Walmart CEO Stands Behind Decision to Sell Guns

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In an effort to serve their hunting and fishing clientele, Walmart will continue selling firearms in American stores for the foreseeable future.

During an interview with CNNMoney correspondent Cristian Alesci, Walmart CEO Douglas McMillon definitively stated that their company has historically catered to the hunting and fishing community, and despite recent gun-related tragedies like Sandy Hook, they still plan to provide local hunters the means to shoot their food.

“When you see events, tragedies like Charleston and Sandy Hook, do you ever question Walmart’s decision to sell firearms and ammunition?” asked Alesci.

“Our focus as it relates to firearms should be hunters and people who shoot sporting clays and things like that,” said McMillon. “We believe in serving those customers, we have for a long time, and we believe we should continue to.”

U.S. Sen. Chris Murphy, a Connecticut Democrat, weighed in on the debate, arguing that guns shouldn’t be sold next to video game consoles, and they shouldn’t be sold by young people.

“I would hope that stores like Walmart would recognize the danger of having these guns displayed right next to an aisle away from microwave popcorn and Xbox games,” said Murphy. “I’m not terribly confident that a 21-year-old Walmart clerk is going to sell guns responsibly or be able to give customers the kind of advice they need on how to responsibly use that gun.”

Murphy may not be confident that a 21-year-old is responsible enough to sell hunting rifles, but the American government is confident that men and women of that age can defend our country with a wide array of weaponry ranging from fully automatic high-caliber machine guns, to grenade and rocket launchers, tanks, fighter jets, and more.

Alesci closed with one last posit, saying, “You don’t think recent or future events would ever change your mind on that decision?”

“Well, that’s hypothetical. I think what our history would tell you is that we want to serve people who want to hunt and fish and we want to have a great sporting goods department, and that’s part of it,” answered McMillon.

(The following was submitted by freelance writer Brent Rogers)

{ 36 comments… add one }
  • jim June 2, 2017, 8:55 pm

    No walmart sporting goods clerks do not always have the right answers but for the most part they are good at what they do. I see no issues with anyone over 18 selling a firearm .You have to pass a background check and then a member of manangment has to sign off on the sale.Though i wish they would sell handguns again.

  • William M. February 6, 2017, 1:38 pm

    I like the fact that Walmart stores believe in our right to own firearms, and I thank them for their doing so.
    However, I live right on the IL. and WI. line. But unfortunately on the IL. side for now. If I want to look at firearms in my
    local Richton, IL. Walmart, I have to ring a buzzer and wait for someone from the automotive depth. to come assist me.
    There is no one assigned to sporting goods depth. itself. And the automotive people do not have keys to the case behind the
    counter for firearms or ammo sales. So its not just a young kid with no necessary knowledge to handle a firearm. Its no one at
    all with knowledge and safety skills to help in that position. I asked to see a 30-06 rifle recently and the older gentlemen did not know what that was. When he handed it to me he did not check the rifle for a round in the chamber, or if the safety was on,
    or anything else. I am a retired Navy man who knows guns and firearms safety measures that are like second nature. These people need to be trained properly. A safety course wouldn’t hurt Walmarts bottom line and would sure make customers more
    willing to buy firearms from their stores.

  • Dennis January 19, 2017, 12:28 am

    Nice.second amendment right being upheld.thank you walmart.tree huggers suck me.

  • Galen Vetterick December 9, 2016, 3:24 pm

    It is interesting that the interviewer is not even up on firearms. She ask about selling semi-automatic guns. There are many semi-auto 22 and center fire rifles, as well as shotguns. I assume she is thinking more of the type built to look like military type firearms that are semi-auto, but her lack of knowledge shows just like so many other people.

  • Tommy D July 2, 2015, 4:32 am

    I think it’s great that Walmart sells guns, bb guns, fishing gear, bows and arrows, etc. They allow you to buy your hunting and fishing licenses there and create a sense of community and camaraderie amongst the store and families as your kids grow and move on to the next level. Why is there such a hatred towards weaponry ? We built our country on this fundamental right and have used it for a long time. If people are taught about gun safety and the dangers involved from childhood, they will be more responsible and there won’t be too may issues with gun ownership. A gun in the hands of a responsible owner provides safety to all those around them.

