On May 11, 2022 Al-JazeeraShireen Abu Akleh, journalist, was shot and killed. Many believe she was deliberately targeted by Israeli armed forces. A CNNinvestigation concluded that video evidence and witness testimony “suggest that Abu Akleh was shot dead in a targeted attack by Israeli forces” while doing her job and wearing a clearly marked “Press” vest and helmet. The Palestinian Attorney General stated last week that Abu Akleh was killed in an attack by Israeli forces. new reportAbu Akleh was shot with a Ruger Mini-14 semiautomatic rifle. It was a 5.56mm round.
The Connecticut-based company Sturm, Ruger & Company, Inc.This Ruger Mini is made. Ruger was founded in 1949 to produce firearms for the commercial sporting markets. It is now a thriving company. one of the largestThere are several publicly traded gun companies in America.
Ruger is a network of banks, investors, and directors that provides financing and governance for the company while it profiteers from harms such as the one against Shireen. These profiteers behind Ruger include corporate actors such as BlackRock and Vanguard as well as board members involved in a range of harmful industries or causes.
Ruger’s Top Owners & Banks
According to Ruger’s most recent proxy statement, two single asset managers — BlackRock and Vanguard — own more than a quarter of the company. BlackRock — the world’s number one asset manager — owns the largest chunk with 15.9% (or 2,792,671 shares) — an unusually large stake even for BlackRock to have in a company.
In recent years, BlackRock’s CEO Larry Fink has made gestures regarding the social responsibility of its investors. Fink’s 2018 letter to CEOs, for example, stated that “[s]ociety is demanding that companies, both public and private, serve a social purpose,” and that “[t]o prosper over time, every company must not only deliver financial performance, but also show how it makes a positive contribution to society.”
BlackRock is still available. the largest shareholderThree of the most prominent publicly-traded gun companies. BlackRock seems to know this is a problem — indeed, it has made statements distancing itself from the gun industry’s harm. BlackRock spokesperson, for example, recently spoke out. said — as paraphrased by The New York Times — that “BlackRock’s holdings of Ruger did not mean the company had taken an active investment position on guns.”
But these statements and positions are an evasion on BlackRock’s part. As Ruger’s top shareholder, BlackRock is in a stronger position than anyone else to hold the company to account. It may describe the nature and extent of its involvement differently, but the truth is that BlackRock has a major stake Ruger’s that it benefits from and is one the few actors who can do something about it.
The same goes with Vanguard, Sturm Ruger’s second largest owner. Vanguard Group — the world’s second largest asset manager — owns 10.7% of the company (1,888,300 shares). Vanguard Group has been heavily scrutinized for its investments into harmful industries. As we reported earlier this year with Action Center on Race and the Economy, Vanguard “oversees nearly $6 billion in investments in high risk sectors in the studied funds that perpetuate environmental and racial injustices.”