Coupons for AK47s and alcohol?
I like deals as much as the next mom, but a coupon for AK-47s, rifles and pistols and also 10 cocktails? Ridiculous, but true! LivingSocial, offers this coupon while telling customers to, “Take a break from the urban insanity—and blow off some steam while you’re at it—with this fully loaded Adventure.”
LivingSocial is an Internet company that offers discount opportunities to participate in fun experiences such as cookie tastings, acting workshops, or even exotic vacations. Such offerings now include “adventures” that combine booze with firearms, promoting and glorifying a risky combination that is frequently a factor in violence leading to injury and even death. According to the Violence Prevention Center of Greater Los Angeles, as many as 86% of homicide offenders, 37% of assault offenders and 60% of sexual offenders were drinking at the time of their offense. By peddling “shootin’ and drinkin’” experiences, LivingSocial may as well be known as DyingSocial.
One LivingSocial “adventure” in Englewood, CO -- a mere 15-minute-drive from the Aurora shootings that killed 12 people last summer -- tells potential customers: “After doing our best dual impression of Dirty Harry and Rambo, we’ll hop into our rides and drive to Whiskey Bar.”
Another “adventure” in Chicago -- where 15-year old Hadiya Pendleton was gunned down just weeks after returning from celebrating the 2013 Presidential Inauguration in Washington, DC -- tells potential clients, “The days of the Old West are behind us, but that doesn’t mean we can’t still pretend to be cowboys.” Participants rendezvous at Hop Haus, a downtown Chicago bar, before heading to the gun range.
Promoting and glorifying the combination of liquor and firearms in a nation that is grappling with the painfully high toll of gun violence on our families and communities every day is not only irresponsible but is also completely insensitive, particularly from a company with “social” in its name, whose business model is based on the desire for human connection. Groupon, the dominant daily deals site, understood this, halting its own guns and alcohol packages a month after the Sandy Hook shootings.
Responsible firearms owners need safety and training classes, as well as access to gun ranges, to properly learn how to handle lethal weapons. But when studies show that suicide and incidents of fatal intimate violence increase in homes where guns are present, that they are in fact, more common dangers to gun owners than intruders, there is nothing responsible about mixing alcohol and guns.
LivingSocial’s guns and booze offerings are careful to say that the shooting comes before any drinking. Many of the packages, however, include transportation on party buses, or even have participants meet up at bars, giving them the chance to drink before the event begins. The fact is, LivingSocial, is offering deals that put short-term profits over public safety.
Moms and family members must let companies like LivingSocial know that we are paying attention, and that is not okay for them to be a part of creating a gun-crazed culture that has flooded our country with the guns that take more than 80 American lives each and every day. Enough is enough.
Tell LivingSocial to stop offering deals that glorify the combination of drinking liquor and shooting firearms: TAKE ACTION!
Read the full report, "Deals to Die For: LivingSocial’s deadly deals that mix guns and alcohol" [PDF].