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.