Moms Demand Founder Shannon Watts: 3 Strategies for Ending Gun Violence

Not happy with how your representatives are handling gun safety laws? It’s time to get creative. At least that’s what Shannon Watts has realized in her five years in gun safety advocacy.

Watts founded Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in 2012 as a response to the infamous shooting at Sandy Hooks Elementary School. Since then. She’s created a powerful grassroots movement that is seriously making a change.

Speaking with Vogue, she recalled some of the more creative campaigns that went viral and made a difference.

Skip Starbucks Saturday

Watts recalled,

“We started a campaign that was called Skip Starbucks Saturday; we helped pictures of open carry at Starbucks go viral. And we just kept at it. Within three months, [then] Starbucks CEO, Howard Schultz, came out on television and said guns were no longer welcome in their stores.”

Moms Demand has since run similar campaigns that led changes in the policies at Target, Trader Joe’s, Chipotle, and more.

Stroller Jams

“We started something called stroller jams. Basically, the halls of the Statehouse would get so filled with moms and babies and baby paraphernalia that lawmakers couldn’t pass us without answering our questions and listening to our spiel. We’ve had them all over the country.”

The “Be Smart” Campaign

Gun safety doesn’t have to be political. As Watts explained,

“We also have a campaign called Be Smart, which is a non-political way to talk about responsible gun storage.”

Melissa Joan Hart is the spokesperson for the campaign.

Interested in getting involved with gun safety? Simply text “Orange” to 64433 and you’ll automatically get information and how and where you can do your part.

Lena Finkel
Lena Finkel is the Editor and Founder of Femestella. Prior to starting Femestella, she worked at People, InStyle, Tiger Beat, and Sesame Workshop (aka Sesame Street). She loves all things Real Housewives and Vanderpump Rules. When she's not busy binge-watching TV, you can find her hanging out with her tuxedo cat Tom.