Exercising the spending power of gun owners

This is a discussion on Exercising the spending power of gun owners within the The Second Amendment & Gun Legislation Discussion forums, part of the Related Topics category; I participate in IDPA, the International Defensive Pistol Association . I recently had an opportunity to participate in an event in Springfield, Massachusetts. I wrote ...

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Thread: Exercising the spending power of gun owners

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    Member Array bigiceman's Avatar
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    Exercising the spending power of gun owners

    I participate in IDPA, the International Defensive Pistol Association. I recently had an opportunity to participate in an event in Springfield, Massachusetts. I wrote to the organizer and informed them that I would not attend any event that brough money to a state with gun laws like those in Massachusetts. The company sponsoring the event was Smith & Wesson, and I made sure I let them know I was not boycotting their fine products or employees, just the state of Massachusetts and the merchants and people who had allowed gun rights to be so violated. Someone on the local club forum thought that was misguided. My response was that if the 80 million gun owners of this country did more than join the NRA, and voted with their dollars as a united group, it would do more to change laws and attitudes in this country than legislative efforts.

    What do you think?

    Would you participate in an effort to fiscally chastise some business or community for their firearms policies? I know many have left ebay because of it and other personal protest boycotts. Would you participate in a nationally organized effort? Would you write letters, walk up to managers in stores, participate in a one day or one week boycott to make an impression? The blacks of Selma Alabama changed the policy of a bus line by boycotting it. The homosexuals have leveraged their buying power to gain all kinds of concessions from businesses and society. Gun owners are becoming a margainalized minority, I think we should do something to remind people that not only is our Constituionally guaranteed right to bear arms indisputable, but that we are a powerful spending block in our communities and our economy. They don't call it the almighty dollar for nothing.
    But if you are authorized to carry a weapon, and you walk outside without it, just take a deep breath, and say this to yourself...
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    Member Array Magilla82ABN's Avatar
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    I agree we contibute a pretty penny to this country's economy. I am a little skeptical on how to get started though
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    Member Array CelticWolf's Avatar
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    If my guns are not welcome than neither is my money.
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    Member Array phaed's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CelticWolf View Post
    If my guns are not welcome than neither is my money.
    ditto. fortunately, the market is still free enough to have some choices.
    War is not the ugliest of things. Worse is the decayed state of moral feeling which thinks nothing is worth a war. A man who has nothing for which he is willing to fight, nothing which he cares for more than his personal safety, is a miserable creature who has no chance of being free. -J.S. Mill

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    Senior Member Array Holdcard's Avatar
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    I wholeheartedly agree that we could make a difference. Getting people on board, organized and consistent is the challenge to overcome.

    Most people think I'm a typical "gun nut" when I suggest not going to a business that restricts or outright denies my right to defense.

    How many of the people on this forum willingly go to Disney parks or other recreational events where the right to self defense is denied? If I spend my money at store A instead of store B, my efforts will not even be noticed.

    If we ALL spent our money at store A the bottom line would make the difference. Affect profit and you will effect change, otherwise you're just a "nut"
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    Senior Member Array walvord's Avatar
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    Never thought much of it, but Bigiceman may be on to something. The groups he pointed out certainly have made large gains in our society using the methods he outlined. Many may or may not agree with said groups , but they have made strides in our society for acceptance. If it worked for them, it could possibly work for us IMO.
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    Distinguished Member Array kazzaerexys's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bigiceman View Post
    What do you think?
    I think I probably won't see you in Springfield next week.

    I have no problem with you voting with your wallet. Obviously, I am making a different choice, but there are definitely times when I feel similarly. For example, if I buy from a merchant who only accepts PayPal, well, I will probably suck it up and buy anyway, but if there is a non-PayPal option I will always take it.

    Quote Originally Posted by CelticWolf View Post
    If my guns are not welcome than neither is my money.
    Ah, but your guns are welcome in Massachusetts...because they charge you money for a temporary non-resident Class B firearms permit!
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    Senior Member Array Holdcard's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kazzaerexys View Post
    For example, if I buy from a merchant who only accepts PayPal, well, I will probably suck it up and buy anyway, but if there is a non-PayPal option I will always take it.
    That pretty much makes my point, there are enough people who feel this way that the rest will not have much (if any) effect. The groups that have used their dollars to cause change have been very organized and unified. As a whole, gun owners are not.

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    Distinguished Member Array kazzaerexys's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Holdcard View Post
    That pretty much makes my point [...]
    Point taken.

