Brands you know are helping the NRA attract members — tell them to stop! #NRAboycott
Like the majority of people in this country, I have become weary at the frequent tragedies of mass shootings, and the seeming inability of our government to put in place measures that would prevent them.
As has been well-documented elsewhere, the National Rifle Association and its large political donations are one of the primary reasons for the current state of affairs, in which someone too young to buy alcohol can legally purchase an assault rifle, and many other absurdities, are tolerated. On an average day, 96 Americans are killed with guns.
Historically, the NRA supported hunting, marksmanship, safety training — and common sense gun laws. But a faction takeover of its leadership in 1977 brought into power a group with extreme views, which have now become the NRA party line.
Listening to a Marketplace program last week, I was surprised to learn that many members of the NRA don’t support its more extreme policies. For example, 74% of NRA members support requiring background checks for anyone purchasing a gun, and 71% support prohibiting people on the terrorist watch list from purchasing guns — positions that are the opposite of the NRA stance. So why do they remain members of the organization? One reason mentioned by Marketplace is financial — NRA members receive valuable discounts on things like insurance and hotel stays.
Listening to this, I thought “insurance? hotel stays?” So I went to the membership benefits page on the NRA site, where I discovered that indeed there are lots of companies acting as NRA partners to offer special discounts to members, including Fedex, eHealth, and Vinesse Wines. (Complete list of the NRA 5-Star Benefits Partners at the end of this article.) Indeed, the NRA touts the many special discounts as number two in its list of reasons to join the organization, and stresses the “access to hundreds of dollars in savings.”
In addition to offering discounts to NRA members, it also appears that the partner companies offer kickbacks to the NRA from sales to NRA members. For example, the metadata for the rental car benefits page on the NRA site reads “Book with these NRA partners and save every time you rent a car. Plus a portion of every purchase helps NRA fight for freedom.”
As the saying goes, follow the money. These corporate partnerships not only help the NRA attract and retain members, but also provide funds for the NRA that help fuel its extremist agenda. While the support of gun manufacturers to the NRA is well-known, this source of support from other parts of Corporate America is not. But it should be. And the goal of the #NRAboycott campaign is to make it well known which companies are partnering with the NRA.
What if those companies were embarrassed to be associated with the NRA? What if those companies realized that their customers were appalled that they were aiding and abetting the NRA? What if we, their customers, called them out, shamed them, and told them we would stop patronizing them? That could help to undermine the NRA’s power. It’s certainly worth a try.
If you don’t want the brands you patronize to be in cahoots with the NRA, enabling them to pursue their unhelpful agenda, then please do the following:
1. Sign our Change.org petition
2. Check out our Google document listing the firms that are involved in offering discounts to NRA members, and their contact information. Reach out to them and let them know that you are unhappy that they are complicit with the NRA, and that as their customer you want them to end their partnership with them.
3. Share this article on social media, and use the hashtag #NRAboycott.
4. Follow us on Twitter (@NRAboycott) and Instagram (@NRAboycott)
It’s easy to feel helpless in the face of all the violence and ugliness happening around us lately. While it’s not a total solution to the problem, calling out those organizations that are complicit with the NRA is one concrete thing we can do. For other ideas, please see this list of 30 Gun Reform Actions You Can Take Now and do as many of them as you can.
Thanks so much for your help.
Additional note: People are asking so here’s why I’m anonymous: Because I am scared someone will make my life miserable like what happened to this woman, or worse because people who would be opposed to this effort have guns. I think that is a reasonable concern. Someone I know got doxxed for posting about gun control online, they told people to come to his home and “get him” (fortunately they had the wrong address, but scary nonetheless).
List of companies partnering with the NRA
Each company name is linked to its Facebook page — go there and let them know what you think!
NRA 5-Star Member benefits partners: collected from the NRA website member benefits information section on February 17, 2018)
American National Insurance Company ON 2/24/18 ANNOUNCED THAT IT WOULD END ITS PARTNERSHIP WITH THE NRA
Checks in the Mail (Harland Clarke) 2/24/18 ANNOUNCED INTENTION TO TERMINATE ITS CONTRACT WITH THE NRA
First National Bank of Omaha ON 2/22/18 ANNOUNCED IT WILL NOT RENEW ITS CONTRACT TO ISSUE THE VISA CARD
TrueCar ON 2/23/17 ANNOUNCED IT WOULD END ITS RELATIONSHIP WITH THE NRA EFFECTIVE 2/28/17
NRA Business Alliance discount partners, collected from the site on 2/23/18
Wild Apricot 2/23/18 CONFIRMED THAT THEY NEVER HAD A PARTNERSHIP WITH THE NRA, NRA WAS USING THEIR LOGO WITHOUT PERMISSION, THEY HAVE ASKED THEM TO TAKE IT DOWN
NRA Life Insurance Central partners, collected from the site on 2/23/18 (NOTE: As of 2/25/18 the insurance company logos were removed from the site)
Life Insurance Central
NRA Direct Long Term Care partners, collected from the site on 2/26/18
Lincoln Financial Group
National Life Group
United of Omaha Life Insurance Company
Other — found on the NRA’s home page 2/23/18
Holiday Card Central (No Facebook link available but enjoy the irony of this NRA Peace on Earth card)