The Crime Stoppers division responsible for the anti-gun billboard campaign that I shared with you last week has backed down.
In the wake of negative backlash, London Elgin Middlesex Crime Stoppers (LEMCS) in southwestern Ontario has agreed to cover the billboards that unequivocally—and erroneously—stated “guns are the problem.”
In a statement issued Thursday night, the volunteer board for LEMCS said that the intent of the campaign was “encouraging citizens to report illegal guns,” and never to advocate against law-abiding gun owners.
“We have never and would never target law abiding citizens, including licensed firearms owners,” the statement read. “Why would we?”
The statement said that comments “mounted to a point that we believed the original intent was lost, the negative impact far reaching, and the decision to remove the billboards was made.”
Though there was no apology or admission of wrong-doing, the result is certainly a desirable one.
And even if the campaign, which was crafted and funded through fundraising efforts by the volunteer team that runs the Crime Stoppers division was, as the board says, done “with the the best intentions,” it still had a direct impact on the stigmatization of Canada’s firearms-owning population.
Canadian gun owners are screened every single day by authorities, making them among Canada’s most-vetted groups as far as the law is concerned.
Though LEMCS has backed down, the attitudes that led to the billboards in the first place still exist, hence the importance of tackling these issues as they come.
Click HERE to see full statement from Crime Stoppers