This is a kinda different post for my blog all around. I usually avoid controversial posts, as although I love a hearty debate in the right context, I prefer this venue just to share glimpses of our life. I also usually avoid product endorsements. We don’t even wear “character” shoes. Disney doesn’t grace the children’s nightwear, underwear or any where. My endorsing a convenience food place is incongruous as well, because we tend to be more of the whole-foods, home cooking mind set.
Yet… I’m absolutely stunned at homeschoolers across the internet being quite so outraged at Subway–yes, the sandwich shop. Apparently Subway is running an essay contest and wants to give 5K in athletic equipment to the winning school.
Our society seems eager to find discrimination. Everything is supposed to be “fair”. On the surface this sounds great, and I’m thoroughly opposed to real, mean-spirited, or even just uninformed discrimination. But it can be taken to communistic levels that try to remove any blessings to flatten the topography and make everything the same. It would be entirely different if they were refusing service to paying homeschooling patrons, or seating homeschoolers in a separate section, but we’ve become so petty we get up in arms if even gifts and donations aren’t all inclusive.
This is Subway’s contest, and they are giving away a prize. They host the contest, they make the rules. This is as it should be. When I give something away, whether it is charitable donations or birthday presents, I give to the recipients of my choosing. If, as a landlord, I want bake bread as a blessing to one renter, but not for all the tenants, that too is my business.
In Subway’s case, it just flat makes sense to me that they’d like the $5,000 of athletic equipment to benefit a larger pool of children than just one family. But regardless of whether it makes sense, it is their right to have the rules they choose–Senseless or otherwise.
Of course it is the customer’s right to boycott, and many homeschoolers are doing just that. I do wonder though, whether it is wise. Certainly there is a lot of real discrimination against homeschoolers, and this contest could further the misconception that we are somehow not doing “real” education. Yet, by protesting we are joining the mentality that says no group should be blessed if my group isn’t included. Like a spoiled socialite we are outraged that anyone could host a party and not invite us.
I’ve not read any other homeschool blogs supporting Subway’s right to make the rules about how they give away money. I’m obviously in the minority. But then, I’ve always held that how a person gives away money is their own business. I don’t believe people are “owed” fairness in this respect, but rather that the business or individual giving is owed the right to give as they please.
On Sunday evening we ate Subway. And after reading around the blogosphere today, I’d be tempted to go get Subway again tonight… but alas we have a delicious roast cooking in the crock pot as I type. Too bad they can’t compete with a slow cooked, organic, grass feed, beef pot roast in a wine sauce with potatoes.
Here’s Keegan showing his support for the rights of businesses:
For Further Reading:
Here’s a link to the contest rules.
And a comment link to tell Subway what you think, pro or con.
Here’s an article from American Thinker about why homschoolers are feeling excluded.
And a Worldnet Daily article on the subject of Subway and the homeschool community.