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Commentary: US businesses increasingly taking a stand on social issues in response to public pressure

"Why are corporations finally turning against the NRA?" 26 February 2018

After the... high-school massacre in Parkland, Florida, left 17 students and teachers dead, the National Rifle Association (NRA), the nonprofit gun-rights advocacy group, was rebuked by a surprising group of liberal activists: American corporations...Why have the Parkland shootings forced corporate action in a way that previous school shootings could not?... In this case, there has been a perfect storm of articulate student outrage and savvy online activism, merging with a rising tide of resentment against Trump and Trump-affiliated organizations. The students of Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School... have joined other activists in naming and shaming companies... [and] encouraging people to contact NRA-sponsoring firms... As more companies canceled their NRA affiliations, it put additional pressure on other companies that had initially resisted doing the same. Within a 12-hour period, Delta Airlines went from defending its relationship with the NRA as “routine” to requesting that the association “remove our information from their website.”.

... Many business leaders are getting political because they have determined that, in this environment, the noisiest position is often to remain silent in the face of national condemnation... In many cases, America’s corporate community has become a quiet defender of socially liberal causes. Nearly 400 companies filed an amicus brief in 2015 urging the Supreme Court to legalize same-sex marriage... Hundreds of executives, many from tech companies, signed a 2017 letter urging the president to protect immigrants brought to the U.S. as children by saving the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program... Corporations... have proven to be far more responsive to political outcries and scandals than political parties... National government in an age of Republican control is mostly unresponsive to liberal protests. So, many activists are focusing their ire on the business community. [also refers to Aetna, Amazon, Apple, American Airlines, AT&T, Avis Budget Group, Delta, Disney, Hertz, LifeLock, Merck, MetLife, Uber, United)

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