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Report: Gun Marketing Tactics Target Scared Asian Americans

gun display
Keith Srakocic
The marketing of firearms has become a subject of recent lawsuits in Connecticut under its consumer protection law.

Gun control advocates from Connecticut and across the country say the firearms industry is exploiting fear of hate crimes to sell more guns to Asian Americans, according to a study led by the Violence Policy Center.

“Historically, Asian-Americans have owned very few guns, which is precisely the reason why we have experienced comparatively low rates of gun violence. That the gun industry is now targeting our community as a lucrative new market is incredibly troubling, because more guns means more gun-related injury and death," said Gloria Pan with advocacy group Moms Rising, another contributor to the study.

Advocates said groups like the NRA and the Newtown, Connecticut-based National Shooting Sports Foundation have targeted people of color since 2015. But since the pandemic, they have started groups and social media campaigns to reach Asian-Americans.

Po Murray, who is Korean-American, is with the Newtown Action Alliance. The group was founded after the 2012 Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting.

“I call on my fellow Asian-Americans to reject the corporate gun lobby’s attempt to exploit our fear and anxiety," Murray said. "Guns are manufactured to kill.” 

Suicide is one of the leading causes of death for young Asian-Americans. Advocates said more guns will lead to higher suicide rates.