Neil DeGrasse Tyson points out a bizarre dichotomy in America:Walmart sells assault weapons but bans music that contains swear words.
That policy tells you a lot about this country.
We can guess why Walmart sells assault weapons: Its customers want them, and the company can make a lot of money selling them.
But Walmart’s customers probably also want music that contains swear words, and Walmart could probably make money selling that, too.
And music with curse words is legal (First Amendment and all that), so this isn’t about legality.
So why the no-cursing policy?
Based on a description on Walmart’s web site, it seems that the retailer worries that some customers might find music with swear words “objectionable”:
Wal-Mart does not display album or song titles that contain profanity…Wal-Mart selects 30-second sample clips such that only clips that do not contain profanity are made available to customers. However, other portions of the recordings may contain profanity, and the 30-second sample clips or the recording as a whole may be deemed by some customers to be offensive, indecent or objectionable. Occasionally, Wal-Mart may refuse to stock music merchandise that may not seem appropriate. However, Wal-Mart may carry some recordings that some customers might find offensive, indecent or objectionable.
So Walmart bans profanity on the grounds that some people might find it objectionable, but proudly sells assault weapons that can be used to slaughter people.
Isn’t Walmart worried that some people might find that objectionable? Like the parents of children who were just murdered with an assault weapon, for example? Or the parents who worry that their children might be murdered with an assault weapon? Or anyone worried that anyone might be murdered with an assault weapon?
Apparently, in America, you’d have to be, well, un-American to find that objectionable.
Here’s a nice-looking assault rifle Walmart’s advertising right now on Walmart.com: The Sig-Sauer M400 With Prismatic Scope. It’s “designed for use in law enforcement and military operations.” Just what every civilian Walmart customer needs.
(Hurry up, though. Word is that Walmart’s selling so many assault weapons in the wake of the Sandy Hook massacre that some stores are running out…)
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