Category Archives: Social Responsibility

How and why we should be not only more socially responsible, but also more responsive

Not in this century

By now I’m sure everyone has heard that the drugstore chain CVS has announced that they will stop the practice of selling tobacco products in all of their stores by October of this year. Since they project that they will take a $2B hit in sales by dropping tobacco either that are really doing this out of a concern for people’s health, or they think they’ll make up for that loss by picking up new shopper who support this move.

One can only hope that CVS will be the first in a wave of socially responsible moves by health conscious businesses.  It has never made sense a to why a drugstore would sell tobacco products once they were determined to not be healthy?  It also doesn’t make a lot of sense about why a drugstore would sell alcoholic beverages (are you listening Walgrens?).  Oh, wait a minute, I forgot we live in a capitalistic society – money trumps everything.

irregardless of CVS’s motives I think we should all congratulate them on doing the right thing.  I think we also need to try to convince more retailers to follow suite.

I am a former smoker and I don’t blame anyone for my smoking other than myself and the society that made smoking acceptable.  Yes in recent years things have changed, no smoking on airplanes, in schools, bars, etc.  Smokers are no longer identified as being “cool”.  Yet, with all of this and the known health concerns it is still legal to smoke.  Crazy, right?  Wait, there is that capitalism thing again.  Tobacco companies make money, employ people and most importantly they spend money to lobby the government to make sure they can continue on in business.

Well, I for one think it is time to phase out smoking.  Yes, it means that eventually the tobacco companies will either have to cease to exist or they will have to find a new line of business.  Sad, yes, but it’s just too bad.

What I would like to propose is a way that I think will lessen the pain to the tobacco companies and allow those who are using tobacco products to continue to do such for the foreseeable future.  Is this the ideal method, no.  My proposal will mean many more years of health concerns and costs but I think it is a viable and workable proposal is also fairly easy to carry out and administer.

I call my plan the “Not In This Century” plan.  To put it simply; no one born in the 21st century will ever by legally allowed to buy tobacco products.  You all have seen those signs that say that you must have been born before a certain date to buy tobacco products right?  Well what I propose is that the last version of that sign will say “You must have been born before January 1st 2000 to buy tobacco products”.  These signs would go into effect on January 1st, 2018.

This would give tobacco companies several years to prepare for the effects of the new law.  It would also phase out their customer base over potentially 80 years or so.  This gives the plenty of time find a new business model or to just get out of business.

The time to act is now.  Who can join with me to push the concept of “Not In This Century”?

Flu is Fun (sick/sic)

It may just be that getting older really isn’t all it’s cracked up to be?  It’s not even what I consider to be flu season yet (Halloween hasn’t come and gone) and I’ve had a nasty go-round of flu!

I’m not one for flu shots (as in I’ve never had one) and before last week it’s probably been twenty years since I’ve had anything that I would classify as “flu”.  Now, I really have no idea as to whether getting a flu shot would have prevented me getting the flu this time, but as you can find flu shots as cheap as $0 I guess I can’t justify skipping them any longer.  Spending a full 48 hours confined to bed definitely cost more tan $0 in opportunity costs if nothing else.

Yes I do believe that getting vaccinated should ultimately be a personal choice.  However, I guess you really do need to factor into your decision-making those around you also.  Must remember that it really “isn’t all about you” in so may different ways!

It’s not always all about you

To paraphrase J.F.K. – “Ask not what somebody can do for you.  Ask what you can do for somebody.”

With the exception of one poor soul somewhere in the world you have to remember that no matter how bad off you are there is someone else out there in a worse position than you.

Online or offline there are a myriad of ways in which you can help others without hurting yourself.  No one is asking for you to give away a Cadillac a day or to feed all the hungry people in the world.  You can start with something as simple as a smile or a “good day”.  You can give up your seat on the bus or train.  You can let the person change lanes in front of you.

Anything positive you do for someone else is a good thing.  Take a moment every day to look around you (and I mean really look) and see what you are actually in the midst of as you move through the day.  How can you make a simple gesture to make someone’s day better?

As I heard today, “Always tip the musician”.  That’s good advice to follow.