(courtesy myfoxlubbock.com)

From Mary Keane
Cheyenne [via wyomingnews.com]

This is in open letter to Bruce, who sits at Starbucks every morning with a gun, bullet-proof vest and assault rifle:

I am writing this letter to the paper because I do not feel comfortable saying this to your face, being that you are armed for combat.

I look forward each weekend to spending time at Starbucks with my boyfriend and two dogs. But we decided about a month ago not to go if you were at Starbucks: We do not feel safe with you there . . .


Last Sunday morning, we drove through the parking lot and checked to see if you were there. You were walking away from the store, so we decided to stay.

I wonder if you know that you left behind a bunch of frightened, angry people who spent about 45 minutes talking about you and how frightening you are.

No one feels safe in your presence. In fact, the police were called twice on Sunday morning about you. So not only are you sowing fear and distrust, you are wasting law enforcement resources.

The police officer who came to Starbucks had to spend 15 minutes assuring the various patrons that the police do not agree with what you are doing, but that they have no recourse.

If your fantasy is to act out the life of a gunslinger, there are so many other appropriate places to wear your gear: the Cheyenne Gunslingers, the Otto Road Shooting Range and hunting.

On the other hand, if you want to leave this world a better place, there are so many organizations here that could use your talents, energy and time. I will pray you find a better use for your time that gives people hope and respect rather than fear and anger.

I am also asking everyone that frequents Starbucks and thinks that guns and assault rifles at a coffee shop are inappropriate to email Starbucks corporate headquarters and let them know.

It’s time the silent majority stands up and asks for our right to live our lives without fear to be respected.

366 Responses to Open Letter to Open Carrier at Starbucks: Stop!

  1. And this is the problem with some open carry advocates. We need to gradually make the public more comfortable with it, not overwhelm them all at once. Yes, it’s your right to wear a pistol on your hip, MSR on your back, and plate carrier on your chest. That typically doesn’t make friends out of enemies very quickly.

    Start with just your pistol on your hip. That’s likely to be a lot more well-received.

    • Somehow, I don’t think a handgun on the hip would make Ms Keane feel any less comfortable. If Mr. OC was a regular fixture at this Starbucks, I think it’s apparent he means no harm.

      • I disagree. I dont think that this would be an issue if he was just some dude, sipping his morning coffee, reading the paper and carrying a pistol on his hip. I bet that he would go largely unnoticed. Its because he chooses the extreme angle that he does that this happens. The idea is to warm people up to it, not create a problem. The squeaky wheel and all…

        In fact, if he dropped the full-DEA-raid getup and only carried a pistol on his hip, he would have a better effect on peoples opinions and attitudes. This whole letter could have been avoided, and perhaps he could have made friends with these people and even changed their minds about gun ownership. Catch more flies with honey and all…

        • I said it’s apparent he means no harm, not that he’s an attention hound, which he is. He’s had the fuzz talk to him, so it’s clear he insists on his way. Not courteous at all. But then, Ms. Keane insists on her way. Make no mistake — it’s not just about discomfort. Ms. Keane wants people like this (us) to disappear.

        • He’s had the fuzz talk to him, so it’s clear he insists on his way. Not courteous at all.

          You seem to be assuming quite a bit of things as fact, that are not fact in evidence based on Fearful Mary’s letter to the editor.

          I conclude that you’re merely projecting your own, anti-open carry prejudice on the situation as described by Hoplophobe Mary.

        • You really think he’s just minding his own business? And where are you getting my “anti-open carry prejudice” from?

        • You really think he’s just minding his own business?

          Where is the evidence that he wasn’t just minding his own business? Busybody Mary even says that he just “sits” at Starbucks, and then leaves. So, on what are you basing your assertion that he was not, in fact, just minding his own business?

          And where are you getting my “anti-open carry prejudice” from?

          Your comments here – as will be confirmed, I assume, by the way you answer my question above.

        • Please. Unless he’s a cop or just back from Iraq, you only wear visible body armor and carry a MSR as a political statement — one I AGREE WITH (all caps since you didn’t read my other comment supportive of OC), but as you say further down, is analogous to talking on a cell phone at a funeral. I’m glad others aren’t bothered by him (Maybe Mary’s all on her own). If that’s the case, then maybe it’s just one complainant and he isn’t being discourteous. But once you know you bug people, it’s worth considering a change. It has nothing to do with rights. Like others here have said, it’s about winning hearts and minds — which if you’re making a statement, should be your goal.

        • While this guy’s get up makes the writer’s paranoia seem almost reasonable, the facts on the ground are that this guy isn’t hurting anyone or even interacting with anyone. All of this in a state where full open carry is apparently legal? These hoplophobes would jam the police phone lines and wring their hands regardless. They’re just looking for something to be worked up about.

          This case gives them an easier object of obsession, to be sure, but their obsession would have found an object, any object, anyway. If not kitted up cappuccino boy, then it would have been low key OC sidearm guy, and we’d be reading a similar letter and holding the same discussion.

          Don’t indulge their hysteria with empathy.

        • Agreed. It’s not a good starting point. It’s like having a conversation with someone about the welfare system in the US by calling them a pinko commie if they support handouts. That very well may be true, but it kills the conversation quickly and it’s not a great way to make friends.

        • If these complainers are actually frightened (as opposed to attempting to exert control), why are they not armed when they go to Starbucks? Have they seen anyone there who might be able to protect them if they are attacked? Of course they have-Bruce. If he is not good enough, gun up.

      • Regardless of whether or not a handgun rather than what is probably an AR pattern rifle would make the author of the letter feel more comfortable, it would make me, as someone that supports gun rights, more comfortable. If you’re not in the course of professional business that requires body armor and a rifle, going to starbucks every day would make me question your mental stability and good judgment. In the same way that having a right to something doesn’t make all times and places the proper circumstances in which to exercise those rights, carrying an AR to starbucks every morning to exercise your 2nd amendment rights, while legal, is just kind stupid.

        Further, if the OCer is doing so in order to spawn constructive debate about the 2nd amendment and open carry in general, he/she is only doing harm to the cause. You’d think that anyone in support of a position would want to ensure that that position was framed as positively as possible. This is certainly not the way to frame the 2nd amendment issue positively and win the hearts and minds of the people to the cause.

        • +1000

          (From one who open carries a pistol as much as possible, and supports the legal right to OC long guns.)

        • When saying that carrying a rifle is stupid, please keep in mind that handguns only exists for times when a rifle is inconvenient. If I had to shoot to defend myself I would much rather have an AR-15 or other long gun than a Glock. As one of my instructors has said “a hand gun is only there to help you get to your rifle.” So if you personally are not inconvenieced by carrying your rifle, you are following the same plan as anyone carrying a pistol, but just not compromising on effectiveness to gain convenience.

        • Tim, I’m tired of this old saw. Doesn’t make any sense at all outside of a combat situation. Most defensive shooting takes place between zero and 20 feet. A handgun is quite effective at that range, and probably the only gun that would be effective under five feet. Not to mention the rather serious problems that would be associated with trying to carry a rifle everywhere.

          You carry what you like, obviously, but I doubt you can give any rational reason a rifle would be better for most of us to carry.

      • @ original Rokurota comment:

        Yes, but you know…”Feelings, nothing more than feelings”.

        Besides, it’s apparent Keane is framing the story to fit the MDA narrative.

        Wonder why???

      • Similar letters were written after the civil rights act of 1964. Of course the target was black people. Mary respects and prays for the person but requests the person to enact self imposed segregation. The police agree and would love to intervene put dog gone it the law prohibits them from letting Mary decide who is allowed to be in her public presence. Mary also suggests places where this person would be happier because it is where his kind congregate. Mary rationalizes her feelings because she fears for her safety and therefore she fears for the safety of all things good and pure in the eyes of God. Man’s fundamental nature never changes..

      • I think that if he switched to a handgun and bailed on the ballistic vest in response to a letter than he may appease some of the concerns. Would the newspaper report on that? Unlikely.
        I’m all for open carry. But dressing up like you’re ready for Afghanistan while at Starbucks gives concerned patrons a justifiable reason to doubt someone’s stability.

        • Appeasement? Neville Chamberlain would be proud. Of course, any appeasement is always temporary, followed by more demands.

    • Oh, hogwash.

      The author of that letter is a naive, ignorant hoplophobe who would never be comfortable with any firearm, carried openly or concealed.

      Giving even a modicum of concern for preventing this woman from coming down with a case of the vapors is a waste.

      • Aren’t you the one assuming lots of “facts not in evidence” now? How do you know Mary would be uncomfortable with Bruce carrying a pistol without “assuming facts not in evidence?” The vast majority of folks in Wyoming have no problem with guns. They do generally dislike showy jackasses, though.

        • Sure, but then her discomfort would be unreasonable, and lots more folks would be happy to point it out. Here I find her discomfort to be pretty damned reasonable. I share it – I think the vest put me over the top.

          I get why those folks in Texas OC rifles where they CAN’T OC a pistol – I think it’s poor tactics in most cases, but I get the logic.

          But this due has a pistol. It sounds like he’s in full battle rattle. And he has a 2nd Amendment right to do it. But then, I also have a 1st Amendment right to dress and act like a complete weirdo – but if my goal is to convince people of the rightness of my point, then I am not going to dress and act like a weido. I’m going to act and dress like someone trying to win by convincing others.

        • Nice point, but remember, people do dress like weirdoes every day, in public. Not many open letters get written to the girl with the pink hair, gauged ears, and pierced tongue, wearing a poodle skirt. Of course, when the first couple people did that they were ridiculed. But they persisted, and now it is just another fact of life. Something to do with freedom or some such.

      • That’s really funny “the vapors”. Makes me think of exactly the image I would clip with this article. A post colony era southern belle fanning herself while putting on her sandwich gloves. point- this guy is within the law. Point- this lady is probably like most stories of this type. Making at least some of this up. Point- he just sits there and drinks his coffee… I highly doubt he’s lucky enough to own an “assault rifle”.

      • I carry a gun, and if I a man walks into starbucks with kevlar and a rifle, I will be ready to draw while assessing the situation. Personally SWATing public places is not how we win. It’s abnormal, and survival instincts tell us that abnormal is a threat until proven safe.

        Open carrying a pistol on the hip while wearing plain clothes is much more people friendly.

        • I carry a gun, and if I a man walks into starbucks with kevlar and a rifle, I will be ready to draw while assessing the situation.

          Situational awareness is good. Paranoia and irrational fear are not.

          What do you have to fear from someone with a long gun slung over his shoulder, who walks in, orders a coffee, walks out, sits down, and consumes his drink?

        • I got a nickel says he has a tactical vest, not armor. Mary and her ilk would never know the difference.

    • I seriously doubt that he’s in there wearing a “bullet-proof vest” carrying an “assault rifle”. He’s probably just an ordinary guy who happens to wear a sidearm in accordance with the laws of Wyoming when he comes in to get coffee. Seeing that he’s a regular, and that nothing has happened, and nobody has said anything to him about his open carry tells me that he’s not a threat to anyone but hoplophobes and criminals.

      • Let’s see: If Bruce really is wearing body armor and carrying an AR or whatnot, that doesn’t look so good, so I’ll just assume the letter is a lie and form my opinion based on that unfounded assumption. Good critical thinking skills on display there.

        • Given the long history or obfuscation, made up statistics, and outright lies from anti-gun types, I’d be willing to bet a jelly donut that the assumption is correct.

