In an effort to appease the gun control crowd, Walmart, who sells about 20% of all ammunition in America, will no longer sell certain types of ammunition. If gun owners want a certain type of ammunition, they will need to go elsewhere to make their purchases.
Walmart has also decided they will no longer allow open carry in their stores. Forcing law-abiding gun owners to hide their weapons won’t stop sick people from walking into a Walmart with a weapon. Anyone who plans to use a gun to harm innocent people won’t likely be deterred because Walmart asks them to keep their guns hidden from plain sight.
According to the AP– Walmart says it will discontinue the sale of handgun and short-barrel rifle ammunition and also publicly request that customers refrain from openly carrying firearms in stores even where state laws allow it.
The announcement comes just days after a mass shooting claimed seven lives in Odessa, Texas and follows two other back-to-back shootings last month, one of them at a Walmart store.
The Bentonville, Arkansas-based discounter said Tuesday it will stop handgun ammunition as well as short-barrel rifle ammunition, such as the .223 caliber and 5.56 caliber used in military style weapons, after it runs out of its current inventory.
It will also discontinue handgun sales in Alaska. Walmart stopped selling handguns in the mid-1990s, with the exception of Alaska. The latest move marks its complete exit from that business and allows it to focus on hunting rifles and related ammunition only.
“We have a long heritage as a company of serving responsible hunters and sportsmen and women, and we’re going to continue doing so,” according to a memo by Walmart’s CEO Doug McMillon to be circulated to employees Tuesday afternoon.
The retailer is further requesting that customers refrain from openly carrying firearms at its Walmart and Sam’s Club stores unless they are law enforcement officers. However, it said that it won’t be changing its policy for customers who have permits for concealed carry. Walmart says it will be adding signage in stores to inform customers of those changes.
Last month, a gunman entered a Walmart store in El Paso, Texas, killing 22 people with an AK-style firearm that Walmart already bans the sale of and marking the deadliest shooting in the company’s history. Texas became an open carry state in 2016, allowing people to openly carry firearms in public.
Walmart’s moves will reduce its market share of ammunition from around 20% to a range of about 6% to 9%, according to Tuesday’s memo. About half of its more than 4,750 U.S. stores sell firearms.
At least one gun control activist group applauded Walmart’s moves.
“Walmart deserves enormous credit for joining the strong and growing majority of Americans who know that we have too many guns in our country and they are too easy to get,” said Igor Volsky, Executive Director and Founder of Guns Down America in a statement. “That work doesn’t end with Walmart’s decision today. As Congress comes back to consider gun violence, Walmart should make it clear that it stands with Americans who are demanding real change.”