Ethics Dunce: Food Lion

I suppose the silver lining in our various corporations and businesses groveling to anti-American groups and movements is that their owners and leaders lack any convictions, values, principles or integrity, so they will abandon stupid decisions as  thoughtlessly as they made them. Remember how quickly Cracker Barrel  did a mid-air double backflip when it first condemned “Duck Dynasty’s” Phil Robertson, then changed its corporate mind the second it realized its original position would forfeit more profit that the reverse? That’s Food Lion. That’s most of these spineless, weasel-wired organizations.


We learned about Food Lion’s “now you see ’em, now you don’t” values when employee Gary Dean, a 69-year-old U.S. Air Force veteran, showed up to work wearing an American flag-printed face mask. His  store manager told him that someone found the mask offensive, and instead of telling the asshole that he was welcome to get his groceries in China,  the manager informed Dean that he could no longer wear the patriotic mask while working. (If Food Lion simply enforced a policy that no attire could  communicate any opinion, position, or sentiment, that would be proper. However, that’s not why Dean was told to take off his mask.)

“As a veteran, my dad being a World War II hero, my best friend killed in Vietnam, out of respect for them, I can’t just say, ‘No, I’ll take my flag and put it in my pocket,” Dean said. So he quit. See, some Americans have principles, just not many who run corporations.

Dean’s story spread on social media, and suddenly, Food Lion was a big fan of the flag again.

Food Lion deeply respects the American flag. We listened to our associates and customers about our uniform policy. We require that associates wear masks without writing, insignia or symbols. We will allow associates to wear masks with the American flag that meet this standard,” it tweeted.We appreciate and thank our more than 77,0000 associates who are working hard every day to safely nourish our neighbors in the towns and cities we serve.”

Wait: if Food Lion respects the American flag, why did its employee groevl to a cutomer who didn’t? And how does someone have an American flag on his mask without having a “symbol” there?

I’m sorry. Not only is Food Lion run by weenies who would be the first to welcome our insect overlords…

…the groceries Food Lion sells probably makes those who eat the food cowardly and stupid.

To hell with it.


22 thoughts on “Ethics Dunce: Food Lion

  1. If you hate the US flag so much there are a couple of hundred other nations to emigrate to. Unless you are an immigrant who used a flying saucer to get here, and then the sky’s no limit. Something can be tacky without giving the right to be offended.

    • 194 to be precise. Seriously? Don’t make me do my Jack Nicholson impression and give the “World with walls” speech. Actually, let me give one of my own, that I gave this past Memorial Day, before all this garbage started:

      Ten Reasons this Nation is Still Worth Fighting and Dying For

      That sounds almost retro in this era of self-loathing, self-flagellation, and endless guilt, with a double dose if you’re white, a triple dose if you’re also male. But, I’m not here to talk about identity politics, as much of an issue as they may be. I’m here to talk about how, despite the endless criticism leveled at this country, some fairly, some not so fairly, some sincerely meant to move us closer to the best we can be, some from those who criticize everything and can never be satisfied with anything, there are still valid reasons that our young people don the uniform and put their lives on the line every day.

      1. Ours is still the greatest economy in the world. No matter how you slice it, even on our worst day, our economy is more than a quarter again the size of the next biggest economy, that of China, and four times the size of the third, that of Japan. After that the economies just get smaller. That’s because we have the resources, we have the expertise, we have the room for innovation, we know how to use all of them, and we let those who know how to use them best do so.

      2. Ours is still a Constitution often imitated, but never duplicated, that gives our people the most freedom anywhere in the world. That’s because the underlying basis of it is that the government must trust the people if it wants them to trust it. A few nations, including some surprising ones (the UK, New Zealand) have no constitution at all, meaning the individual rights you and I take for granted could be voted away there tomorrow. Many other nations didn’t even have any kind of guarantee of basic rights until well into the 20th century. Even where they do have them, quite often they are more aimed at keeping the community civil and orderly than free. In some countries (Austria, Germany) you can be jailed for displaying a symbol, in others (Turkey) for speaking out against the majority or disparaging its founder, in still others for daring to criticize current policy. This is before we even talk about the right to keep and bear arms, or the right to be secure against unreasonable searches and seizures, or the rights of criminal defendants, a lot of which are greatly curtailed or nonexistent elsewhere.

