Today is National Day of Remembrance and Action on Violence Against Women. It also marks the anniversary of the École Polytechnique massacre (Montreal massacre) in 1989, a femicide, in which an armed student murdered fourteen women for "fighting against feminism."
Days before the Montreal massacre anniversary, the Canadian Coalition for Firearm Rights' (CCFR) ran an online promotion offering 10% off their merchandise for customers who used "POLY" as a promo code.
Canadians took to Twitter and called the promotion "disgusting."
Polytechnique Montréal addressed the CCFR's recent promotion code and called it a tasteless provocation and insulting to those affected.
The CCFR denies exploiting the anniversary of the École Polytechnique massacre.
"The code "Poly" does not refer to the mass shooting, it refers to the Twitter account, @PolySeSouvient, and they all know that. The discount code is in response to the group "Poly" and their constant demonizing of only licensed gun owners, and their non-stop implications that we are some kind of fraudulent organization. Their Twitter feed is available for anyone to view," Rod M. Giltaca, CEO & Executive Director of the Canadian Coalition for Firearm Rights' wrote to Yahoo Canada.
"We responded with a discount code, this was on Nov 20, not the "eve of the anniversary of the tragedy". They sat on the tweet for almost 2 weeks, then rolled it out as in their claim, knowing that no one would look at the tweet and see the date. The truth is, we didn't do what they've claimed. What we did was cheeky toward them, it was. But it was nowhere in the same universe as what they have represented."
Polytechnique shooting survivor and spokeswoman for gun-control group PolySeSouvient, Nathalie Provost, told the media that it is "incredibly disrespectful" for the gun rights coalition to invoke the group's name in a merchandise sale discount code. She said the promotion's timing was not surprising, as they had dismissed the event and the anniversary before.