If you saw the news yesterday, one of the biggest stories was that 145 corporate CEOs were calling on the Senate to enact gun control. The headlines made it seem like a good portion of the S&P 500 was calling for action on gun control.
Having read the list, the reality is much different.
Out of that list of 145 CEOs, only six are heads of S&P 500 companies. Those six companies are Ecolab, Gap, Interpublic, Omnicom, Royal Caribbean Cruises Lines, and Twitter.
Of the large non-S&P 500 companies on the list, you did have the usual suspects like Bloomberg LP, Levi Strauss, and DICK’S which wouldn’t have surprised anyone. The heads of Levi Strauss and DICK’S have been pretty vocal for a long time now. Moreover, could you have had such a list without Bloomberg LP? Not likely.
Only 47 out of the 145 companies have more than 500 employees. The rest are identified as being the CEO of companies with less than 500 employees. In other words, you aren’t talking about captains of industry.
You are talking about Jeff Sellinger who is listed as the founder and CEO of HipDot. You know! HipDot – the makers of cosmetics featuring Sponge Bob Square Pants.
OK. So maybe you don’t know about HipDot. I’m sure you know about Quartzy and SkySafe. The former is the maker of online lab management software and has 60 employees while the latter is an anti-drone company whose software prevents drones from entering secure airspace.
My point in all of this is that while these CEOs most certainly had the right to make their views known, they are no more significant than yours or mine. The media made it sound like corporate America was turning against the gun culture and the reality is that most of these companies are niche players located in gun control bastions like California.
You can read the letter and see the list of all the CEOs below: