Citing recent “civil unrest” in certain areas of the country, Walmart announced on Thursday it is removing ammunition and guns from some of its locations. The retail chain said it will still offer them for sale, but has taken out the displays. Ammunition was found scattered on the floor from looters ransacking a Philadelphia Walmart during riots, which broke out amid otherwise peaceful protests, following the shooting death of Walter Wallace, Jr. by city police earlier this week.
A spokesperson for Walmart said this isn’t the first time in recent years the giant retailer has pulled firearms displays from its store shelves and is doing so now out of an abundance of caution to ensure safety for both its customers and employees.
Concerns have also been raised due to Election Day upcoming next Tuesday, as political watch groups have expressed cautionary potential for negative reactions and violence. With some distrust of the election process, law enforcement officials are preparing for trouble in cities across the country, including voter intimidation or harassment at the polls as well as objections to the election results.
Walmart’s move comes while a cloud of uncertainty lingers as the country faces an ongoing pandemic, economic troubles, riots and threats to political leaders. The demand for firearms has increased dramatically in recent months, according to background checks submitted to the FBI.
Ann Sullivan is a contributing staff writer covering national and world news topics. She brings dedicated experience having written international and domestic news, blogs, and web content for over 20 years. She’s also a published poet and graphic designer with degrees in Business and Graphic Communications and has been a music distributor, music industry sponsorship sales director and band manager.