Anyone remember when President Barack Obama solemnly informed us that in many areas of the country, it’s easier to get your hands on a deadly gun than it is to buy a piece of fruit…or a book? Yeah, Pepperidge Farms remembers. How could we forget, when this is one of the main calling cards of the anti-gun left? They want us to know – every day and in every way – how easy it is for unqualified, unacceptable psychos to get their hands on so-called “weapons of war.” Why, you can just saunter up to your nearest gun show! Hell, you can simply click a button and order one from the comfort of your home computer! It’s a piece of cake.
Part and parcel with this is a pressure campaign to get retailers like Walmart to stop selling guns to their customers. This may be what Business Insider reporter Hayley Peterson had in mind when she decided to go see just how easy it was to get a deadly killing machine at her local Walmart. Unfortunately for her agenda, she found out that getting one’s hand on a firearm is just a little more complicated than the media would make it seem.
“I went to Walmart with the intention of buying a gun last week as part of an investigation into the placement, selection, marketing, and security of firearms in Walmart’s stores, and to learn more about the retailer’s processes governing gun sales,” Peterson wrote. “My journey to bring a gun home from Walmart turned out to be far more complicated than I expected.”
Wonder how easy it would have been for Ms. Peterson to walk out of Walmart with a red delicious apple or a bunch of grapes? Easier? Harder? Any takers?
Peterson started her quest by trying to find a nice selection of guns at Walmart.com. Because of course, that would have made for a great expose – I could have been a crazed killer, but Walmart sent me this bazooka in the mail! That turned out to be a bust, though. All she could find on their website were Airsoft rifles and the like. Damn.
Perhaps already fearing that her story wasn’t going to turn out like she’d hoped, she began calling Walmarts to see where she could come in and pick up her weapon of war. It took her a few tries, but she finally got a Walmart employee in Virginia who would admit to carrying the stock.
“The selection of guns was limited compared with nearby gun stores, which offered dozens of different kinds of firearms, including handguns,” she lamented upon arriving at the store. “Walmart stopped selling handguns in the 1990s and removed semiautomatic rifles, such as the AR-15, from stores in 2015.”
Aw, damn. No Pulitzer in the works.
Peterson wasn’t allowed to buy a gun on her first shopping trip because Walmart had no one working in the department. She was told to come back later in the week, but even then, her luck was no better. Oh, Walmart had an employee ready to assist her, but the background check turned out to be a dead-end. See, Peterson’s actual address no longer matched the one on her driver’s license, seeing as how she’d recently moved. That brought her quest to buy a gun to a premature end, because when it comes to purchasing firearms, your documents have to be in order.
The article wasn’t a complete loss – Peterson may have actually taught readers a thing or two about how seriously gun sales are taken in the United States – but did she get the story she wanted out of it? We’re guessing not.
Nor, indeed, did she get her hands on a gun.