Earlier today Eric Thompson—president and owner of TGSCOM Inc., a Wisconsin-based firearms dealer—acknowledged that his company sold Pittsburgh health club shooter George Sodini a Glock Magloader and a Glock Factory Magazine last year. This is notable if only because the company also sold guns and firearms accessories to both the Virginia Tech shooter and Northern Illinois University shooter.
While Thompson claims to be “deeply saddened” by Sodini’s actions, he is clearly looking to profit from the Pittsburgh tragedy. In the prepared statement he issued today, he spent two lines conveying his condolences before spending the remainder of the release arguing that the only way to prevent violence like that which occurred in Pittsburgh is for everyone to arm themselves. In the statement he also manages to disparage the police, asserting that there’s no way that law enforcement can reliably protect the public from harm, and even if they could, “an individual does NOT have any expectation of police protection,” a quote from the Supreme Court case of <i>Castlerock v. Gonzales</i>, which he is probably taking out of context.
Thompson comes across as incredibly insensitive, which is no surprise considering his past behavior. In the wake of the Virginia Tech massacre he offered a discount to students interested in buying firearms. And on April 24 of last year, he spoke at Virginia Tech during a demonstration in favor of allowing people to carry concealed weapons at colleges, a decision that school spokesman Larry Hincker called “incredibly insensitive.”
Somehow it just doesn’t seem right that TSSCOM be allowed to profit from the violence it plays a part in perpetuating. I think most people would have to agree.