Skip to comments.Anti-Gun Groups Turn Up Pressure on the Private Sector (OMG,,,, Where's the "Panic Button".)
Posted on 03/21/2014 6:06:30 PM PDT by progunner
The American gun control movement is going corporate. Still reeling from the stinging legislative defeats of 2013, proponents of tougher firearm regulations are increasingly turning their focus to private sector campaigns.
Gun control groups have claimed victories in recent months, successfully pushing Starbucks to declare guns unwelcome in stores and persuading Facebook to crack down on unregulated firearm solicitations. With no end in sight to the congressional gridlock that has thwarted more stringent federal gun laws, groups say they will continue to apply pressure on major companies.
Congress locked the door, so moms are going through the window, said Shannon Watts, founder of Moms Demand Action.
The gun control organization, modeled on Mothers Against Drunk Driving, has made the corporate push a third prong of its strategy, along with campaigns to influence state and federal policies, Watts said. Pro-gun groups downplayed the likely effectiveness of these tactics, which have also been embraced by Mayors Against Illegal Guns and Americans for Responsible Solutions. Officials from the National Rifle Association and Gun Owners of America described the corporate campaign as a retread of past initiatives.
This is not the first time weve seen this kind of thing, Gun Owners of America spokesman Erich Pratt said, pointing to an unsuccessful effort a decade ago to sue gun makers. Whenever the anti-gun groups get stymied in Congress they resort to boycotts and other private measures.
Gun control advocates rallied behind a flurry of bills introduced last year following the previous Decembers Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting in Connecticut, only to see them beaten back. The legislation sought a host of strengthened restrictions, including bans on assault weapons and large capacity ammunition magazines, as well as an amendment seeking to expand background checks to all commercial gun sales. The latter measure offered in April by Sens. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) and Pat Toomey (R-Pa.) was seen as having the best chance for passage. In a major blow to gun control supporters, the amendment fell six votes short of passage.
In the months after, the gun control fight was waged largely in state legislatures around the country, with both sides claiming wins. But in September, activists won what they called a major victory with Starbucks request that gun owners stop bringing firearms to the companys thousands of coffee shops, even in states with open carry allowances.
The presence of a weapon in our stores is unsettling and upsetting for many of our customers, Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz said at the time.
The move was preceded by calls from activists and congressional Democrats, who targeted Starbucks after gun rights advocates organized a grassroots campaign to bring guns into the coffee shops to celebrate Starbucks Appreciation Day a campaign that was not sponsored by the company. Gun rights advocates stressed that Starbucks action is not an outright prohibition, but merely a corporate request, and suggested it is not the definitive decision that gun control groups have portrayed.
I think theyre trying to make way more of it than it is, Pratt said. Starbucks has not banned people from bringing guns.
But Ladd Everitt, spokesman for the Coalition to Stop Gun Violence, said company policies are key to the formation of social norms that stand as key guidelines for acceptable behavior.
Corporations have great influence in American society, Everitt said.
The coalition has recently called upon Visa to sever a business partnership with the NRA, saying the credit giants affiliation with the powerful gun lobby is effectively funding opposition to stronger regulations. The group has collected more than 5,000 signatures from people urging the company to end its affinity program with the NRA. A web page run by the Rifle Association tells members that every purchase helps fund NRA programs at no cost to them and says more than $20 million has been raised to date.
Every corporation draws lines in terms of the types of organizations it partners with, Everitt said. By putting your brand on this youre calling into question your own brand.
Efforts to reach Visa officials Friday afternoon were unsuccessful. NRA spokesman Andrew Arulanandam brushed the effort off as part of a futile effort to stigmatize gun owners and gun ownership. As evidence of the corporate campaigns failure, Arulanandam pointed to upward trends in the numbers of U.S. firearm purchases and gun owners.
Earlier this month, several gun control groups hailed Facebooks announcement of new policies designed to tamp down on unregulated firearm transactions over its network. Under the new policy, Facebook and its subsidiary Instagram will block minors from seeing posts about the sales of guns and other regulated items, require pages used for that purpose to include language reminding people of the applicable legal restrictions, and warn sellers they are bound to comply with those laws.
This was absolutely a huge win, said Watts, who helped lead an effort pressing Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg and Instagram CEO Kevin Systrom to combat illegal sales over the platforms.
Mayors Against Illegal Guns and Americans for Responsible Solutions, the group founded by shooting victim and former Rep. Gabrielle Giffords (D-Ariz.), also praised the action. But another leading gun control group criticized Facebooks action, saying it was not a victory at all.
A mere warning to follow the law and community-based reporting will not do enough to prevent unchecked gun sales to dangerous people, said Daniel Gross, President of the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence.
The NRA, meanwhile, issued a statement calling the policy shift a welcome alternative to activists ultimate goal of removing any online content that references the private sale of firearms from Facebook.
