• Press Release

MFOL Urges the FTC to Protect Kids from Unregulated and Dangerous Firearm Marketing

WASHINGTON, D.C.  —  Last week, March For Our Lives sent a letter to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) requesting a meeting to discuss how their agency is protecting people, specifically young people, from dangerous and unregulated firearm marketing. The letter was sent exactly one year after President Biden issued an Executive Order urging the FTC to publish a public report analyzing how gun manufacturers market firearms to minors and adult U.S. civilians. March For Our Lives’ letter details how the FTC is still failing to regulate the industry and the consequences of their inaction. 

For years the gun industry has been targeting Americans with ads that glorify gun use, downplay its dangers, and upsell even deadlier firearms like assault weapons. Our letter to the FTC details the particular ways they’ve targeted children, and the AAPI community. Companies like Wee 1 Tactical  market to children through products like  the JR-15, which advertises a toy weapon that “looks, feels, and operates just like Mom and Dad’s gun.”  Bushmaster, the manufacturer of the assault rifle used in the 2012 Sandy Hook shooting, is indicative of the unethical marketing practice in the industry, releasing a campaign that valorizes deadly firearms with its “Consider Your Man Card Reissued” campaign. These advertisements and tactics prove what we already know: the gun industry’s marketing has shifted toward high-powered military-grade weapons, which have fueled soaring industry profits on the back of a soaring gun violence epidemic. That is why we are demanding that the FTC take the first step in addressing this issue and publish a public report analyzing how gun manufacturers market firearms to minors and adult U.S. civilians.

The FTC currently regulates the advertising and promotional marketing of alcohol and tobacco to prevent potentially harmful substances from getting into the hands of young people. They have a clear moral and responsibility to do the same with deadly weapons. For too long, the gun industry has escaped oversight and accountability, through sweetheart deals like PLCAA that allow it to escape public scrutiny, in a way no other industry does. The FTC must hold the gun industry to the same standard as every other industry and regulate the marketing of firearms to protect children and young people. We are calling on the FTC to meet with March For Our Lives and our youth activists to discuss this urgent issue and begin to rectify this oversight.