Sam never used the corporate discounts available to him through his National Rifle Association membership. It’s not like he doesn’t love a good deal — he just forgot they were available.
A pharmaceutical salesman from suburban Cleveland, Sam says he’s never been much of an activist when it comes to leveraging his purchasing power. “I am pretty pragmatic about my shopping habits,” said the 40-something, who asked that his last name not be published. “While I look for convenience, I will go out of my way to purchase something if I was treated well by a company.”
After 17 people were killed in a mass shooting at a Florida high school on Feb. 14, a slew of big-name corporations, including Best Western, Delta Air Lines, MetLife, the Bank of Omaha and the Avis Budget Group, have terminated their promotional programs for NRA members.
Not because the NRA had anything to do with the shootings, but because an organized campaign to boycott the gun organization appeared on Twitter within hours of the shooting. As the hysteria rose and thousands of activists bullied companies allied with the NRA, corporations panicked and canceled their affiliate programs. The left cheered and the rest of the country bristled as politics suddenly invaded the once-innocuous world of corporate discounts — yet another sector of America formerly untouched by activism.
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