      3. Ours is still one of the most welcoming nations in the world – for those who come here legally. Over the centuries we’ve welcomed people from almost all of the 196 nations in the world right now, and successfully incorporated them to become productive members of society. Some have fled wars. Some have fled tyranny. Some simply come seeking a better life and are willing to play by the rules and work hard for it. Every July 4th we swear in thousands of these new citizens. Our main problem, despite what others might tell you, is with the folks who AREN’T willing to play by the rules or do the necessary work to become part of this society.

      4. Ours is a nation where advances are made. That wasn’t always the case, but, where Japan produces electronics, Germany produces automobiles, and South Korea produces both cheaper and quicker, we make the first foray into cyberspace, we harness light to cut through steel and perform life-saving surgery, we build aircraft that can’t be seen, heard or detected until they’re right on top of you, and we put men on the moon. Name the last five major European medical breakthroughs? They aren’t there, because single payer health care takes away the impetus to make advances.

      5. Ours is a nation that helps others. Who was there when Indonesia was flooded through no fault of its own? Who was there when Japan got so shaken by earthquakes that nuclear plants were getting destroyed and polluting land and sea? And that’s just some of the more recent stuff, we haven’t even touched the really major efforts like the Marshall Plan, that rebuilt Europe from the ashes of World War II, which we did not have to do. When New Orleans was flooded by Hurricane Katrina, and the New Jersey Shore and Long Island were left helpless by Superstorm Sandy, no one from anywhere else did so much as pump out a basement. Although firemen came from as far away as Chicago and LA to help their brothers when the Twin Towers lay in ashes, I don’t recall any international smoke-eaters coming in to work “the pile.”

      6. Ours is a nation that forgives. Yes, we certainly know about realpolitik and how to use the enemy of my enemy and how today’s enemy can be tomorrow’s friend and vice versa. We also know our history and we know we had help coming to be, mostly from France. We paid that debt when rushed to France’s aid when they were in danger of falling. We liberated them again when they DID fall, even though we didn’t have to. By all rights we could have left Germany and Japan in ruins. They tried to conquer the world. We didn’t, and today we are allies. By all rights we could have told the UK, who’d been our enemy twice and actually built ships to be used against us that they were on their own against Hitler, and a few communities here wanted to do just that. We didn’t. We have embassies in Havana and Hanoi, the capitals of nations that were our sworn enemies for years. We have every right to hold grudges, and if we did we could make a lot of other nations’ lives miserable, but we don’t.

      7. Ours is a nation of great opportunity. I won’t deny that many folks who did well here, including many on both sides of the political aisle, were born into wealth. That happens all over the world. However, this is the nation where Andrew Carnegie started as a poor immigrant with nothing and became one of the world’s richest men by discovery how to purify steel. It’s the nation where Athinasios Karvelas started selling ice cream with one old truck, and later became Tom Carvel, with 500 franchises nationwide. It’s also the nation where a decidedly ordinary engineer named Jeff Bezos launched amazon and a whiz kid from White Plains named Mark Zuckerberg created Facebook.

      8. Ours is a nation that somehow manages to hold it together despite being possibly the most heterogenous anywhere. Americans come from every continent, color, creed and class the world over, but, somehow, in the almost 250 years since we declared our independence, we’ve had a few rough patches, but only one civil war, over the questions of state vs. Federal power and whether we would continue to allow slavery. Can other, more homogenous nations make that claim? The UK, which fought over five ruling dynasties and a messy civil war over religion? France, who went through two kingdoms, two empires, and five republics in the same time we’ve been around? The Scandinavian nations, who don’t seem to have been able to decide exactly which one of them was in charge for centuries? India, which had to split into a Muslim nation and a nation composed mostly of Hindus to avoid tearing itself apart upon becoming independent?

      9. Ours is still the deadliest nation in the world. A few other nations may have more men under arms, and before the war on terror there were others who had more battle experience, but our armed forces still boast the most sophisticated missiles, the fastest and most advanced aircraft, the best training with the most strategic depth, and an ability to project power anywhere in the world unsurpassed by any other nation and unstoppable.

