Minor league team scuttles gun raffle
Athletes and guns have been a poisonous mix. It only took a few days for the Huntsville Stars to realize that.
Now, the minor league team -- a Double A affiliate of the Milwaukee Brewers -- that is playing host to a "2nd Amendment Night," which was to feature the raffling of three rifles, has called off that portion of the evening.
According to Stars' general manager Buck Rogers, "It's in the best interest of baseball."
Minor league baseball and the Southern League helped make the decision.
Rogers told Al.com the news was blown out of proportion, that "once the news gets out of market, it gets like that telephone game" where things are exaggerated.
It's a 180-degree spin from Rogers' comments of last week.
Rogers told Al.com several organizations routinely raffle off guns.
"And since everybody's buying guns hand over fist and Larry's Pistol and Pawn wants to get involved in some sponsorships and they had a line out there a mile long (to buy guns)..." Rogers said. "We're having a Second Amendment night to talk about things anyway. It's an educational night. No guns coming to the game. Nobody is giving away guns."
Rogers continued by explaining the organization's rationale behind the event.
"One of the hot-button issues right now is the Second Amendment that everybody's running from," he said. "We're not touching base on First Amendment, Fourth Amendment, abortion or any of that type of stuff. A lot of stuff makes people uncomfortable.
"Maybe it's time Americans basically said, 'Hey, what's going on? What's wrong with this?' Day in and day out, people's rights are being taken away. The government is spying. We've got phone companies selling our information — the whole nine yards."
Originally, the Stars' main point was to to make it perfectly clear they weren't giving away guns at their July 3 game in Alabama.
You had the chance to win the raffle, the team said, and then receive a certificate to take to Larry's Pistol and Pawn to pick up your weapon.
@PTutor_Star Nobody is giving away guns. I don't know where you got that information, but it is incorrect.— Huntsville Stars (@HuntsvilleStars) June 28, 2013
If you are an NRA member, you are in luck as your membership card gets you free admission to the game. The Stars said the night would be filled with patriotism, fun, food and firepower.
Throw in a little gunpowder and it made the perfect combination of promos if you mixed it with the promotion for a free funeral being offered by the Lehigh Valley Ironpigs, the Philadelphia Philles' Triple-A affiliate