Following the Parkland, Florida mass shooting, some companies decided that they would no longer sell semi-automatic rifles, like the AR-15, and high-capacity magazines. Among them was Dick’s Sporting Goods. Not only did Dick’s state that it would no longer sell “assault-style” rifles or the “high-capacity” magazines, but it decided it would no longer sell any firearms to anyone under the age of 21. But what is the sporting goods store going to do with its inventory of “assault-style” weapons? Well, the public now has the answer.
As reported by the Associated Press:
In February, national retail chain Dick’s Sporting Goods announced it would stop sales of assault-style rifles and high capacity magazines at all of its stores and ban the sale of all guns to anyone under 21 years old.
The announcement came Feb. 28, just two weeks after the school massacre in Parkland, Florida.
But recently the sporting goods chain also said it was destroying all the assault-style guns pulled from shelves as well as the accessories.
“We are destroying the firearms in accordance with federal guidelines and regulations,” a spokeswoman told the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.
What a waste, and what a strange business model.
The store is already taking a hit due to its involvement in the gun control debate, as Tom wrote about here. Those troubles may continue with this news. According to the report, the Parkland shooter didn’t even purchase the firearm used in the massacre from one of the company’s stores. However, Dick’s Sporting Goods’ Chairman and CEO did say that the shooter had bought a shotgun from the store the year before.
…the gunman who killed 17 people in Florida, mostly students, had purchased a shotgun at a Dick’s store in November 2017, Stack said.
“It was not the gun, nor type of gun, he used in the shooting,” Chairman and CEO Edward Stack wrote. “But it could have been. Clearly, this indicates on so many levels that the systems in place are not effective to protect our kids and our citizens.”
Contrary to what Stack believes, the systems that are in place are sufficient if all the parts of the system do the job each is intended to do. The National Instant Criminal Background Check System didn’t fail here as the shooter had no criminal record on file and was, therefore, able to clear a background check (more than one, in fact). What failed, sadly, was law enforcement. The FBI received tips on more than one occasion that the shooter was planning his attack and people who knew him were concerned. The Broward Sheriff’s Officer went to the shooter’s home numerous times and still did not act to charge the shooter with a crime or figure out a way to restrict him from keeping firearms in his possession.
Dick’s Sporting Goods’ decision isn’t focusing on the actual problem. It’s almost like it wants to go out of business.