      10. Ours is still the nation all other nations look to. For a while the world took its cues from London and Paris. After that Berlin and Vienna joined the club. Then all those flags fell and the world looked to Washington and Moscow for fifty years. At this point Moscow’s star has faded and, like it or not, this is the nation all others look to. Hopefully that’s how it stays.

      • Steve, you make good arguments in favor of American exceptionalism.

        However, I would like to clarify one point on your list. The United States did get offers of help after 9/11, particularly from Japan.

        And we also got offers of help after Katrina.

        How much assistance our government accepted is an entirely different story, but other countries do offer help.

        • <bSteve, you make good arguments in favor of American exceptionalism.

          Yet, and certainly everyone notices this, America is exceptionally afflicted right now. It would seem — or it is possible to suggest in any case — that a great deal made it ‘exceptional’ has been, through many different mechanisms, undermined. While I do think that the plurality of those who write here — this is by-and-large a Conservative blog — understand that corruption is present and rampant, there seems to be some difficulty for the conservative sort to gain clarity about causation.

          Again, it is easy to understand why some will undertake to point to the many good reasons why the nation America is great or has great aspects and things about it, especially when there are people who are literally burning it down in the name of Heaven-knows-what. But simply citing some reasons why the nation is exceptional is simply not enough. Corruption has rendered it non-exceptional.

          How can one go about examining that corruption and speaking about it?

        • Thanks for getting that in, A.M. The Japanese, in particular, have always been around when help was needed, before it was looked for, unnoticed. A lot of Alaskan coastal waters and shores have been quietly cleaned up by individuals and small groups. The country that is mostly on-the-spot after any of our disasters, however, is most often overlooked: Outside of the U.S., Canada provided the most aid and relief for Hurricane Katrina for instance: “ships, supplies, volunteers, search-and-rescue teams”, and homes for evacuees in their country. And to finish up where you left off, here’s Homeland Security’s take on this country’s learning to swallow our false pride and learn to take what we’re offered with good grace.

          There’s nothing worse than wanting to help people who have helped you and have it cavalierly waved away. Among other things, it’s an insult. And insulting ones friends …. even the little ones who can’t afford to copy our extravagant (and generally well publicized) generosity …. is not a nice thing to do to friends.

      • Ethics Alarms is a blog dedicated to the investigation and discussion of ethics. Into what category within Occidental traditions do we place and locate ethics? Philosophy seems the most likely category. Because any conversation about ethics, because it is a conversation and takes place through *the terms of discourse*, will be philosophical by nature. This is also true of Greco-Christianity btw, The religious and mystical categories of the early Apostles entered into and became animated through Greek philosophical categories.

        So, the point is that the discussion of ethics, decisions about what is ethical and what is not ethical, is not a game of vanity in the sense that you cannot play unless you are serious. But the question What is seriousness? And What makes a person serious? turn back into philosophical considerations and the use of reason and profound thought that are necessary for that sort of examination.

        I suggest that there is a large and obvious problem with The Patriotic Viewpoint and The Patriotic Assertion that is in some sense incompatible with the examination of ethical questions. Patriotic View is, more often than not, infused with sentiments that tend to augment bias. This is not a hard point to grasp. If a man is a salesman for a car, for example, and owns stock in the company that manufactures the car, it is not likely that he will be able to tell you the Real Truth or the Full Story about that car.

        So it is — I assert this is obvious — with the Declarative Patriotic Viewpoint. You cannot say anything against such a declared position because you will *offend* the one who has it and expresses it. And everyone should know that the Patriot’s Viewpoint will tend to gloss over those elements of a given nation that are *unbecoming* to patriotic rhetoric.

        We live in a dynamic and dangerous time, a crucial moment in US history obviously, but also one that Is similarly dangerous for Europe — for the Occident generally. To speak about this — to uncover what is happening, why it is happening, and what it means — seems to me to be an area of investigation that can only be an endeavor demanded by Ethical Imperative. One has a *duty* to attempt to understand the present. And one has a duty to profoundly engage in the examination of ethics — essentially an examination of behavior and choices — and to be a serious about it as is possible. But again, What is seriousness? It turns back again to questions that are essentially philosophical.

