Gun Laws & Legislation

Anti-gun group applauds Google’s move to muzzle firearms retailers

A major anti-gun group is applauding Google’s recent policy change to exclude firearms and other weapons from its shopping search results.

The policy — part of the company transitioning its Shopping Center to a commercial site — places shopping results under its advertising policy, which is a paid service. Google stated in a letter to firearms retailers that its policy was necessary to ensure family safety, in addition to legal and regulatory compliance.

The Brady Center to Prevent Gun Violence, a gun control lobby group, recently told AFP that it welcomed the move by Google — seeing the ban as a win in advancing its gun-control agenda.

“We applaud Google for acting to restrict sales of dangerous weapons that would frequently occur without background checks,” said Daniel Vice, senior attorney at the Brady Center.

Citing a study by another prominent gun-control group, the New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg-led Mayors Against Illegal Guns, Vice said that “62 percent of online gun sellers were willing to sell weapons to people who could not pass a background check.”

“The Internet is a notorious source of guns for killers,” Vice said.

The company is now in the crosshairs of gun groups outraged and up in arms over the policy change.

Despite Google’s best efforts to strengthen its relationship with members of the political right, the company’s long-time alliances with the American political left is giving gun owners reasons to view the company with suspicion.

The Daily Caller first reported on Wednesday on the reaction of major Second Amendment advocacy groups. The National Rifle Association’s lobby arm called Google’s new policy a “calculated political statement,” and the National Shooting Sports Foundation scolded the company, stating that Google “should know better than to censor the flow of online information.”

Past incidents involving Google and its advertisers show that the company has been less than consistent in enforcing its own policies, which includes profiting off the sale of advertising to online dealers of counterfeit goods.

The Brady Center did not respond to The Daily Caller’s requests for comment.

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