          A man who has been sitting in Starbucks in full operator gear every weekend for months and MDA and the media hasn’t splattered this on every front page in the country?! Not a chance in hell…

        • And here you are, assuming that the assertions of a woman who obviously knows jack about any manner of gear are somehow (mystically?) accurate. If she said he was also carrying a suitcase nuke, would you take her word for it?

          Meantime, he is not breaking the law either way, she is being hysterical.

    • I completely agree! I served as a full-time LEO for a lot of the last decade and am now in private business (completely unrelated) but still a reserve. Even in full uniform, if I casually walked into Starbucks, in uniform, with my patrol AR slung over my shoulder, it would bring undo attention and cause panic with people in the store. If I saw another LEO walk in while carrying a long gun, my assumption would be that they were responding to an escalating situation involving an armed person, and my alertness would run up a few (ok MANY!) notches.

      Just because it is your right to do something doesn’t mean that it is the right thing to do! If this story is true as stated, this person is not making “friends of the gun.” I support OC and live in an OC state (CO). I do understand why some businesses have started asking people to not carry in their establishment. In this case, it could legitimately be costing the business money because someone wants to show up decked out like a commando! That is VERY unfair to the business!

      OC’ing a HOLSTERED handgun is a lot different than walking around ready for full combat. It doesn’t specify how he was carrying the rifle. If he has it in front at a low-ready (what we have seen in some of the photos that have circulated around over the past six months), I don’t see that as being any different as having an upholstered handgun in a low ready. If I were confronted with that, I’d be pulling my concealed weapon and drawing down on the person. In CO, we have a felony menacing statute. Walking around, waiving an un-holstered handgun is no different than walking around in a “low ready” position with an AR. It causes alarm. If someone walked into an establishment with a 10 lb. fire extinguisher in hand, pin pulled, and hose out, my first assumption would be, “where’s the fire???”

      Face it. We live in a very narcissistic society. It’s all about ME. I find this behavior in that type of environment to be self-serving and narcissistic with absolutely NO regard for anyone else around. How and when we exercise our constitutional rights shows our character as a person. I have a 1st amendment right to walk down the street and yell out at somebody that they are ugly. At the same time, it would also show a lack of character and maturity on my part even if it were true.

      I think amidst all of this controversy, we have sometimes forgotten about the other constitutional rights, concerning owners of property, etc. The 2nd amendment is one of MANY rights afforded to every citizen of the US.

      While I disagree with Starbuck’s decision to ask people to keep their guns out of their stores, they have a constitutional right to private property and to conduct business as they see fit. They have not implemented a policy against carrying weapons, and in my case, I keep mine concealed while on their property (I generally carry concealed anyway since it provides a much greater tactical advantage and doesn’t make me the first target if something bad were to ever happen.) If we are going to win the battle over the constant 2nd amendment infringements, we need to make friends, not enemies. Blatantly throwing this in people’s faces is not how to do it!

      Assuming everything the writer states is true, I completely understand why she is asking “Bruce” to stop with this behavior. It is obnoxious and belongs elsewhere than in a private business. Unfortunately, if this writer was on the fence concerning gun rights, I doubt they are anymore!

    • I’ve said this a hundred times: There’s a big difference between a discretely armed gentleman and a d-bag with a gun.

      This guy *is* obviously a confrontational type and is looking for a reaction so he can seem surprised and righteously indignant when challenged. I have the right to scream “F$CK” at the top of my lungs all I want, and will exercise that right when warranted. Having that right doesn’t mean its appropriate in all situations.

      And yes, I carry. At SBUX. On those rare occasions when I’m OCing, I OC into SBUX. I go about my business politely…

      Too bad there’s no picture. These guys usually look like they’d be more comfortable playing Magic or Dungeons & Dragons than at a range.

  2. I don’t think dogs should be allowed in Starbucks, as they are likely a greater health risk in a food establishment.

    So please stop…

    • You wouldn’t see this letter addressed to “Police Officer, who sits at Starbucks every morning with a gun, bullet-proof vest and assault rifle:”

      Because, you know, snazzy costumes make all the difference.

      • Yeah, it’s weird that the average Joe might be OK sitting next to a uniformed police officer, but uncomfortable next to a tooled up survivalist nut. Crazy.

        • Can you cite the statistics for the comparative gun crime rates for the uniformed police officer versus the “tooled up survivalist nut”?

          I’ll give you a hint: one commits gun crime an order of magnitude less frequently than the other.

        • You are 5-8 times more likely to be killed by the costumed man than a terrorist or crazy.

          That help you with your irrational fear?

        • @ Chip and Christopher –

          You guys are right, but don’t forget that perception = reality.

          A lot of people don’t care enough about gun rights or self sufficiency to know anything you just said. It would be a shock to them.

          The average person gets their news from the standard news media on TV – one, maybe two stations.

          With these people, they hear about the “survivalist” who killed a cop in Pennsylvania recently, but never hear about police killing anyone unless it turns into a big race baiting snafu like Ferguson.

          When you put the situation into this perspective, maybe it becomes a bit more understandable why low information, less ….tough people tend to go all hyperventilation-y when they see a “civilian” with guns.

        • “perception = reality.”

          Bull, and I’m absolutely sick of this illogical mindset.

          There is objective truth that has nothing whatsoever to do with subjective perception.

          We can extract some objective truth from this letter even taking her premises at face value.

          Fact 1: The man described is not a threat. It is claimed he has been there frequently for a month. He has not done anything violent or criminal.

          Fact 2: She claims the cops have been called, yet the cops have not jailed him or removed his firearms or taken any other action that even remotely suggests that the COPS think he is violent or a criminal.

          Fact 3: The presence of a firearm, regardless of barrel length, is not by itself dangerous or a threat. See above comments about anti’s comfort level with visibly armed cops. Therefore, it is a FACT that the long gun question is answered: they don’t fear the gun. They fear the person with the gun, which is unfounded based on objectively observable data (See Facts 1 and 2).

          Stop with this perception is reality garbage. That’s letting the anti’s configure the language of the debate and in practice concedes them a LOT of ground.

          They are wrong. They are provably wrong. We need to stop letting them prance around with false claims as if it is somehow more polite to allow them to perpetuate falsehoods.

          Open carry, especially of long guns, is not her problem. Her problem is HIM, and more to the point, her problem is that he is not controlled.

          Gun control is about people control, not the gun – long or short.

        • The guy is a regular, and nothing bad ever happens, unless the writer starts something. Which “she” is trying to do. Bet “she” is one of the people that called the police. The hoplaphobe would have been just as offended by a kid with a toy gun

        • @ JR….

          Perception = reality is a fact. Trying to brush it off as some kind of liberal agenda makes you look ignorant. It’s like claiming that 2+2=6.

          If you’re going to go off on logic-free tangents like that, you might as well start talking about “legitimate rape” too. It makes about as much sense.

          I’m all for spirited arguments or discussions on here with differing opinions, but trying to claim that our world views, experiences, morality, ethics, etc. don’t significantly affect how we see the world as individuals is just… utterly silly.

        • Perception = reality is a fact. Trying to brush it off as some kind of liberal agenda makes you look ignorant. It’s like claiming that 2+2=6.

          Quite true. “Perception = reality” is analogous to “2 + 2 = 6”.

          Reality is reality. Truth is objective. Perception, by definition, is a biased and/or imperfect perspective of reality. Where perception is inconsistent with truth, reality is truth, not perception.

        • @Chip

          That is an intellectually lazy and disingenuous way to rephrase my argument.

          Perception = reality has nothing to do with facts that can be proven and everything to do with opinion/morality/beliefs/outlook etc.

          Or are you claiming that there is one, factually correct religion?

          What about abortion, hmm? Is there one person or one opinion that is “correct”?

          How about education? What is the solution to the country’s education problem?

          How about the age people should be legally allowed to drink?

          How many immigrants should be allowed into the US every year?

          What should be done with the illegal immigrants already here?

          What are the “correct” gender roles?

          You get my point.

          Please don’t jump on the train making all of us gun owners look like uneducated, ignorant knuckle draggers, please

          Fears, morals, opinions – pretty much everything that isn’t a scientific fact (and sometimes even that) are not objective.

          Even religious beliefs are only objective to the one who has faith in them.

          To argue against subjective/perception based reality for humanity is as ignorant as people who believe Iranian Muslim women should somehow just magically escape their family, country, and morals to become self confident CEOS.

        • That is an intellectually lazy and disingenuous way to rephrase my argument.

          No. Truth is truth, whether we understand it or not. Facts are facts, whether we have knowledge of them or not.

          I’m really not interested in a debate about post-modern beliefs about truth, especially if you’re going to conflate objective fact with subjective belief.

          Instead, let’s apply it to your original argument:

          A lot of people don’t care enough about gun rights or self sufficiency to know anything you just said. It would be a shock to them….When you put the situation into this perspective, maybe it becomes a bit more understandable why low information, less ….tough people tend to go all hyperventilation-y when they see a “civilian” with guns.

          RKBA is derived from the right to life. The right to life is recognized in our Declaration of Independence, and its derivative RKBA is protected by our constitution. The right to life, and therefore RKBA, is a God-given, natural human right.

          Someone’s perception of another’s lawful exercise of that right does not compel that person to acquiesce to the flawed perception of the observer. The reality is consistent with the truth that the person lawfully exercising his RKBA is in the right, and the observer with the flawed perception is in the wrong.

          The observer’s irrational fear of the long gun that the person uses in exercising RKBA does not cause the person lawfully exercising his rights to be in the wrong – legally, morally, or in any other way.

        • You know who else sees the world in black and white, who sees opinions and beliefs as being fact?

          Dictators, psychos, stalkers, etc.

          Yup. I said it.

          It’s easy to put people to the sword during the crusades or torture confessions out of people when you really /believe/ you’re right. Because the world is black and white, right? Our religion is right, those other guys are wrong, end of story.

          I don’t usually engage in ad hominems on here, but believing in universal truth in regards to anything we can’t prove through science is fucking crazy. Furthermore, expecting average people to just magically shake off the points of view of a lifetime and disregard everything they know to be true to embrace pure logic is an Ayn Rand wet dream.

          Should everyone use pure logic all the time, every day and be able to ignore everything they believe to be true. Sure! While we’re at it let’s teach the world to sing and have world peace too.

          It’s not realistic. And since it’s not realistic, those who believe in universal absolutes are usually those who wish to /push/ their views on others. If they get enough power, that can be through force.

          I tell you the truth – it’s for this reason I carry a pistol in the first place when I can. It’s for the fact that people like this exist that I joined the military. It’s for this reason I am proud to be an American.

          America is what it is because we /don’t/ say everything is black and white in the world of morality. And when we do (like with “no tolerance” and minimum sentence laws) we begin to veer away from justice and what’s right.

          So not only do I disagree, I /vehemently/ disagree. Sure, I believe too (and we have facts and figures to back it up) that gun ownership = good, ya ya ya, the whole 9 yards.

          But I will never pretend that those who hold different opinions than me are somehow subhuman or not real people. That’s how despots rise.

          For clarification, I believe the the RTKABA is a fundamental, God given right too. But you know what? That is a belief. I take that on faith. Hopefully, everyone else who calls themselves an American does too (and I think they’d have to if they were honest), but that does not make me, nor you the arbiter of what is /right/.

          It just means we believe in something greater than ourselves, that life is precious, and we have the right to defend against anyone or anything that would want to take our lives away from us.

        • When you’re done rambling on about abortion, religion, the Crusades, and the price of tea in China, can we get back to the discussion about the right to keep and bear arms?

        • “Perception = reality has nothing to do with facts that can be proven and everything to do with opinion/morality/beliefs/outlook etc.”

