CHANDLER, Ariz. — Just days after a promotion was launched involving Deal Chicken and Desert Valley Firearms, the online coupon site has pulled the plug.
Desert Valley Firearms offered a $39 handgun safety training course that was big step toward getting a concealed handgun permit through the Arizona Department of Public Safety. Owner Dale Roddy said he received calls and emails from Deal Chicken on Tuesday informing him the deal was off.
“They told me basically the culture is changing.”
Living Social cancelled the same deal on Dec. 14, the day of the Connecticut school shooting.
Roddy believes that simply means Deal Chicken and Living Social feared backlash after the Sandy Hook school shooting and the increasing talk of tighter gun control, including a possible ban on assault weapons and extended ammunition clips.
“I’m just trying to teach people responsible use of handguns,” he said. “That’s what we’re preaching, nothing more. How to follow the laws. Learn what works and doesn’t work.”
Roddy said firearms dealers have been unfairly attacked since the school shootings and some callers opposed to guns have been filled with venom.
“One lady calling from Connecticut called me a merchant of death,” he said. “Anybody who knows me knows that I am not. It takes a toll emotionally and I understand what the families in Connecticut feel like. I lost two family members to gunfire. The reality is that the anti-gun movement puts a panic into the public and they want more guns, bullets, everything. It achieves the opposite of what they’re trying to do.”
Roddy said he will take a loss, but he will keep offering the $39 course which usually carries a price tag of $100 without Deal Chicken and Living Social “until the end of time if it helps train people how to be safe with handguns.”