  • YANKEEBILL July 1, 2015, 9:52 pm

    I guess I must be hitting the right WalMarts, because as best I remember, every one I have visited from here in my part of Florida to Pennsylvania has had at least a couple long guns in their display cabinets. They all had ammo, because I bought some at quite a few of those stores. I don’t get much further south, but I do have friends who frequent some of the WalMarts south of my location, and they have bought long guns and ammo in those stores. I am not sure of the exact locations, though. As far as the individual department managers having full control as to whether or not firearms are carried in “their” sporting goods department, I also cannot say for sure either way. I do believe WalMart corporate would have some say in that decision, maybe final approval or not? I am not defending WalMart, but their prices are tough to beat, and when you live on a fixed income, that does matter. I DO NOT LIKE what they did with the battle flag.

  • John Swaney June 29, 2015, 5:23 pm

    Wal-Mart in my area only sell black powder gun because the manager of that department has a friend that owns a gun store and he promised not to compete against him. Talk about the good-old-boy network in action. What they sell in that department is up to the manager of that department. If you want to have a different selection of guns, then you have get that manager to change his personal policy for that department.

  • John Swaney June 29, 2015, 5:22 pm

    Wal-Mart in my area only sell black powder gun because the manager of that department has a friend that owns a gun store and he promised not to compete against him. Talk about the good-old-boy network in action. What they sell in that department is up to the manager of that department. If you want to have a different selection of guns, then you have get that manager to change his personal policy for that department.

  • Kalashnikov Dude June 29, 2015, 5:19 pm

    How can you be expected to sell guns responsibly if you haven’t even gotten off your parents health insurance? Yet the general trend among Democrats is to get the young actively voting, and involved in political agendas, while they’re still under the influence of radical left wing teachers and school administrators as well as starved senseless by Moochelle’s “do as I say, not as I do” school lunch programs.

  • Byron Winchell June 29, 2015, 4:41 pm

    From the WalMart action on the Confederate Battle Flag [see “This is what you have to do this week to avoid being called racist.”], it’s probably just a matter of time. WalMart isn’t sentimental or careful of basic rights, it is just a matter of whether the profit margin will be impacted by the Grievance Industrial Complex.

  • Bil June 29, 2015, 12:06 pm

    1st of all ,why do you even set down with CNN..?

  • Bry June 29, 2015, 10:41 am

    Walmart’s management is correct and they should stand behind their decision with pride. The anti-gun politicians and organizations have always amazed me. They always crawl out with their irrational hysterical rants after a shooting. I don’t have an actual statistic to quote, but it wouldn’t be surprising if these style killings by psychotic or racist murders would account for less than one-thousandth of one-percent of all gun owners in America. Ironically, you never hear cries for banning cars, alcohol or revoke driver licenses from incident persons when a drunk driver kills someone? However, if a crazed lunatic shoots someone all of the good law-abiding citizens should have to surrender their guns and the stores forced to end selling guns and ammunitions. Possibly it’s due to the number of politicians and anti-gunners that drive around drunk all of the time. 🙂 Bry

  • D Hicks June 29, 2015, 10:32 am

    Wal Mart is based in ARKANSAS ! That’s the state I live and shop at Wal Mart, I’ve bought several rifles and shotguns there because they also have the right price.Buy from those companies that support American values.

  • DOTTIE M June 29, 2015, 10:10 am

    I was raised with guns and my father taught me everything about them. He had me
    fire a shotgun when I was around 5. He wanted me to know what could happen.
    We always had at least 15 guns on display in his den. Not locked up. Not loaded.
    But he made me aware that They were not there to play with. He was a hunter and
    I feel taught me correctly. If people were brought up the RIGHT way we would
    not have a problem. WAKE UP PEOPLE. What are you going to do if confronted.
    Take a chance on a crook or whatever getting you.

  • Joe June 29, 2015, 10:06 am

    The Walmart stores here in east central Florida don’t stock anything other than air rifles but do stock a limited ammo supply. I don’t know why unless China doesn’t offer them…
    At least I can pick up a box of .308 target rounds for less than 15 bucks and don’t have to pay shipping fees for em..

