Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Businesses, TV & Movies Becoming Gun-Shy

Dick’s Sporting Goods (DKS), one of the largest retailers in its industry, said Tuesday it is suspending the sale of certain military-style semiautomatic rifles similar to the one used by the Newtown killer. Fox News reported that Discovery Channel (DISCA) has decided to cancel its popular reality show, American Guns. Less visible to consumers, but no less important, Cerberus Capital Management, a $20 billion private-equity firm based in New York, announced overnight that, under pressure from the California teachers’ pension fund, it will sell its controlling stake in the country’s largest guns-and-ammo manufacturer, a conglomerate called Freedom Group. The semiautomatic rifle used to slaughter 26 people at Sandy Hook Elementary School, 20 of them children, was made by Bushmaster Firearms, one of the companies operating under the Freedom Group umbrella. The California State Teachers’ Retirement System, which has $751 million invested with Cerberus, said it would review its relationship with the private-equity firm, “given the tragic events last Friday in Newtown, Conn.” Cerberus then followed with its announcement, saying that unloading Freedom Group “allows us to meet our obligations to the investors whose interests we are entrusted to protect without being drawn into the national debate” on gun control. In the entertainment world, the cable channel TLC has already delayed airing a show called Best Funeral Ever. Violent movie trailers might get postponed or edited. The massacre during a showing of The Dark Knight Rises in Aurora, Colo., in July prompted Warner Bros. (TWX) to pull the trailer for the forthcoming Gangster Squad, which depicted a theater shooting. Later the studio cut the scene entirely...more

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