After the school shooting in Parkland, Florida last month, the students from Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School helped organize the March For Our Lives. The march is scheduled for March 24th on Pennsylvania Avenue in Washington, D.C., but there are “sibling marches” happening all over the country, which thousands of people are reportedly planning to attend. Organizing a march of this scale is no easy task, which is why a handful of celebs and companies are supporting the March For Our Lives. If companies aren’t directly funding the march, they are cutting ties with the National Rifle Association, which offers benefits to members, much like AAA does.
While ending these benefit partnerships might not seem as effective as legislators actually fighting for gun violence prevention and common sense gun safety laws, it does help stigmatize the organization. The NRA isn’t the cause of school shootings, but it does work hard to normalize gun ownership and has lobbied in the name of keeping AR-15s and other rifles normally used for combat on the market. Donating to the March For Our Lives and boycotting organizations that support gun laws is the best way, aside from voting in the midterm elections, to make sure things change.
People are donating to the march via its GoFundMe page, which states,
So far, not many companies have donated directly to the march. Gucci was one of the first ones to financially support the movement. According to the Business of Fashion, the fashion house stepped forward with $500,000 for the march. Alessandro Michele, creative director for Gucci, said in a statement, “I am truly moved by the courage of these students. My love is with them and it will be next to them on March 24. I am standing with March for Our Lives and the strong young women and men across the United States who are fighting for their generation and those to come.”
In addition to that, Lyft is offering free rides to students and people attending the march in cities all over the country, though kids under 18 years old have to accompanied by an adult, per their policy. The company explained in a statement:
Bumble, the dating app, donated $100,000 to March For Our Lives and is also banning images of guns on its user profiles, which is more good news. Whitney Wolfe Herd, the CEO of Bumble, told the New York Times that getting rid of these photos is not going to be easy and will likely upset some of the app’s users. “This is not super black and white. It’s a very tricky battle we’ve chosen to taken on, but I’d rather pursue this than just ignore it,” she said. For way too long, companies and legislators have refused to take on common sense gun laws and or take other steps to prevent gun violence for just this reason, so it’s a big deal that some progressive companies are finally considering people’s lives worth the hassle of upsetting some of their customers.
In addition to those companies, both Oprah Winfrey and George and Amal Clooney have donated $500,000 each to the march. Allied Van Lines, North American Van Lines, Avis Budget Group, Hertz, Enterprise Holdings (which includes Alamo, Enterprise, and National), Starkey, Hearing Technologies, MetLife, Chubb, Teladoc, TrueCar, SimpliSafe, Symantec (which includes LifeLock), and Wild Apricot are all of the companies so far that have stepped back from their partnerships with the NRA.
Even better than companies walking away from the NRA are the ones who are seeking to make getting guns harder and make having a gun not something you really brag about. Dick’s Sporting Goods, for example, is choosing to no longer sell assault-style firearms, as well as ban high-capacity magazines and prohibit anyone under the age of 21 from buying a gun.
Kroger and Walmart also raised their age limit to buy a gun to 21 years old, despite the fact that federal law allows kids as young as 18 years old to purchase one. (As you can imagine, there’s already a lawsuit against these companies for “infringing” on an individual’s right to buy a gun.)
With all of this support from both companies and celebrities, there might actually be some change coming to our gun laws and the culture surrounding them. Money definitely talks — just imagine what could happen if companies and celebs always gave this amount of support to important grassroots causes.