Mixed feelings have continued to trail Wednesday’s decision by Walmart, the United States largest retailer to stop selling guns and ammunition to anyone under 21 years of age and remove from its stores all toys and airsoft rifles that resemble assault-style weapons.
Similarly, Dick’s Sporting Goods said it was immediately ending sales of all assault-style rifles, and would also no longer sell high-capacity magazines, reports The New York Times.
The moves by the two companies came two weeks after 17 people were killed at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, when a gunman armed with an AR-15-style rifle shot up the school.
Meanwhile, Walmart in a statement said, “Our heritage as a company has always been in serving sportsmen and hunters, and we will continue to do so in a responsible way.”
Walmart, which said it started a review of its firearms policy “in light of recent events,” became the second major retailer on Wednesday to raise the age to buy firearms in its stores to 21 from 18.
Walmart said it would put the changes in place in its stores and online as soon as possible.
On its part, Edward Stack, the chief executive of Dick’s, said company leaders were “disturbed and upset” about what happened at the school and wanted to act.
Since the Florida school shooting, a number of major companies, including Delta Air Lines, announced they had ended their discount arrangements with the National Rifle Association. Other companies, including FedEx, said they would continue to offer discounts to members of the N.R.A.
The new policy by Walmart is the second change in recent years regarding the type of firearms and guns accessories sold in its stores.
In 2015, Walmart said it would no longer sell high-powered rifles in the United States, but cited lower customer demand for the military-style rifles and not politics.
Walmart also does not sell handguns, except in Alaska, and has not sold high-capacity magazines or “bump stocks,” an attachment that enables a semiautomatic rifle to fire faster, which was used by the gunman in Las Vegas in October.
Meanwhile, United States citizens have continued to express mixed feelings over Walmart’s plans, particularly on social media. While many lauded the moves, others are kicking against it.