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Schumer blasts gunmaker for alleged marketing to minors

Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, Democrat of New York
Saul Loeb
AFP via Getty Images
Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, Democrat of New York.

U.S. Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) wants the Federal Trade Commission to investigate the maker of an AR-15-style rifle for alleged marketing towards children.

Schumer said the "JR-15," a smaller and lighter version of an AR-15, made by WEE1 Tactical is an irresponsible marketing campaign aimed at selling weapons to people who cannot buy them — those under 18.

The company’s website calls the weapon a “modern sporting rifle” smaller in size and made from “lightweight rugged polymer” and “geared towards smaller enthusiasts.”

“People under the age of 18 cannot own a gun. So why is this company so fervently marketing it to kids? And that's what we want the FTC to investigate," Schumer said.

WEE1 Tactical did not immediately respond to inquires.

The FTC does take a particular interest in advertising campaigns toward children, but has never taken action on firearm advertising. The gunmaker's ads are noteworthy for not shying away from featuring children, whereas in the past firearm makers haven’t done so.

Charles is senior reporter focusing on special projects. He has won numerous awards including an IRE award, three SPJ Public Service Awards, and a National Murrow. He was also a finalist for the Livingston Award for Young Journalists and Third Coast Director’s Choice Award.