Dick's Sporting Goods' removal of assault-style weapons praised, - wave3.com-Louisville News, Weather & Sports

Dick's Sporting Goods' removal of assault-style weapons praised, questioned

Dick's Sporting Goods announced on Feb. 28 that it will stop selling assault-style rifles and high-capacity magazines. Dick's Sporting Goods announced on Feb. 28 that it will stop selling assault-style rifles and high-capacity magazines.

LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) - Dick's Sporting Goods announced Wednesday that in response to the Parkland, Fla., shooting, it will stop selling assault-style rifles and high-capacity magazines.

The move is being both applauded and questioned. Some people say Dick's is being courageous by taking a stand and changing its policies, but others believe the move is political marketing.

Following the Feb. 14 shooting that left 17 people dead, Ed Stack, the CEO of Dick's Sporting Goods, announced major gun policy changes.

"Everybody talks about their thoughts and prayers go out to them, and that's great, but that doesn't really do anything," Stack said in interviews Wednesday.

Dick's no longer is selling assault-style weapons and high-capacity magazines frequently used in mass shootings, leaving Bass Pro Shops, which owns Cabela's, as the only major retailer doing so.

Frank Guttenberg, whose daughter was killed in the shooting, cheered Dick's.

"I'm going to Dick's Sporting Goods today to buy something, because you know what? I am so proud of them." Guttenberg said. Dick's also announced it will not sell any guns to anyone under age 21.

Some Louisville independent gun retailers said they believe the move is more political than thoughtful.

"I don't think there's any substance to it that's going to help anything," said Barry Laws, who owns Openrange in Crestwood.

Laws added that millions of assault-style weapons and high-capacity magazines will still be on the streets.

"You can buy a high-capacity magazine for a pistol," he said, as he displayed a 33-round magazine that could fit the gun. Laws said the age-limit change also lacks reason.

"Maybe they shouldn't vote until they're 21, maybe they shouldn't go into the Armed Forces until they're 21," he said. "It's an arbitrary age to start with."

Laws said he believes the hot-button debate ignores real problems, like not reacting to warning signs.

"You have a 19-year-old that does this, turns into a murderer so, what happened when he was 6 years old and having issues?" he asked. "Who took care of him, what happened at seven, eight and 12?"

Bass Pro Shops did not respond to WAVE 3 News' request for comment.   

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