As I have mentioned before, I read the advice columns. Many times I will just read the question from the puzzled reader and skip out on the advice from the “expert.” However, earlier this week I read a question that was interesting enough for me to read the response.
Here in Myrtle Beach the local newspaper runs Dear Abby. In the Monday column, a high school teacher wrote in. She explained that a fellow teacher had a fundraiser where she sold brownies for $1. A student came along and cleaned her out of the brownies, buying every single one. He then proceeded to re-sell those brownies for $2 each to his classmates during lunch. The teacher who wrote for Abby’s advice praised the student for his entreprenual spirit. However, her co-workers didn’t. The fellow teachers thought it was wrong to profit off a fundraiser. Talk about a dilemma!
Abby responded by siding with the person who wrote in. She explained that the young man was entitled to do whatever he wanted with the brownies. Never one to miss out on the opportunity to slip in a zinger, Abby added “If other students were willing to spend $2 for $1 brownies, well — that’s capitalism.” Nice one.
Here is my opinion. Please, take it or leave it…
I disagree with Abby and the person who wrote in declaring that the student should be praised for making a profit. However, that doesn’t mean I agree with the reasoning offered by the other teachers either.
I think it was in bad taste for the student to buy the brownies and then re-sell them. But I don’t believe it was wrong from the standpoint that he was profiting off of a charitable cause. The fundraiser had a maximum amount of money it could make with the prices that were set. The noble cause reached the maximum goal as the product completely sold out. The money was raised and the effort was a success.
With that said, I think the student acted inappropriately. In my eyes, what he did was incredibly disrespectful to the teacher who originally sold the brownies.
I think it is safe to say that the teacher put some planning into the fundraiser. Most likely she baked those brownies or at least made arrangements for someone else to make them. She arrived on campus and put herself out there by selling treats for a good cause. The product of her labor should have ended with the selling of the brownies and the enjoyment of them by the student and whoever he wanted to give them to (free of charge). The fact that the student bought her out and then immediately started re-selling them doesn’t sit well with me.
Although probably not his intention, the actions of the student is a slap in the face to the teacher. He showed her up in front of the whole school by making it look like he was more savvy than her. What he did displayed no appreciation for the efforts of the school employee and minimized the teacher-student relationship.
I do wonder what the teacher felt like as she watched the student sell her brownies. I bet it was a personal blow and a direction she never thought her good intentions would take.
How about you? Do you agree with Dear Abby and the teacher who wrote in? Do you agree with the co-workers? Or do you side with me? I am interested to hear your opinions. Don’t Blink.