Amazon reaps what it sows on public safety

AP Photo/John Locher

Amazon is an amazing website, truth be told. For a borderline recluse like myself, I can get just about anything I want shipped to my house, generally with free shipping even. It’s kind of great.

At least, as a vendor, it’s great.

As a company, though, they’re following in the mold of so many others and getting involved in politics. Now, their political positions are coming back to bite them in the posterior.

Seattle is the home of Amazon’s corporate headquarters, employing more than 80,000 people. It’s also one of the nation’s epicenters of crime, rioting, and looting that erupted in 2020 which remains concerns today.

The online sales behemoth that embraces gun control and defunding police is now witnessing the effects of those policies. Amazon is moving its employees out of one of its downtown corporate buildings over concerns of rising crime.

“Given recent incidents…, we’re providing employees currently at that location with alternative office space elsewhere,” an Amazon spokesperson recently told media. “We are hopeful that conditions will improve and that we will be able to bring employees back to this location when it is safe to do so.”

To understand how the neighborhood became so violent as to force the company to relocate their employees to safer confines, Amazon may want to look in the mirror.

Gun Control Donations

Amazon has the largest employment footprint in Seattle, nearly double that of locally-based Starbucks, and the company’s employees are active in campaign giving. This includes donating to gun control groups and elected officials who support restricting the Second Amendment in Washington

Locally, the online delivery giant was the single largest source of donations to former Democratic Seattle Mayor Jenny “Summer of Love” Durkan. All told, employees donated more than $350,000 to a group supporting her mayoral campaign. Durkan, of course, supported defunding police and gun control. She cheered the city council’s approval of her budget that slashed nearly $20 million from the police budget.

In other words, Amazon helped to facilitate the lawlessness they’re now trying to help their employees avoid.

I can’t lie, it’s a little funny to me.

It’s important to note, however, the company itself simply facilitated donations by their own staff. While we know that founder Jeff Bezos isn’t exactly a Trump supporter, the company doesn’t seem to have made its own donations.

Since Amazon’s Smile program allows users to do something similar–only Amazon makes the donation where the customer prefers–though with a far more limited reach, it’s not really the company that’s responsible.

That is, it’s not the company as a legal entity.

However, what is a company if it’s not a collection of people who work there? Without employees, it’s a legal document and little more, and in Amazon’s case, those employees have spent a lot of money that ultimately has made their workplace less safe.

I’d say it’s hilarious except that real people are being hurt.

The problem here is that Big Tech has made a fortune off of hardworking Americans who like the convenience of shopping somewhere like Amazon, yet then turn around and ignore the values many of those people hold. That includes hardworking people who live in the area that Amazon employees are effectively abandoning.

They, however, don’t get to run for the hills. They’re forced to still live and work in the area. They can’t just up and leave.

And they shouldn’t have to.

The employees are reaping what they sow, but unfortunately, so are a lot of other people who made no such donations and just want to live in peace. They sowed no such thing, but now they’re left holding the bag.