Dick's Sporting Goods loses firearms businesses after gun control push

Several major gun manufacturers said they were severing ties with Dick’s Sporting Goods in response to the company's February announcement it would no longer sell assault-style weapons due to the deadly Parkland school shooting.

O.F. Mossberg & Sons Inc., the parent company of Mossberg guns, announced Wednesday they would no longer be doing business with the sports retailer. Mossberg & Sons ended its association with Dick's after Dick’s hired three Washington, D.C., lobbyists to push for gun control efforts, the National Review reported.

Dick's Sporting Goods announced in the aftermath of the Parkland school shooting that it would stop selling assault-style weapons.

Dick's Sporting Goods announced in the aftermath of the Parkland school shooting that it would stop selling assault-style weapons.

“It has come to our attention that Dick’s Sporting Goods recently hired lobbyists on Capitol Hill to promote additional gun control,” Mossberg & Sons CEO Iver Mossberg wrote in a press release. “Make no mistake, Mossberg is a staunch supporter of the U.S. Constitution and our Second Amendment rights, and we fully disagree with Dick’s Sporting Goods’ recent anti-Second Amendment actions.”

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The manufacturer called on customers to “visit one of the thousands of pro-Second Amendment firearm retailers” instead.

The Mossberg announcement came just one day after MKS Supply, which makes Hi-Point firearms, also announced it would pull out of Dick's. Last week, gun manufacturer Springfield Armory said it was halting business with the sport’s supply company, too.

“We believe that refusing to sell long guns to adults under age 21, while many young adults in our military are not similarly restricted, is wrong. We believe that villainizing modern sporting rifles in response to pressure from uninformed, anti-gun voices is wrong,” MKS Supply president Charles Brown wrote a statement. “We believe that hiring lobbyists to oppose American citizens’ freedoms secured by the Second Amendment is wrong. Dick’s Sporting Goods and Field & Stream, in purportedly doing all of these things, have demonstrated that they do not share our values. [We’re] standing by the American people by refusing any further sales to Dick’s Sporting Goods & Field & Stream.”

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On Feb. 28, Dick’s announced it would immediately stop selling assault-style rifles and ban the sales of all guns to anyone under 21. The Pittsburgh-based company announced last month it would destroy all unsold firearms pulled off the shelves. The sports retailer decided to make the changes after the Valentine’s Day shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School. The accused gunman, Nikolas Cruz, shot and killed 17 students and faculty with an AR-15. Cruz legally purchased the firearm.

Following the massacre, shooting survivors called on Congress to pass stricter gun laws. The company previously pulled sporting rifles from its shelves after the 2012 massacre at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn.

The sporting goods store is currently facing two lawsuits due to the imposed age limit on purchasing firearms.