Gun Retailer Uninvited From Wizard World Chicago
The decision came after pushback from attendees
A Chicago-area gun dealer and manufacturer was uninvited from Wizard World Chicago (which kicked off a couple days ago) after convention producers received complaints. DS Arms, which is located in Barrington, Illinois, had been given a booth at the event right up until Thursday when they were pulled as a vendor. While the shop had only intended to offer replica guns for sale, they were also planning to include “promotions for services such as gun safety and shooting classes”, according to the Chicago Tribune.
News began to circulate about DS Arms’ presence at Wizard World, and it wasn’t long before attendees and comics pros voiced their disapproval about a gun dealer having a booth at the con–especially since DS Arms sells real guns in addition to the replicas and props they provide for films. Fans began using the hashtag #GunFreeComicCon to express their displeasure. Still, it wasn’t until Thursday, the first day of the event, that DS Arms was booted, and their booth remained up for about 90 minutes before a Wizard World staffer took it down. Presently, DS Arms is scheduled to attend DragonCon as well, though not as a vendor.
Wizard World Chicago’s policy regarding weapons includes “any parts or accessories that can readily cause harm” to con-goers, and no real weaponry is allowed inside the convention. Other comic cons have also stepped up their weapons policy to include replica firearms that are used as props in cosplay. On the rules page of their website, New York Comic-Con states that “in the harsh reality of our times, our security staff and local law enforcement officials will treat anything that looks like a real gun as a real gun”, and any purchases of real blades at the event will be held for attendees until they are ready to leave the event. At San Diego Comic-Con, prop weapons are allowed, but are “subject to prior approval.”
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