Monday, March 2, 2009

Why Gun Owners Should Patronize Gun Shops and NOT "Big Box" and "Discount" Stores

As I wrote previously, the Pax Wife and I went out and purchased some additions to the Pax Armory. In our travels during this endeavor we stopped in two national chain stores, Wal Mart and Dick's Sporting Goods.

Not good decisions.

At Wal Mart we found that they have deleted all firearms from their inventory (at least at THIS particular store). While looking around the sporting goods area I noticed "James" standing at the counter in front of the (mostly empty) ammo cabinet staring off into space. I approached "James" and asked, simply and nicely, "Have you stopped selling firearms?"

You would have thought I had called his mother a vile name.

James responded, "Are you looking for handguns? We NEVER sold those!" Understand, he didn't just SAY this, his tone and demeanor were those of someone who might have been asked if they would trade their female relatives for cattle. I was a bit shocked and was about to explain that I had looked at a Remington 700 and a Ruger 10/22 there last fall when "James" went on in a quite apoplectic manner that this Wal Mart had not sold rifles or shot guns for at least two years. I replied that it had not been two years, but thanks, and that I'd go elsewhere.

That wasn't good enough for James of Wal Mart. He literally chased me down and began yelling that he would call a manager if I didn't believe him. At that point I challenged him to do so if he so wished with the warning that I would file a compliant about his attitude and mannerisms should he so wish. The guy finally stopped and found his way back underneath his rock.

After our Wal Mart adventure we found our way to Dick's Sporting Goods. I had been eyeing a Remington 700 in .308 with an OD synthetic stock and scope combo in there for several months. A young man soon approached us at the firearms counter. I told him what we wanted to look at and he went in search of someone with a key. Seconds later a young woman appeared, the key holder in question according to the young man from before, and asked how she could help. I told her what I was looking for, the Remington 700 in .308, and the young woman sarcastically bobbed her head and said, "Yeah, ok. And?"

I answered, "Yeah, ok, and what?"

"We don't have one."

Now, when a customer comes in your store and asks for a specific item that is out of stock it is generally accepted custom to inform the customer when it might be in stock or how the customer might obtain one from the store.

Except for this young lady. Nope, scorn was the order of the day for her. Being a bit tired of dealing with store representatives that didn't want my money I simply said thanks and walked away.

Not the Pax Wife. While I went out to the Pax Motor Unit she proceeded to the Customer Service desk and complained. A manager apologized to her about the young lady's attitude and stated that coaching would be in order. The manager also explained details about Dick's ordering and stocking process about which I have no interest and for which one would have to ask the Pax Wife. Bottom line: They don't have what I want and their sales person lost the opportunity to get it in return for my cash.

When I went into the small gun shop down the road from these "Big Box" department stores the guy behind the counter listened to what I wanted, showed me what he had, and explained to me why he didn't have some of the things I wanted and told me how he could get them for me.

Imagine that. Customer Service from a merchant that wants my business and is glad to have it.

If you are on the west side of Nashville and want or need firearms related merchandise stop and see Nashville Sporting Arms.

Forget the box stores. They are often staffed by liberal know nothings who don't share our belief in or our desire to exercise our Second Amendment rights. As happened today, law abiding gun owners are the targets of disdain by the representatives of these merchants that benefit from the commerce we bring them. By contrast, gun shops like Nashville Sporting Arms are staffed by the people that own them and people they trust who share our dedication to Second Amendment liberties and who are knowledgeable about the products they sell.

I've often stopped in at Wal Mart in various locations when on the way to a range to quickly pick up a box of "cheap" ammo. As we learned today, there is another cost associated with buying firearms and related products from the Big Box stores. That is the cost of enabling those Big Box stores to inhibit our access to the products that are essential to the exercise of our Liberty while at the same time denying commerce that would help like minded, Second Amedment supporting merchants.

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