ERIC Number: ED415295
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1997-Nov
Reference Count: N/A
Joe Camel with Feathers. How the NRA with Gun and Tobacco Industry Dollars Uses Its Eddie Eagle Program To Market Guns to Kids.
Glick, Susan; Sugarmann, Josh
The National Rifle Association (NRA) has developed its Eddie Eagle program as a school-based curriculum that claims to teach gun safety to children in preschool through grade six. The program uses a four-part message for children to follow when they see a gun, admonishing them to stop, not touch it, leave the area, and tell an adult. The NRA has credited the program with playing a major role in decreasing the unintentional death toll among children, but it has not conducted an evaluation of the effectiveness of the program. The primary goal of the Eddie Eagle program, this report argues, is to increase the acceptance of guns by children and youth and the development of new customers for the firearms industry and the NRA itself. The NRA funds Eddie Eagle through its NRA Foundation. Research by the Violence Policy Center shows that members of the firearms industry and the tobacco industry have made substantial contributions to the NRA Foundation. Many of the marketing problems the firearms industry faces are similar to those faced by the cigarette and smokeless tobacco industries, and the industry is using similar marketing strategies. The NRA also uses Eddie Eagle as a lobbying tool in its efforts to derail the passage of child access prevention and mandatory trigger lock laws at both state and federal levels. As a thinly disguised marketing tool to "soften up guns," Eddie Eagle is a sort of Joe Camel with feathers. Instead of acknowledging the inherent danger firearms in the home pose to children and the often irresponsible firearms storage behavior of adults, the Eddie Eagle program places the onus of safety and responsibility on the children themselves. Public health researchers have not found programs like Eddie Eagle to be effective in reducing unintentional death and injury from firearms. Six appendixes present additional information about the Eddie Eagle program, including copies of commendations and letters refusing endorsement. (SLD)
Descriptors: Child Safety, Curriculum, Elementary Secondary Education, Financial Support, Gun Control, Guns, Marketing, Prevention, Safety Education, Smoking, Violence
Violence Policy Center, 1350 Connecticut Avenue, N.W., Suite 825, Washington, DC 20036 ($20).
Publication Type: Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: Public Welfare Foundation, Washington, DC.
Authoring Institution: Violence Policy Center, Washington, DC.; Global Survival Network, Washington, DC.