Hey, we're killing this planet anyway, so let's party!
Now all the corporate pitchmen advocate that, no matter what our vice, we kill ourselves responsibly. Those Bud Girls really discourage teenage binge drinking, don't you think? And problem gambling? Who ya' gonna' believe, a billionaire casino owner or some dinky little church always preaching at you? Sheldon G. Adelson, the billionaire CEO behind Sands Bethworks, is even a recent recipient of the Woodrow Wilson Award for Corporate Citizenship, given to those who exalt the common good over their own bottom line. They don't hand those out every day. According to Adelson, "the act of philanthropy and good corporate citizenship is not an obligation, it's an honor."
So don't be worried about that casino, which will contain 3,000 slot machines and electronic table games, 300 hotels rooms, 40 upscale stores, 8 restaurants and 4 night clubs, all of them under one roof. Don't fret about all that money leaving the Lehigh Valley economy and going straight back to corporate headquarters in Vegas. After all, the casino will have lots of menial jobs for you and me. We'll at least have the satisfaction of knowing that our slave wages help the philanthropy of a Woodrow Wilson award winner.
So it's no surprise that Chris Benedict, a Freedom High grad, would ask the new casino to help defray some of the cost of his class' 25th reunion, which will be held at Musikfest this year, jointly with Liberty High School. He's been soliciting corporate and business sponsorships as low as $50.
He was shot down by Susan Stachowski, Executive Assistant to the President, Sands Casino Resort Bethlehem.
"Regarding any request for contributions or investment, unfortunately, we would not be able to participate in any projects requiring financial support prior to our opening. Our commitment to our shareholders and the State is to get the project up and running as soon as possible and we are going to be focusing all our resources on accomplishing that goal."
Gee, she doesn't sound like Woodrow Wilson at all. I thought some things were supposed to be more important than the bottom line. Before that casino was approved, the Sands was handing out money like there's no tomorrow. For example, it contributed $2,500 to one of Benedict's classmates for an annual golf outing, Par Fore Kids, benefiting kids at Pembroke. The casino even threw in a free weekend trip to Las Vegas. I don't know if they threw in any Bud Girls. Now, Benedict's classmate can't even get the Sands to return his calls.
Incidentally, Lehigh County Exec Don Cunningham is a member of Diamond's graduating class. But what has he done lately?