Mayors Against Illegal Guns released a new Demand A Plan ad yesterday this time featuring retired military leaders calling on Congress to pass new gun laws in an effort to curb gun violence.
The military leaders are all retired Generals or Admirals and like the other commercials they look into the camera and discuss how much damage a gun can cause when in the wrong hands.
The video features Rear Adm. James A. Barnett Jr., USN; Brig. Gen. Stephen A. Cheney, USMC; Maj. Gen. Paul Eaton, USA; Rear Adm. Malcolm MacKinnon III, USN; Lt. Gen. Charles P. Otstott, USA; and Brig. Gen. Stephen N. Xenakis, MD, USA, according to the press release, which has full bios on all the senior officers. Essentially it’s just new faces delivering the same message as before.
While the Demand A Plan campaign has a slew of videos, many of which feature gun violence victims or members of their family, this is the third major commercial for the group. The other two feature A-list celebrities and NFL players.
The campaign launched shortly after the movie theater shooting in Aurora, Colorado that left 12 people dead and 58 wounded in July, but it really didn’t take off until after the Sandy Hook shooting in Connecticut when MAIG produced a short commercial with high production value featuring movie stars.
While the first video is somber and taps into an emotional core, it was highly criticized especially by those in the gun world because most of the actors and actresses have starred in flicks that often contain guns and violent images. And many see the second video — starring NFL players — as a glowing example of hypocrisy because of the unsavory reputation of numerous professional football players. However, the third video is different because it contains men who served the U.S. instead of just entertaining it — MAIG must’ve been listening.
“These men have stood in the line of fire in service to our country, and they speak with great knowledge of guns and the purpose of military-style weapons and ammunition,” said Mayors Against Illegal Guns Co-Chair and New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg. “I want to thank them for continuing to protect American lives — even in retirement — by helping to lead the charge for more sensible gun laws that will make our country safer.”
While lots of gun owners who double as gun rights advocates can connect to the figures in the new video — in having served in the armed forces — the commercial still delivers the same message, pushing for more gun control. Specifically for background checks for all gun sales, banning rifles defined as “assault weapons” and high-capacity magazines, and making gun trafficking a federal crime.
In states where lawmakers are currently debating or have passed gun control bills — like New York, Colorado, Connecticut, Illinois, Maryland — the Assault Weapons Ban usually takes the stage in the public’s eye, but it aims at preventing gun violence, or violence, at a superficial level. The language of those specific bills often define “assault weapons” by aesthetic features rather than how they operate, and in turn suggest features like a pistol grip or flash hider make a rifle or shotgun more dangerous when in the wrong hands.
The ad will air throughout the week on Washington, DC cable and broadcast television.
What are your thoughts?