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#187 School Shootings
Denny Hatch -- Direct Mail Expert Denny Hatch -- Direct Mail Expert
For Immediate Release:
Dateline: Philadelphia, PA
Tuesday, May 2, 2023



 #187 Blog Post  - Tuesday, 2 May 2023         

 Posted by Denny Hatch


A Direct Marketer Takes Aim at the Gun Lobby

With a Sincere Attempt to "Save the Children."

This photograph is typical of how Congress, local politicians, guns and ammo manufacturers, the NRA, gun owners and the media want Americans to believe what classroom shootings are really like. 


The sanitized message of the Gun Lobby: The dead children are in a happy place — in heaven playing with stuffed Teddy bears hugging little bunny rabbits among colorful flowers. All are having a loving and lovely time together.


The Backgrounder That Triggered
This Long Overdue Blog Post.

This past March 27tha nutcase woman wielding two AR-15 automatic rifles and a pistol shot her wayinto the Covenant Presbyterian Elementary School in Memphis. After walking thehalls she found three 9-year-old children and three adult teachers and blew themto smithereens. Mercifully, the police rushed in and shot her dead before shecould take any more lives.


This was the 118thschool shooting incident in the first three months of 2023. That’s more than oneshooting every day.

2023School Shooting Victims Numbers 68-73 

            Evelyn Dieckhaus (age 9)       Hallie Scruggs (age 9)         William Kinney (age 9)


   Katherine Koonce (age 60)         Mike Hill (age 61)           Cynthia Peak (age 61)

WhyShould This Cranky Marketing Blog
Givea Damn About School Shootings?

Our business — yoursand mine — is direct marketing.

We dream up products andservices, figure out the precise arithmetic and then create selling campaigns thatwill bring in the most orders hopefully at the allowable CPO (cost-per-order).

After 60 years in directmarketing I have come up with the seven-word description of what we do:

“Wecreate wants and change people’s behavior.”

Ifwe are the foremostexperts at changing behavior, how’s about we change the behavior of the rogue  members of America's AR-15 sicko sub-culture addicted to performing massmurders.


The Five Enablers That Must Change Their
Behavior to Put an End to Gun Violence.

1. Congress, State and Local Politicians
2. NRA
3. Guns and Ammo Manufacturers

4. Gun Owners          

5. The Media

Of the Five Groups Above, Only the Media —
The Lynchpins — Have Gone Unchallenged

I spent a weekwrestling with the question: Why aren’t all Americans against mass shootings?What is the missing link?


Then it hit me. Hard. I hadnever seen a photograph of a crime scene — the actual schoolroom where a shooting massacre had just taken place:

• The mayhem of mutilateddead little kids with their heads blown off by a military AR-15 assault rifle.

• Their bloodied brains splattered on the walls and windows with their tiny bodies lying soakedin pools of blood — bright red blood everywhere.

• The limited number of people who have seen firsthand the real horrorof mass shootings are the perps, teachers, police, EMTs, local mayors and pols, the janitors who cleanedthe mess up and the traumatized little classmates lucky enough not to have been inthe line of fire.

I searched all over Google, Bing , the Internet, YouTube et al., for a photo of an actual schoolroom mass murder crime scene. Couldn’t find one, not in color, not in black-and-white, not movies, not stills. Zip. Zero. Nada.


Two AppallingCrimes That Were

Graphically Picturedin My Lifetime


My family followed World War II moreclosely than most Americans. The reason: my father, Alden Hatch, had writtenthe first biography of General Dwight D. Eisenhower, published in late December1944 while the war was still raging. On April 12, 1945, General Ike flew into Ohrdruf,Germany to meet with Generals George Patton and Omar Bradley for a tour of thenotorious Buchenwald concentration camp system where 56,545 prisoners — men,women and children were starved, tortured and executed. The threeAmerican generals and their staffs, who had heard rumors of the cruelty, carnage and death,were seeing it firsthand for the first time.


