The social advocacy organization Mayors Against Illegal Guns, co-chaired by New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg and Boston Mayor Thomas M. Meninio, has launched a new PR campaign via social media in an effort to push American politicians to pass gun control legislation. The group also released a petition this week urging Americans to “join more than 750 mayors and 750,000 grassroots supporters to demand that President Obama and Congress step forward with a plan to end gun violence” on a national level.
The three main objectives of the Demand a Plan campaign are:
- Require a criminal background check for every gun sold in America
- Ban assault weapons and high-capacity magazines
- Make gun trafficking a federal crime, including real penalties for “straw purchasers”
Like most modern advocacy campaigns, this one gets creative with social media:
Bloomberg’s statement on its website reads, in part: “Calling for ‘meaningful action’ is not enough. We need immediate action. We have heard all the rhetoric before. What we have not seen is leadership – not from the White House and not from Congress. That must end today. This is a national tragedy and it demands a national response.”
Meanwhile, Menino writes: “As a Mayor who has witnessed too many lives forever altered by gun violence, it is my responsibility to fight for action. Today’s tragedy reminds us that now is the time for action…Now is the time for a national policy on guns that takes the loopholes out of the laws, the automatic weapons out of our neighborhoods and the tragedies like today out of our future.”
Supporters are invited to sign the petition, follow the campaign on Twitter @DemandAPlan, and tweet about it using the hashtag #demandaplan. But the campaign doesn’t stop there; the Demand a Plan website also offers several suggestions and links to help people contact their senators and representatives, recruit their town mayors to the cause, write letters to the press, donate to the organization and even contact the White House.
While it’s no surprise that long-time politicians like Bloomberg and Menino would know how to properly roll out a multifaceted campaign, we are particularly impressed by Demand a Plan’s ability to achieve a vast reach and scope while keeping its basic mission simple, honest, and to-the-point.
This all serves to effectively hammer home its message: less rhetoric, more action.