Big R stores across America will continue to sell America’s favorite rifle, the AR-15, along with other “black guns”!
The farm and home store chain had in recent years expanded their sporting goods departments into full-fledged gun shops inside their stores, complete with staff that knew the difference between a clip and a magazine.
The store had gotten some harsh criticism from anti-gun folks in the days after the Orlando Muslim terror attack. Their advertising inserts in local newspapers featured sales on firearms and reportedly they had AR-15s on sale that fateful day.
Upon getting the calls from gun haters, the chain’s owner quietly told staff to sell the remaining inventory of “scary guns” and then not reorder them or do special orders of those guns.
Word got out to their customers about the policy shift and the calls and emails began arriving on a daily basis at the corporate headquarters.
Guns Save Life sent correspondence as well. Here’s an excerpt:
…Recently, I’ve heard that you have elected to cease handling so-called black guns, including America’s rifle, the AR-15, in your stores. Once existing inventory is sold, I’m told you’ll be out of that segment of the firearms market.
This concerns me and that’s why I’m writing today.
I can only speculate that you perhaps received some angry phone calls, perhaps after the Muslim terror attack in Orlando. Yes, there are a handful of die-hard anti-gun radicals who tirelessly agitate against gun rights. In the case of Orlando, these people blamed America’s favorite rifle (even though the AR-15 wasn’t used in that attack) instead of radical Islam or a delayed police entry into the nightclub as the true causes of those deaths.
I do know that Gallup surveys Americans on all manner of issues, and they report that those mentioning gun control as among America’s most pressing issues usually averages around 2%. If a radical few of that 2% have caused you grief with threats of boycotts, etc., I’m sorry about that, but they don’t reflect the beliefs or values of mainstream America. In fact, support for a “scary gun” ban hit an all-time low late last year.
Frankly, let’s be honest. Anyone indignant about Big R selling America’s favorite rifle are not going to buy any guns in your Big R stores. In fact, those who strongly dislike guns to the point of demanding you cease selling certain categories of firearms probably view Big R as a store for people they would rather not associate with. If you’re like me, that’s okay. I would rather not have bigots in my stores anyway.
What’s more, if you give these radicals a victory today, they’ll be back for seconds and thirds at a later date.
Gun owners, on the other hand, are incredibly loyal and we vote with our wallets. You’ve surely seen how gun sales are at record levels, and setting new records with each passing month. In Illinois, the number of gun owners has exploded over 50% since Barack Obama’s inauguration in 2009.
We stand by those who stand with us, and I’ve got to tell you, our members loved when your “sporting goods section” was vastly expanded to include a full line of guns and accessories – including guns most useful and effective for personal defense. After all, these new gun owners aren’t buying guns to hunt Bambi or go skeet shooting.
…In closing, I hope you’ll take a moment to reconsider any earlier decision you might have made to stop selling some of the most popular-selling and most effective self-defense firearms on the market. There’s a reason the AR-15 stands as America’s favorite rifle. We think it appropriate that good guys in Illinois should be able to buy one at their local Big R store.
We’ve received word that in recent days that the decision to stop selling America’s favorite rifle and those like it following the Orlando terrorist attack has been reversed. If it’s legal for everyday Americans to own, Big R will sell it or special order it.
Good call, Big R. We value your support of our Second Amendment rights!