A flower shop near Nashville refused to provide decorations for a GOP event featuring former President Donald Trump, and urged other businesses to deny future services to the Republican Party in a call for stricter gun laws.
Owners of the FLWR Shop in Belle Meade, Tennessee, said they “immediately declined” service for the upcoming Republican National Committee (RNC) fundraiser and encouraged “others in the Nashville event industry to say no to taking money or jobs from the Republican Party until they begin to make the changes to gun laws that most Americans are calling for.”
In a lengthy response to the RNC, owners Alex Vaughan and Quinn Kiesow claimed that while they “respect” the views of their conservative customers, the speakers featured at the RNC event go “beyond our comfort level.” The lineup of GOP speakers includes Trump, former Vice President Mike Pence, Sen. Marsha Blackburn, R-Tenn., and Gov. Brian Kemp of Georgia.
“At this moment, I cannot ignore the work the RNC has done to create this tragedy and so many others like it,” the FLWR Shop said referring to the March shooting at the Christian Covenant School.
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The business posted its response to the RNC’s request on social media Monday, claiming that the Republican Party “makes this problem worse, like the recent changes to gun laws here in Tennessee.”
“The Republican Party has wasted taxpayer money and precious legislative will on banning drag shows, rather than assault rifles that are being used to murder children in their classrooms,” the statement read.
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“We will not be accepting any of your money,” the Tennessee business owners wrote. “The blood of the 3 beautiful babies we lost in Nashville is on that money.”
Christian businesses have faced backlash in the past for denying services that would go against their religious beliefs, including refusing to bake cakes or create websites for same-sex weddings. However, the FLWR Shop was praised on Twitter for its political statement.
“BRAVO!!!” a prominent activist account wrote in response to the refusal of service.
Despite claims that the GOP refuses to take action to prevent mass shootings, Gov. Bill Lee, R-Tenn., signed an executive order Wednesday to ensure a more extensive, up-to-date background check process for the purchase of firearms in the state.
“I’m asking the TN legislature to pursue a new ‘Order of Protection Law’ to separate dangerous individuals from firearms, while preserving constitutional rights,” Lee wrote in a Twitter post.
Nashville’s Second Amendment debate was recently put under the national spotlight after a transgender shooter opened fire in a Christian school, killing six individuals, including three children.
Following the horrific incident, three Democrat state lawmakers led an anti-gun protest at the state’s capitol, leading to the expulsion of two male legislators. Despite violating House rules, the expelled lawmakers were reinstated just days after their removal.
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