CAPE CORAL — A Southwest Florida roofing company is going viral for its Thanksgiving sale special, but its deal is stirring controversy.
According to CBS News affiliate WINK, Roof E-Z — a roofing contractor in Cape Coral — announced on its Facebook page that is offering customers who buy a roof a free turkey and AR-15 with their purchase.
"Everybody needs an AR-15," said Jason Polly, president of Roof E-Z. "Every homeowner needs to have an AR-15 to protect their family, and everybody thinks it stands for assault rifle. It doesn't. It's [an] Armalite rifle, so I know we're gonna get some kickback on, 'Hey, you're giving away AR-15 guns?' Well, we'd like to promote gun safety for your entire family."
The original post reportedly garnered many shares but was taken down sometime since Tuesday when local news outlets began picking up on the story and began to get flagged by some of those concerned on social media.
On Wednesday, Roof E-Z reshared a graphic describing the holiday special, saying that its "Roof and Gobble" sale was still going on.
However, there is a catch with this promotion: Anyone who wants in on the deal must go through the same steps as if they were just buying a firearm.
"You got to get a background check. You can't have any felonies," Polly said. "Once you pass your background check, you can pick it up in three days."
"The turkey will get you all sitting at the table, so you can spend time together. The roof will protect your home and the AR-15 will protect your family," he added.
Though lauded by many Second Amendment advocates on social media, not everyone was thrilled with the post. Patti Brigham, president of Gun Violence Florida, spoke to WINK, saying that the sales special was "adding to a culture of gun violence."
"Why would a business want to give away AR-15s? To those getting a new roof? What is the purpose of that? It is a destructive thing to do. That business is just adding to a culture of gun violence. The AR-15 is the choice of mass shooters," she told WINK.
"Support American family values by adding more AR-15s weapons of war into the public stream. I mean, that is not a family value at all. Family values are about love and acceptance, and forgiveness, not arming the public even further with these military style firearms. It's sick," she added.
CBS News Miami has reached out to Roof E-Z for comment about its Thanksgiving special. It has not responded as of 6:15 p.m. Thursday.
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