They had to settle for an insignificant victory that they tried to portray as something more than what it was, Arulanandam said. They didnt get what they wanted.
Still, supporters of stricter gun regulations view the Starbucks and Facebook decisions as progress. While they maintained they have not given up on congressional action, the groups said they are planning additional, as-yet-unspecified corporate actions for 2014.
I think you will continue to see these types of campaigns".
Just like nats that persistently irritate you when they fly into your ears or nose. Even more irritating are the liberals and RINOS who are constantly attempting to erode the strength of America. I've a question I'd like to propose to those that I've just depicted, Who and What is going to protect you when you are about to be robbed, raped or murdered? AAaahhhh! I've got my trusty cell phoooo(fade). The fade that follows the entry of the projectile or knife blade that just penetrated your flesh as you fall to the ground. I mentioned Who and I'll elaborate. I'm to the point where if I see someone in this situation (I DO carry) I'm going to ask questions. One being,,,, Are you a liberal? You are? Okay then,,,, have a sparkling evening. The second question is,,,, as your life is oozing out of you,,,, Does it hurt? Do you wish you had a gun to defend yourself or someone close by that could have come to your aid that had a gun?
Congress locked the door, so moms are going through the window, said Shannon Watts, founder of Moms Demand Action.
Hey! Shannon! I just thought of a novel idea providing it's not too difficult for you to comprehend and execute. Did the thought of negligent parental guidance ever cross your mind as a cause of crime. Oh! That's right, a necessary spanking or other means of punishment became criminalistic. Oh well,, guess that rules out checking on the conditions at the home of a "problem child". You may be a good mother but to dismiss the fact that not all are would earn you a one way journey on "the ship of fools". I'd instruct you on a much more efficient course of action rather than to go after the law abiding gun owners of America but your a liberal and probably too young and unsophisticated to comprehend the complexities of my metaphysical philosophies.
The coalition has recently called upon Visa to sever a business partnership with the NRA, saying the credit giants affiliation with the powerful gun lobby is effectively funding opposition to stronger regulations.
Well boo hoo,,,, there should be a law preventing high caliber crimes such as that. [/sarc]. Watch out VISA, they'll be gunning for you next.
Typical of these nut cases.
The door is firmly closed in their face, and they resort to breaking and entering.
We need to have these same corporations know our voices. There are far more gun owners than dimwitted gun controllers. If Visa and others feel the sting of reduced business, they’ll learn to ignore the gnats.
This “presence of a weapon is unsettling” quote from Schultz is what gets me. I live in the Puget Sound so have heard it. And I have t been in Starbucks for 6 months because of it. But these people are so shallow-minded that the “presence” of the weapon bothers them, regardless of who has it or why? This boggles my mind. Why all the focus on inanimate objects?
I’m sorry to report that Bulldog News in Seattle has followed this unfortunate trend of posting gun-free. And I think Elliott Bay Book Co. also did. Are independent businesses in other cities doing this? At least Starbucks has the excuse that its a corporate policy.
The Nazis are determined to continue trying to disarm Americans. This time, they’ve bitten off more than their big mouths can chew.
They’ve collected 5000 signatures out of 320 million. We’re in big trouble Kemo Sabe.
I concur, as in the case of CT's Gov. Malloy. The "Nutmeggers" have told him to go spit and now his head is somewhere in the vicinity of where the sun isn't shining. I've got so much hope in this next election in the fact that the libs will get a major kick in the a$$.
Gun control Nazis need to be very, very careful and concerned about their safety because we know where they live.
This may actually be a good sign, of sorts. Since they have been utter failures in the political arena, they are going the way of Jesse Jackson, hoping to blackmail corporations into buying them off, getting their movement subsidized.
However, that trick has been done before. A lot of corporations have learned that Jesse and the like are just windbags, so if the company tells them to get knotted, there is nothing they can do about it.
Except "wallow in the mire". How right you are my friend.
If VISA were to buckle from the pressure these kooks apply, I would no longer accept VISA at my business, and of course would be rid of my VISA and carry a debit card by Master Card, until they capitulated. Then it would be cash or check only.
Liberals live on meds. Sadly one of their meds to alleviate their pain from being beat by muslims, gay raped or robbed by illegals is to screw the country.
And then you got the particular evil kind of liberal who gets simply a rush out of abusing people and they do not care if the consequences happens tohwlp enemies.
company policies are key to the formation of social norms that stand as key guidelines for acceptable behavior
It’s not fascism when THEY do it!
Here we see the minions of socialism at work, if they
can’t change the law, they have no qualms about
manipulating the people by other means.
“Gun control Nazis”
Beat me to it! Gungrabbers wanting to silence funding of opposition to their agenda are indeed FASCISTS!
The “Social” is another code word of cult dictatorship replacing the obligation to pay the bourgeois for his products and rents with other obligations to some sort of group.