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Monday, July 6, 2015

Gun Watch Blog on the NCPC "Lock it Up" Billboard

Last year, this blog reported on the National Crime Prevention Council (NCPC)/ Bureau of Justice Assistance (BJA)/AdCouncil public service announcements that are suppose to encourage gun owners to properly store their firearms when not in use.  BJA is one of the grant making bureaus at the U.S. Department of Justice and the Obama administration found $1 million laying around in 2013 and directed BJA to give the funds to NCPC to produce these ads.  Setting aside the obviously anti-gun bias of the ads in question, the fact that public service announcements for the most part run on TV and radio when no one is likely to hear them, they are probably the best way to waste taxpayer money.

Probably for that reason, the radio and TV ads have not garnered much attention from either side of the issue.  But over the weekend, Gun Watch blogger Dean Weingarten noticed one of the billboard ads in Yuma, Arizona and wrote about it.

What is wrong with the above picture?  Everything.  First, it gives the impression that small children gaining access to firearms is a big problem in this country.  It isn't.  The number of children under five that die in firearm accidents each year is in the single digits.  Most of those are shot by an adult.  In a country of 313 million people and 347 million firearms, that is a remarkable safety record.

So why the picture of a 4 year old with a revolver?  Simple.  Shock propaganda value aimed at the non-gun owner, and an attempt to demonize guns more than they already are.  If you dig into the campaign further, the attempt is to push gun owners to lock up their guns when "not in use".   The ad is couched in terms of in terms of "gun safety", pushing the idea that guns should be "locked up".

This happens to echo the latest push for gun control by the left, the San Francisco ordinance that any handgun in the home, that is not being carried on the person of an adult, "must" be locked up, which is now being echoed in a proposed Los Angeles ordinance.  
Weingarten's comments echo those posted on this blog last June when the campaign was originally launched - that far from simply being a campaign asking people to voluntarily secure their guns, the very images created for the campaign were developed to demonize firearms and promote the idea that guns are bad and should be locked up.  A far more effective campaign is NSSF's Project ChildSafe.

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