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Major bank squeezes trigger on gun store, kills accounts

'I'm a professional fireman. I do everything the right way. It's messed up'

By Peter LaBarbera Published January 17, 2023 at 8:17pm

Wells Fargo, one of the nation's "wokest" major corporations, has taken its far-left social agenda up a notch by abruptly shutting down the bank accounts of a professional firefighter and his gun store, Wex Gunworks, three days before Christmas.

On Dec. 22, Wells Fargo sent a letter to Wex Gunworks, owned by Brandon Wexler and based in Delray Beach, Florida, with this message: "Wells Fargo performs ongoing reviews of its account relationships in connection with the Bank’s responsibilities to manage risks in its banking operations. We recently reviewed your account relationship and, as a result of this review, we will be closing your above-referenced accounts.”

"The accounts are expected to close by February 9, 2023 or you may contact the Bank to initiate closure at an earlier date," read the letter from the San Francisco-headquartered bank, as first reported Jan. 13 by The Reload, a pro-gun-rights publication. "The Bank's decision to close your accounts is final."

Jennifer Langan, a Wells Fargo spokesman, denied to Reload that the closure had anything to do with the gun "industry," instead claiming it was "based on our analysis of the risk associated with this customer." But Wexler and Second Amendment advocates are not buying it.

"I've been with them [Wells Fargo] for 25 years," Wexler told the pro-gun-rights publication The Reload. "I'm a professional fireman. I do everything the right way. It's messed up."

He told Reload founder and journalist Stephen Gutowski that he had done nothing different with his business to warrant the Wells Fargo "review."

"It feels like it's a direct attack against gun dealers," he said. "I've never seen anything like this."

Gutowski supplies context to Wells Fargo's action: According to the firearms reporter, left-leaning Wells Fargo, which for decades has been at forefront of corporate "diversity and inclusion" efforts on another "progressive" cause, the LGBT agenda, at first resisted the left's anti-gun crusade.

"However, Wells Fargo has begun signaling a shift against guns in recent years. In 2019, it committed to donating $10 million to "gun violence research." A year later, it said it planned to cut ties with the National Rifle Association," writes Gutowski. "Now, it may be starting to quietly cut decades-long ties with small gun dealers like Wexler. While they may be able to find other banks to work with, being shut out of doing business with major financial institutions limits their options for growth or even survival."

Wells Fargo is among the top 20 biggest banks in the world.

The left's "back door gun control" using corporate financial pressure campaigns, as Wexler calls it, is the type of "soft tyranny" that has forced conservatives to begin to create alternate financial institutions, just as they've had to create new social media platforms such as Rumble (a conservative, free-speech version of YouTube) to get around leftist tech censorship. Among those who condemned Wells Fargo for "canceling" Wexler is popular talk show host and former California GOP gubernatorial candidate Larry Elder, who tweeted Jan. 13, with a link to The Reload story:

Meanwhile, the firearms industry trade association NSSF reports Florida legislators are moving to protect gun owners against another corporate-led effort inspired by the "woke" left: credit-card companies tracking and flagging private citizens' purchases of firearms and ammo.

“This is the United States of America. You don’t get penalized for exercising a Constitutional right. The Second Amendment is nonnegotiable, and here in Florida, we are going to fight to protect the rights of Floridians,” Florida state Sen. Danny Burgess said.

Republicans Burgess, Florida Agriculture Commissioner Wilton Simpson and Florida state Rep. John Snyder are introducing the “Florida Arms and Ammo Act,” a "first-in-the-nation measure to prohibit businesses from tracking Floridians’ firearm and ammo purchases," NSSF reports on its website.

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