This article was originally posted on Thefirearmblog.com
Earlier today, news began to trickle through online forums and social media platforms that retail giant Optics Planet had stopped selling magazines with a capacity over 10 rounds. With the internet being, well, the internet, we decided to have a look for ourselves. A cursory search of Optics Planet’s site revealed a couple of noteworthy concerns:
1) Very few magazines over 10 rounds for sale.
2) Government restriction banners reminiscent of the 1994-2004 Assault Weapons Ban
3) Gun accessories or gun parts might be for sale only to Government or Law Enforcement customers with department letterhead.
We have reached out to Optics Planet for clarification on when this new sales policy took effect. We will keep you posted.
This item is available for sale to Military and Law Enforcement Agencies or Individuals, Private Security Guards, Correctional Facility Personnel, Peace Officers, and other qualified personnel. Documentation required may include an official government or employer issued identification and additional certification forms. Certain federal, state, and/or local laws and regulations may apply.
By adding to cart, I understand and agree to the Domestic Restricted Product Policy and certify that I will comply with applicable federal, state and local laws and regulations.
U.S. Federal, State and Local Laws / Regulations and Product Restrictions
OpticsPlanet offers several items that are restricted for sale in the United States of America by federal, state, and/or local laws and regulations. Sale of these restricted items may be limited to United States Military, Law Enforcement, Correctional Facility Personnel, Security Guards, Peace Officers, and various other authorized users.
OpticsPlanet makes its best effort to ensure that it remains current on all laws and regulations as applicable. Please be aware that United States federal, state, and/or local laws and regulations are complex and are subject to change. Therefore, any summaries of such laws and regulations provided by OpticsPlanet at any time can never and will never serve as legal advice or counseling in any way. If you have any questions about any law or regulation, OpticsPlanet advises you to consult with an attorney who will represent your interests. It is ultimately the Customer’s responsibility to investigate and ensure that any item is legal to use, carry, possess, purchase and/or own within the Customer’s intended federal, state and/or local area.
Items regulated by United States federal, state, and/or local laws and regulations may include, but are not limited to, Body Armor, Helmets, Shields, Entry Tools, Lasers, Batons, Insignia, Restraints, Handcuffs, Gun Accessories and Gun Parts, Knives, Automatic Knives, Pepper Spray, and Stun Guns. Purchase of any restricted item may require various documents, including, but not limited to, a purchase order on department or institution letterhead, an official identification, and/or additional certification forms. OpticsPlanet expressly reserves the right to require any documentation as it deems necessary to ensure compliance with any applicable laws and regulations or any other purpose. Further, OpticsPlanet’s reservation of rights includes, but is not limited to, the right to require end user and end use information and/or compliance certification forms from any Customer.
At the moment, only these four magazines with a capacity greater than 10 can be found for sale at Optics Planet:
Optics Planet posted the following response on their Facebook page in response to a comment on a post about a camo sale:
We fully understand how the email featured in the article on The Truth About Guns suggests that we may have made a decision to limit the sales of magazines over 10 rounds due to the recent tragedy in Parkland, Florida. Before we go any further, we want to make it clear that our condolences go to the families of all of the victims, and that our hearts go out to a community trying to recover after a senseless event.
At OpticsPlanet, we have never used the inflamed tensions and emotions of current events to drive decision making. Our support of the 2nd amendment is made undeniably clear by the products we offer. We are one of the few online retailers who never stopped offering completely legal products such as bump stocks or binary triggers, when many did. We do not raise prices during frenzies. We do, however, follow the laws and make adjustments when legally required.
In this case, insufficient internal communication led to a misread message. We are not offering magazines with capacities greater than 10 rounds to the general public due to our location in Northbrook, Illinois, and local laws that limit our ability to sell these. Being an internet retailer serving fifty states can be complex at times, and frankly, our location in Illinois only adds to this complexity. We may not always like the law, but we need to follow it.
We own up to the fact that we did not explain this well internally, which led to an unclear message given to the customer, but we can completely repudiate any notion that this is a reaction to any recent event or the political climate. Unfortunately, our loyal customer base is best served by purchasing their magazines from retailers in “free” states. This issue is currently out of our hands. We’re committed to working hard to retain your business for everything else you need.
It’s unfortunate that this issue has created so much confusion, and we apologize for not providing clearer messaging in the first place. We continue to support our passionate customer community as we have for the past eighteen years in every way we can.
So basically it is a big nothing burger that has been blown out of proportion. At some point, they stopped selling magazines over 10 rounds likely in accordance with the following policy: https://library.municode.com/il/cook_county/codes/code_of_ordinances.
Running a firearms related business, in locations with restrictive policies and ordinances, is always going to be problematic. Invariably people are going to jump on the “hate bandwagon” and pillory the company. Typically with less than all of the details.
For now, internet, slow your roll. They apparently aren’t going to be selling magazines with more than 10 rounds to the general public. But it is not due to some nefarious conspiracy; just them trying to comply with the restrictions they find themselves under.