Dick's Sporting Goods has suspended the sale of modern sporting rifles in all of its stores chainwide, the company announced on its website. This includes the Dick's store in Buckhead on Peachtree Road in the Lenox Marketplace shopping center.
Shoppers there told Buckhead Patch what they thought of the sporting goods company's decision, which was made in the wake of the school shooting in Newtown, CT, that left 20 children and 6 school staff members dead.
Sarah Gilliland said she was unsure if the suspension of sales of rifles was the answer, but more comprehensive background checks–including a mental health verification– should be conducted before a gun can be purchased.
"I don't think it's a matter of gun control, but of better mental health care," she said. "People are going to get their hands on guns anyways."
Robin and her college-aged son, Preston, Johnson had similar views.
"I don't think it will help," Robin Johnson said. "We need to find out what's going on with our children."
Preston agreed, and added that the country's culture of celebritizing gunmen of these mass shootings should be eliminated.
"I don't think it's about (guns) being accessible. Humans are so unpredictable. If they want to get a gun, they can get their hands on one. We need to not publicize their (the gunmen's) names," Preston Johnson said.
However, one male shopper told Buckhead Patch that Dick's made a "good decision."
Betsy Wagner, who was shopping with her elementary school-aged son and daughter, said, "I think (Dick's decision) is awesome. I've never been in favor of it anyways. I think it will get people talking."
Here's the full statement from company officials found on the Dick's website:
"We are extremely saddened by the unspeakable tragedy that occurred last week in Newtown, CT, and our hearts go out to the victims and their families, and to the entire community. Out of respect for the victims and their families, during this time of national mourning we have removed all guns from sale and from display in our store nearest to Newtown and suspended the sale of modern sporting rifles in all of our stores chainwide. We continue to extend our deepest sympathies to those affected by this terrible tragedy."
A modern sporting rifle, a term used for a semi-automatic rifle, is a type of rifle that fires a single bullet each time the trigger is pulled, according to USLegal.com, Wikipedia and many online dictionaries.
No date was given for the return of sales of those types of guns.