          I find it completely ironic that you are using phrases like “uneducated” to describe us then trot out this statement.

          Do you know what the term “reality” even means?

          From The Google:

          re·al·i·ty
          rēˈalətē/
          noun
          noun: reality

          1.
          the world or the state of things as they actually exist, as opposed to an idealistic or notional idea of them.

          The denial of objective truth lies at the heart of every gun control debate in existence.

          The anti’s perceive guns as the danger. We argue against that as “objective fact.”

          The anti’s claim all gun owner’s are short-penised OFWG “knuckledragging” (thanks for playing into that, by the way) violent nutjobs, even though it is objectively provably false.

          There are many other similar examples. Their perceptions most certainly are not reality, but by your argument, you are saying we should play the game by their rules, admitting that their claims have legitimate basis, just because of their perceptions.

          Sorry. I will not. They are objectively wrong. I will not concede their arguments have any merit whatsoever, nor are they worthy of intellectual respect.

          Since I have provided two examples where perception does not equal reality, I have logically shown the blanket generalization “perception equals reality” is false.

          Q.E.D. Whether you agree or not, the same logic applies. There is objective truth.

        • @TheBear

          That is an intellectually lazy and disingenuous way to rephrase my argument.

          To the contrary; it was an obscenely simple way to point out that your premise is flawed, THEN you doubled down by trotting out religion/faith, gender roles, and a handful of political topics.

          You used issues with arguments built upon perception as examples but had the stones to call somebody else lazy and disingenuous…

        • My point with all the contentious issues I brought up is that there is no truth to any of them. Just opinions and beliefs.

          No matter how deeply held a belief is, it is still a belief.

          If you are not able to grasp the fundamental logic in this, then I don’t know what else I can say.

        • My point with all the contentious issues I brought up is that there is no truth to any of them. Just opinions and beliefs.

          Post-modern nonsense. You’re confusing human knowledge and understanding of truth with the existence of truth.

          Abortion: either an unborn child is a human person, attendant with all God-given rights, or it isn’t.

          Religion: either there is a God, or there isn’t. Either there is a heaven, or there isn’t. Either this is a hell, or there isn’t. Either there is reincarnation, or there isn’t. Either there is sin, or there isn’t.

          Truth exists, whether we know or understand it, or not.

          Now, can we step back up out of this mostly pointless rabbit hole?

        • abortion….the life of a living thing is being terminated. You can opine all you want about whether or not that being is human, thus whether of not it is truly murder, but a life is being terminated. Your perception of a very real event doesn’t change that the event is what it is.

        • “Not everything is subjective.”

          A few hundred years ago, it was a scientific fact that the world is flat.

          60 years ago it was sinful and immoral to marry someone of a different race than yourself.

          Those of you with /opinions/ based on your morality (like on abortion), in 100 years your descendant may feel 100% differently.

          So, “Not everything is subjective.” I beg to differ.

        • You can beg to differ all you like, it doesn’t make you correct. None of your statements have any bearing on that. Maybe you just don’t understand.

        • A few hundred years ago, it was a scientific fact that the world is flat.

          It appears that “scientific fact” also doesn’t mean what you think it means. More importantly, this example proves my point: the reality of the shape of the earth has not changed, but the perception of the shape of the earth has changed. Did truth change? Did the earth go from being flat to a spheroid merely because humans developed observational means to alter our perception of the earth? No. The shape of the earth never changed. Truth never changed. Reality never changed.

          Only perception changed.

          60 years ago it was sinful and immoral to marry someone of a different race than yourself.

          No. Whether inter-racial marriage was sinful or not has not changed. Only human perception of it has changed. God has set the standard, which we call morality. God hasn’t changed. his definitions of what is morally right and wrong has not changed. Only human perceptions change.

          (Fortunately, we find righteousness through Jesus, and don’t have to rely on workout out moral perfection on our own. We could never do it on our own.)

          N.B . And thus ends – hopefully – the off-topic interjection of religious belief in the discussion here.

          Those of you with /opinions/ based on your morality (like on abortion), in 100 years your descendant may feel 100% differently.

          It would appear that you didn’t read what I wrote. With respect to abortion, there is truth, and there is perception. Either the unborn child is living, or it is not. Either it is human, or it is not. Either it is a person, or it is not. Our perceptions may change, but the truth does not.

          I’m not advancing an argument about abortion here; rather, I’m asserting that there are certain, objective facts about the unborn child (“fetus”, if you must) that do not change, just because our perceptions of them may change.

          So, “Not everything is subjective.” I beg to differ.

          I would recommend trying to grasp the difference between objective and subjective. I would also recommend trying to grasp the difference between the existence of truth, and human knowledge and understanding of truth.

          Until such a time, having a discussion with you on such subjects is pointless.

        • @Chip

          You kind of just made my point for me. I think to take this further is to argue semantics.

          Your argument is basically, “There is a truth, but the truth we all know to be “truth” may not be THE truth.” Okay, I can accept that.

          But doesn’t that in turn validate all of my arguments? The only way it doesn’t is if we hold our personally held beliefs to be “the” truth, which history has shown us may not always be the case.

        • But doesn’t that in turn validate all of my arguments? The only way it doesn’t is if we hold our personally held beliefs to be “the” truth, which history has shown us may not always be the case.

          Some truth is more easily knowable/understandable than other truth, but all truth is absolute.

          But let’s take that back to your original assertion (because while I enjoy an existential discussion as much as the next nerd, most of that discussion is off-topic for the discussion at hand):

          A lot of people don’t care enough about gun rights or self sufficiency to know anything you just said. It would be a shock to them…When you put the situation into this perspective, maybe it becomes a bit more understandable why low information, less ….tough people tend to go all hyperventilation-y when they see a “civilian” with guns.

          Gun crime statistics, including that 90%+ of gun crimes are committed using hand guns, are easily knowable/understandable truth. That long guns of all types are used to commit fewer homicides than either hammers or baseball bats each year is easily knowable/understandable truth.

          The preferences and motives of criminals are less-easily knowable/understandable truths, but surveys of such criminals tend to be awfully consistent, and indicate that criminals prefer the inconspicuousness of hand guns, and prefer not to draw attention to themselves.

          Perhaps if we, as supporters of gun rights, spent as much time and effort into educating people about these easily knowable/understandable truths as we do maligning people who choose to exercise their rights by open carrying, we would have a demonstrably more positive impact on society and cultural norms that is alleged that open carriers have a negative impact.

        • Oh yeah, and as this very long, impassioned argument proves, TTAG is an echo chamber my ASS. 🙂

          You can quote me on that, RF.

        • “A few hundred years ago, it was a scientific fact that the world is flat.”

          Another factual error. Human beings have “scientifically” known the world was spherical since the ancient Greek civilization made measurements to show it.

          There are simple observable facts. You mistake the simple observable fact with scientific conclusion and call “perception” reality.

          This is wrong. And before you call me “uneducated” again, I’d like to simply state my credential on the particular subject of science. I hold a terminal degree in a hard science field and within that field earned the respect of my peers. So, I am inclined to inquire what credentials you have to (a) refer to me as “uneducated” and (b) argue the merits of scientific thinking and the nature of observation in the scientific process.

          With that out of the way, it is important for you to separate the observed “fact” with any resulting theory, model, law or conclusion drawn from it. It is a simple observed, and objective, fact that if I drop something, it falls. That is “objective truth” that has nothing to do with subjective perception.

          Just like I stated above, it is an objective fact that if they were in fact called to that Starbucks they cops did not find in committing any criminal act, which would include acting in a threatening manner.

          That some twit claims to have misinterpreted the facts of the situation and subjectively perceived him to be threatening is (a) not his problem, (b) not my problem and is only a “gun rights” issue if we let people like her make it one.

          Fact: He did not fire his rifle at anyone. Fact: he did not point his rifle at anyone. Fact: He did not verbally threaten anyone while armed with a rifle.

          Those are examples of objective truth as observable facts. Perception is reality is garbage nonsense that has no place in rational, logical discussion. None. Because it is patently false.

          I don’t simple “perceive” a sunburn if I stay outside to long…I have one. I don’t “perceive” death if swallow a poison…I become dead.

          I get the point you are trying to make…that we should not scare the muggles and all that jazz. I’m trying to emphasize that it does not matter what we do; if it involves guns, gun ownership, possession, carry or anything else, they will trot out the “I’m scared” card and sell the perception that the gun is harming them in some way…to claim “a right” to control.

          I’m trying to get across the point that you are playing into their hands…emboldening them to continue this “divide and conquer” tactic by saying the dude did anything whatsoever wrong when in fact…there is no objective basis to conclude that.

        • @JR

          I never, NEVER said this guy shouldn’t go to Starbucks armed to the teeth. Please, find where I said this or else the rest of your post is pretty much meaningless.

          I also don’t recall calling you uneducated. I don’t recall attacking anyone in this entire thread specifically.

          Kthanksbye

        • @TheBear:

          “Furthermore, expecting average people to just magically shake off the points of view of a lifetime and disregard everything they know to be true to embrace pure logic is an Ayn Rand wet dream.”

          I tend to agree with most of this. But you misunderstand Ayn Rand. She very explicitly states that when judging someone’s actions you need to look at their knowledge of the situation, not your own. She does expect people to be rational, she doesn’t expect them to magically have the correct facts to reason from.

          For instance there is a scene in Atlas Shrugged (where she illustrates a lot of her philosophy) where one of the “good guys” (Hank Rearden) slaps one of the other “good guys” (Francisco d’Anconia), whom he believes has caused untold harm to his own business as well as Rearden’s. d’Anconia is furious, and clearly wants to pound Rearden to a pulp, but he restrains himself (with difficulty), because he knows that Rearden doesn’t know the whole story. In other words, Rearden had acted correctly, given what he knew, and d’Anconia knows that’s all that can be expected of a man. His exact words to Rearden are: “Within the extent of your knowledge, you are right.” (pages 640-641 of the hardback, though you might want to start on 638 to get more context–even then it won’t make much sense if you don’t know the book fairly well.)

          I have difficulty condemning an anti-gunner who simply hasn’t been exposed to the truth at all. I can condemn the ones who don’t care about the facts and refuse to learn, however.

          The problem oftentimes is NOT that the other side isn’t being logical. They often are: their conclusions do follow from their premises. But logic has to operate on a knowledge base, and if that is defective or incomplete, valid logic will still lead to a bad result.

        • “I also don’t recall calling you uneducated. I don’t recall attacking anyone in this entire thread specifically.”

          I was inclined to let this go except for two things: (1) You are conveniently now dropping out without addressing the specific points I raised and (2) the snarky little exit in your comment.

          You may not have said anything to me specifically, but in a general statement seemingly made toward anyone disagreeing with you on the points you raised in this thread:

          The Bear: “Please don’t jump on the train making all of us gun owners look like uneducated, ignorant knuckle draggers, please”

          So, perhaps I have misinterpreted this statement. If you did not intend to imply that toward those of us disagreeing with you, I welcome correction.

          The Bear: “Perception = reality is a fact. Trying to brush it off as some kind of liberal agenda makes you look ignorant. It’s like claiming that 2+2=6.

          If you’re going to go off on logic-free tangents like that, you might as well start talking about “legitimate rape” too. It makes about as much sense.”

          “Ignorant” is synonymous with uneducated on a particular topic.

          So, yeah, you kinda did hurl some negatives out at us for disagreeing with you.

          You started with some pretty strong language at those of us disagreeing with your “perception is reality” assertion, yet now seem to have completely dropped it.

