Advertisement uses humor to talk about gun safety - WFSB 3 Connecticut

Advertisement uses humor to talk about gun safety

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Advertisers often use humor to get their point across, but a funny ad about gun safety is turning some heads.

Those who were at a shooting range in Olathe, KS, spoke about if they thought the ad hits its mark, or if it just turns them off.

The video takes viewers back to our Founding Fathers, working out the amendments to the Constitution, and, in the skit, there's a fictional second clause to the 2nd Amendment.

An actor playing Thomas Jefferson reads from the altered Amendment, "The right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed, as long as people aren't being dumb****s about it."

"It's definitely something that shouldn't have to be said," said Jeffrey Hilty, practicing on the gun range at Centerfire Shooting Sports.

Certified instructors there make sure folks know their way around a weapon. The folks there believe in the right to own a gun and the need to use it safely.

"Anything that's going to promote safety, we're all for it," said Centerfire Firearms Instructor Greg Mendiaz.

But what about the ad's edgy approach?

In the video, the Jefferson character also suggests cutting "the dumb*** part" of the amendment.

A second founding fathers character counters, "Without it how will future generations know that the right to own a gun doesn't give you the liberty to act like a dumb*** with it? How will people know that they shouldn't leave loaded guns lying around the house unlocked, willy nilly?"

It brought a few chuckles to Hilty and he says that's a good first step to opening a conversation.

"I totally think it's a hard thing to talk about, because people always will bring it back to something political," Hilty said.

But some people say it's just too cavalier for a serious subject.

"A little offensive to some people. The 2nd Amendment's been around a long time," Mendiaz said.

For the ad's creators, Saatchi & Saatchi New York and for the nonprofit gun safety organization Evolve, starting a debate is the whole point.

"We're not doing it for the sake of being provocative or to set people off. We're literally doing it because we're hoping that it will get people talking, even if they disagree with us," said Claudine Cheever, Chief Strategy Officer for Saatchi & Saatchi.

Doing that with a laugh is exactly the aim.

The ad's creators say they want their campaign to catch on like "Friends don't let friends drive drunk." They say a cultural shift toward everyone handling guns responsibly will do more than any law could.

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