In a country where mass shootings in schools aren’t rare, it’s hard to have a sense of humor about guns. Many young and innocent lives have been lost in schools because of guns — in a place where children are supposed to be safe. So, when a Walmart display suggested the idea of taking a gun to school, people were less than impressed.
Leeanna May was the woman who first questioned the display. She tweeted a photo of the display showing a slew of guns arranged in a row. At the top of the display, there was a sign which said, “Own the school year like a hero.”
May even spoke to The Washington Post about the incident. “We have already lost so many innocent lives to guns,” she said. May, like many others who saw the photo, “drew an immediate connection between firearms and school shootings.”
May said that she took the photo at a store in Evansville, Indiana. She was there with her husband and the sign was near the sporting goods section. A spokesman for Walmart, Charles Crowson said that the display was not at the Evansville store.
It’s still unclear whether the sign was meant to be there. Or if someone with a perverse sense of humor decided to move it. What is clear is that people were offended and Walmart spent the last few days apologizing to its customers on Twitter.
Of course, with such a display and with people commenting on Walmart’s Twitter page, soon the conversation turned to gun control. Some people didn’t even know that Walmart sold guns. Others thought not selling them would be the best idea for this store.
“Whats horrible is Wal-Mart selling guns,” commented one user. “Maybe you should remove the guns not the sign,” tweeted another. “Here's an idea. Stopping selling guns and a lot of us will stop hating you so much. I never set foot in your store and I'm not alone,” wrote another Twitter user.
May, who first posted the photo, insisted that it wasn’t Photoshopped and that the sign was there. Walmart has denied the photo was a fake. But it did insist that it does not promote violence, so it could have been the work of a bored employee or a kid who was dared to.