          The bottom line is that her perception of the situation is wrong. There is objective reality, and it can be demonstrated. We can choose to do one of two things: (1) accept her false perception and nurture it (and thus allow her to use it to try to control the rest of us), or (2) correct her perception.

          I submit that the latter is the better long term solution.

          And as a consolation, if we cannot correct her, at least make it so so few people give her false perception audience that it does not matter what she says.

          We gain nothing by playing into the false fears and perceptions of the anti’s. That only allows them to grow and become more virulent in an anti-rights way.

        • @JR – ok, I will concede your points on negativity and I apologize for those dismissive and patronizing comments, but the reason I’m now dismissive and why I’m going to bow out of this argument is simple.

          The entire thing was started based on an incorrect assumption and bad reading comprehension. My patronizing tone was addressing what I perceived to be responses to what I intended to originally say, and not what others apparently took it to mean.

          I never said that the gentleman mentioned in the article should not be going to Starbucks. My response was to encourage empathy towards the (obviously) hoplophobic woman who penned the open letter.

          My frustration is that when we demonize the anti-gun folks, we slim down our chances of ever convincing them to the logic of our stances or ever converting them to our camp.

          I was not aware that most if not all the people responding in this thread had misunderstood my point, so the foundation for the entire back and forth is now flawed.

          As for relativism, I have not budged. That said, it seems everyone was upset about my comments because they believed my take on the hoplophobe’s perception allowed her to ban the man with the long gun and armor from Starbucks

          THAT WAS NOT THE CASE.

          So I am going to bow out of this argument and hope that the next one I am in includes a higher degree of reading comprehension. And yes, that snark was 100% intentional. I don’t like people putting words in my mouth.

        • I never said that the gentleman mentioned in the article should not be going to Starbucks. My response was to encourage empathy towards the (obviously) hoplophobic woman who penned the open letter.

          Mary is beyond civil discourse and unworthy of empathy. She is a totalitarian who wants nothing short of complete civil disarmament. (Yes, this is speculation on my part.)

          That said, if I encountered her in the Starbucks, rather than only having knowledge of her based on her pretentious letter to the editor (and her part in the campaign to add “greenways” to Cheyanne, at the expense of driving lanes), I would attempt to have a discussion with her, and in that discussion would attempt to educate her about her incorrect perceptions.

          But the Mary that we’ve encountered is an obvious MDA type, whose tactics will not be swayed by such discourse. The only acceptable course is to hold our ground, and defend the rights that she wants to take away.

        • @Chip

          Mary is beyond civil discourse and unworthy of empathy. She is a totalitarian who wants nothing short of complete civil disarmament. (Yes, this is speculation on my part.)

          That said, if I encountered her in the Starbucks, rather than only having knowledge of her based on her pretentious letter to the editor (and her part in the campaign to add “greenways” to Cheyanne, at the expense of driving lanes), I would attempt to have a discussion with her, and in that discussion would attempt to educate her about her incorrect perceptions.

          But the Mary that we’ve encountered is an obvious MDA type, whose tactics will not be swayed by such discourse. The only acceptable course is to hold our ground, and defend the rights that she wants to take away.

          We may disagree on a few things, some of which are fundamentals, but I like you.

        • @Matt

          *Raises coffee cup (note: not a salute)*

          If we all agreed about everything, this place would be pretty dull. I appreciate the discourse, and being challenged in my beliefs. You’re good people.

      • Irrational fear, that is the point. We are not going to brake through that fear by tooling up like we are waiting for the apocalypse. I talk to people all the time that have an irrational fear of guns. When I tell them I am carrying it freaks them out a little but I don’t look like I’m waiting for the apocalypse so they are willing to talk to me. They are even interested in talking to me about the subject and most of them walk away thinking logical about it rather than emotional.

        • “We are not going to brake through that fear by tooling up like we are waiting for the apocalypse.”

          There are anti’s you are not going to break through to no matter what you do or say.

          They are irrational by definition. They don’t understand logical argument and evidence. They lie. They forge photos. They manipulate language to suit their end goal, which has nothing to do with guns. Open carry, concealed carry, camo, operator, regular guy … it does not matter to them. They simply hate us.

          Likewise, you are not going to break through to the other set by not tooling up.

          It really is a wonder to me that we’ve gained the ground we’ve gained in the last 10-20 years. So many defeatist attitudes around…

          Hey, anti-long gun OC dudes…take a look at the legal victories in the last 2 decades. They were not won by hiding or being passive. They were won by fighting for rights. They were won by folks lobbying. And in some cases, they were won by folks getting arrested and earning those court decisions we now benefit from…they earned their victories the hard way.

          So, we dishonor every single one of THOSE FOLKS whenever we say, “We should slow it down now…we should hide our guns and respect the [non-existent] “rights” of those that seek to disarm us.”

          The more I think about it, the more I think that attitude makes me sick.

      • This is part of the cop’s job. His gear is selected based on the threat and not chosen from some mall ninja catalog. If your risk assessment determines that a vest and rifle are needed, stay home and read a book on logic.

    • Late to this comment string, and with information unavailable at the time it was posted, but perhaps a few more of the ISIS/ISIL promoted random beheadings such as Oklahoma and (insert your town here) may cause Mary and her ilk to drive by the local Starbucks and make absolutely certain there IS someone in there open carrying a firearm before they decide to stop in for coffee.

  3. exactly what if I was afraid of dogs do not I have a” right “to be somewhere where there’s no dogs to protect my silly little fears.

    Sarc

    • She’s not saying she has the right to kick him out. She’s saying he may very well have the ‘right’ to be there but that he’s bothering everyone around him.

      • What she is doing is claiming her “..right to live our lives without fear”, at the expense of his right to do the same – the expense of his actual protected rights to bear arms, freely express his opinion and to protest.

        Is the guy a nut? Maybe. Is he an attention-whore? Yes. Is he within his rights? Yes. Is he a threat? Not evidently.

        • I definitely don’t think she has a right to not be afraid, but I also don’t like how a lot of open carry protesters seem more concered with getting attention than anything else.

          If I dress up as a clown everyday before I go to Starbucks I am totally within my rights, but that doesn’t mean it isn’t a little weird. Others don’t have a right to not think I’m weird, but I would stick to just the clown nose and leave the rest of the get up at home. Similarly I would open carry a handgun as I dressed nicely, and not as if I were in a warzone.

      • Just like the guy who won’t stop yakking loudly into his cell phone, there’s no law against being a douche in public.

        How is her irrational fear of someone else’s douchery anyone else’s problem?

        And honey, you in fact don’t have a right to live your lives without fear… Fear and risk and pain are part of the human condition, and you have no right to make someone change their behavior just so you can ‘feel safer’.

      • Imagine what life would be like if we all exercised our “…right to live our lives without fear.”

        Since fear is unique and different for everyone it is really not possible. There is no “right to live without fear.”

        Instead of whining, and staring from afar whilst boiling in her own contempt, why doesn’t she go and talk to the guy. Maybe he would be very friendly. No reason for the contempt merely because he is different. That is the problem with these people. Intolerance.

        Also, Mary, you are in Wyoming. Can’t you leave at least one or two states out of the 50 that enjoy the carrying of firearms alone? I mean – you have 40 some odd other states you can enjoy gun-free coffee. Can’t we have at least 1 state? Come on.

    • Your being sarcastic but, the truth of the matter is, that her dogs are FAR more dangerous than his firearms. There is absolutely ZERO chance any of his guns will hurt anyone around him unless he makes it happen. The same thing cannot be said about dogs…..

    • Alpo,

      I’ll one-up your comparison. Suppose “Bruce” was a body builder with a physique that put a young Arnold Schwarzenegger to shame, was wearing clothing that accentuated his physique, was wearing a weight-lifting belt, and had a large photo of him ripping apart a concrete block with his bare hands. Such a man could at any moment quite literally kill almost everyone in the café with his bare hands. Should we shun such a man and forbid him from patronizing the café? After all, no one with that kind of a physique wears a weight-lifting belt in public.

    • This analogy is stupid. The students who conducted the sit-in at the Woolworth’s lunch counter in Greensboro were fighting for a right they did not have, i.e. the right to be served alongside whites. Bruce already has the right to open-carry. Wyoming is one of the most gun-friendly states. Bruce is not fighting for anything. All he is doing is grandstanding to draw attention to himself and antagonize people. Taking your morning coffee at Starbucks in Cheyenne, Wyoming while wearing body armor and carrying a rifle does not bring any benefit whatsoever to anyone’s second amendment rights.

      Bruce would be making a useful political statement if he would carry his rifle into a Starbucks in Manhattan. But you can bet your bottom dollar we won’t be seeing any of these flamboyant open carry folks doing anything like that.

      • There were a lot of blacks that argued the marches and sit-ins did more to hurt the civil rights movement than it helped.

        You don’t have to agree, Bruce clearly DGIAF…

  4. You bring your dogs to Starbucks? I’m not an animal person, they’re fine for those who want them but I feel they have no place in where the public is eating. If I see someone with a dog at a restaurant I will typically think long and hard on whether I want to consume anything there. If I do stay, I may strike up a conversation with other patrons too polite to complain about how inappropriate it is to bring an animal to a restaurant, that is after the animal person leaves. Many others also feel the same as I.

    • Yep. Exactly. I love my dog but I am logical and educated enough his face is a germ breeding ground. As such it belongs no where near a restaurant where people may be allergic.

    • @Omer
      I always wondered who it was that bad mouthed service animals, now I know. And FYI – don’t bother visiting Europe is not uncommon to see dogs (normal ones, not service animals) sitting at the feet of patrons in a restaurant.

      Your disdain for animals isn’t much different then the anti-gunners.

    • Do we know for a fact he is wearing body armor? We have only the hoplophobe to go on, and they usually think anything that doesn’t have a barrel must be the body armor.

    • Given that Mary sees an “assault rifle” where none exists, I’m not convinced “Bruce” is wearing armor. Could well be a “tactical vest”. If Bruce is not totally fictitious, that is.

      • Why do you assume he wasn’t carrying a rifle? To be sure “assault rifle” is a misnomer, but that doesn’t mean he wasn’t toting an AR-15 or something in that general category of weapon.

        • What Desert Ranger said. Someone who sees an “assault weapon” in every semi-auto that comes down the pike might just as easily see “body armor” in a tactical vest.

        • Looks like I misinterpreted what I said as being a claim that a “military style semi automatic rifle” (commonly mislabeled as an “assault rifle”) wasn’t being carried.

          I do tend to account for peoples’ ignorance when they try to tell me something. When an ignoramus says “look at that assault rifle” I *don’t* say “what assault rifle? There’s no assault rifle. Go away, you delusional twit.” I say, “Oh, that. [since I know exactly what they are refering to]. By the way, that’s not really an assault rifle.” At least then they know I understood what they were trying to say rather than refusing to acknowledge their point because they got a fine point of terminology wrong, and I still get to inform them they used the wrong word.

          In this particular case I know what the letter writer was talking about, and knowing it was just a “black rifle” not a real assault rifle, I read the comment as denying that ANY sort of “Black rifle” was being carried. My apologies.

        • Looks like I misinterpreted what I said as being a claim that a “military style semi automatic rifle” (commonly mislabeled as an “assault rifle”) wasn’t being carried.

          “Military style” is just as meaningless as “assault rifle”. What makes a rifle an “assault” rifle? What makes a rifle “military style”?

          They’re simply the nomenclature of the gun-control crowd. We really need to stop ceding ground on propagandistic terminology.

