Facebook rejects 'Back the Blue' ad, citing 'sensitive social issue'

Facebook blocks Florida distillery’s ‘Back the Blue’ event ad

Loaded Cannon Distillery marketing and creative director Michelle Russell tells ‘Fox & Friends Weekend’ ‘it came as a shock’

A Florida distillery says its requests to promote a “Back the Blue” event through paid advertising on Facebook has been repeatedly denied by the social media platform. 


Loaded Cannon Distillery, located in Lakewood Ranch in Bradenton, Florida, is preparing to launch a new line of spirits dedicated to different groups of first responders. 

“We’re launching this Lost Legend series because they are legends, all of them,” Loaded Cannon Distillery marketing and creative director Michelle Russell told FOX & Friends Weekend in an interview on Sunday. “First responders, EMTs, police, firefighters, anybody that wears a badge, and they deserve some recognition.”

The free event will take place at Loaded Cannon Distillery on May 29 from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m., featuring live music, food trucks and other vendors, and free drink samples from Loaded Cannon. 

Lost Legend Series (Photo courtesy of Loaded Cannon Distillery)

The majority of the event’s proceeds will go to Supporters of Law Enforcement, or SOLE, a nonprofit dedicated to providing support to law enforcement in times of illness, crisis, or injury. In addition, about 2% of each of the five bottles’ sales will be given to the respective first responder group being honored. 


In an effort to promote the event to a wider audience, Russell sent a series of requests to Facebook to place multiple $200 ads. However, each of the requests were denied by the tech giant, according to Loaded Cannon Distillery.

“Your ad may have been rejected if it mentions politicians or sensitive social issues that could influence public opinion, how people vote and may impact the outcome of an election or pending legislation,” Facebook, which did not immediately return Fox News’ request for comment, cited as the reason for the rejection. 

However, Russell argues there is nothing controversial or political about the event. 

“We’re just trying to support our community because during this hard, trying year that everybody has gone through,” Russell said.

The Lost Legend series will be available for purchase outside of Loaded Cannon Distillery’s Tasting Room beginning in June. 

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