The PJ Tatler

Is PepsiCo Underwriting Gabby Giffords' Gun Control Activism?

Take a look at this. It’s from the 2013 Aspen Ideas meeting:



If you haven’t heard of the Aspen meeting, it’s one of those gatherings of the high and mighty around the world, UN heavyweights and Hollywood nitwits and politicians with big government causes, like Giffords.

Here’s the text from that screenshot:

Two and a half years ago, Gabrielle Giffords and Mark Kelly had their lives changed forever by a madman with an arsenal of deadly weapons. Today, the former congresswoman and the former astronaut discuss what it’s like to take on one of the most complicated issues in America—and one of the most difficult political challenges of our time. Giffords and Kelly will discuss how the shootings at Sandy Hook Elementary School drove them to commit themselves, personally and professionally, to reducing gun violence in America—by working toward common sense solutions that respect our Second Amendment rights and traditions of gun ownership. They will share what the first few months of their new organization, Americans for Responsible Solutions, have yielded, what it feels like to be public figures again, and what the future holds, in terms of keeping our communities safer and building a political movement that reflects the diversity of our great country. Underwritten by PepsiCo.

Giffords’ group, Americans for Responsible Solutions, proffers “solutions” to gun violence that would not solve anything, such as mandating background checks among private sellers at gun shows. They use fuzzy logic to support this measure.

[T]here is a gaping hole in our laws that allow criminals and others to go to “private sellers” at gun shows, on the internet, and elsewhere to buy guns with no background check, no questions asked. Commonly referred to as the private sales loophole or “gun show loophole,” this failure in our public safety policy has allowed up to 40 percent of all gun transfers to take place without a background check.

In practice, this means that those wishing to purchase a gun have two easily available options – a federally licensed seller that will require a background check and an unlicensed seller that won’t. Not surprisingly, 80 percent of criminal inmates in a Department of Justice survey said they got their guns through private means – no background check necessary.

Do criminal inmates always tell the truth? Where is the link between how criminals get their guns “privately,” and gun shows? Giffords’ site doesn’t demonstrate that such a link exists.

Giffords uses an old statistic — “40 percent of all gun transfers take place without a background check” — which has been debunked.

The bolded line from the Aspen Ideas site above prompted the folks at TheTruthAboutGuns to call PepsiCo for an answer. An answer has not been forthcoming.

I called PepsiCo (1-800-433-2652) to see what’s what. “That is absolutely outrageous,” Customer Service Rep Hannah said. “We would never do something like that.” After spending an Internet eon on hold listening to the audio history of Pepsi jingles, Hannah transferred me to her supervisor, Elise Galgano. “PepsiCo doesn’t sponsor any gun control-related event,” she told me. “I’ll pass this along to my boss and get back to you.”

NBC’s Andrea Mitchell’s role alongside Giffords is a nice touch. Mitchell, whose show engineered smears of Republican Mitt Romney during the 2012 election, may be the most unethical reporter at MSNBC, which is saying something.

PepsiCo brands are numerous and difficult to avoid, should you want to avoid them.



Pepsi earned criticism in 2009 for aligning its branding and rhetoric too closely to the Obama campaign’s look and feel.