FedEx Says It Backs Assault Rifle Ban, but Won’t Cease Business With NRA Due to Politics

Mark Lennihan/AP

Overnight shipping giant FedEx defended its business relationship with the National Rifle Association Feb. 26, saying the gun group is just another client whose politics they ignore.

But FedEx representatives declined to explain why the company continues to offer discount rates to NRA members even as FedEx distanced itself from the NRA’s controversial support of assault rifles like the one used to kill 17 students and teachers earlier this month in a Florida high school.

FedEx ranks No. 2 on the Transport Topics Top 100 list of the largest North American for-hire carriers.

“FedEx views assault rifles and large capacity magazines as an inherent potential danger to schools, workplaces, and communities when such weapons are misused,” the company said in a statement.

“We therefore support restricting them to the military. Most important, FedEx believes urgent action is required at the local, state, and Federal level to protect schools and students from incidents such as the horrific tragedy in Florida on February 14th."

FedEx was responding to social media pressure from gun control advocates to break ties with the NRA amid calls for companies to boycott the gun group in the aftermath of the Parkland massacre.

FedEx was hit with a barrage of social media posts from Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School students, celebrities and regular people around the country ratcheting up the political pressure on companies that work with the NRA.

“@FedEx Just remember, you guys aren’t the only shipping gig in town. So you should think about cutting ties with the @NRA, otherwise; several of us who use you guys can and will make sure our business goes elsewhere.#BoycottNRA,” California father Bill Singleton tweeted.

The mega-shipper’s main link to the group is through the NRA Business Alliance, which offers members up to 26% discounts on their package costs.

FedEx said it “does not and will not deny service or discriminate against any legal entity regardless of their policy positions or political views.”

The company also said the NRA is “one of hundreds of organizations in our alliances/association Marketing program whose members receive discounted rates for FedEx shipping.”

The company did not respond to requests for comment about its discount policy.

Delta and United Airlines, the country’s top airlines, announced Feb. 24 that members of the gun group will no longer get discounted tickets.

Enterprise rental company and its subsidiaries, Alamo and National, said that the gun group’s members would no longer get price breaks as of March 26. Hertz rental car company also put the brakes on NRA member cost cuts. MetLife and Chubb insurance companies followed suit, ending special NRA policies.

First National Bank of Omaha announced this week it would not renew its contract for the NRA Visa card.

NRA spokeswoman Jennifer Baker called the corporate backlash “a shameful display of political and civic cowardice.”

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