Universal background checks; that would be a good first step. Gun violence may seem to some of my readers too far afield from corporate governance. However, I believe our investment decisions, including communications with companies and proxy votes made after AFTER buying stock should reflect all our values, not just greed.
I am all for banning assault weapons, ending the federal funding freeze on gun violence research, raising the minimum age to buy firearms, outlawing bump stocks, no-fly no-buy laws, etc. However, here I simply request that readers take a few minutes to help pass federal legislation requiring universal background checks by putting pressure on corporations to lobby in favor of it.
Side note: My California license plate is CORPGOV. That is a reference to my website and my passion to make corporate governance more democratic. Unfortunately, most people think it has something to do with my support of Corporatocracy. For example, I was once given a ticket for failing to observe a right turn only lane. The police officer acknowledged there was poor signage. She told me she saw my license plate and gave me a ticket so I would get it fixed through my “connections.” I did end up getting it fixed but through photographs and letters, not connections.
#ParklandStudentsSpeak seem to be moving us forward. Grade school survivors of Sandy Hook were not as articulate? Requiring universal background checks seems very doable to me. Companies and their trade associations do have clout in Congress. Dick’s Sporting Goods came out in support when they made their other announcements.
It should not be hard to get WalMart, Kroger, LL Bean, etc. to support universal background checks, since that would take business away from gun show competitors. Additionally, 97% of Americans support background checks, so there little is little risk of adverse publicity, except from the crazies. Nineteen states with comprehensive background checks had a roughly 50 percent lower gun violence rates.
Take Action on Universal Background Checks
Yes, write to your political representatives asking them to support background checks and other measures. Don’t stop there. Everyone knows companies and their trade associations have tremendous influence in Congress. Here are some of the additional steps I took.
- As a shareholder and occasional customer, I contacted Walmart.
- At Kroger’s, contact the Fred Meyer Division.
- LL Bean
- Outdoor Industry Association
My typical message was fairly short. Here’s what I wrote to Kroger.
I reviewed Kroger’s gun policy but did not see a policy on universal background checks.
Universal Background Checks: Going Further
Want to take additional steps? #SandyHookPrinciples
#BoycottNRASponsors #BoycottNRA #ParklandStudents Support Drain the NRA, Moms Demand Action For Gun Sense In America. Write to NRA partners and funds holding gun stocks. More suggestions from US SIF at What ESG-conscious investors can do about guns.
Have additional suggestions for shareholders? Please leave them in the comment section below or e-mail me. Together we can make a difference.