In a shed, a pile of roughly 30 emaciatedbodies were discovered, sprinkled with lime in an attempt to cover the smell. Patton, a man privy to the violent scenes of war, refused to enterthis shed as the sights and smells in the camp had previously causedhim to vomit against the side of a building.”  —NationalWorld War II Museum, New Orleans, Louisiana


Eisenhower sent members of his staff tointerview the well-fed, German citizens that lived in the towns around thecamps and were hostile to their American conquerors. How could they have stomached what was goingon? the American military wanted to know. “We didn’t know anything about it,”the Germans lied. 

Eisenhower ordered they tour the camp. Here's the video. I invite you to have a look.


Fast Forward to August 1955.

EmmettLouis Till was a 14-year-old African American boy from Chicago who was visitingrelatives in Money, Mississippi. He was accused by a white woman, CarolynBryant, of offending her with a wolf whistle in the back room of her family’s grocerystore. Four days later Till was lynched by Bryant’s husband and half-brother, tortured,beaten and murdered.

“Till's body was returned to Chicago,where his mother insisted on a public funeral service with an open casket, which was held at Roberts Temple Church of God inChrist.[4] It was later said that "Theopen-coffin funeral held by Mamie Till Bradley[a] exposed the world to more than her sonEmmett Till's bloated, mutilated body. Her decision focused attention on notonly American racism and the barbarism of lynching but alsothe limitations and vulnerabilities of American democracy".[5]   


"Tens of thousands attended his funeral orviewed his open casket, and images of his mutilated body were published inblack-oriented magazines and newspapers, rallying popular black support andwhite sympathy across the U.S. Intense scrutiny was brought to bear on the lackof black civil rights in Mississippi, with newspapers around the U.S. criticalof the state. Although local newspapers and law enforcement officials initiallydecried the violence against Till and called for justice, they responded tonational criticism by defending Mississippians, temporarily giving support tothe killers. In September 1955, an all-white jury found Bryant and Milam not guilty ofTill's murder.” —Wikipedia


Takeaways to Consider  

For Emmett's funeral, in Chicago, Mamie Till insisted that the casket containing his body be left open, because, in her words, "I wanted the world to see what they did to my baby." That photograph changed American history.


• The American media establishment — TV, radio, Internet, blogs, e-newsletters,social media, newspapers, magazines, movies, billboards and skywriting — reachdirectly into the lives of the entire U.S. population, currently 337 millions ofus.

• Alas, nomember of this vast network will ever show the actual crime scene of a modern-daymass schoolroom shooting. The reason: it would “offend.”  (Andbe poor P.R. for the "greatest country in the history of mankind.")


•RememberRupert Murdoch’s immortal quote: “It’s not red; it’s not blue; it's green." It's about money. (In this case it's about cancelled advertisingand canceled subscription revenues.)


• Thehorrifying portrait of Emmett Till in death was a one-off event. A roomful of disfigureddead children with bright red blood all over the place is not in the cards.


 As a result, the greedy $2.2trillion-dollar Media Establishment —with tentacles that reach throughout the entire country — will remain the rootof all this evil. It is the ultimate enabler of America’s AR-15 culture, wielding farmore power than Congress, NRA and the guns-and-ammo makers combined.

 “Viewer discretion is advised.”


• If you have a better idea, let's hear it! 

Thank you.




Word count: 1229



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At age 15, Denny Hatch—as a lowly apprentice—wrote his first news release for a Connecticut summer theater. To his astonishment it ran verbatim in The Middletown Press.He was instantly hooked on writing. After a two-year stint in the U.S. Army (1958-60), Denny had nine jobs in his first 12 years in business. He was fired from five of them and went on to save two businesses and start three others. One of his businesses—WHO’S MAILING WHAT! newsletterand archive service founded in 1984—revolutionized the science of how to measure the success of competitors’ direct mail. In the past 55 yearshe has been a book club director, magazine publisher, advertising copywriter/designer, editor, journalist and marketing consultant. He is the author of four published novels and seven books on business and marketing.


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