Yesterday, Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America launched its first-ever corporate-focused advertising campaign, “Guess Which One.” The campaign makes use of powerful images comparing people outfitted with military-style assault rifles, which Kroger permits inside stores, and people doing things that Kroger prohibits, such as eating ice cream, skateboarding, or going topless. The ads make a powerful and startling statement.
The ads, aimed at convincing Kroger management to prohibit the open carry of firearms in and around its stores, will also be running as “homepage takeovers” in the online editions of USA Today and other online publications, as well as print newspapers around the US.
“These images bring into stark contrast Kroger policies that prohibit skateboards, food and a lack of appropriate attire in stores, but allow the open carry of loaded guns. This inconsistency is particularly shocking given that the laws in a majority of states do not require a background check, permitting or even training to open carry a firearm,” said Shannon Watts, founder of Moms Demand Action. “In all states, but especially those where gun laws are lax, businesses have an obligation to protect their employees and patrons.”
More than 115,000 Americans have already signed the petition calling on Michael Ellis, President and Chief Operating Officer, and Mr. W. Rodney McMullen, Chief Executive Officer, of the Kroger Family of Stores to prohibit open carry in its supermarkets. Moms Demand Action launched the campaign in response to incidences of gun violence in and around stores, as well as open carry demonstrations organized by gun extremists who brought loaded semi-automatic assault weapons into stores (photos here).
The new ad campaign comes on the heels of Moms Demand Action boycotting Kroger-owned stores over Labor Day weekend, and pledging to support competitors who don’t allow open carry. (You can see the postings on Twitter and Facebook using the hashtag #GroceriesNotGuns. ) Moms Demand Action supporters have pledged to boycott Kroger-owned supermarkets every weekend until Kroger prohibits open carry at its stores.
“Kroger’s leadership has been resistant to prohibiting open carry because, as they’ve stated, we don’t want employees to have to ‘confront’ a customer openly carrying a firearm, but neither do moms when we’re carrying children,” Watts said, “If Kroger is concerned about the safety risks an armed individual poses for staff, management should put in place specific policies against open carry in and around its stores to protect both employees and customers.”
You can sign the petition to demand Kroger take action here.