        We definitely live in a time where a great deal about *America* is being attacked. We see this daily. But as I often say it seems to me that we often see *superficially*. A superficial view is a view that remains *on the surface* and does not get to the heart of the issue. So, we are bound to the task of examining *causation* and not merely to examine shifting, mutating circumstances. To choose to focus only on surface is, according to the reasoning I present, a failure to *take seriously* what one must take seriously if one is to understand.

        A Patriotic View cannot be and is not sufficient as a platform of analysis of our dangerous & complex present. True indeed that a radically critical and a radically destructive movement such as we observe out there on the streets, and also on the pages of the New York Times, calls forth a reaction. One is called to defend what is unfairly attacked. One is also required to see into and also through the motivations of those who carry forward this attack. But here is the issue, or certainly an important part of the issue: Who can see and who can explain? If one merely explains superficially, but does not arrive at genuine understanding (if such is actually possible), that could be insufficient and even perhaps worse than if no attempt at explanation were attempted.

        The Patriotic View is a glossary view. It can also contaminate the necessary intellectual freedom that is needed to be able to see and describe things truthfully. A Patriotic View, in a genuine crisis, cannot serve the internal processes of analysis and examination needed to come to *actionable understanding*. Yet it is true that the patriotic mood can rally people, to some degree, within defensive postures.

        But even if this is so, and it is so, nevertheless a Patriotic View cannot replace the mind-set that is needed for profound ethical analysis. This much seems obvious to me. And this is why I resist patriotic viewpoints. If ethics becomes *contaminated* by patriotic sentiment then one establishes, it seems to me, an ethics of bias as being *good & proper*. This can’t be right.

        So I will say it again: America is splitting apart at its seams. The reasons this is happening definitely needs to be examined and understood. A mere Patriotic Viewpoint is not sufficient to this task. And a Patriotic Stance is not and will never be enough to patch back together what is coming apart at the seams because, I suppose, the reasons the seams are parting extend far beyond sentimental vision.

        • Isaiah Berlin is, I think ‘classically’, a Roosevelt liberal. And here he describes the importance and the advantage of a *philosophical perspective* while also at least mentioning why such analysis is problematical.

        • In a Monty Python skit, a BBC host (I’m reciting from memory) begins by saying, “We must be clear and mean what we say.’ Then he starts saying, with increasing speed, “But what to we mean by mean? What do we mean by clear? What to we mean by must? What do we mean by we? Waht do we mean…” until a 40 ton weight falls out of the sky and squashes him.

          So watch out.

          • Ah, I see your point. Touche!

            However, had he started by saying

            I am moved by fancies that are curled
            Around these images, and cling:
            The notion of some infinitely gentle
            Infinitely suffering thing.

            Wipe your hands across your mouth, and laugh;
            The world revolve like ancient women
            Gathering fuel in ancient lots.

            that 40 ton weight would have remained suspended in the air and he and we would only have stared at it in wonder!

            I am sure that you will agree of course . . .

    • Marie, the malcontents don’t want to leave, they are miserable and want to stay and make everyone else miserable. I ask the same question of the black kids who want to change colleges. “If the place is so awful and is irreparably racist, why don’t you go to a historically black college are start your own?” But they just want to make a ruckus.

  2. A bit off topic but I read about a refugee from
    North Korea who now lives in the U.S. Her journey was harrowing but she says she is grateful for her experience because she sees so much good. She also mentions being bewildered at how Americans growing up here can see so much darkness.

    As a great philosopher once said: “Hunger is the best sauce.”

  3. We are seeing more and more of this kind of kowtowing to the extremists everyday across the USA, their intimidation is working. It’s happening so often that every instance is as signature significant as the last.

    It’s things like this that lend support my claim that the the deliberate dumbing-down of America is complete and irrational social justice warrior intimidation has already won the battle of the minds across the metropolitan areas of the United States. They’re controlling damn near all the college campuses and infiltrating every corner of society with their irrational poison. They’re being elected to local governments, school boards, and congress. This is just one more signature significant example to put on top of the already huge pile of evidence to prove my argument. It’s a verifiable pattern; it’s happening over and Over and OVER again and it will not stop until there is a HUGE public blow up and the shit really hits the fan because some company or University or municipality doesn’t kowtow the irrational lunatics of the social justice army.

