why dont firearms businesses encourage voting?


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hokiemojo
June 20, 2016, 04:38 PM
I've been to many shops, and one thing that I consistently see is lots of talk about politics from regulars. What I don't see is any effort to mobilize voters. No information about registering, no discounts for showing an "I voted sticker", no calendar of upcoming elections, no list of pending legislation with explanations of it. Why not?

Seems like a fantastic opportunity is slipping away. All of this could be done in a non-partisan way that simply states facts, but I feel like too many people dismiss the impact they could make if the voting pool expanded. Thoughts?

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CraigAPS
June 20, 2016, 04:56 PM
This is just purely speculation on my part, but the firearms industry is seen as being part of/in favor of one party that a discount could be viewed as trying to buy votes. I can see (not that I think this way) that it could easily be likened to the time in our history when candidates could offer drinks for votes and/or get voters drunk prior to voting which caused the government to order all bars and liquor stores to remain closed until after the polls closed to ensure that that did not happen. Kind of making the argument that LGS will only offer discounts to voters who voted for the "pro-gun" candidate. Of course, other industries (coffee and food in places like Richmond, VA and Detroit, MI) have offered discounts for "I voted" sticker wearers. So, what do I know!

However, I think that more LGS need to at least hang a couple signs encouraging people to vote. Hell, ALL businesses need to! The more voters we have, the better!

Rembrandt
June 20, 2016, 06:54 PM
Sounds like a solution to a problem that doesn't exist.

Business of a gun shop is to sell and service customers gun needs....not to push a political ideology or agenda. Mixing politics and business is what did in the Dixie Chicks. Ben & Jerry's along with other activist businesses drive away nearly half their potential clients by doing this.

kcofohio
June 20, 2016, 08:14 PM
Most of the gun industry will point to toward joining the NRA.

BullRunBear
June 20, 2016, 09:11 PM
From what I've seen and heard, most customers in LGSs already vote. They may or may not like the choice of candidates but they do go the polls. And I suspect it's a safe guess which way they will vote if they are pro second amendment. An LGS might figure overt signs are preaching to the choir and open them up to BS controversy.

Jeff

danez71
June 20, 2016, 09:38 PM
Gungenie / http://galleryofguns.com has a "trigger the vote" campaign right on their home page.

Warp
June 20, 2016, 10:20 PM
Sounds like a solution to a problem that doesn't exist.

Business of a gun shop is to sell and service customers gun needs....not to push a political ideology or agenda. Mixing politics and business is what did in the Dixie Chicks. Ben & Jerry's along with other activist businesses drive away nearly half their potential clients by doing this.

Well, there's no natural political leaning to people who eat ice cream. There kind of is to people who buy, own, and shoot guns.

And people's ability to continue patronizing that business is dependent upon politics

Steel Horse Rider
June 20, 2016, 10:32 PM
My response is that too many people in this world are spineless. I took on the LGTQR community in the late 1990's here on an Ordinance that would have stripped away all Constitutional Rights of individuals and businesses to set their own standards. Among the egregious parts was that an individual had to provide proof that they DIDN'T discriminate based on qualities that you are banned from enquiring about, and the petitioners had up to a year to file complaint and you had to provide written proof that those qualities did not play a part in your hiring decision. If you are not involved in the political process then you are a pawn being pushed to and fro by the prevailing winds. To paraphrase a Patriot: "Be comfortable in your bondage and content with your lot, no matter how miserable it is." I prefer to be myself and let the chips fall where they may.... My business has prospered beyond all expectations since that time.

joel6180
June 20, 2016, 10:41 PM
I have a political sign from the election 8 years ago hanging in my gun shop. 75% of my clients did not vote the way I did. Makes for some interesting discussions, but they keep coming back, because I do transfers for free.

Proinsias
June 20, 2016, 10:51 PM
If two stores are basically equal but one has employees who choose to make non-business related comments to me, I will choose the non-political one. I don't want music store (remember those?) employees making comments about my music choices for more than 1 second. If they choose to have subtle signs or if you become a regular and BS with the owner, that's fine. But don't assume that I agree with you 100% and even if I do agree on something, it's uncomfortable if you make irrelevant comments.

Warp
June 20, 2016, 11:35 PM
If two stores are basically equal but one has employees who choose to make non-business related comments to me, I will choose the non-political one. I don't want music store (remember those?) employees making comments about my music choices for more than 1 second. If they choose to have subtle signs or if you become a regular and BS with the owner, that's fine. But don't assume that I agree with you 100% and even if I do agree on something, it's uncomfortable if you make irrelevant comments.

