I took my time, as I usually do, so I could think about what Walmart’s recent change around firearms and ammunition means to our industry before I gave my take.
I like to say that adults make decisions based on facts, not emotion, so I wanted to make sure I focused on the facts.
Highlights of Doug McMillon’s Statement
- History of supporting hunters – I had several issues with how McMillon made statements about being a hunter and gun owner as if it makes the decision valid. It was a great example of trying to say that he is one of us, but he clearly isn’t as he parroted several of the gun control crowd when he used “large capacity clips” and “military-style weapons” in his memo while calling our for “common sense” measures. Some of the other highlights that follow support that he is not a friend of our community. Let’s also not forget that he also said he wants to reimplement the so called assault weapons ban that had no impact on crime.
- Stop selling handgun ammo – Walmart’s market share is very high, and them no longer selling ammo will drive up the price at other stores and will very likely result in job losses in the industry as changes will need to be made to distribution channels to get ammo to other stores for sale and distribution to us. To be honest, when I would travel for training, I would often purchase ammo from Walmart as it isn’t possible to carry 6000-1,000 rounds for the training classes that I take.
- Stop selling handguns in Alaska – The reason Walmart was selling handguns in Alaska is that they are able to meet the requirements to do so, and get valuable firearms into the hands of those that live in the back country and have the need for reasonably priced firearms for protection as well as small game hunting.
- Stop selling 5.56mm and .223 ammo – This has similar impact as stopping handgun ammo sales. It will hurt the community of law abiding sportsmen and those that need practice and defense ammunition.
- Open carry discouraged – I have never supported open carry, but it is a right. Taking away the ability for some people that do not have conceal handgun permits to still carry to protect themselves and their loved ones is a huge detriment to the community. Walmart is trying to make itself into a gun free zone. Do they not understand that criminals don’t abide by the laws and by making themselves gun free zones, they are only making their customers less safe?
- Encouraging government intervention – This clearly shows that Walmart is not a friend to our community and absolutely does NOT support hunters.
Who Wrote the Memo?
I wonder who actually wrote the memo. It was clearly drafted by a PR firm that is anti-gun as they used the same language, and inappropriate terminology, in the memo.
I do not believe that McMillon wrote the memo.
Just to lay the foundation, let’s remember, Walmart caved to the PC crowd, the social terrorists, when the stopped selling certain guns. It was clear that they were trying to appease these people.
Walmart caved to the pressure the first time, then they caved again when it came to selling long guns to those that are 18 by raising the age limit to 21. Again, to appease the PC crowd.
Then, they caved to the PC crowd that didn’t like certain shirts with certain slogans.
Now, they are taking another step and sacrificing more of the business to appease these social terrorists.
This won’t stop here. Next, it will be the shot guns and hunting rifles, then it will be all archery accessories and components, then it will be anything that can be used to hurt people.
Walmart set the precedent awhile back, and they are going to continue to cave over and over again.
Having had the opportunity to meet Sam Walton and talk to him at one of the stores in Southern Colorado, it is clear to me that he would never support this action. Sam Walton was big on guns, and he clearly wanted Walmart in the market.
Next is the clear virtue signaling that is taking place. Walmart says they will continue to sell what they have in stock. Wait… WHAT? If this ammo is so evil and is causing so many problems, why not stop selling it right away. Take the loss. Show that you really mean it. No, they are going to continue selling until they run out so they won’t have to take a loss. Profit over the supposed safety issue that they are saying is the reason they will stop. But wait, there is more. If guns are evil, then stop selling all of it. Oh yeah, there is that profit thing again.
What really bothers me, though, is that McMillon’s memo makes it sound like he is making the change to save lives, but the hypocrisy runs deep when Walmart continues to be huge sellers of other products that cause poor health and deaths at high rates. Should we be asking McMillon about how he can take that point of view with firearms and ammo, but not for:
- Tobacco products
- Alcohol sales
- Junk food
Come on, which of those cause more issues? We could look at many of the products sold by Walmart that cause poor health. However, those just don’t matter. They make good money, and there just aren’t enough people protesting the loss of life caused by drinking.
Many people point out that sportsmen lashed out, and hard, when it came to Dick’s violating the trust of its customers and removing firearms from its shelves because of the number of people that protested them, and they were not even customers.
Outdoors sportsmen are not going to stand pat when it comes to Walmart, and we can expect them to take action, even if it is just voting with their dollars and spending their hard earned income at other stores that support them.
What was the impact to Dick’s? They lost $250 Million, at least that is the amount that they attribute to their anti-gun stance.
Walmart’s actions will not impact violent crime. Their new policies would not have prevented any of the attacks that supposedly drove them to make the change. None.
However, Walmart’s actions will have a significant impact on law abiding citizens, especially rural customers.