Jeff Bezos signaled a major change of tone for Amazon.com during his testimony to Congress in the recent tech antitrust proceedings, hinting that the discredited, left-wing extremist group Southern Poverty Law Center’s days of playing gatekeeper for non-profit eligibility in the AmazonSmile program may be running out. This shift in attitude comes hot on the heels of a shareholder resolution supported by a cohort of Christian faith-based investment firms and non-profits that received broad publicity and pressured Amazon.com for their favoring of liberal viewpoints espoused by groups like SPLC and their refusal to give equal play to conservative viewpoints in corporate decisions.
In a remarkable pivot for the tech giant, Bezos admitted that the SPLC is “not perfect” and went on to say that he “would like a better source” and “would like suggestions on better or additional sources” other than the SPLC to help Amazon.com curate their list of eligible non-profits in AmazonSmile.
In his testimony, Bezos was grilled by Rep. Matt Gaetz to give his reason for continuing to rely upon the SPLC, which has been scandalized by sexual abuse and racism in recent years and makes a common practice of smearing political rivals as “hate groups,” to decide which non-profits are allowed to receive donations in the massive AmazonSmile program, thus preventing Amazon.com customers from making donations to numerous conservative, mainstream charities such as American Family Association, Alliance Defending Freedom, Catholic Family News, the Jewish Defense League, and others.
Faith-based investor impact
Why is Bezos willing to change his tune on the SPLC? It seems that the mounting pressure from Christian shareholders, customers and now Congress is having an effect on Amazon.com and, God willing, suggesting that perhaps the pendulum is beginning to swing away from leftist extremism and toward common sense in the board room of one of the largest companies on earth.
Now more than ever, Christian faith-based investors need to speak up with a united, winsome voice into the board rooms of corporate America and let them know that there are shareholders who care about biblical values. And we need to use tools like inspireinsight.com to be wise about what the companies we invest in are doing to turn a profit and also what social and political issues those companies are actively promoting. Bezos’ statements demonstrate that we can have an impact when we pay attention and are working together.
Beyond Amazon.com, there are currently fifty-five other major companies that we at Inspire Investing, along with a coalition of partners, are engaging with to present a respectful, clear message about issues important to faith-based investors. We pray that we can help these companies understand better the perspective of their faith-based investors and make space at the table for those conservative, biblical viewpoints. Join us in praying for and working toward inspiring transformation for God’s glory throughout the business world!
Robert Netzly is the CEO of Inspire Investing and frequent contributor on FOX, Bloomberg, The New York Times, The Christian Post and other major media. Read more from Robert in his #1 bestselling book Biblically Responsible Investing, available at Amazon.com and other major retailers.
Follow Robert on Twitter and LinkedIn and get inspired!
Advisory Services are offered through CWM Advisors, LLC dba Inspire, a Registered Investment Adviser with the SEC.