East Texans react to Walmart raising firearms age limit to 21

Source: KTRE Staff
Source: KTRE Staff

EAST TEXAS (KTRE) - Walmart's decision Wednesday to no longer sell firearms, to customers under the age of 21, has caused both anger and support.

In East Texas, those associated with guns and gun sales are struggling to take Walmart's decision seriously.

"This is just a band-aid on a wound," said gunsmith and vendor, Mike Walsh. "And, until they solve the actual problem, just moving the gun age up to 21 is not going to help any.

Walsh's job certifies online gun purchases with background checks that he admits aren't perfect, either.

"That individual is run through the system," Walsh said. "If they have any felony convictions, that will definitely pop up. It's the other issues that are the real problem."

For others, Walmart's move signals a refreshing change to the dialogue of gun control.

"We're finally kicking out those half measures," said Ethan McBride, a student gun control advocate. "We're tired of seeing people wobble on these issues. We're really just ready to say, you know what, we're not comfortable with the way the Second Amendment is being interpreted in this country, right now."

The limit change also included the removal of assault rifle style toys and air guns, from the store's website only.

Some say it adds up to a bad business decision.

"They're looking at a small part of the big problem, saying, 'Oh, we can do this, when in reality it's only going to hurt their business,'" said Luke Tarbutton, the owner of the Shoot Perfect gun range.

Walmart plans on acting on these changes immediately in their thousands of stores nationwide.

"The bottom line is we're terrified of getting gunned down in our public places, where we're supposed to be safe," McBride said.

Walmart's announcement came only hours after Dick's Sporting Goods made a similar move.

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