Here we go again waiting until the damage is already done to try and “fix” the issues we’re facing. Walmart’s CEO Doug McMillion recently announced that the store chain will be reducing its gun and ammunition sales a month after the deadly El Paso, TX, shooting that left 20 dead and more injured. It is also said by CNN that the large chain will stop selling handguns in Alaska. That’s great and all, but when are we going to stop waiting for deadly things to occur before we take action and protect ourselves? Why wait until something happens to start caring about the possible outcomes in the future? So many easily avoidable things continue to happen because nobody wants to take preventative measures before it reaches a detrimental point.
It was stated by Walmart that the company represents around two percent of the market for guns today. It seems like this statistic was thrown out to make it seem as if they aren’t accountable for any of the gun violence that has been occurring. Despite this, the company is responsible for about “a 20 percent market share of ammunition sales,” says CNN. That’s a pretty high percentage. This information is probably only being released because they don’t want to continue to look bad for withholding things from the public.
It’s great that Walmart plans to cut back on their gun and ammunition sales, but it seems like they’re doing it for the wrong reasons. If this was something done before the mass shooting occurred it wouldn’t appear that way, but because the shootings happened on Walmart property with weapons and ammunition that could potentially have been purchased from them it just looks bad.
On top of this, the company says they don’t want any of their customers to openly possess firearms within their stores unless they are authorized members of law enforcement. This even applies to states where “open carry” is allowed according to CNBC. I just feel like it’s too late to try to enforce that considering it has been acceptable for so long already. They’re doing the right things for the wrong reasons and people will continue to do as they please regardless of what new things Walmart is trying to enforce.
Speaking of gun violence and gun control, Sen. Ted Cruz made a remark about it and, of course, mentioned the city of Chicago. There was a tweet made by @BreitbartNews which stated “At least 25 people were shot, seven fatally, during the first half of Labor Day weekend in Democrat-controlled Chicago.” Cruz replied to this tweet by saying “Gun control doesn’t work. Look at Chicago. Disarming law-abiding citizens isn’t the answer. Stopping violent criminals—prosecuting & getting them off the street—BEFORE they commit more violent crimes is the most effective way to reduce murder rates. Let’s protect our citizens.” Not only was it unnecessary for the news page to mention the fact the Chicago is a Democratic-controlled city, but Cruz’s mentioning of Chicago was completely uncalled for. Mayor Lori Lightfoot didn’t take well to it and took to Twitter to clap back. Lightfoot said, “60% of illegal firearms recovered in Chicago come from outside IL—mostly from states dominated by coward Republicans like you who refuse to enact commonsense gun legislation. Keep our name out of your mouth.”
It’s super ironic to me how any time gun violence is mentioned Chicago is the first place people tend to think of. Why not look at other cities that have the same things going on? Why not look at the positive that our city has to offer and help us to improve? That’s not what this article is about right now though, so I digress.
I really feel like this new thing that Walmart is going to do isn’t really going to solve anything. There are so many more ways, legal and illegal, that people can get guns and the ammunition for them. I suppose it’s a good start, but there’s definitely more that needs to be done in order for us to be able to see a difference.
By Cierra Lemott, Senior, Brooks College Prep
Instagram & Snapchat: @cece.kodak