"I saw that as a big corporation issue," she confessed. "But the more I learned about it, I realized that it was designed to trickle down to small business and eventually individuals."
Hardy's alliance is concerned about the framework, which is used to assess an organization's business practices and performance on various sustainability and ethical issues, because it "will wipe out free markets and representative government."
"It's a way to very quickly get social change through a society without actually going through the voting booth," she summarized. "You lose your power as a business owner, and you have to follow the ESG metrics, which is basically a woke score, and they're constantly changing."
People doing business with gun manufacturers, for example, may experience financial difficulties. Those resistant to LGBT+ promotion could also suffer.
"You can get your CEI (Corporate Equality Index) score up, which helps your ESG score, if you do a lot of transgender work," Hardy said.
In Europe, ESG is not just encouraged, but it is the absolute law. So, subsidiaries or suppliers doing business with a European company, even if that company is based in America, must sign an ESG code of conduct letter.
"That's how you get small business to get on board," said Hardy. "We have had small businesses in our state impacted by this, and it's designed to trickle down to everyone eventually."
She does not believe all businesses are on board with the ESG framework but suspects they just go along with it out of fear that investors and customers will walk.