Money Talking

Why Walmart Fought for LGBT Rights

April 2, 20157 min
When social controversy strikes, good business sense says companies should sit in nonpartisan silence. Customers could fall on either side of a debate.
But this week, just as Indiana passed a "Religious Freedom" law and Arkansas considering passing a similar law, a tidal wave of strong denouncements from Fortune 500 CEOs — from Apple's Tim Cook to Wal-Mart's Doug McMillon — was almost immediate. In their view, the laws would let businesses refuse service to gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender customers. Marriott's CEO Arne Sorenson went as far as to call Indiana's move "an idiocy." 
Money Talking host Charlie Herman asks why corporations would suddenly feel the need to speak out, and guests Cardiff Garcia of the Financial Times and Heather Landy of Quartz suggest the outpouring of CEO opinion could mean the role of American business in social politics is shifting.

Our statement on Arkansas #HB1228
— Walmart Newsroom (@WalmartNewsroom) March 31, 2015

"Our internal policies have and will continue to stand up against #discrimination" #s4egala
— Marriott Internat'l (@MarriottIntl) March 31, 2015

There’s something very dangerous happening in states across the country.
— Tim Cook (@tim_cook) March 30, 2015

Today we are canceling all programs that require our customers/employees to travel to Indiana to face discrimination.
— Marc Benioff (@Benioff) March 26, 2015

Angie's List will withdraw campus expansion proposal due to passage of #RFRA
— Angie's List (@AngiesList) March 28, 2015

An Open Letter to States Considering Imposing Discrimination Laws
— Jeremy Stoppelman (@jeremys) March 27, 2015

Statement from #FinalFour coaches regarding the Indiana Religious Freedom Restoration Act ... #RFRA
— NCAA (@NCAA) April 1, 2015

Unacceptable. "Defying Criticism, Arkansas Legislature Passes Bill on Religious Freedom", via @nytimes
— Jack (@jack) March 31, 2015

Joint Statement from NBA, @WNBA, @Pacers and @IndianaFever
— NBA (@NBA) March 28, 2015

Today we support the @HRC’s statement against laws undermining #Equality. We seek a society of tolerance, peace & prosperity for all. #RFRA
— American Airlines (@AmericanAir) April 1, 2015

Chat About Why Walmart Fought for LGBT Rights

For You