Connecticut Newspaper Runs Gun Show Ad Alongside Sandy Hook Back-to-School Story


The placement raised eyebrows, prompting a statement of apology.

Sandy Hook Elementary students returned to school Thursday for the first time since the shooting that claimed the lives of 20 first-graders and six educators.

Meanwhile, on page A5 of the Stamford Advocate (via BuzzFeed), there's an article on the 400-plus students transitioning to a different school in Monroe, Conn., near Newtown. And alongside that story: an advertisement touting an "East Coast Fine Arms Show" starting Friday at the Stamford Plaza Hotel.

This odd placement is raising eyebrows and cries of insensitivity in the media, with Buzzfeed's headline dubbing it "The Most Inappropriate Ad Possible In An Article About Sandy Hook." Seconds The Atlantic Wire: "Who Let This Gun Show Ad Run Next to a Story About Sandy Hook Students?"

Hearst Connecticut Media Group executive editor Barbara T. Roessner has offered a response to the media news website Romenesko, writing in an emailed statement: "Our newspapers should not be running gun ads — including ads for antique and collectible gun shows — next to stories about Sandy Hook. It’s insensitive, and it shouldn’t have happened. It was an oversight, and we apologize for it. We have taken steps to make sure it doesn’t happen again."