Whether we like it or not, most of commerce today runs on credit cards. And although we may not think much about it, the companies that process those cards have a great deal of power.
So says Nick Logan, founder and president of Cornerstone Payment Systems. "Oftentimes people kind of overlook and don't understand how the money really moves. The reality is today, social media and the Big Tech giants and the companies that move credit card transactions really control and can become the choke point for fueling godly ministries and righteous work," he says. Logan goes on to explain that more and more organizations have fallen prey to what's called "deplatforming," or delegitimizing, where the transaction company refuses to transfer payments to them if they take a biblical stance.
"If you just Google the name of some of these large payment companies, and put in 'ministry,' you're going to see what they're doing. ... One of the groups in California called Save California was turned off right before they were going to get large donations coming in. And the company that turned them off said, 'We're just not comfortable with you.' The Family Research Council, it's out there in the press; they were turned off right before a big event they did in Washington. And the excuse was, 'Well, we really don't want to support you because of your stand.' Well, their stand is a biblical stand. And if you take those biblical stands, you're going to get abused.
Logan says the issue today is not cutting off the ministry but cutting off what fuels the ministry. He also explains that this issue, along with the business of credit card transactions, is complicated. "It basically comes down to two things," he says. "Every cardholder has a right to choose what card comes to the top of their wallet. Say they're making a donation and making a purchase. They may use a Visa, MasterCard; they may use the other major cards that are out there. What companies like Cornerstone do is we enable the ministry or the business to accept that card and then to move the money.
"So if you come in and make a donation to, let's say, Focus on the Family, one of our clients, when you make that transaction, we actually take your card, approve it, and then our system debits your card, puts it on your bill, and then we move the money to Focus on the Family," Logan explains. "And this is where the problem is, because these companies are not allowing that to happen. And when they do, these very righteous ministries aren't getting the money. ... We're that intermediary that says, 'Your card is good,' or 'Your card is declined,' and [if it's good] we move the money to those ministries."
Logan again reminds those who may run a business or nonprofit that "who you select as your processor can change the world. And what I mean is that if you have a business, and you're processing with a bank that does pornography, and let's say you do $100,000 in credit card processing, you enable that bank to take $100,000 in pornography, because Visa and MasterCard say, 'Well, pornography, that's First Amendment, that's their right.'"
To learn more about the business of credit card transactions and Nick Logan's advice to consumers as well as businesspeople, listen to the entire episode of the Strang Report podcast here. And be sure to subscribe at this link on multiple platforms to be sure you never miss an episode of inspiring, informative content.
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