        • “Military Style” is far from meaningless. It means “Looks like a military rifle” Which they do.

          “Assault Rifle” means something too, but it requires select fire, which these guns don’t have, so it’s a factual mistake to call my AR-15 an “assault rifle.”

          Granted “Military Style” is a term that scares some people, and has no definition in law, but so what? The point IS, it looked like a military rifle (so the term directly makes my point even if you hate it), so the ignoramus assumed it was an “assault rifle,” not really knowing what that term means.

          To anyone reading this: Excessive pedantry, to the point where a person refuses to acknowledge someone’s point because they misused a term in a predictable way, is a BARRIER to communication. Correct their phrasing (i.e., explain that that AR-15 isn’t an “assault rifle”), rather than denying that they said anything meaningful (“I don’t see anything, there’s no assault rifle here.” when you know they were talking about that AR-15 over there). Then once you have made it clear you understand what they are saying, rather than dismissing it out of hand, you can spend your time arguing against what they are thinking. It’s amazing how much progress a conversation can make when you actually know what the other guy means.

        • “Military Style” means “Looks like a military rifle” Which they do.

          Like I said: meaningless. By that definition, some AirSoft rifles, paintball guns, and water guns are “military style.”

        • meaningless. By that definition, some AirSoft rifles, paintball guns, and water guns are “military style.”

          So would many bolt-action rifles used for hunting and target shooting. Next we can ban certain types of attire because it too closely resembles the uniform of some nation or another. Perception is reality, after all. Right?

        • Matt,

          You’ve got me confused with someone else if you are going to ascribe the “perception = reality” (as posed further up the page) to me.

          I have been known to use that phrase, but only as a quick way to state that people’s perceptions will affect their politics. Someone who perceives that violent crime is surging due to guns flooding the world and due to guns being available off the shelf at Walmart without any effort to stop thugs from getting them might very well be inclined to vote for gun control. That is true, even if every single thing that they perceive is really factually false. But that was a different argument.

        • @Steve, my comment was totally in relation to Chip’s and in reference to another sub-discussion elsewhere. Wasn’t directed at you at all

        • Ah, Steve, back to my point . We don’t know what kind of rifle Bruce carries. We don’t know what all Mary thinks is an “assault rifle”, it could be pretty much anything other than bolt action or a double barrel. By using the term “assault rifle” she is indicating she is likely not knowledgeable about firearms. That lack of knowledge could well extend to gear like body armor. So I am not going to assume she is accurate in her descriptions.

        • Sure. But I think it’s a safe bet, given the way that the term “Assault Rifle” is typically misused, that he was carrying what we sarcastically refer to as an “Evil Black Rifle” since I’ve never seen them refer to a lever action that way. (But give them time.) In fact I’d almost go so far as to say the wood stock would be a distinguishing feature, except that AKs at least start out with wood oftentimes, and an SKS typically even has the older style stock instead of a pistol grip. I’m not even sure what they’d make of a Garand and its descendants. (Now that would be an amusing way to waste government grant money: show a bunch of these clowns a bunch of rifles and ask them to split ’em between “assault rifle” and “not an assault rifle.” Run another group and see what they do with “assault weapon.” Then publish the results.) Of course “assault rifle” does have a real meaning, but it’s not the one they think it is [insert Inigo Montoya clip from Princess Bride here].

          But you do know what she is trying to say (“he’s carrying a scary looking gun that I always see spraying bullets in the movies or the news”), and responding to her claim by simply denying it is pointless. Without your knowledge (and she doesn’t have your knowledge) of what mistake she’s making in her assertion, it just looks like you are calling her a liar.

          Now to be perfectly clear I am not saying you shouldn’t call her on her misuse of terms; I am just saying simply denying her statement out of hand because she misused a term isn’t the way to do it. (A lot of people here were denying this incident ever even happened, at first, and I know I thought you were one of them.)

    • It wouldn’t be the first time a tactical vest had been misidentified as ‘bullet-proof body-armor’. corrections (if they ever get published) are on page 17.

      • I choked on my beer when I saw those two numbers side by side. I would have shrugged it off as a given that there were more dog attacks than shootings annually but I would have never guessed the spread was that outrageous.

  5. I wonder if Bruce really exists.

    The reference to body armor (no doubt with rows of 30-round mags, each stacked one behind the next, like shark’s teeth, so as to maintain an ever ready state of legality) makes me question its veracity. After all, not even the infamous Chipotle ninjas had body armor, and if Bruce did, there’re be a picture of him armored up, with his AR-15 and his cappuccino, slapped on every mainstream new outlet in the country.

    If on the off chance Bruce does exist, then for the love of God, stop.

      • It looks like Bruce is also harmless, and most people responding are telling Mary to go somewhere else if she doesnt like the company at that Starbucks.

        Not that I agree with Bruce’s wardrobe choices. The vest and long gun seem a bit much, in addition to the OC handgun, but hey, thats just my two cents. YMMV.

        PS: the dog thing is just rude. Even if its not breaking the health code there, the fact is there are many people who have had a bad experience as kids, or smiply are not comfortable with dogs, and she is blithely threatening them with hers- no matter how “nice” they might be. And I am a dog guy, btw.

  6. I have no idea why this fellow comes loaded out to drink a frappuccino. He’s obviously beyond caring what people think, so I’m not sure any of us would be able to reason with him, if we had the chance. In that way, he’s no different than the unwashed weirdo with dreads who chats up patrons at my coffee shop and bugs the snot out of us, both with his funk and unbidden conversation. Life is full of little annoyances.

    Just thinking: I don’t OC, but in either of these situations, I just might. At least dreads guy might leave me alone.

    • Wow, so much cognitive dissonance:

      At least dreads guy might leave me alone.

      Is that the same dreds guy about whom you said, “…who chats up patrons at my coffee shop and bugs the snot out of us, both with his funk and unbidden conversation.“?

      As compared to the person referenced in the letter, who does nothing other than “… sit[] at Starbucks every morning with a gun, bullet-proof vest and assault rifle“?

      So, using your logic, the dude who does nothing other than sit, drink his coffee, and mind his own business somehow bothers you, yet the guy with the funky smell who strikes up unwanted conversations with people is “leaving you alone”?

      Maybe that logic needs a bit of re-thinking?

      • Maybe you need to reread your comment, or at least reread mine. Did I say I was bothered by Wyoming OC guy? No. Mary Keane is, and she would be equally bothered by funky dreads man. You really think Tactical Joe is there to mind his own business? Ha. His getup is there to get a reaction. In fact, I would say dreads guy probably has less of an eff you attitude — he thinks he’s being friendly, at least, in his own unhinged way.

        What I’m saying is that you go to public places, you have to deal with the public. Not everyone is you.

    • there’s two kinds of people who go and sit at Starbucks:

      College students who really don’t have anywhere better to be and the wifi is free

      Attention whores who want other people to see them with their stuff.

    • “He’s obviously beyond caring what people think, so I’m not sure any of us would be able to reason with him…”

      So, lacking a desire for social acceptance is an indicator of irrational thought?

  7. Ma’am, if your description is accurate, the guy does sound a little strange. However, the “right to live our lives without fear” doesn’t exist. You don’t have a right to not be afraid or offended or any other emotion. You bring your dogs to Starbucks – what about other patrons who might be afraid of dogs? What about their “right to live without fear”? What if someone is afraid of black men? Do you see where this can lead, and why your fears don’t trump other people’s actual rights?

    • Yep. What you said. But, I’m also not unsympathetic. Her reaction is like what happens when loud, drunken, bikers begin to take over your favorite bar. Sure they have a right to be there but, finally, you just have to leave. I don’t know if Mr. AR actually exists, kinda doubt it, but this guy is doing more than just quietly enjoying a coffee and conversation: he’s claiming space. I’m all for OCing but this doesn’t cut it.

      • I definitely agree. If this really happened (which I kinda doubt), then the guy is going about it all wrong. He’s not promoting and extending gun rights, he’s being aggressively in-your-face. If you want to “normalize” guns in everyday life, wearing body armor and toting an AR isn’t the way to do it. A gun on the hip, not drawing attention to it, is going to work better in the long run.

        Of course, she called him “Bruce”, so she’s apparently on a first-name basis with the guy. He must not be that scary.

  8. So not only are you sowing fear and distrust, you are wasting law enforcement resources.

    Ummm, what? Who is wasting law enforcement resources? Maybe you should just have a conversation with him? Tell him that you get his message, and would he mind scaling back a bit?

    Amazing how a little mature un-emotional thinking works….

    btw: where do these idiots get the notion that they have a “right” to live without fear? Evidently, in their fantasy world, that’s an unalienable god-given right not enjoyed by any other living thing on the planet.

    • “No one feels safe in your presence. In fact, the police were called twice on Sunday morning about you. So not only are you sowing fear and distrust, you are wasting law enforcement resources.”

      Yes indeed. Sounds like the patrons who were calling 911 were the ones wasting LE resources.

      Like what this says:
      http://www.nedhardy.com/wp-content/uploads/images/2012/march/stop_being_afraid.jpg

      Stop being afraid of other americans, religions, classes, nations, of speaking out. You’re Americans. Act like it. If you don’t get it, ask an American who does.

      Have a cup of coffee with tacticaldudebro, you might learn something.

    • FDR gave American idiots that idea with his Four Freedoms speech which included “Freedom from Fear”.

      In other words, it’s an old authoritarian trope.

  9. Smells fake to me. “Silent majority” is an MDA talking point. Nothing but astroturf nonsense; a false call-to-arms by a scared “patron” is not an unknown tactic by these people.

    Ignore, and move on.

    • Yeah, the “silent majority” doesn’t have much of an opinion on gun rights, and would much rather the attention be elsewhere, like on the out of control costs on health care, foreign policy, and the economy.

  10. I don’t exactly understand the need to parade with openly carried rifles for some activism. However, if needed it is something one may have to do when their car breaks down or whatever.

    BUT

    The same exact argument can be made for someone bringing their two assaulty-looking pit bulls to Starbucks.

    INSTEAD

    Can we all just mind our own business already? There is certainly no need for more laws!

  11. Sounds bogus to me too. No mention of it in the Wyoming news, local or state, and no “letters to the editor” of either the Cheyenne or Casper papers either. You can bet both of those papers would be all over this story if it were true.

    I live in Wyoming. I open carry wherever I go, and I have no problems with it, or anyone complaining about being afraid. While such a person as “Bruce” would have every right to dress as he pleases, I do think the body armor and rifle would be a bit excessive for a trip to Starbucks. But then, I don’t go there anyway. The nearest one to me is 80 miles away, and I hate their coffee anyhow.

    If this were a true story, it would be obvious that they guy was just a bit strange, not violent. What in the world are they all so terrified about? Do they cringe in horror and complain about the parking lot full of massive pickup trucks and SUVs that could mow them down so easily?

  12. Here’s the deal.

    Society by definition is based on common social norms. It is not a socially accepted practice to answer a cell phone call in the middle of a funeral, even though it is perfectly legal.

    So it goes for open carry. It may be legal, but still socially offensive. The combination of socially offensive with firearms tend to motivate people to support more restrictions, not less. If armed individuals make a nuisance of themselves – a status separate from the Constitution, which is properly silent on social decorum -it will not be long before the bystanders decide its time to make a law to enforce what custom cannot.

    • So it goes for open carry. It may be legal, but still socially offensive.

      The more that people espouse such moronic stances, the more and more I am pushed to defend open carriers.

      Talking on a cell phone during a funeral is not a constitutionally protected, God-given natural right. The right to keep and to bear arms, on the other hand, is.