    • L Cavendish June 29, 2015, 10:31 am

      Hmmm…the Super Wal-Mart on East 50 in Orlando has guns…they have shotguns and rifles…11250 E Colonial Dr…Academy is just down the road…and Dick’s is almost literally around the corner…
      Have not been to ALL the Wal-Marts, of course. But of all that I have been to…all had ammo(when available)…but not all had guns.

      • Joe June 29, 2015, 12:50 pm

        Yeah that’s not the east coast son, its the middle of the state, come to Brevard county and you will see what I mean.

        • Efrain Salas June 30, 2015, 2:20 am

          He didn’t say that it was at the east coast sonny, he said East Colonial Dr., which is Orlando.

          • Joe June 30, 2015, 10:13 am

            Yeah, that’s why my first post dictated east central Florida instead of central Florida now go take some memory pills or something.

  • Kimberpross June 29, 2015, 9:48 am

    I find it offensive that a Senator would categorically claim a 21 year old isn’t mature enough, smart enough, educated enough (Whatever his point) to sell guns to the public. Selling a gun is a bureaucratic quagmire that requires training by Wal-Mart and is strictly enforced but his Federal Government jack boots. We have the greatest military on the planet with most of the boots on the ground less than 25 yrs. old. I hope those irresponsible 21 year olds vote that bastxxxd out!! Demonstrate directly how smart they really are.

    • Bob Peck June 29, 2015, 7:14 pm

      Agreed Kimberpross. An 18 year old can join the Army, Navy, Air Force or Marines and be trained to use all kinds of weaponry but we couldn’t trust a 21 year old to follow the rules the store sets for selling firearms??? There really is no use in this country for liberal democratic senators. Vote those weasels out of office…

    • Donn Lowe June 3, 2017, 2:03 pm

      That’s because the senator Chris Murphy from Connecticut is a gun-grabbing liberal jerk. We have the worst politicians in the country running our state and these people in this state keep voting them back in makes me wonder who the real assholes are. I know Chris Murphy is one and our governor is another. It’s an absurd state to live in. Almost every house in every neighborhood is for sale people are just try in any way they can to get the hell out of Connecticut.

  • Roger June 29, 2015, 9:26 am

    This has all gotten to be so ridiculous. Guns are not the problem- people ar the problem. The focus needs to be on people and why they do what they do and how to reverse the trend of them committing horrible crimes against other people. It is insulting to think that someone commits a crime and everyone wants to take the guns from people who had nothing to do with the crime.

  • DENNIS June 29, 2015, 8:30 am

    I shop at Walmart because they have what I want.

    I DO NOT SHOP AT:

    Bell
    Evans
    Beck
    Sports Authority
    KMART
    or Sears,
    because they do not serve all of the public
    –and most have since gone out of business–and good riddance to politically correct sophists.

    • Bob Peck June 29, 2015, 7:16 pm

      Why would anyone in their right mind even consider shopping at Walmart????

      • Turney's October 7, 2016, 11:11 am

        Amen to that.

      • Mark December 9, 2016, 2:41 pm

        Because they are an American owned, family owned company who sells affordable goods that people want. I have never been to my WalMart in upstate NY and not seen it packed. Because of the SAFEACT they refrain from selling firearms.
        I go there and get my fishing and game licenses and mope around the locked ammo shelf hoping that I will actually see a box of .22 ammo on it. They have a limit of one box of 50 rounds per buyer but are always sold out.

  • YANKEEBILL June 29, 2015, 7:47 am

    I GUESS I LIVE IN A FREE STATE, WHICH IS FLORIDA, AT LEAST AS FAR AS GUNS GO. WAL-MARTS DOWN THIS WAY ALL SELL FIREARMS, AS FAR AS I KNOW. IN MY COUNTY, ONE OF THE ONLY LIBERAL, DEMOCRAT-VOTING COUNTIES IN NORTH FLORIDA (NOT ME!), I HAVE SEEN LONG GUNS IN EVERY WAL-MART I HAVE VISITED, WHICH IS QUITE A FEW. I HAVE BEEN SEARCHING FOR 22 CALIBER AMMO, LIKE MANY OTHER FOLKS. I NEVER FIND THE 22 AMMO, BUT I DO SEE EVERYTHING FROM A BASIC SCATTERGUN TO SOME PRETTY FANCY LOOKING AR15 TYPE RIFLES AND CARBINES, ALL AT DECENT PRICES. CHEERS TO WAL-MART FOR THEIR SENSIBLE STAND ON THIS ISSUE..

