The New York Times reported on this yesterday and noted:
JPMorgan Chase & Company is coming under fire for the way it conducted an online contest to award millions of dollars to 100 charities.
At least three nonprofit groups — Students for Sensible Drug Policy, the Marijuana Policy Project and an anti-abortion group, Justice for All— say they believe that Chase disqualified them over concerns about associating its name with their missions.
The groups say that until Chase made changes to the contest, they appeared to be among the top 100 vote-getters.
I certainly believe that a private business can do what it wants with its money. But we should remember that almost all banks are now dependent on the government for help. JP Morgan Chase received about 25 Billion dollars from the U.S. Government. We are not dealing with a private business here, but rather with an organ of the government. We should expect that our government should be neutral and fair. We should expect our government to play by the rules that it sets down. They should not have started this contest and encouraged all charities to take part if they were going to exclude groups that they considered to be controversial. They should have been upfront about this.
I don't do any business with JP Morgan Chase. I think that people who are interested in drug reform (or who at least believe in fair play) ought to reconsider their relationship with this bank. Of course, it doesn't matter anyway. If they lose business, the government will just give them money.