      I really couldn’t care less if “society” takes “offense” to someone lawfully exercising a constitutionally protected, God-given, natural right.

      If armed individuals make a nuisance of themselves – a status separate from the Constitution, which is properly silent on social decorum -it will not be long before the bystanders decide its time to make a law to enforce what custom cannot.

      Please define “making a nuisance”. All I see is someone minding his own business, drinking coffee, and leaving the establishment.

      Speaking of “making a nuisance”, I would consider all of the following to be nuisances:

      – Bringing dogs into a coffee shop
      – Calling the police (twice) on a law-abiding citizen conducting lawful affairs in a lawful manner
      – Striking up conversations with strangers in order to talk behind someone’s back about said lawful conduct of affairs
      – Writing letters to the editor to demand law-abiding citizens alter their conduct of lawful affairs in order to acquiesce to your non-existent “right” to live free from (irrational) fear

      • You do not get to define what society in a given area defines as a ‘nuisance’ . By definition thats a collective custom, one above the ability of individuals to immediately change.

        The 2nd Amendment recognizes the right to keep and bear arms. It does not grant the right to be an antisocial jerk, which is what happens when one bears arms or exercises any other civil right in a socially unacceptable way. Your argument would suggest that I have the right to free speech, so the offended husband should be alright with me propositioning his wife because ‘Constitution!

        • You do not get to define what society in a given area defines as a ‘nuisance’ . By definition thats a collective custom, one above the ability of individuals to immediately change.

          And society doesn’t get to define how an individual chooses to protect his right to life, through exercise of his right to keep and bear arms.

          “Collective customs” don’t trump the constitution, or the God-given, natural rights it defends.

          “Collective customs” and societal mores that define as “antisocial” the mere act of carrying a long gun can pound sand.

      • You still seem to be completely missing the point. You can be right all you want. You can be the only “right” person, standing alone atop your mountain telling everyone else they are wrong. Believe me, I and most of us here know you are right when it comes to our protected rights.

        The problem is that a majority rules. It always has and always will. If you want to be able to continue to exercise your rights, you need to have enough people agreeing with you that you have them.

        Seeing as we are right/correct, it should be easy to convince others to agree if done correctly. It is also possible, however, to convince people of the opposite by going about it wrong.

        That is the crux of this issue. You must shift what is socially acceptable in the right direction, and that cannot be done by shocking and offending people. It doesn’t matter that they should not be offended. Take any currently non-socially acceptable thing and shock someone with it suddenly and you have trauma. Acclimate them gradually and you can make it acceptable to them.

        Telling everyone you disagree with “It’s my right!” and showing them your middle finger is not the way to win this.

        • You still seem to be completely missing the point.

          No, really; I’m not. I simply refuse to compromise on what is right, based on an unproven fear of societal backlash. Laws continue to be changed, to strengthen RKBA. I keep hearing anti-OC people claiming that if the OC [insert invective here] types keep it up, all of our gun rights will be taken away. But that fear is specious. Where is the wave of laws being changed in response to people lawfully open carrying?

        • @Chip

          We are starting from a point where we have very few of our rights left already, and all the headway being made is due to those starting to turn the societal norm. Concealed carry is becoming ever more popular and less people are having a problem with it. Meanwhile you see more and more people saying “don’t let me see it because it scares me.” As irrational as that may be, public opinion seems to be swinging away from open carry an more toward “see no evil.”

          Honest questions about your position… Are you refuting the idea that society’s opinion on open carry is turning negative, or are you saying that the laws generally don’t reflect that change in opinion?

          Additionally, do you believe that carrying AR-15s and wearing body armor in a coffee shop has 0 negative affect on society’s opinion of open carry, or are you arguing that it has no *net* affect due to the positive momentum we have? If the latter, shouldn’t we all be “rowing in the same direction?”

        • Honest questions about your position… Are you refuting the idea that society’s opinion on open carry is turning negative, or are you saying that the laws generally don’t reflect that change in opinion?

          I would say that, MDA’s caterwauling aside, there’s no evidence about society’s opinion one way or another – other than as expressed at the ballot box. And everywhere I know of, the will of the people continues to be expressed in favor of supporting the second amendment. (I think the Colorado recall elections are an excellent case-in-point.)

          So, to the second part, I would say that laws are certainly not reflecting an anti-open-carry opinion that no evidence exists to be changing in society at-large.

          Additionally, do you believe that carrying AR-15s and wearing body armor in a coffee shop has 0 negative affect on society’s opinion of open carry, or are you arguing that it has no *net* affect due to the positive momentum we have? If the latter, shouldn’t we all be “rowing in the same direction?”

          Given that I have not seen any evidence of change of society’s opinion of open carry, I don’t see any evidence that such anecdotal examples are having such an affect, or driving such an affect in society at-large.

          All I see are MDA types hyperventilating, and anti-open-carry POTG eating their own. I don’t see society as a whole being moved one way or another, at all.

        • “All I see are MDA types hyperventilating, and anti-open-carry POTG eating their own. “

          Exactly, and +1000.

          Only point I’d add to that is that MDA would be (and do) equally hyperventilating over anything gun related…CC, home defense, whatever. Long gun OC is the story today, right now.

          If anyone thinks this is only about OC of long guns or what they guy is wearing, they simply are not keeping up. MDA is about banning all guns from all civilian ownership, possession and carry.

          So, yeah, let’s chew up our own this issue and in so doing, tell the the anti’s, “hey, ya’ll CAN win this one step at time; just find the issues gun owners can be divided on.”

    • So’s wearing a clown suit on a body fhat hasn’t been washed in four months while using a ham sandwich as a puppet. Not acceptable to social norms, but not unlawful.

      • We all know that social norms never change…as a result of people doing different things and forcing people to accept a new idea or view. I don’t care if people are comfortable around guns, but they damn well better learn to be accepting of them in public. If you don’t like it, it is you who must learn to adapt.
        As a matter of fact, a few centuries back it was quite common to see people armed in some manner, quite conspicuously, everywhere. I guess it is a social norm after all! Now where did I put that chain mail?

    • Oh, why can’t I live a life for me? why should I take the abuse that’s served?
      Why can’t they see they’re just like me. It’s the same, it’s the same in the whole wide world
      Well I let their teeny minds think, that they’re dealing with someone who is over the brink; and I dress this way just to keep them at bay, ‘Cuz Halloween is everyday.

      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DXtX9u7_6F8

        • HA…my ex-wife was a member of Ministry(way back in 1983 when they were techno synth). Seeing the crazy ex’s Facebook I see Al Jourgenson is doing poorly. It’s weird to me to see someone I haven’t seen in 30 years all over the internet.

    • I’m working on a Gecko45 costume for this halloween. Still tracking down a chinese knock-off NVGs and a pistol bayonet big enough to frighten trees.

  13. People shot at Starbucks by Open Carry advocates = 0

    People shot at Starbucks by armed criminals who prey on the unarmed and defenseless = a whole hell of a lot more than 0

    Shut up and mind your own business Mary.

    • People shot at Starbucks by Open Carry advocates = 0

      Coincidentally, that’s the same number of laws that have been changed to further infringe upon the second amendment as a result of open carriers, despite all of the incessant concern trolling otherwise.

  14. How does she know his name is Bruce if she’s too scared to approach him? I guess it’s possible that he’s wearing a little “Hi, my name is…” tag on his body armor but I doubt it.

    • It’s possible he’s made up… or if he exists, he’s infamous and everyone knows his name because when they call the police or ask the Starbucks staff about him they say “Oh, that’s Bruce… yeah he’s a freak but what can you do…’

    • Because they call out your name at Starbucks to pick up your order?

      Of course if he’s a proper prepper, he’ll be giving them a false name.

  15. As far as I know, dogs in food establishments and grocery stores pose a health risk (imagine a food safety inspector walking into a restaurant with dogs).

    If the guy is a regular, people would be used to him by now. If 2 people called the cops on him, there should be record of the calls.

    Also, classic case of projection.

  16. And they’re totally in their rights to be concerned. Again, with open carry Texas and all other “open carry” groups, their problem is not IF you should be allowed to do this but SHOULD. Until they learn “should”, this stupidity will continue, and people will get offended.

    Open Carry Texas and those like them are not helping our cause: they’re hurting it. Just because you can doesn’t mean you should. And doing so under the excuse of “I’m conditioning the populace to accept it” is a cute and wanna-be PC way of saying “screw you, I’m going to do what I want.” Not very far from the excuse the KKK uses to walk through the streets.

    Freedom and liberty weren’t designed to work that way. The concept is supposed to be this: your freedom to (for instance) punch someone in the face ends where their nose begins. People have just as much right to walk around openly carrying rifles as people have a right to not have to sit around them. But when that takes away Starbucks business (or any other business) because you’re in there scaring off their customers, their right to do business trumps yours to carry. Don’t like it? Go somewhere else.

    Another problem is the big picture: I CWL everywhere I am allowed. In Florida, even at church. People like that who open carry everywhere and are jerks about it cause me to lose my rights when businesses get sick of them and put up “no firearms” signs. So not only are you pissing off businesses and the populace, you’re taking MY rights away because YOU want to be a jerk.

    Stop being a teenager and demanding the world revolve around you. Put yourself in other people’s shoes. Think about others for a change. Sure, you have a right, but you aren’t seeing the big picture.

    • “Freedom and liberty weren’t designed to work that way.”

      I don’t think those words mean what you think they mean.

    • ” I CWL everywhere I am allowed. In Florida, even at church. People like that who open carry everywhere and are jerks about it cause me to lose my rights when businesses get sick of them and put up “no firearms” signs. So not only are you pissing off businesses and the populace, you’re taking MY rights away because YOU want to be a jerk.”

      Ummmm…. not to be pedantic… but, if you are licensed to CCW in Florida, then you should know that those “no guns” signs mean absolutely nothing in the Sunshine State. Your rights are not affected by those signs. 🙂

    • You confuse Freedom and Liberty, they are related but distinct terms. Freedom can be given, but Liberty must always be acquired.

    • A lot of people commenting here don’t get the difference between can and should as you said. I can wear basketball shorts and a stained wife beater to church. That doesn’t mean I should, or that people won’t give me weird looks. Does that mean I need to go to the other end of the spectrum and wear a nice suit, not necassarily, but again I just try not to attract attention to myself. No one made me dress nicer, but I just try not to make a thing out of it.

      Similarly, I know my pastors don’t like guns. So I wouldn’t open carry even if it were legal in my state. It’s not against the church’s policy to carry, I just carry concealed because it doesn’t offend people I know personally and we all go home happy. We do occasionally run into compromises in life that have nothing to do with legality and more to do with not stirring up unneccesary strife with people who probably were pretty neutral to begin with as long as we don’t rub it in there faces.

    • IOW, you claim the right to tell me what to do, like you are some kind of ruling power among other people? You are the great mind of the ages and all should worship you and instantly obey your wishes without question? I have something to say to you, but it’s not allowed. I bet you can guess.

  17. “I am writing this letter to the paper because I do not feel comfortable saying this to your face, being that you are armed for combat.”

    Let me get this straight. He sits there, drinking coffee, every morning, NOT SHOOTING ANYONE, and if you say something to him, he will…do what exactly?

    “No one feels safe in your presence. In fact, the police were called twice on Sunday morning about you. So not only are you sowing fear and distrust, you are wasting law enforcement resources.”

    Wrong, the people calling 911 are the ones wasting law enforcement resources.

    “The police officer who came to Starbucks had to spend 15 minutes assuring the various patrons that the police do not agree with what you are doing, but that they have no recourse.”

