Are Gun Rights the Next Target of Corporate Censorship?

Friday, January 4, 2019
By Paul Martin

José Niño
Mises.org
01/03/2019

Ever since Dick’s Sporting Goods and banks such as Citigroup made business decisions in line with the mainstream media’s push for gun control, some opponents of gun control have debated whether private companies pose a bigger threat to gun rights than government does. In the case of Dick’s Sporting Goods, the outdoor company decided to stop selling rifles like the AR-15 and banned the sale of firearms to individuals younger than 21. In response to the Parkland shooting in Florida, banks like Citigroup also crafted their own anti-gun policies as reported in The New York Times:

Citigroup is setting restrictions on the sale of firearms by its business customers, making it the first Wall Street bank to take a stance in the divisive nationwide gun control debate.

The new policy, announced Thursday, prohibits the sale of firearms to customers who have not passed a background check or who are younger than 21. It also bars the sale of bump stocks and high-capacity magazines.

It’s not just gun owners who are experiencing limited shopping choices. Gun rights lobbies like the National Rifle Association have faced opposition from corporate America. Rental car companies like Avis and software companies like Symantec have severed their affiliate programs with the NRA in the wake of the Parkland shooting hysteria.

It appears the next fad in virtue signaling in the corporate world may be gun control gun.

Why More Laws are Not the Answer
US Senator John Kennedy of Louisiana recently filed the No Red and Blue Banks Act that would “prohibit the federal government from giving contracts to banks that discriminate against lawful businesses based solely on social policy considerations.” Kennedy does raise a valid point about how the government should put the brakes on business subsidization.

Unfortunately, Kennedy falls for the modern-day conservative trap of attacking government contracts because they benefit corporations who espouse leftist causes, rather than categorically opposing all forms of government intervention. For starters, all state contracts and privileges to businesses should be cut off, regardless of their stated goal or purpose. However, many well-intentioned conservatives are stuck on myopic thinking and fail to notice the implicit state coercion in the background. For them, ironically, more government is the answer.

The Rest…HERE

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