Are Corporations People?
So I was walking down the street the other day, when a corporation said, “Hello,” to me. He smiled and waved. It was odd, because I’d never actually encountered a corporation pretending to be a person before, but there he was in disguise. He had pants and clothes on, and he was walking around just like everyone else. He looked so suspicious. I thought about yelling, “Hey, you’re not a real person!” but I didn’t want to hurt his feelings.
Obviously, corporations are not people. They are organizations of people. But I keep hearing protesters yell, “Corporations are not people!” as if there is a whole army of robot corporations trying to disguise themselves as human beings. The whole thing seems ridiculous to me. Corporations can’t drive, they can’t feel, or sing, or love. They’re not people.
Progressives are so fired up about the idea, that it is seen as the quintessential evil of capitalism. They want to take away the rights of corporations, and amend the constitution to give the government more power to crush corporations. Under the new 28th amendment, the government could squash a corporation whenever it wanted. If a corporation put a controversial ad on the air, the government could revoke the corporation’s “charter”, and it would simply cease to exist.
But this infringes on our rights as people. It infringes on the right of free speech. Sure, maybe corporations don’t have the right to say whatever they want, but people do. And people run corporations. Why is it fair to take someone’s rights away just because they run a corporation?
This also infringes on private property rights, which is even more dangerous.
I’m on the side of the progressives. Corporations are not people. But it makes me cringe when progressives want to amend the constitution to take away free speech and private property rights. There are better ways to restrict big businesses, without giving up our rights. The best way is to make government smaller, because after all, it is governments who grow corporations to monsterous sizes.