Responsible Gun Ownership is as American as the NFL

Ken Blackwell is Senior Fellow, Family Empowerment at Family Research Council. This article appeared on, December 8, 2013.

It's a sad commentary on how much sway an urban elitist mentality must have within the NFL that Bob Costas can give an anti-gun diatribe for free, while the NFL and networks happily take money for ads telling people to drink alcohol and take drugs to help them have more sex, but a firearms business cannot pay to run an ad encouraging men and women to consider how to defend their families.

There's nothing wrong with responsible drinking and with older men finding help to enjoy their marital relationship, but those aren't near as important as keeping your family secure. That commercial was of a Marine veteran who is married and has a baby, and who wants to keep them safe.

The NFL's core viewership contains millions of hunters, veterans, and other law-abiding gun owners. This ad speaks to that audience and countless millions more Americans in the heartland. In an age when the media covers plenty of stories of NFL players cheating on their wives, fathering children out of wedlock, and getting caught at bars and nightclubs with illegal handguns, the NFL is taking a serious risk by refusing a pro-Second Amendment and pro-family ad. They better get on the same side of American culture as their audience before they further damage their brand.

My thinking on this matter is informed by my experience as a husband, father, former mayor of Cincinnati, a former undersecretary of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, a gun owner and a member of the Board of Directors of the National Rife Association. In addition, I'm a U.S. Constitution-loving NFL fan, who was, ever so briefly, affiliated with the Dallas Cowboys.

With the NFL rapidly becoming a cultural cheerleader for gay rights, Obamacare and other, so called "Progressive Issues", it is time for NFL fans and ticket holders to speak up!

Let them run the ad!!