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Corporate America: New steps to restrict the sale of firearms



GAINESVILLE, Ga. – When Gary Ramey started working in the weaponsmithing business, he decided to put one of his handguns up for sale on his website.

That did not suit well the company he had used to process payments, and they informed him that they dropped his account. Another credit card company told him the same thing: they would not do business with him.

The reason? His firearms business violates her policy.

In the course of mass shootings, the corporate USA has taken a stand against the firearms industry, as lawmakers have not taken any arms control measures. Payment processing companies limit transactions, Bank of America ceased funding AR companies and retailers like Walmart and Dicks Sporting Goods imposed age restrictions on arms purchases.

However, the steps are praised by gun security advocates criticized by the arms industry, which they consider a devious way to undermine the Second Amendment. The gun industry leaders see the backlash as a real threat to their industry and conclude that they need additional protection in Congress to prevent bank financial retaliation.

"If a few banks" No, we are not going to give loans to arms dealers or arms manufacturers, the industry is suddenly threatened and the second change does not mean much if there are no weapons, "said Michael Hammond, legal counsel for gun owners "If you can not make weapons, if you can not sell weapons, the second change does not mean much."

The issue has already attracted the attention of the Republican, who chairs the Senate Banking Committee Idaho-based Mike Crapo sent letters criticizing Bank of America and Citigroup, which decided to restrict the sale of firearms by their corporate customers because of their new gun rules following the Florida high school shooting in February.

Everyone is worried when banks like yours are trying to replace lawmakers and policy makers and look after social policies restricting access to credit, "Crapo wrote to the Citigroup chief.

Honor Defense is a small business with a handful of employees Ramey's son and his wife work in an unspecified building in a Georgia office park north of Atlanta. In 201

6, it sold 7,500 firearms in the first year. Its products – handcrafted 9mm handguns in various colors – can now be found in more than 1,000 stores.

When Ramey discovered that neither Stripe nor Intuit was processing payments through his website, he filed a complaint with Georgia 's Attorney General Englisch: www.germnews.de/archive/gn/1999/01/12.html Help of a state law that prohibits the discrimination of arms companies against the arms industry. But the state declined, saying that credit card processing is not considered a financial service under state law.

He sees the credit card problem as a company that "puts politics into business".

"We're just a small business trying to survive here," said Ramey. "It's hard enough to compete with Smith & Wesson, Ruger and Sig Sauer."

Financial industry action came amid a major setback by American companies after the Florida shoot. Delta and United Airlines have no longer offered NRA members reduced rates, as did the rental companies Hertz, Alamo and National. The first National Bank of Omaha, one of the largest private banks in the country, decided not to renew a co-branded Visa credit card with the NRA.

Walmart and Dick's sporting goods both decided not to sell any "offensive weapons" firearms for people under the age of 21. REI, an outdoor shop selling no firearms, joined the roster and ruled that there are no ski goggles, water bottles and bicycle helmets from companies whose parent company Vista Outdoor manufactures AR-style ammunition and rifles.

Some legislators responded to the election year, especially in Georgia, where Lt. Gov Casey Cagle, who ran for the governor, led a legislative move to kill a tax allowance on jet fuel to punish Atlanta-based Delta over its NRA measures. The move cost the airline an estimated $ 40 million.

Weapons control lawyers welcomed the efforts and said that they show responsible leadership during a time of paralysis in the government. Experts say it's a sign that the business community does not see wading in the gun debate as risky – and indeed potentially beneficial to their brand.

"Businesses by and large avoid these problems like the plague and they just get involved – whether it's credit card companies or airlines – if they feel like doing nothing is as bad as doing something and they feel completely bogged down, "said Timothy D. Lytton, a professor at Georgia State University's College of Law and author of" Suing The Weapon Industry: A Battle at the Crossroads of Gun Control and Massentort. "

The arms industry admits that businesses have nothing to do with arms manufacturers or traders. Monthly reports by the Federal Government show that the background checks for the purchase of a firearm have progressed so far in comparison to last year that the first actions did not seem to have caused a drop in sales.

Nevertheless, the industry considers stricter laws against financial retaliation necessary for the future

"We may need to seek legislation to ensure that it can not be done and that one can not discriminate against the lawful exercise of a constitutional right" said Larry Keane, senior vice president and legal advisor to the National Shooting Sports Foundation, which represents gunsmiths. "Imagine, banks would say you can not buy books or that certain books are unacceptable, that would be problematic and I do not think anyone would stand for this kind of activity from the banking industry."

Copyright 2018 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, transmitted, rewritten or redistributed.


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