Hunting and fishing was part of our family fabric and having guns around our home was commonplace. I've not handled or discharged a firearm in easily 30 years. I also fundamentally don't object to the notion of responsible gun ownership. Sadly, it's easy suggesting there are simply too many guns in the hands of the irresponsible.
Defining and contextualizing the word responsible is where this conversation falls apart. What makes for a really interesting conversation is one about underdogs. A meaningful conversation happens when you bring together a bunch of really pissed off moms, mix in a significant helping of social media and start building a community that has the determination and commitment to enacting common sense gun control laws in America.
The group's founder, Shannon Watts, is an Indiana mother of five, who wants to drill home the message of responsibility: "We understand the Second Amendment guarantees the right to keep and bear arms — just not ALL arms. Let's make our country a better, less violent place for them."
One Million Moms for Gun Control was founded to demand action now to:
- Ban assault weapons and ammunition magazines of more than 10 rounds.
- Require background checks for all gun purchasers.
- Report the sale of large quantities of ammunition to the ATF.
- Limit the scope of concealed weapons laws at the state level.
The word is spreading quickly, and not surprisingly social media playing a key role in raising awareness. Awareness is good, but funding is vital sustenance. Stepping up and playing the key fundraising role is Vancouver's FundRazr .
Landis Carey, the Million Moms' national social media director is realistic about the challenge ahead: "The National Rifle Association has been organizing themselves since 1871. We are playing catch-up, and we are using social media, specifically FundRazr, to rapidly do that as well as to secure the dollars we need to successfully move forward. We are harnessing the networking capabilities of social media online to demand action offline."
Daryl Hatton, FundRazr CEO/founder offers his insight: "There has never been a time in history where technology can better harness the hearts and contributions of the crowd to enact real change. Far more than a donate button, FundRazr creates a powerful rich media campaign and uses Open Graph social sharing to spread the word to friends of friends and new fans to securely collect the funds to level the playing field."
One Million Moms for Gun Control has a big social media campaign called "How do you wear your heart?" to help moms across the country creatively express their collective desire for new and stronger gun control laws.
Members are given templates for a signature heart, which they can pin over their heart and wear publicly in support of the campaign. Moms are asked to take pictures of themselves wearing their pin and to share them on social media via Twitter @1MM4GC and the hashtag #howdoyouwearyourheart, or their Facebook page.
Follow John F. Gray on Twitter: www.twitter.com/grayspective