Share bikes are a thing. And they should be. The sharing economy is shaking the world up in a good way and bikes vs cars? Well, there’s no debate about which is better for the world.
Share guns? Now, that’s shocking. And that’s the power of the campaign by Chicago agency, The Escape Pod, for The Brady Center to Prevent Gun Violence.
The agency has established a share gun installation called QuikShot in Daley Plaza, Chicago, that mimics the city’s most popular bike sharing program, Divvy, except that instead of bicycles it offers ten replica AR-15 rifles. In case the visual message fails to hit the mark, it is reinforced by a sign that asks, “Why does Chicago have so many gun deaths when Illinois has some of the country’s toughest gun control laws?”
A report published in October last year noted that Chicago’s gun deaths were mostly likely attributable to illegal guns. Since 2013, the Chicago Police Department has recovered nearly 7,000 “crime guns” each year. And between 2013 and 2016, six in 10 of those illegal guns came from outside Illinois. Neighbouring Indiana was the state with the highest share of responsibility, with one in five illegal guns originating there, and the US’ laxest gun laws.
Of course, visitors to the exhibit can’t actually get a gun, but they can make a donation to the Brady Center on an iPad located on the site and learn more about the campaign’s gun safety efforts. Since the Parkland school shooting in Florida in February, the Brady Campaign has advocated for three policy changes:
- Extending background checks for all gun sales.
- Banning assault weapons and high capacity magazines.
- Passing extreme-risk protection order laws that allow courts to prohibit someone from owning a gun if they pose a threat to themselves or others.
The installation, built by Nicholas Berg of Ojo Customs, will remain in place for one week (until May 16), but it is also mobile and Escape Pod intends to move it to other locations during the US summer.
“Arguably, the lack of legislative action to implement even the most basic and rudimentary gun regulation is the real problem,” stated Escape Pod executive creative director, Vinny Warren.
“Our goal here is to start a conversation on one of the more burning issues of our day, and in the process, raise much needed funds for the Brady Center to Prevent Gun Violence. This issue is especially relevant to our home town of Chicago, which has suffered more than most from the plague of gun violence.”