When was the last time the music you could own or listen to was limited by the government, or required a background check, or registration, or risked confiscation, or became a major, leading topic in an election year?

Proinsias
June 20, 2016, 11:40 PM
When was the last time the music you could own or listen to was limited by the government, or required a background check, or registration, or risked confiscation, or became a major, leading topic in an election year?
How did you think I was saying they were equivalent? Or that I was referring to gun politics (which are relevant in a gun store) and not other unrelated politics talk?

Warp
June 21, 2016, 12:25 AM
How did you think I was saying they were equivalent? Or that I was referring to gun politics (which are relevant in a gun store) and not other unrelated politics talk?

Well, this is THR, and the topic of the thread is gun stores

Proinsias
June 21, 2016, 01:01 AM
Well, this is THR, and the topic of the thread is gun stores
Let me be more explicit: if they had told me to write my Senator about today's gun proposals (that failed, woo!), that would be relevant to a gun store. I would be very, very surprised to see Hillary 2016 posters in a gun store. But all things equal, I'd prefer not to be engaged about non-gun related politics or why Trump is better than Cruz or vice versa. Same as that I'd rather buy coffee from a shop who talks about coffee, and doesn't hand out political literature or talk to me about inequality, as some Starbucks did recently. I'll take my business elsewhere.

Or for something that is not political but still gets very charged: if I ask whether the Glock or the M&P is a better gun, they might offer an opinion. I don't want to hear about how one that I'm interested is crap and I should go with the other one.

Jim K
June 21, 2016, 01:44 AM
With the exception of a few businesses run by political activists, most businesses just want to sell coffee, or cars, or (yes) guns, not get into situations where they might well attract some customers while alienating others. While few gun dealers will post political signs or actively solicit votes for specific candidates, most let their views be known.

A few (very few) gun shops even support leftist anti-gun politicians, making it known that they are "superior stores" which sell only "proper sporting" guns to "discerning" and "respectable" customers. Those dealers who support gun control are often favored by interviews with TV and the press, complete with bespoke suits and sneers to match. They mostly sell antiques, very high ticket English doubles, and the like. I have been in a few of those shops; they are like those auto dealers whose low end line starts at $250,000. ("We must not appear to be excluding the lower classes, old boy.")

(It was in one of those shops that their self-styled "expert gunsmith" - who appeared to be about 17 - assured me that Damascus barrels were stronger than solid steel because the Damascus unwound, like a spring, and absorbed high pressure instead of bursting.)

Jim

RoscoeBryant
June 21, 2016, 03:02 AM
In about half of the gunstores around my home, there always are informational brochures and posters put up on pending legislation or otherwise relevant changes to the law. The employees do not engage in discussions about politicians (if you don't start it), but they actively inform about changes to the law etc.
I like it that way, as I fully support getting knowledge about legislation out there, but don't want to hear the same arguments about certain politicians I have heard a thousand times before.

hokiemojo
June 21, 2016, 12:00 PM
Thanks for all the replies guys. It's interesting to me to hear people's experiences. I just want to be real clear. I get that you can't be trying to buy votes. It is my understanding though that you can certainly encourage voting, and if your audience leans one direction politically, so be it.

I'm not trying to politicize this (really I'm not!). I was just thinking that while NRA members (or other similar gun organizations) may have high voter turnout, I suspect that a lot of people who aren't members might not turn out at such high rates and that it would be good if people in gun shops got out there and made their voices heard at the polls.

NormH3
June 21, 2016, 12:16 PM
I go to a LGS because I'm interesting in looking for a gun or accessory. I don't want to get bogged down in a political discussion. Not all Republicans think alike nor do all Democrats. Same goes for Liberal and Conservative. My parents are Conservative Democrats and have been their entire adult lives and they've been on this earth 83 years. That's just an example of what I referring to.

Warp
June 21, 2016, 12:25 PM
I go to a LGS because I'm interesting in looking for a gun or accessory. I don't want to get bogged down in a political discussion. Not all Republicans think alike nor do all Democrats. Same goes for Liberal and Conservative. My parents are Conservative Democrats and have been their entire adult lives and they've been on this earth 83 years. That's just an example of what I referring to.

We're down the rabbit hole now.

There's nothing conservative about the Democrats being elected around the nation and to the White House these days. Nothing.

But I don't think the OP was referring to having conversations or discussions about candidates so much as providing the info mentioned.

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