You know TOMS, right? The company that vowed to help someone in need every time a purchase of one of its products is made, then actually fulfilled its promise -- and continues to do so?
Company founders have just added an item to their list of ways to make a difference in the world.
It started with shoes. Then the company moved on to helping people in need of access to safe water, medical treatment, materials and training needed for safe birthing and bullying prevention.
Now, the company has launched a campaign to help end gun violence. And while many people, establishments or companies take a firm stance on the right or left side of the gun agenda, TOMS is simply pushing for stricter background checks on gun purchases.
TOMS founder Blake Mycoskie was brought to tears during an interview with Jimmy Fallon when he explained why the campaign is near and dear to his heart.
He explained that his wife called him upset during the Thousand Oaks, California, mass shooting Nov. 7 and said, “I’m not taking our son to school today.”
That shooting left 13 people dead, including the gunman, officials said.
“Someone has to do something about it,” Mycoskie said. “I was emotional … I sat there and I thought — I said, ‘You know what? We’re gonna do something about it.'”
He then announced that TOMS would evolve its giving model to not only give shoes, but also “considerable resources to the causes and the most important issues of our time,” he said. “We’re going to start by giving $5 million to the most amazing organizations who are working hard, on the ground, every day to end gun violence.”
He went on to explain how they’re making it possible to give every American an opportunity to act.
With its initiative, TOMS is inviting anyone who visits their website to send a postcard to their local representative to encourage universal background checks — and they do all the legwork.
“We developed a technology … You can go on there, and in less than 30 seconds, you can send a physical postcard to your representative,” Mycoskie said. “That postcard will go to them, urging them to do one thing: Let’s pass universal background checks. This is something that 90 percent of Americans are in favor of.”
Universal background checks are a proposed federal policy change that would require a background check each time a gun is sold, including at gun shows, online and other direct selling methods that presently allow buyers to bypass the background check process.
Interested in helping make the push for the checks?
Here’s how it works on TOMS.com:
Once you click on the big red button that reads “Send a postcard” on the front page of the website, you’ll see exactly how your postcard will read:
More than 90% of Americans support universal background checks.
And I’m one of them.
As your constituent, I urge you to stand with me and pass this life-saving legislation.
Let’s end gun violence together.
Sincerely, (your name)
You then enter your name, email address, street address and zip code.
Then off your postcard goes.
“If every single American makes an action like this, Congress will listen," Mycoskie said.
Is this an initiative you can get behind? Do you think it will help make a difference? Let us know in the comment section below.