Amazon has officially kicked Black Lives Matter off of its charity platform, AmazonSmile, after the company said the progressive organization has failed to live up its standards as charity in “good standing” after the group had come under fire in recent weeks for failing to properly disclose how it is spending millions of dollars donated from individuals, groups, and corporations.
The Washington Examiner first reported the story on Wednesday, stating that the online consumer and retails conglomerate removed Black Lives Matter as of the eligible charities under its AmazonSmile program. AmazonSmile allows user to donate a portion of their money spent on Amazon to a charity of their choice, as explained by Business Insider:
AmazonSmile is a program that donates 0.5% of your eligible purchases on Amazon to a charity of your choice. All you need to do is start your shopping at smile.amazon.com. The donation will be made at no extra cost to you and you can choose from nearly one million public charitable organizations.
However, as reported by Washington Examiner, Black Lives Matter recently fell out of compliance in several states:
BLM voluntarily shut down its online fundraising on Feb. 2 after California and Washington issued legal threats to the group for its failure to report what it did with the millions it received during the second half of 2020. BLM published a report in February 2021 claiming to have ended 2020 with $60 million in its coffers.
As of Wednesday afternoon, BLM remains out of compliance in those states, as well as in New Jersey, North Carolina, Connecticut, Colorado, Maryland, Maine, and Virginia.
BLM said when it shut down its fundraising that it had engaged “compliance counsel” to get back in good standing with the states.
Because of that, the group no longer met Amazon’s standards to be listed as part of their charities:
“Charitable organizations must meet the requirements outlined in our participation agreement to be eligible for AmazonSmile,” an Amazon representative told the Washington Examiner. “Among other eligibility requirements, organizations are required to be in good standing in their state of incorporation and in the states and territories where they are authorized to do business. Organizations that don’t meet the requirements listed in the agreement may have its eligibility suspended or revoked. Charities can request to be reinstated once they are back in good standing.”
This is not the first time Amazon removed a charity for questionable business practices. In 2021, the company removed several groups after it was suspected they had funded groups responsible for the January 6, 2021 riot at the U.S. Capitol.
“Organizations that engage in, support, encourage, or promote intolerance, hate, terrorism, violence, money laundering, or other illegal activities are not eligible” for the Smile program, Amazon said at the time, according to Cnet.
The Black Lives Matter movement, it has been reported, had received upwards of $10 billion from across the globe, as referenced recently by Wilfred Reilly:
On 20 December 2020, The Economist noted that $10.6 billion had been pledged to causes and organisations affiliated with BLM. According to that article and further reporting from the right-leaning Daily Signal, BLM’s corporate donors included Amazon, Gatorade, Microsoft, 23andMe and Tinder, while recipients ranged from the small-scale Unicorn Riot guerilla media firm to the sizeable Black Lives Matter Global Network Foundation (BLMGNF).
But as Reilly noted in his column, “no one seems to know how most of that money has been spent.”
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