    Hordes of Anti-Social “Stupid” People Stomp Civility Into Submission!

    • It’s been said that you never really know what you have until it’s gone. I think our society has lost so much of those sturdy societal building blocks that it’s now quite obvious that they’re mostly gone and without these sturdy building blocks our society is apparently starting to crumble.

      Was there sociological switch that was flipped over night or was it a slow decline to what our society is today? Personally I think it’s been a nearly unnoticeable slow decline with some notable stimulus along the way. What I’ve observed is that since the beginning of the 21st century it seems to me like these sturdy societal building blocks are rapidly being disregarded as valueless and old-fashioned. This is especially evident in the last ten years and their value is very noticeably been scrapped and replaced in the last three years.

      What was once considered to be taboo anti-social behaviors in our society are now rapidly becoming mainstream acceptable, encouraged and are replacing the sturdy societal building blocks that were once held in high regard.

      As I often say: You (plural) see the surface but seem inhibited from getting to — seeing and explaining — causation. If society is *crumbling* as you say this is an observation that people have been making for generations and even for thousands of years. There are cuneiform tablets from Sumer where fathers complain about this errant sons!

      Those ‘building blocks’ seem to me more the effect of an integrated, well-founded society. Could one assemble those *blocks* and (to push on your metaphor) give them to people and think that the social corruptions will magically be cured? It would not seem so. Those *blocks* have become non-important to them. Other *blocks* they prefer to work with.

      If what I suggest is so, a more detailed and perhaps *fearless* examination of causation is in order.

      Was there sociological switch that was flipped over night or was it a slow decline to what our society is today?

      This question, though a good one, seems to me an admittance of having no (or little) idea about causation. ‘The Decline of the West’ is a topic in and of itself. Richard Weaver’s Ideas Have Consequences attempts an answer . . . yet I might suggest that though the answer is there, it is not an answer that is recognizes as needed or useful. I mean that if people cannot see themselves, if they cannot see their circumstances, if they cannot see their ‘trajectory’ and what has happened to make them them, they rather obviously cannot introspect sufficiently to even have concern for the question!

      In Hindu thought (Vaishnava philosophy specifically) it is suggested that our activities lead us either toward nescience or liberating science which, for a Vaishnava, is knowledge about the higher orders of being. It is a dual possibility that stands before us. We either cultivate the sort of materialism that leads to bondage; or we recognize, *see*, and cultivate higher levels of awareness. So, you ask if a switch was suddenly flipped or if it was a slow decline. It does not matter, does it? if the problem — the cause — is properly identified.

      In reading you over some years now you seem to have very little idea about *causation*. My theory is that the causal agent simply does not appear on your mental radar. Why do I say such a bold thing? Because I force myself to be serious about this endeavor — the one we are apparently involved in.

      But there are perhaps a dozen different areas — causes, as I say — that you cannot see because you will not to see them, or you will to exclude them from being seen. Note simply that the Dissident Right does not suffer from that fear, or that defect as the case may be.

      What if your rhetorical questioning amounts to *going around in circles*? What if you will never make substantial progress until you can develop some clearer notions of causation? What if, given your methods and the material you work with, your efforts are unfruitful and even vain? Isn’t this the biting question we must all ask ourselves?

  4. “We appreciate and thank our more than 77,0000 ….”

    Was it wrong of me to expect that sentence to end with gratification toward the armed forces? or say…. the country? (okay, I wasn’t expecting the government to get the praise, but their “associates?” Am I meant to understand that these are not employees or that those who work for wages and the ones who get salaries are lumped together? Talk about mealy mouthed, just to avoid an apology to an individual . . . . Who is this “we”? (Anyone remember the old Lone Ranger/Tonto exchange when kemosabe notes the bows and arrows aimed down at them from the high canyon walls and exclaims “Looks like we’re in trouble now, Tonto” and Tonto questions his use of the plural?)

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