Is Pierre Peladeau a good role-model for Business students?

Essay by Deez-NutzCollege, UndergraduateA+, September 2008

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Most of us have heard of Pierre Peladeau, a man who has built a multi-billion dollar company from a $1,500 loan. There is no doubt that he has achieved a lot during his life time and there is no doubt that a lot of it was good. For instance, he was known for donating millions to charities and even visiting dying strangers in Montreal hospitals to bolster their spirits. However, I believe that the bad things he did overshadow the good. He was involved in several controversies, the most famous being the anti-Semitic remarks made against the Jewish community. There were also some sexist comments about business women. In the following I will explain why, in my opinion, Pierre Peladeau is not a good role-model for Business students.

First of all, I would like to discuss about Peladeau's anti-Semitic comments. In 1990 he gave an interview to the monthly magazine "L'Actualité".

In this interview he mentioned that Jews "take up too much space". Immediately, this sparked a huge controversy. Now that is no surprise, because the founder and CEO of one of the biggest publishing companies in the world should not make such remarks. Such a person is well known and looked upon with great respect, and the comments that he made tarnish this hard earned respect. His remarks about the Jews didn't end there; he made similar statements on a radio show and feuded with a Jewish musician. In the end he did make an apology, but the damage had already been done. For instance, the Université de Montreal and the Concordia University both withdrew plans to honor Peladeau for his contributions to society. What was also very surprising is that not a single politician said anything about this issue except for Robert Libman, the only Jewish...