    On second thought, having government agents explain to ignorant citizens the finer points of the RKBA sounds like a win to me.

  18. My guess is that she eats outside with the dogs. We have plenty of restaurants with outdoor eating areas that allow well behaved dogs.

    As for “Bruce”, while within his right, I disagree with his method.

    Although I wonder, would the author mind if he had on some Realtree and was carrying a “hunting” rifle? I feel that she’s more bothered by his weekend warrior appearance.

  19. The real travesty here is that people continue to drink horrible coffee from Starbucks…I’ll take my guns and money to a place that serves good coffee, thank you.

  20. If Bruce were to shoot someone, he would have done so already. If he exists.

    The reason I question his existence, or at least his “state of readiness”, is because no photos exist of someone wearing a plate carrier/vest and carrying a rifle and wearing a pistol at a Starbucks in Cheyenne. In this day and age of data saturation, such a photo would exist. I Googled many variations of “Bruce starbucks gun cheyenne” to no avail. I got photos of Open Carry advocates at Starbucks carrying pistols and rifles, but no one fitting Bruce’s description.

    In the vernacular of the children – “pics or it didn’t happen”.

    Bruce’s activities, though legal, are unusual enough for someone to at least sneak a photo of him in getting his daily dose of overpriced caffeinated crap.

    If Bruce exists, I’m sure he is probably just some guy with a pistol that Mary doesn’t like.

    Though on a practical level, I wouldn’t bring my rifle into a Starbucks, I’d leave it secured in my vehicle and only have a pistol on me. I think if the SHTF in a Starbucks, I could address the issue with a pistol.

    If I bothered with Starbucks anyways.

    Did I mention I loathe Starbucks?

  21. Personally I’m thinking of arming myself with a little kitty pink soap-bubble gun or a plywood glock. Both wold be good conversation starters.
    Too bad they have pulled the bubble gun from the shelves!

  22. Thus sounds like a fictitious story to me. I say challenge the writer on it

    Besides…. Didn’t MDA get guns banned from Starbucks… 😉

  23. The dude is obviously prepping for Pumpkin Spice Latte season. Having the tactical advantage over other patrons would naturally make them discuss strategy for hours after he left.

  24. Sooooo no one going to pick this apart with the illogic?

    Open Letter to Open Carrier at Starbucks: Stop!
    By Robert Farago on September 23, 2014

    (courtesy myfoxlubbock.com)

    From Mary Keane
    Cheyenne [via wyomingnews.com]

    This is in open letter to Bruce, who sits at Starbucks every morning with a gun, bullet-proof vest and assault rifle:

    I am writing this letter to the paper because I do not feel comfortable saying this to your face, being that you are armed for combat.

    I look forward each weekend to spending time at Starbucks with my boyfriend and two dogs. But we decided about a month ago not to go if you were at Starbucks: We do not feel safe with you there . . .

    *******************So your irrational fear is his fault, at least have the courage to talk to the guy.
    But hey, good job identifying who you are, I mean Bruce is totally too dumb to recognize two people with two dogs who are afraid of him.

    I wonder if you know that you left behind a bunch of frightened, angry people who spent about 45 minutes talking about you and how frightening you are.
    ******If you are afraid of someone with (even irrationally), telling him that you all are picking on him behind his back is a real great idea.

    No one feels safe in your presence. In fact, the police were called twice on Sunday morning about you. So not only are you sowing fear and distrust, you are wasting law enforcement resources.
    *********Isn’t it the person who is calling the cops on someone doing something legal a waste of police resources? Good job blaming the victim here.

    The police officer who came to Starbucks had to spend 15 minutes assuring the various patrons that the police do not agree with what you are doing, but that they have no recourse.

    ********Freedom is like that, deal with it.

    If your fantasy is to act out the life of a gunslinger, there are so many other appropriate places to wear your gear: the Cheyenne Gunslingers, the Otto Road Shooting Range and hunting.

    ******Assuming Brucie isn’t this but trying to make a political statement, this is like saying the proper place to picket for women’s suffrage was the kitchen.

    On the other hand, if you want to leave this world a better place, there are so many organizations here that could use your talents, energy and time. I will pray you find a better use for your time that gives people hope and respect rather than fear and anger.

    *****I pray that those busybodies learn to live and let live.

    I am also asking everyone that frequents Starbucks and thinks that guns and assault rifles at a coffee shop are inappropriate to email Starbucks corporate headquarters and let them know.

    It’s time the silent majority stands up and asks for our right to live our lives without fear to be respected.
    **********There is no right to live without fear. (as opposed to the actual right to keep and bear arms). Also it seems the silent majority is standing up, and we are saying “unless he is infringing on your rights, its not your business what he is doing”

    Finally to Bruce (if you actually exist), while it is your right to carry an ar-15 in public, why not carry a 1911 or a revolver and lose the body armor. Heck, do what she says, volunteer somewhere while carrying a pistol discreetly (but openly if legal), and show the scared folk that gunnies are decent folk.

    • How do you–or Mary–know he doesn’t volunteer to do charitable things? He might be running an orphan’s home or an animal shelter or even something politically correct like a solar energy co-op for all you or Mary either one knows.

      • OOOOOOh show up wherever she volunteers (ccwing of course) and volunteer there, and volunteer more; that should totally screw with her mind…..

  25. I’m guessing Mary is MDA’s Wyoming “team” . And if that is the case, “Bruce” could very well be entirely fictitious. (how WOULD she know his name anyway? Unles he is such a fixture there that the non-neurotic patrons there are greeting him by name or something)

  26. I doubt Bruce exists in the form Mary writes about. Because there’d be a photo of him. Bruce’s activities, legal as they may be, are unusual enough to warrant being photographed. We live in a society where the unusual are trotted out as “freaks”. Look at People of Wal-Mart. While yes, I’ve gotten many a laugh off of the website, the root cause of the site is people’s desire to see the unusual. Bruce (the Mary version of) is unusual to society. I don’t find the idea of Bruce offensive, but many do.

    So, where’s the photo of Bruce? I Googled around hardcore and cannot find him. I found plenty of OC advocates in Starbucks, but none as tooled up as Bruce.

    I think Bruce, if he exists, is a guy with a pistol on his belt that Mary doesn’t like.

  27. Wait, I think you missed the MDA press release tag somewhere in that post? The butt hurt is so strong, I only assume that is where it came from…

  28. All I got out of this woman’s missive was that she thinks she has the right to place judgement against “Bruce” based solely on what she sees and what she decides to project. She has judged him a danger, but has never spoken a word to him. Apparently, so have others, or so she says.

    I hope “Bruce” continues to do what he’s doing (and I expect he will). Ms. Keene can buy aKeurig and learn to make coffee for herself for all I care.

    Her position is completely absurd and wrong-minded!

  29. According to multiple comments at the original source, “Bruce” is, in fact, a real person:

    I have been there when Bruce was there and after and sure didn’t see a bunch of frightened, angry people talking about Bruce, just some people wondering why he carried there but not frightened or angry.

    And:

    Mary, you are the problem with this country! I have known Bruce for years and he is one of the kindest people you would ever meet in Cheyenne. He has worked in Ranching most of his life and is fond of Children and animals alike. It is your prejudice that is of concern here! I hope I never have to see your pathetic loser self while I frequent the DT Starbucks in the mornings.

    • I’m still not convinced. Someone else might be playing Mary’s game from the other side. “Kind to animals”? Altho it could all be true, being in Wyo and all.

  30. She has to be transplant from california or something. I’ve open carried plenty of times in this state and never had an issue. Then again, I don’t carry an AR or wear body armor to starbucks. Pistol? Sure, but no need for an AR at starbucks. Never seem to see any coyotes or PDogs when hanging out for a coffee.

  31. 1) You are neither the majority, nor silent. It’s laughable to think otherwise in either case.

    2) You are a fool. People conceal carry all around you every single day of your life. SHOCK! Zero issues. You just don’t like being confronted with the visual representation of what is going on all around you. That kind looking guy in front of you at the grocery store checkout? CCer. Your local pizza place’s delivery girl? CCer. The old man you passed on the sidewalk? CCer. If the world went poof and all of those people converted into open carriers you would no more or less safe. Get a grip lady.

    3) Don’t lie. YOU are probably at least one of the people who called the cops in a spiteful attempt to harass a law abiding citizen. Shame on you.

  32. OOps… didn’t see the link: [via wyomingnews.com]

    Ok, so it is a real “letter.” The comments that follow pretty much do the job.

    Unfortunately, Cheyenne, Casper and a few other cities in Wyoming are becoming over run with hoplophobes. They just generally can’t get any traction.

  33. Considering the Media’s hard-on for everything that can hurt the RKBA cause, where’s the evidence this has happened, or is nothing more than a conjuration from a hoplophobes mind?

  34. bullet proof vest. You sure this guy wasn’t security or law enforcement already? This open letter smells of embellishment. When was the last time an open carrier busted out his kevlar for coffee.

  35. Yeah, this didn’t happen. Mr. Bruce’s whole image, day-after-day nonchalant presence, a whole store of people, the self-righteous affirmation that was revealed that everyone else felt powerless, the police revealing that their hands are tied….

    This whole thing sounds like an allegory some over-intellectual gun hater authored in their mind to represent the current social reality as they perceive it and to emphasize how they want to portray how they want others to feel helpless because obviously the law, as portrayed in this passion play by the image of a police officer offering no satisfaction to their pleas of decency, isn’t correct and needs to be changed for the better. It’s like a holier-than-thou bad Hemmingwayesque civic protest.in short story form except there’s nobody drunk in this….which would have made it better, at least. Hemingway did love his drinks…and drunks.

  36. Maybe Bruce needs to write an open letter back to this gal and let her know his thoughts and his motivation for what he has been doing.

  37. A silent majority is just a some number of people being silent, not like minded. If they are silent, how do you know that they are thinking?

  38. The right to feels is about the most pathetic lily livered thing I can think of. How can you have a right to something so subjective? How can you demand someone else meet that right?

    What if the only way Bruce feels safe is strapped up to the gills? Legally, I might add. Are you not now in violation of HIS right to feel safe if such things are banned from Starbucks?

  39. Several comments here say Bruce is just “minding his own business.” Going to Starbucks wearing body armor and carrying a rifle is intentionally making a political statement, and doing so in a flamboyant manner. Whether you agree with it or not, at least call it what it is.

    • I don’t agree with YOU! Perhaps “Bruce” considers it his business to make a statement such as this every morning. If you don’t like it, look the other way. If he moves back into your line of sight and starts inflicting his thoughts on you, THEN he is no longer minding his own business. You sit there staring at him, calling the police multiple times after admitting he’s there every morning, writing bitchy letters to the paper, it is YOU who is not minding your own business.

  40. Bruce is making a mistake and he is not helping either his cause or ours. Common sense and courtesy would dictate that peope should show a little discretion when “tooling up” to go to Starbucks. I agree that those who open carry a handgun are fine and I don’t think the letter writer would mind or even notice them. But c’mon, an AR with chest protector? This guy is as bad as the two mopes who showed up at Chipolte (sp?).

    He’s going to Star Bucks for the attention; end of story. He’s also hurting our cause big time. Time to grow up folks.

    • What would make you suppose anyone should care what you agree with or not? What he is doing is legal, mind your own business.

  41. TTAG must have a reader in Cheyenne. A trustworthy report by a local would be more interesting than a hundred speculative comments.

