YETI Coolers appears to be the latest company to sever ties with the NRA Foundation.
YETI is not the first company to drop their affiliation with the NRA in an attempt to avoid backlash from the growing social media protests following the shooting at Majory Stoneman Douglas High School. We have even seen anti-NRA billboards pop up as those opposed to gun ownership look for someone to blame.
The NRA-ILA posted an email from past president Marion Hammer on Saturday, which details that YETI has decided that they no longer want to do business with the NRA Foundation and will cease sales to them. The email, dated 4/20/2018, elaborates on how this came about:
“DATE: April 20, 2018
TO: USF & NRA Member and Friends
FROM: Marion P. Hammer
USF Executive Director
NRA Past President
For years YETI Coolers have been a hot item for sportsmen at the Friends of NRA Foundation Banquet and Auction events around the country.
These Foundation events raise money to support youth programs and educational programs nationwide. The youth of America who benefit from these programs are the future hunters, hikers, fishermen/women, bikers, campers, wildlife photographers, mountain climbers, sportsmen/women and conservationists who will protect our natural resources and recreational lands.
Suddenly, without prior notice, YETI has declined to do business with The NRA Foundation saying they no longer wish to be an NRA vendor, and refused to say why. They will only say they will no longer sell products to The NRA Foundation. That certainly isn’t sportsmanlike. In fact, YETI should be ashamed. They have declined to continue helping America’s young people enjoy outdoor recreational activities. These activities enable them to appreciate America and enjoy our natural resources with wholesome and healthy
outdoor recreational and educational programs.
The NRA Foundation is 501(c)(3) non-profit, charitable organization.“
Unfortunately, this is a trend which appears to be picking up steam among brands which offer ancillary services such as car rentals and travel discounts to NRA members. The good news is, there are a number of companies who would love to support the 2nd amendment, and are not afraid of to tell their costumers how they feel.
In an almost immediate response, both RTIC Coolers and Orca Coolers have responded in their own ways, reaffirming their support for the gun ownership and the 2nd amendment.
Users within the comments of the RTIC post were also commenting that in direct messages, ORCA expressed their support for the 2nd amendment and gun ownership however, no official statement has been made.
What are your thoughts on YETI’s move? Will you be looking to other cooler companies for your next purchase? Let us know in the comments below.
(UPDATE 4/23): This article has been updated with an official statement from YETI.
Following reports that YETI severed ties with the NRA foundation, YETI has since released a statement claiming the NRA’s statements are “inaccurate”:
Here is the statement we received from YETI:
“A few weeks ago, YETI® notified the NRA Foundation, as well as a number of other organizations, that we were eliminating a group of outdated discounting programs. When we notified the NRA Foundation and the other organizations of this change, YETI explained that we were offering them an alternative customization program broadly available to consumers and organizations, including the NRA Foundation. These facts directly contradict the inaccurate statement the NRA-ILA distributed on April 20.
Further, the NRA-ILA stated in that same public communication that “[YETI has] declined to continue helping America’s young people enjoy outdoor recreational activities.” Nothing is further from the truth. YETI was founded more than 10 years ago with a passion for the outdoors, and over the course of our history we have actively and enthusiastically supported hunters, anglers and the broader outdoor community. We have been devoted to and will continue to directly support causes tied to our passion for the outdoors, including by working with many organizations that promote conservation and management of wildlife resources and habitat restoration. From our website to our film footage and from our social media posts to our ambassadors, YETI has always prominently featured hunters pursuing their passions. Moreover, YETI is unwavering in our belief in and commitment to the Constitution of the United States and its Second Amendment.”