In an effort to make themselves look good to the general public, retail chains Walmart and Kroger have both announced that they will no longer sell guns to anyone under 21 years of age.
Walmart released a statement on their "Firearms Policy" on Wednesday, saying they made the decision "in light of recent events."
"Going forward, we are raising the age restriction for purchase of firearms and ammunition to 21 years of age," the statement reads. "We will update our processes as quickly as possible to implement this change."
Interestingly, given how "rolled-back" Walmart's gun sales have already been, it's pretty clear the corporate move is for optics, only.
The statement continued:
In 2015, Walmart ended sales of modern sporting rifles, including the AR-15. We also do not sell handguns, except in Alaska where we feel we should continue to offer them to our customers. Additionally, we do not sell bump stocks, high-capacity magazines and similar accessories. We have a process to monitor our eCommerce marketplace and ensure our policies are applied.
So if Walmart already doesn't sell sporting rifles or handguns, where's the sacrifice here?
As far as Kroger is concerned, the company announced this week that their 45 Fred Meyer stores will also raise the minimum age for buying a gun to 21.
According to a statement released by Kroger:
Recent events demonstrate the need for additional action on the part of responsible gun retailers. We are raising the minimum age to 21 to purchase firearms and ammunition in all of our Fred Meyer locations that sell firearms. We stopped selling assault-style rifles in our Oregon, Washington and Idaho Fred Meyer stores several years ago and we will no longer accept any special-orders of these weapons in Alaska. Through Restock Kroger, we have a robust space optimization effort underway in many of our stores, including Fred Meyer locations. As we refresh stores we are often transitioning gun departments due to softer demand and changing customer preferences.
In contrast, outdoor retailer Cabela's isn't just standing firm on the sales of guns, they're offering sales.