By Dave Workman
Moms Against Illegal Guns is gloating today over a decision by Facebook and its Instagram subsidiary to “take significant steps to block potentially illegal firearm sales through their platforms,” but to the firearms rights community, it seems like another exercise of social bigotry.
According to an MDA press release, the Facebook decision came after a “month-long campaign” by the organization that included a meeting between Facebook officials and Mayors Against Illegal Guns, the group started by billionaire former New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg and ex-Boston Mayor Tom Menino.
This appears to be part of a bigger push to alienate gun owners that follows efforts to convince various businesses to refuse service to legally-armed citizens. The Seattle Gun Rights Examiner takes a look at this issue here.
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According to MDA, the campaign to pressure Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg and Instagram CEO Kevin Systrom “drew more than 230,000 supporters.”
On Tuesday, a group of MDA protesters descended on a Staples office in Framingham, Mass., in an attempt to force that national chain to refuse business to armed citizens. They showed up with a petition that reportedly carried more than 12,000 signatures, but were quickly asked to leave the premises.
Last week in Seattle, Wash., a smaller MDA group gathered in front of the Seattle Public Library main branch to demand a change in that state’s gun laws to prohibit the carrying of firearms in the library or its branches. Currently, under the state’s model preemption statute, passed in 1983 and strengthened in 1985, libraries and other public buildings cannot enact their own regulations regarding firearms.
Last year in Seattle, former anti-gun Mayor Mike McGinn launched a “gun free business” campaign that encouraged private businesses to refuse service
The preemption law was upheld two years ago when the Second Amendment Foundation and National Rifle Association successfully sued the City of Seattle to prevent the enactment of a gun ban in city park facilities.
Under the new Facebook policy, the following “educational and enforcement efforts” will apply to people who talk about the private sale of “regulated items”:
- Any time we receive a report on Facebook about a post promoting the private sale of a commonly regulated item, we will send a message to that person reminding him or her to comply with relevant laws and regulations. We will also limit access to that post to people over the age of 18.
- We will require Pages that are primarily used by people to promote the private sale of commonly regulated goods or services to include language that clearly reminds people of the importance of understanding and complying with relevant laws and regulations, and limit access to people over the age of 18 or older if required by applicable law.
- We will provide special in-app education on Instagram for those who search for sales or promotions of firearms.
For more from Gun Rights Examiner on a breaking Seattle case and a court win for the Second Amendment Foundation, click here.