    • L Cavendish June 29, 2015, 10:19 am

      Nope…not all Florida Wal-Marts sell guns. I have seen ammo in all Wal-Marts here in the Central Florida area, but my local Wal-Mart does NOT sell guns, nor does the closest Super Wal-Mart or the next-closest smaller one.
      The Wal-Marts in the less touristy and formerly less built-up areas seem to carry the guns.
      They tell me they sell handguns in Alaska stores. Not sure if that is true.

  • Bob Peck June 29, 2015, 7:46 am

    Watch for their stance on selling firearms to change based on some shocking news story the same way they stopped confederate flags!!! They will go the way the wind blows!!

  • Bob Peck June 29, 2015, 7:43 am

    “Our focus as it relates to firearms should be hunters and people who shoot sporting clays and things like that,” said McMillon. “We believe in serving those customers, we have for a long time, and we believe we should continue to.”
    Wow!! So if I am not a hunter but just want to purchase a handgun you won’t stock handguns and sell to me?? This is BS. Responsible people can buy any type of gun and handle that firearm responsibly but Walmart draws the line in the sand and says we won’t sell handguns because they are only for shooting people???? That is ridiculous.

  • Mitch Spence June 29, 2015, 7:39 am

    “U.S. Sen. Chris Murphy, a Connecticut Democrat, weighed in on the debate, arguing that guns shouldn’t be sold next to video game consoles, and they shouldn’t be sold by young people.”

    Just when you think a politician can’t say anything more inane, one comes out of the woodwork. Maybe he should be debating the value of video games. Moreover, it is not the responsibility of any clerk to teach me anything. Those of us who have become adults are responsible for our own actions. Democrats, however, don’t seem to get that basic concept.

    • James Kirkland September 14, 2015, 7:14 am

      When you see some of the violence on many of the video games, not to mention television, where are these politicians coming from? Maybe they need to look at the quality control on their state’s databases of who shouldn’t be permitted to purchase a firearm and requirements for who is added to those databases. It isn’t up to some clerk at Walmart to teach gun safety. There are many sources for such training which ideally should start at home.

  • Mark N June 26, 2015, 12:56 am

    WalMart sells guns? Not around here they don’t. As a matter of fact, I don’t think they sell them anywhere in the whole state of California.
    And what’s this bit about whether or not a 21 year old clerk “is going to sell guns responsibly or be able to give customers the kind of advice they need on how to responsibly use that gun.” If WalMart sells a gun, that means it is an FFL, and therefore every purchase must have a background check. What ore does this dimbulb want. ([Oooh oooh I can answer that! he doesn’t want them to sell ANT guns! Do I get a prize?] Nor have I EVER seen a gun dealer giving advice as “to how to responsibly use that gun.” Indeed, they have no duty to do so. The closest thing I can come to is California’s requirement that all purchasers perform a “safe handling demonstration” at the time the gun is picked up after the 10 day wait, which consists of loading (with a snap cap) and unloading the firearm, checking for clear, and applying an approved safety device. The last time I bought a handgun, I had to show the “clerk” how to apply the Kahr trigger safety, which neither of us had seen before. What, they should be teaching the four rules too? NOT!

    • Michael E. Hensley June 29, 2015, 4:22 am

      Mark N.
      I do feel your pain about Walmart’s in California not selling Guns.
      Here in Virginia they do a brisk business. Also here most all Gun Shops will give safety and use instructions on Firearms. Plus most shops have at least 1 qualified Gunsmith.
      Also here anyone with an FFL can sell guns out of their homes, No special permits required, All you have to do is follow the FFL rules.

  • Slim June 25, 2015, 8:09 pm

    When I shop at Walmart on the weekend I always check to see if the guns are still for sale. My hats off to Walmart.

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