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Facebook Shuts Down Controversial Gun Shop Contest

PITTSBURGH (NewsRadio 1020 KDKA)- A McKeesport gun shop's giveaway contest had to be postponed because Facebook shut down the Pittsburgh Tactical Firearm's page.

The contest was to give away an AR-15, ammunition, and other gear, valued at some $10,000 dollars. The company has done many of the giveaways, their most recent was back in February.

KDKA-AM's Robert Mangino spoke with Pittsburgh Tactical Firearm's Owner Eric Lowry about his gun shop's giveaway who says they've never had any problems up until now.

Lowry believes that it's your Second Amendment right to own a gun and that the American people have the right to protect themselves to the fullest extent against any enemy.

At his gun shop, they sell all kinds of guns, including police and military style weapons, as well as tactical classes on survival and defense. He believe it's everyone's right to own any kind of gun you would want.

Lowry says the contest was about to launch when Facebook told the gun shop they violated their policy which prohibits the sale of or advertisement of the sale of firearms. Lowry contests that they're not selling anything, they're giving it away.

"There was a media outlet out of New York, and we were one of the headlining companies that they had featured." Lowry said. "We were singled out."

Lowry says the gun shop even paid Facebook $5,000 dollars to advertise their giveaway, and all their Facebook ads were approved by the company.

"They took our money without a problem, but as soon as somebody brought media attention to it, they shut us down." Lowry said.

Facebook has since reinstated Pittsburgh Tactical Firearm's page, with heavy restrictions. One of which is to never do another gun giveaway.

"I think they're trying to make an example out of us." Lowry believes.

"We follow all local state and federal laws, you have to, I'm not going to go to jail over a contest." Lowry added.

Lowry said that he set up forms on his shop's website, where people can sign up for his firearm giveaways from now on.

And those that think like him have supported the gun rights movement by using their wallet. For instance, Lowry says that after Sandy Hook, he has seen a huge jump in gun sales.

"Two days after the shooting, we sold 95% of our stock out," says Lowry.

Robert Mangino is live every weeknight from 7-11 p.m. on NewsRadio 1020 KDKA.

Eric Lowry

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