Walmart faces pressure to stop gun sales after latest U.S. mass shootings

Walmart faces pressure to stop gun sales after latest U.S. mass shootings
  • Clock-gray 03:00
  • calendar-gray 06 August 2019

Walmart Inc said on Monday there has been no change in its policy on gun sales after two mass shootings over the weekend, including one at a Walmart store, left 31 people dead in Texas and Ohio, APA reports citing USA Today.

Years of public pressure led Walmart, the largest U.S arms retailer, to end assault rifle sales in 2015, and in 2018 to raise the minimum age for gun purchases to 21. Some gun control activists and Walmart customers now want the retailer to drop sales of guns and ammunition altogether.

The weekend shooting in Texas unfolded at a popular Walmart store in the border city of El Paso, killing 22 people. In the other weekend mass shooting, in Dayton, Ohio, a gunman killed nine people.

While it was not clear where the shooters in both incidents purchased their guns, many people took to social media to post about the deadly shooting using the hashtags #walmartshooting,” “#boycottwalmart,” and “#guncontrolnow.”

Guns Down America, an advocacy group that runs campaigns for gun control, began a petition to urge more change at Walmart late on Monday.

The petition calls on Walmart to stop selling firearms, pledge it will no longer make contributions to lawmakers who take money from gun rights lobby the National Rifle Association, and fund gun buybacks. It also pushes Walmart to use its political influence to advocate for legislative changes to raise the standards of gun ownership in America.

“Federal legislative change will take time, but more and more Americans are dying every day,” Igor Volsky, the founder and executive director of Guns Down America, told Reuters. “The El Paso shooting happened in their store, they have a responsibility to go further.”

It is not the time that gun-control advocates have signed a petition calling on Walmart to take action. In early 2013, just one month after a gunman in Newtown, Connecticut, shot dead 20 first-graders and six adults at an elementary school, nearly 300,000 people signed a petition urging Walmart to stop selling assault weapons.

It was another two years before Walmart ended such sales.

Faiq Mahmudov

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