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Fraud At LaVerde’s

Basil Enwegbara

Sometimes, I wonder why one should always insist on justice and fairness. I wonder this because of the costs that such insistence imposes on a person. You collide head-on with the system as soon as you begin to question things that go wrong around you. When you disagree, when you stand up to say no, and when you refuse to accept unfair practices, no matter how small they might be, you notice you are in fierce confrontation with the status quo. Because most of us cannot withstand the costs of these oppositions, many things around us continue to go wrong.

The acceptance of wrongs is selfish and is against collective interest. It does not prepare you to be a leader or a good citizen. Even here on the MIT campus, you would be amazed by how people continuously take advantage of you and other students with impunity. Most of these things that go wrong would not exist if some brave students could stand up to oppose them. You should start by pointing out such wrongs whenever you come across unjust activities designed to take advantage of students. They might divert you from your busy academic schedule and homework, but at the end of the day, they are worth pursuing.

Recently, I have noticed some pricing and charging irregularities at LaVerde’s Market. If you care to find out, you should check this out, and I would advise you to take your calculator with you. You will be amazed by what you will discover. I discovered that the total price printed on the receipt does not match up with the total amount charged to the card. Students I shared my experience with have had similar experiences at LaVerde’s. As one student viewed it, these poor practices are “just a common thing among shop cashiers.” Another student also expressed how he had similar experience at La Verde’s and now demands that the cashier to redo the billing whenever he suspects unfair practice. However, most other students simply concurred that it is just a rip-off and there is nothing one can do than overlook it.

But my question remains: if something is not working properly, why shouldn’t we complain? Why shouldn’t we take the time to point out unfair practices in our community? Or have things gone so wrong that there is little we can do to effect a change? Perhaps we are simply afraid of the consequences. If everyone should be unconcerned, who then should bring the change?

We are the freest nation in the world, and this is MIT, the world’s leading center of excellence. Shouldn’t MIT excel at being the world’s watchdog? Isn’t the cost worth bearing in order to benefit the larger society? Do I whine? While I ask myself these difficult questions, I suggest that other students pose to themselves these same questions.

The students must oppose whatever goes wrong on campus. Opposing it makes MIT a better place for us and for future MIT students. Doing so is another way to stop new Enrons from emerging. Unfair practices are the cancer the society must fight. Fighting it brings out the best society, one we can all cherish. In fact, opposing the slightest unfair practice is the best way we can shine as leaders. MIT students do not deserve to be taken advantage of by anyone.