"LivingSocial Urged To Stop Promoting Deals Combining Guns And Booze"
Daily deals site LivingSocial is under pressure from advocacy groups to stop promoting deals that package guns and alcohol. Credo Action and the Gun Truth Project released a report on Monday highlighting the many outings to shooting ranges and bars offered by LivingSocial all over the country.
Though the packages usually begin at the shooting range and end with alcohol, these groups protest the deal site’s glorification of the combination of guns and drinking. Many of the ads invoke American gun mythology, telling customers they can be like “cowboys,” “Annie Oakley,” or “James Bond” if they buy the deal.
LivingSocial told the Hill that participants are turned away if they seem like they have consumed alcohol or drugs before the event. Nevertheless, CREDO blasted the company’s hyping of firearms for profit:
“In the wake of Newtown, I’d like to know how the people who own or work for LivingSocial can justify profiting from the packaging of AK-47 shooting sprees with an evening of bourbon shots,” Becky Bond, CREDO’s political director, said in a statement.
The company, she added, “is endangering the public health by suggesting pairing assault weapons with alcohol binges is just good clean fun.”
LivingSocial’s competitor, Groupon, cancelled all gun-related deals in North America after the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting.
Mixing guns and alcohol is unfortunately common among those attracted to risky behaviors. As the report notes, 86 percent of homicide offenders were drinking at the time of the homicide. Gun owners also have far higher binge-drinking and chronic alcohol abuse rates than people who don’t own guns. People who carry concealed weapons or have confronted someone with a gun are more than twice as likely to drink heavily than non-owners. Ignoring this connection, many states — most recently North Carolina, South Carolina, and Louisiana — have recently pushed for legislation allowing guns in bars.
In late July, LivingSocial said they have no plans to offer new gun and booze deals and shuttered the broader “Adventures” program as well.