Saturday, March 16, 2019

Money Changes Everything…Almost

Money changes everything
I said money, money changes everything
You think you know what you're doin'
We don't pull the strings
It's all in the past now
Money changes everything.
-Lyrics from the song ‘Money Changes Everything’ by Cyndi Lauper

By now you’ve heard about the college admissions scandal. Rich people paying college administrators, testing services and coaches in order to get their little darlings into the elite school of their choice. The list of bribe paying parents includes notable entertainers and business leaders.

This is bad and it is big, but it’s not new. People with money get special treatment. That’s just how it works. And people with money get used to it. Eventually it becomes an entitlement. I am rich, I deserve it. Whether it’s flying around in a private jet, staying in a suite on the top floor where price line peasants dare not to tread or just getting a grand table with a view in the hottest new restaurant while everyone else has to wait for over a year to get a bad table in a small space by the kitchen door. Or making a big donation to a university to insure that a child or grandchild gains admission. Not a bribe, just a generous gesture of support for higher education.

And when your child wants to go to a certain school, there has to be a way to make that happen. It only takes money. Money along with some people who are willing to bend and, if need be, break the rules in order to accomplish outcomes for which the wealthy are willing to pay handsomely. Thus, we have the Great College Admissions Scandal of 2019.

Wealth means power and power can be used for the greater good or just the greater good of me and mine. So whether it’s their child, their political party, their business or just their alma mater's football team; people tend to use their wealth and power to gain advantage. What the Great College Admissions Scandal reveals is just how desperate and audacious some people have become in order to get what they want. It also demonstrates what happens in a society when the classical virtues of prudence, justice, temperance and courage are no longer taught.

The scale of this abuse of wealth and power is striking. A business was created that catered to this growing demand for ways to game the college admissions process. The silver lining around the Great College Admissions Scandal of 2019 is that it may just force universities to consider their real purpose and to establish admission standards that are not for sale. Lux et Veritas.

A bribe is seen as a charm by the one who gives it;
they think success will come at every turn. - Proverbs 17:8

No comments: