A solid number of San Francisco employees for company management software developer Salesforce say it’s time for their company to tell the National Rifle Association to go stick their muzzle where the sun don’t shine.
In a letter first reported by SFGate, employees cited the gun-loving advocacy group’s penchant for using online marketing campaigns after major shooting events like the massacre at Robb Elementary in Uvalde, Texas—which claimed the lives of 19 children and two adult teachers.
Employees addressed the letter to co-CEOs Marc Benioff and Bret Taylor along with other company executives last Wednesday. Reports said that over 4,000 employees advocated that they didn’t want Salesforce products to be a part of the NRA’s efforts to control the narrative around gun control with their marketing and fundraising efforts.
“Based on past history, it is likely the NRA is already upping, or preparing to up, their Marketing Cloud usage in response to this tragedy, not to prevent future tragedies from happening, but to sow fear, sell guns, and abet future atrocities,” a part of the letter reads according to Protocol.
The company is cited as San Francisco’s largest private employer with around 10,000 employees based in Fog City. Still, not everyone agrees with the letter’s main thrust. SFGate also reported some employees said Salesforce would be too selective in breaking off from the NRA when the company hasn’t technically done anything illegal.
The company did not respond to Gizmodo’s request for comment. The company has been keeping mum on its internal stances on major issues, even though the public face of the company has not strayed away from the political spotlight.
The letter came just a day after a CNBC interview where, when asked about the school shooting in Uvalde, Texas, Benioff said “I’m surprised action has not been taken. There’s too many words and not enough action… I think you have to stand up to your values—what is important to you as a company, what is important to you as a [corporate officer.]”
Benioff has made other public statements online and in interviews bemoaning the number of shootings that regularly take place in the U.S. compared to other countries. The same day employees sent company executives their letter, the CEO tweeted:
The NRA has not broken off its relentless support of gun advocacy after Uvalde or any one of the sickening number of mass shootings over the past several years. Even as it made mention of its “deepest sympathies are with the families and victims involved in this horrific and evil crime” after Uvalde, the NRA still hosted its annual convention over the past weekend proclaiming the need to protect both the second amendment and, of course, gun manufacturers and the gun lobby.
Cutting ties with the NRA wouldn’t be outside the realm of what Salesforce has done in the past. In 2019, the company banned some gun sellers from using its platform with additions to its acceptable use policy. Specifically, the company announced it would decline to do business with those who sold automatic, semi-automatic, or 3D-printed gun parts.
Compared to many other companies, Salesforce has not kept itself completely out of the political arena. The company has previously said it will help pay for transportation costs or even aid in relocation for employees seeking access to abortions.