More than two weeks after a gunman killed 17 people at a high school in Parkland, Fla., the number of companies cutting ties with the National Rifle Association, or changing its policies on firearm sales, does not appear to be slowing.
While lawmakers are often seen to wield the heftiest influence when it comes to tightening restrictions on guns, companies including retailers, insurers, and tech firms have also come under scrutiny for links to the gun industry and NRA. To some consumers, many of whom rallied around the viral hashtag #BoycottNRA, those ties show a complicity with the status quo as America reckons with its latest mass shooting.
“In terms of assessing what the companies are doing from a moral perspective, I think what strikes me is that it’s always better to do something because you want to than because you have to,” said Joe Holt, an expert on business ethics at the University of Notre Dame’s Mendoza College of Business.
Holt pointed to other instances when companies have weighed in on political or social issues, including in the aftermath of President Trump’s withdrawal from the Paris climate agreement, or Trump’s remarks after white supremacist protests in Charlottesville.
But even on “very big, hot-button social issues,” there tends to be a buildup of corporate voices for five or six days before momentum dies down, said Leslie Gaines-Ross, chief reputation strategist at the public relations firm Weber Shandwick. That hasn’t been the case after Parkland, Gaines-Ross said, adding that the organized “March for Our Lives” on March 24 is still weeks away.
“I think having that date far out is going to maybe be the bookend,” Gaines-Ross said. “I think that march gives companies time to decide what they want to do.”
From airlines to hearing aid manufacturers, here is a sampling of the companies that have ended their relationships with the NRA or the gun industry, have yet to make a change, or have affirmed their current policies.
Cut ties with the NRA
- Delta Air Lines: Delta announced it would stop discount rates for NRA members through its group travel program. “We will be requesting that the NRA remove our information from their website,” the airline wrote in a tweet that quickly went viral.
- United Airlines: United issued a statement similar to Delta’s saying it would end discount rates to those traveling to the NRA’s annual convention, to be held this May in Dallas.
- Enterprise, Alamo and National rental companies: All three companies, which are all owned by Enterprise Holdings, will end their discounts for NRA members, effective March 26.
- Hertz: The rental car company will end its discount program for NRA members. The announcement did not specify when that policy would go into effect.
- Avis and Budget: The companies will discontinue NRA member discounts on rental cars beginning March 26.
- Allied Van Lines and North American Van lines: The companies, both of which are owned by Sirva, issued identical statements saying they were no longer affiliated with the NRA, effective immediately, and asked to be removed from a benefits programs on the NRA website.
- Tech, security, and health:
- Symantec: The cybersecurity firm announced it had terminated its discount program with the NRA.
- TrueCar: The car-pricing website for buyers and dealers said it was “ending its car buying service relationship with the NRA” as of Feb. 28.
- SimpliSafe: A company spokesperson told ThinkProgress that the home security company had “discontinued our existing relationship with the NRA.” ThinkProgress reported that NRA members had previously received two free months of SimpliSafe’s monitoring with the purchase of a new home security system.
- Starkey Hearing Technologies: The hearing aid manufacturer said it would not renew its discount program for NRA members and asked to be removed from the organization’s website.
- First National Bank of Omaha: One of the country’s largest privately held banks, the First National was among the first major companies to cut ties with the NRA by not renewing a designated NRA Visa Card, which was issued to NRA members. A tweeted announcement said “customer feedback has caused us to review our relationship with the NRA.”
- Chubb: The insurer will no longer underwrite NRA insurance for gun owners, called “NRA Carry Guard,” according to Reuters. A Chubb spokesman told Reuters that Chubb gave notice of the policy change months ago.
- MetLife: The insurance company said it was ending its discount program with the NRA.
Taking a stance on gun control
- Walmart: The world’s largest retailer announced it would not sell firearms and ammunition to anyone under 21. Walmart also announced it would remove all items resembling assault rifles, such as toys, from its shelves. Walmart stopped selling assault-style rifles in 2015.
- Dick’s Sporting Goods: Dick’s said it would stop selling assault-style rifles and it raised the minimum age required to buy a firearm from 18 to 21.
- Kroger: The grocer announced it would raise the required age to buy a firearm and ammunition to 21 at its Fred Meyer stores in response to Parkland’s mass shooting.
- L. L. Bean: The outdoor retailer announced it would stop selling guns and ammunition to anyone under 21.
- The Mountain Equipment Co-op: The Canadian co-op, which sells outdoor gear to its members, announced in an open letter that it would suspend future orders with brands owned by Vista Outdoor, a large gun manufacturer based in Utah. Those brands include: Bollé, Bushnell, CamelBak, Camp Chef, and Jimmy Styks. The MEC letter said existing inventory would stay on its shelves until it sold.
- REI: The outdoor retailer announced that, for the time being, it would stop orders on 50 brands from Vista Outdoor, which manufactures shooting products and outdoor goods. Those brands include CamelBak, Bell, and Giro.
No change in policy
- FedEx: Facing broad public pressure to cut ties with the NRA, FedEx said it opposed the sale of assault rifles to civilians but would continue with its discount program to NRA members. “FedEx is a common carrier under Federal Law and therefore does not and will not deny service or discriminate against any legal entity regardless of their policy positions or political views,” a statement said. (An updated FedEx statement targeted a shipping competitor, UPS. “For shipping from its online store, the NRA uses UPS and not FedEx,” the statement said. In response, UPS told Bloomberg that while it had a shipping deal with the NRA, it doesn’t offer special discounts for members, which FedEx does.)
- Amazon, Apple, and Roku: Advocates for tightening gun laws have called on the companies to stop streaming the NRA channel NRATV. So far, none have elected to do so. (Amazon.com chief executive Jeffrey P. Bezos owns the Washington Post.)