    Just thinking out loud here, but it occurs to me that the states with the worst gun laws (or best Brady scores if you prefer ) are, pretty much, socialist. Socialist states are not what most of us would call very fiscally sound, which means that economic arguments probably don't sway them very much.

    I mean, look at my state, Maryland. To pay for a bunch of crappy social spending that exists only to pander to three counties out of the whole damned state, the governor just forcefed the people a whole bunch of tax increases. Much of this is targeted at business. The net result is that businesses will pack up and move to Delaware, Pennsylvania, or Virginia. Maryland will lose money and the state economy will be even worse off.

    Did this stop them from raising taxes? No. Is it really going to have an effect on the three counties worth of blue-state entitlement crybabies who send these people to the state goverment for the purpose of fleecing those of us who actually make money? Not really.

    So, my point is that I am not sure the states that do have onerous gun laws are likely to be swayed by a purely economic force. Back to the OP, if S&W pulled out of Massachusetts, the local liberal weenies would probably shout it from the rooftops as a Great Victory Against the Forces of Eeeeevil! On the other hand, maybe if S&W gets financial support, they will be able to lobby their state government more effectively...

    (And yes, I realize I do not have to live in Maryland. Likely I will not for much longer, but for now I choose to do so. I realize that is another way to deal with the issue, though.)
    “What is a moderate interpretation of [the Constitution]? Halfway between what it says and [...] what you want it to say?” —Justice Antonin Scalia

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    Member Array bigiceman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Holdcard View Post
    That pretty much makes my point, there are enough people who feel this way that the rest will not have much (if any) effect. The groups that have used their dollars to cause change have been very organized and unified. As a whole, gun owners are not.

    Holdcard
    These kinds of things can be organized in such a way that the merchants or city fathers can get the message without changing the gun owner's life forever. If you only boycott for a week or month that is long enough to make an impact but not change the participant's life and habits forever. These kinds of tactics have been used by aforementioned groups over a week or month to let their buying power be felt. This will also mollify spouses and children so that they can go along.

    There is another tactic that has been used by P. T. Barnum and the USN before. Pick a particular denomination of currency that is not normally used in transactions. (dollar coins or two dollar bills) and make all of your transactions for a period of time with them. When the merchants cash drawers overflow with them they realize how dependent they are upon the group in question. This was done in Norfolk VA during the 70's and it opened a lot of eyes. The admiral there had everyone's paychecks cashed with $2 bills.

    Talk to your friends who have firearms who might not be on this forum and see what they think. That will have to be the other part of this, everyone would need to be reached.
    But if you are authorized to carry a weapon, and you walk outside without it, just take a deep breath, and say this to yourself...
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    VIP Member Array Supertac45's Avatar
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    It'd be nice if 80 million gun owners would join the NRA. We'd really be listened to by the Government.
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    VIP Member Array rodc13's Avatar
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    Looking at it another way, promotion of shooting sports in a state is a good way to begin building a base of support for change. I'd consider it more effective to boycott everything except shooting events.
    Cheers,
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    Member Array bigiceman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by rodc13 View Post
    Looking at it another way, promotion of shooting sports in a state is a good way to begin building a base of support for change. I'd consider it more effective to boycott everything except shooting events.
    If I could think of a way to stay there and eat there that didn't give the local government some of my money I would love to go to the event. I am also not going to pay MA a fee for a temporary permit to exercise my Constitutional rights inside the borders of their little police state.

    I wish we could get all 80 million people who own firearms to join the NRA, but even then there would still be 240 million out there with little or no perceived stake in our gun ownership. Until we find a way to do that financially or the day comes when an armed uprising (which I am in no way advocating, only postulating) was needed and the guns were not there will most of those other 240 million care.
    But if you are authorized to carry a weapon, and you walk outside without it, just take a deep breath, and say this to yourself...
    "Baa."
    LTC(RET) Dave Grossman

    Revolutionary War Veterans Association Shooter Qualification: Cook

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    Senior Member Array wht06rado's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CelticWolf View Post
    If my guns are not welcome than neither is my money.
    I agree. If my guns are not welcome, then I must not be welcome and my money walks with me!

    I beleive that this is a good idea in theory, but as others have said, I'm not sure how we would organize something that large.
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    Distinguished Member Array sniper58's Avatar
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    Business policies have directed my spending. I've bought suits from local merchants and a few at Men's Wearhouse, but after reading in here how firearms-friendly the Men's Wearhouse stores are, I've decided to buy all my suits and related clothing from them. I let the manager know (and called the 800#) exactly why I shop there (outstanding quaility notwithstanding). It's do-able if enough people start thinking that way and, it has to start somewhere.
    Tim
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