Dallas Cowboys face backlash after partnering with gun-themed coffee brand

The Dallas Cowboys have drawn criticism on social media after announcing a marketing deal with a gun-themed coffee company that sells blends called ‘AK-47 Espresso’, ‘Silencer Smooth’ and ‘Murdered Out”.

The football team unveiled its partnership with the Black Rifle Coffee on Tuesday, a day after more than half a dozen people died in a shooting during a 4th of July parade in the suburbs of Chicago.

The partnership also comes nearly a month since the Cowboys announced their role in a $400,000 tournament. Don to support victims and survivors of shooting in a school in Uvalde in South Texas, where 19 students and two teachers died.

A Twitter Publish Tuesday’s deal announcement between “America’s Team” and “America’s Coffee” drew about 800 comments in the first 24 hours, most of them critical, and the timing of the announcement was poor.

“Maybe read the room guys a bit,” one person posted, while another wrote, “Dallas Cowboys just lost one of their biggest fans. Integrity matters.”

The Cowboys declined to comment.

The tweet links to a contest offering two tickets to a Cowboys home game and a one-year subscription to the coffee company. Most of the company’s sales are direct to consumers.

Evan Hafer, founder of Black Rifle

Black Rifle was founded by U.S. Army veteran Evan Hafer, who made supporting veterans one of his company’s tenets.

“The BRCC is proud to partner with the Dallas Cowboys, who are strongly committed to our mission of supporting veterans, first responders, and American men and women in uniform,” a Black Rifle spokesperson said. “The long-planned announcement was timed to coincide with the Independence Day holiday – America’s Team. America’s Coffee. America’s Birthday.”

Some Twitter users said the Cowboys could have chosen another company for a partnership.

“There are veteran-owned coffee companies that don’t glorify guns and would be much better partners for ‘America’s Team,'” one user said.

Reaction to the marketing deal suggests a “shared identification among fans” with the Cowboys, said T. Bettina Cornwell of the University of Oregon’s Warsaw Sports Marketing Center.

“For those who oppose gun violence, there is no right time,” Cornwell said. “The trade question is, ‘Have the Cowboys taken a misstep in terms of their relationship with their more moderate fans? “”

Cowboys owner Jerry Jones’ unwavering support for the military was best exemplified when he was one of the most outspoken owners in the NFL against players kneeling during The Star-Spangled Banner before games to protest the racial injustice and police brutality.

The Black Rifle brand is popular among conservatives and gun rights advocates, and the Salt Lake City-based company has ties to Texas. The first physical store opened in San Antonio, where the company has a second headquarters.

About Jeffery L. Parker

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