Corporations Should Stay Out of Politics



POLL: How familiar are you with ESG, or environmental, social and governance criteria

The statement “separation of church and state” is well-known and well-instituted in this country. Something else that is also important in the foundation of an individualized country is the separation of corporations and government. 

Corporate influence in governmental matters has become a controversial issue in the United States recently. Politics have become incredibly divided, more so than in previous years, mostly due to the increase in media consumption. Corporations have also recently begun to take their own stances on political and social issues, and  this has only furthered the divide. 

Almost every company has both conservative and liberal consumers. When companies share their corporate stances on social and political issues, it tends to degrade one side of their consumers and, therefore, hinders them from wanting those products any longer. 

Take the recent Bud Light issue. The famous beer company, Anheuser-Busch, received enormous backlash when they had transgender activist Dylan Mulvaney promote their Bud Light brand in a commercial. As a result, Bud Light sales have dropped 26%, according to Bump Williams Consulting, which is a firm that monitors activity in the beverage industry.

Bud Light has always held the title as the best-selling beer in America, but their numbers have dropped so dramatically that they are in danger of no longer holding onto that status. 

A business’ only worry should be about their business. It is understandable that people have their own personal beliefs on important issues, but when corporations take part in current controversies, they hurt themselves. 

Another recent example of a corporation taking a political stance was in 2022, when  the CEO of Walt Disney World spoke out about the Parental Rights in Education Act, or what was dubbed as the “Don’t Say Gay Bill.”  Not only did his stance elicit a negative response from Disney-goers, it hurt the company as well,  as lawmakers rapidly passed legislation to rescind the special tax break that Disney World had previously held in Florida. 

Some people may argue that they would feel more comfortable working for a company that shares the same political beliefs as themselves. While that may sound good on the surface, it would create a completely un-diverse corporate community.   Companies would become filled with employees who all share the same beliefs on different issues.

In order to be truly diverse and truly inclusive, businesses need staffs of people who think, look, and believe differently from one another. 

Instead of focusing a company’s resources on controversial issues, businesses should focus more on what is going on in their own business. If a company takes a firm stand on only one side of an issue, they are creating an uncomfortable environment for their employees who may have differing opinions, causing them to be afraid to speak out on their own views. 

Separation of corporation and state is vital to a healthy work space and a politically diverse country. The more big businesses speak out on controversial issues, the more divided America will become.

Businesses need to focus less on sharing their corporate political views and focus more on providing quality goods and services to their customers and decent working conditions for their employees.