Is a Credit Union Seeking to Restrict Gun Purchases?

AP Photo/Jae C. Hong

When I’ve needed financial services over the years, I’ve used both banks and credit unions. I’ve personally never noticed much of a difference, but I know a lot of people prefer credit unions. At least some of them are member-run, in the grand scheme of things, which means they have a say in how things go.

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Since a lot of banks have become anti-gun in recent years, I could certainly understand why many would prefer a credit union.

Yet it seems such financial institutions aren’t immune to anti-gun hysteria.

Of course, that wouldn’t be surprising in a state like New York or California, but what about Georgia?

A follow-on post shows that the CEO is knee-deep in DEI ideology, so it’s not like this place is ever going to be a pro-gun, but what we see here is troubling.

I mean, it’s not just guns you can’t buy, but even tobacco or prescription drugs.

It’s easy to get worked up about this, but it’s also just a screenshot. We don’t have the full context, so I reached out to Georgia United Credit Union to get some answers. Are they really trying to tell people what they can and can’t do with their own money?

The short answer, as per vice president of marketing Michelle Dobbins? No.

But that doesn’t give the whole story, either.

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According to Dobbins, “The highlighted portion that was shared was under the section of the Online Banking User Agreement as it pertains to person to person payments.”  She added, “Georgia United Credit Union offers its members a convenient person-to-person payment service, allowing for digital transactions using a phone number or email.”

Basically, this is something like Zelle or Venmo, where you can transfer money from your account to someone else without having to use a credit card or something else.

Dobbins notes that Georgia United Credit Union uses a third-party for this service, though she didn’t clarify exactly who the third-party was, despite me asking. As such, it’s unclear if this was the credit union’s decision or the third-party’s.

She also noted that a large number of such services do not permit payments for firearm sales, linking to Gunbroker’s page listing all of the services that don’t.

Now, that was all fine and well, but the question was whether people could still use their own money to buy guns. Saying “this is from this other part,” doesn’t really clarify anything about any other policy.

So, I asked if people could buy guns with a debit card. Dobbins was clear. “[T]his does NOT apply to making debit or credit card payments from a retailer.”

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In other words, at least as of right now, if you are a member of GUCU and go to buy a gun with money in your bank account, there’s nothing that will stop you from doing so, at least from their end. That’s good news.

The bad news is that regardless of where the decision lies, either with GUCU or the third-party service, they still want to tell you what you can do with your own money. While they have a right to say what they will and won’t do as companies, you also have a right to determine which companies you wish to support.

I’m not going opining on the CEO’s belief in DEI or anything like that, and if you want to close your accounts there because of that either, more power to you.

Let’s just make sure that if you’re going to close your account, you’re doing it for what is actually happening, not what someone else says is happening.

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