AFP AUDIO INTERVIEW
Kelly McMillan, director of operations for Phoenix, Arizona-based family firearms manufacturer McMillan Group International, discusses how and why Bank of America decided to drop his company as a customer, the outpouring of support he’s received from across the globe, and the threat this action poses to the Second Amendment, in this informative interview (25:07).
Dave Gahary, a former submariner in the U.S. Navy, is the host of AFP’s ‘Underground Interview’ series.
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Bank of America Assaults Second Amendment
• Banking giant refuses to maintain, open accounts for gun makers
By Pat Shannan
Not only has the megabank Bank of America (BofA) ceased opening new accounts for manufacturers and retailers of firearms, but also it is now closing accounts held by gun makers and dealers already on its books. While refusing to speak publicly about it, some bank officers have conceded privately that the change is merely for “political correctness.”
Kelly McMillan, director of operations of a family firearms conglomerate founded in Phoenix by his father more than a quarter-century ago, got a visit in May from BofA’s branch manager and senior vice president Ray Fox. The appointment was for a supposed “account analysis” meeting to evaluate the two lines of credit McMillan Group has had with the bank for 12 years. McMillan Firearms and McMillan Fiberglass Stocks combine for just under $10 million a year.
According to McMillan, the banker spent an uncomfortable five minutes talking about how McMillan has changed in recent years in that it has become more of a firearms manufacturer than a supplier of accessories.
Realizing that the purported reason for the appointment was a ruse, McMillan abruptly said: “Can I save you some time so that you don’t waste your breath? What you are going to tell me is that because we are in the firearms manufacturing business you no longer want our business. Right?”
“That is correct,” said Fox.
“So you are telling me this is a politically motivated decision, is that right?” inquired McMillan.
Fox confirmed that it was.
McMillan replied that they would be moving their accounts as soon as possible “to a Second Amendment-friendly bank that will be glad to have our business.” Then he went on the Internet to announce the disturbing ramifications of such a banking decision in this nation.
“I think it is important for all Americans to know when a business does not support the Bill of Rights,” McMillan told AFP. “What anyone does with this knowledge is up to them, but we can no longer support such unconstitutional behavior.”
Pointing out that this sort of game can be played by both sides, he added, “We are no longer accepting BofA credit cards.”
This is not an isolated case. Terry Benjamin is a retired police officer who owns a small gun shop in north Texas. He opened a business account with BofA and was guaranteed they could beat his current credit card processing fees. But when they saw his completed application and realized his was a gun shop, they refused to honor their previous offer and canceled his credit card. He now accepts all bankcards except BofA.
Outraged by such behavior in the marketplace, Atlanta consumer advocate and radio host Clark Howard urged his national audience to withdraw their funds and boycott BofA. Clark later announced that the withdrawn amount reported back to him totaled $50 million.
Pat Shannan is an AFP contributing editor and the author of several best-selling videos and books.