    My take, speculatively, is this: I don’t want feds or the local PD dragging their carbines into local restaurants without some exceptional reason. I don’t find the citizen’s version much more amusing. Can’t he leave it locked in the car during his coffee hour? Or is this the first reported case of “Homeless man has no place to park his AR”? I know, “homeless people have rights, too!”

  42. Like there is a Starbucks in Wyoming…

    Actually, I’m probably wrong now that I see the other comments on that website about this Bruce dude, my “Hemmingwayesque allegory passion-play” explanation seems a bit wigged out now. I had fun writing it though.

  43. Quite a nice piece of fiction this “open letter” and until there are pictures to back up the claim its pure agitprop.

    • Boiled down this strikes me as “My feelings are more important than your rights. Go away.”

      I’m starting to think that such sentiment is also behind every anti-open carry commenter here at TTAG.

    • No. Making sure my second amendment rights don’t get infringed is more important than Bruce’s desire to show off and draw attention to himself.

      • No my rights are more important than Bruce’s desire to show off and draw attention to himself.

        Straw man.

        Bruce’s lawful actions do not, have not, and will not have any impact on your rights.

        • Well, since you agree that Bruce’s actions will do nothing to protect or expand my second amendment rights, what’s the purpose of antagonizing people?

        • Well, since you agree that Bruce’s actions will do nothing to protect or expand my second amendment rights, what’s the benefit of antagonizing people?

          Why should Bruce’s lawful exercise of his rights need to provide any benefit for you in order to be justified?

        • Dodging my question, I see.

          To answer yours, the way Bruce is lawfully exercising his rights, has nothing to do with Bruce’s desire to excessive his rights. I believe it has to do with a juvenile desire on Bruce’s part to shock people and draw attention to himself. I also believe that Bruce and people like him who get their jollies by trying to shock people by displaying their firearms pose a long-term threat to my second amendment rights.

        • Well, since you agree that Bruce’s actions will do nothing to protect or expand my second amendment rights, what’s the purpose of antagonizing people?

          See the question mark there at the end? These things – ? – signal questions.

        • See the question mark there at the end? These things – ? – signal questions.

          Mea culpa. I was replying from email, which showed an excerpt from your earlier comment.

          Well, since you agree that Bruce’s actions will do nothing to protect or expand my second amendment rights, what’s the purpose of antagonizing people?

          As to dodging your question: I’m not dodging it. I’m claiming that it is irrelevant. Bruce doesn’t need to justify the lawful exercise of his rights by ascribing some benefit to you in the way he chooses to exercise his rights.

          Additionally: you are assuming that his purpose is to antagonize people, but that assumption is specious. There is no indication that he does anything other than show up, purchase a drink, sit outside, consume it, and leave. There’s no indication that he attempts to talk to any other customers, or do anything other than mind his own business.

          I reject out of hand the notion that merely open-carrying a long gun is inherently antagonistic. Slung over the shoulder, it might as well be a baseball bat.

          The problem is, you project a whole lot of intent on Bruce, without any evidence that it applies: I believe… I believe… I believe…. The problem is, what you believe is not in any way supported by what we know.

        • You’re projecting things on me, Chip. I don’t care what Bruce’s purpose is. Open carry of a rifle, particularly while wearing body armor, at coffee shops does, as a matter of undisputed fact, antagonize people. It antagonizes them regardless of whether the OC intended to or regardless of whether you or I think it should antagonize them.

          My question remains: What’s the purpose of antagonizing people? You’ve already conceded the open carry won’t do anything to affect second amendment rights, so why exercise a right you already have in a way that is bound to antagonize people?

        • I guess many of my friends, and I, don’t count as “people”. We most certainly are not antagonized by the sight you describe.
          You are the one projecting “feelings” upon some nebulous group you call “people”.

        • Open carry of a rifle, particularly while wearing body armor, at coffee shops does, as a matter of undisputed fact, antagonize people.

          No. It doesn’t. Is it the definition of “antagonize” that you don’t understand, or is it the definition of “undisputed fact”?

          To antagonize means to cause to become hostile. Open carrying of a rifle does no such thing. Common sense says so, as does SCOTUS. Lawful exercise of a constitutionally protected right is not evidence of any unlawful activity, and does not constitute an inherent threat.

          You appear to be confusing “antagonizing” with “doing something I don’t like”.

          My question remains: What’s the purpose of antagonizing people?

          Your question remains… irrelevant, because open carry of long guns is not inherently antagonistic. I refuse to accept your premise.

          ou’ve already conceded the open carry won’t do anything to affect second amendment rights…

          I conceded no such thing. I said that Bruce’s personal exercise of his rights has no impact on your personal exercise of your rights.

        • Chip, if flamboyant open carry wasn’t antagonistic there wouldn’t be 238 odd replies to this post or even the post in the first place. Arguing that having your morning coffee at a Starbucks in body armor with a rifle is not antagonistic to people (and Paul “people” does not mean everybody; “people” and “everybody” are two words with two different meanings) is intellectually dishonest and shows an unwillingness to meet the argument on square terms.

          As you like to say, Chip, there is such a thing as fact. And the fact is you are dodging my question. Your insistence that you are not dodging it, your belief that you are not dodging it, or your “refusal to accept my premise” doesn’t change the fact.

          You have also, as a matter of fact, said open carry won’t make a difference. In reference to open carry you said, “Given that I have not seen any evidence of change of society’s opinion of open carry . . . .” If you’re going to go back against yourself now, at least clearly state your position: Do Bruce’s actions and the similar actions of others generally help second amendment rights, hurt them, or make no difference? If it’s anything other than help them, what’s the purpose of the antagonism? And if this time you’re going to say it helps instead of makes no difference, where’s your evidence?

          Ultimately, Chip, I would just like you to subject your own arguments to the same standards and level of scrutiny that you apply to others’.

          I also think it’s worth noting that the folks in this thread doing all the hair splitting and crying about logic are the ones who think Bruce is A-OK. Having to be overly technical, relying on semantics, and crying about logical fallacies is often a warning sign that your argument sucks. Good arguments stand on their own. They don’t rely on nitpicking others.

        • And the fact is you are dodging my question. Your insistence that you are not dodging it, your belief that you are not dodging it, or your “refusal to accept my premise” doesn’t change the fact.

          You’re establishing a false premise – that Bruce’s actions are inherently antagonistic – and then asking me to answer a question based on that false premise. Because your premise is false (i.e. unproven), I cannot answer the question. Your question is the logical equivalent of “when did you stop beating your wife?”

        • You said people, a generic term with no qualifier such as “some” or “certain” people. Your mistake, not mine.

        • Open carry of a rifle, particularly while wearing body armor, at coffee shops does, as a matter of undisputed fact, antagonize people.

          It doesn’t antagonize me, I could not care less. Therefore I dispute your supposed “fact”, proving it is NOT “undisputed”. You are deliberately infringing on someone else’s 2A rights, as well as your own, living in controlling fear that someone will take it away. You may as well not have those rights, if you are afraid to exercise them.

      • Chip, your premise — that Bruce’s actions are not inherently antagonistic — is the false premise. You base your premise on two fallacies. The first is that Bruce did not intend to antagonize anyone. Neither you nor I have any idea what Bruce’s subjective intentions were. The second is that you are conflating subjective intent with objective effects. Antagonism cannot occur without an effect on someone else. The essence of antagonism is the effect of something on others, not what’s inside someone’s head. As the original letter, this post, and the comments to it all show, Bruce’s actions were antagonistic, regardless of whether that was Bruce’s primary purpose or intent. A declaration from Chip Bennett that Bruce’s actions were not antagonistic not does not make it so.

        Once again, apply the standards that you apply to others’ arguments to your own arguments. Better yet, stop playing logic games, arguing semantics, and nitpicking. Instead, clearly state your position and argue its merits directly, something you rarely do on here. It’s much harder to build up than tear down.

        As far as I can tell, your position is that open carry like what Bruce did has no effect on anyone’s second amendment rights one way or the other, it’s his right to do it, and you like it. This brings us to my still unanswered question. What’s the purpose of the antagonism?

        Cutting through your BS, you’re saying you won’t answer the question because you don’t think anyone should be antagonized by Bruce’s actions. Whether Bruce meant to or not, Bruce ought to know that sipping his coffee with body armor and a rifle at Starbucks is going to antagonize people. If he’s not helping second amendment rights (Wyoming is already super gun friendly), why do it? It’s really about basic respect for others. And don’t start with “Mary Keane didn’t respect Bruce’s rights.” Two wrongs don’t make a right. When it accomplishes on useful purpose, exercising your rights in a way that’s bound to bother people just because you can is childish.

        Paul G: “people” used by itself in a sentence does not necessarily mean all people. “The people,” “all people,” or “everybody” means all people. Your comment itself make it abundantly clear that you understood my sentence. More importantly, what’s the point of arguing semantics?

        I’d be all for Bruce or anyone else who open carries in a place where it’s illegal as part of an effort to challenge a law. We’re not going to see that because these flamboyant OCers are childish showboaters, not agents of social change. Putting on body armor and taking your rifle out for your morning coffee where it’s already legal and to a place that’s probably the most likely place in town to draw a negative reaction is just being asinine.

        • Chip, your premise — that Bruce’s actions are not inherently antagonistic — is the false premise. You base your premise on two fallacies. The first is that Bruce did not intend to antagonize anyone. Neither you nor I have any idea what Bruce’s subjective intentions were.

          Except that we have other, empirical evidence upon which to base speculation about Bruce’s intent:

          1) Bruce is observed to have done nothing other than sit, mind his own business, consume whatever he purchased, and leave.
          2) Bruce has been observed to exhibit the same behavior during repeated visits to that Starbucks over a period of months.
          3) Bruce’s behavior has not prompted any action by any patrons who witness him
          4) Either no patrons have complained to the management of that Starbucks, or else the management of that Starbucks has not considered Bruce’s behavior sufficient to warrant intervention.
          5) Police have stated unequivocally that Bruce’s behavior is not actionable on their part.

          Thus, it would not be logical to conclude that Bruce intends to incite anyone, because he repeats the same behavior, without the allegedly intended impact, for months. On the other hand, it would be logical to conclude that Bruce intends nothing other than to mind his own business while consuming whatever he purchases during his visits to Starbucks.

          The second is that you are conflating subjective intent with objective effects. Antagonism cannot occur without an effect on someone else. The essence of antagonism is the effect of something on others, not what’s inside someone’s head. As the original letter, this post, and the comments to it all show, Bruce’s actions were antagonistic, regardless of whether that was Bruce’s primary purpose or intent.

          No. Antagonism requires intent. One person cannot control what a perpetually aggreived and/or overly sensitive person will find offensive. One minding one’s own business, while conducting lawful affairs in a lawful manner, who has no knowledge that said conduct is perceived adversely by another cannot reasonably be said to be acting antagonistically. And even if one does have knowledge that said conduct is perceived adversely by another person still cannot reasonably be said to be acting antagonistically, if the adverse perception itself is unreasonable.

          Unless you’re one of those “right not to be offended” types? Then I could understand where you’re coming from, even if I disagree with you.

          A declaration from Chip Bennett that Bruce’s actions were not antagonistic not does not make it so.

          A declaration from TT that Bruce’s actions were antagonistic does not make it so. (See how easy that is?)

          Once again, apply the standards that you apply to others’ arguments to your own arguments. Better yet, stop playing logic games, arguing semantics, and nitpicking. Instead, clearly state your position and argue its merits directly, something you rarely do on here. It’s much harder to build up than tear down.

          You’ll see what you choose to see, I suppose. But might I ask that you take your own advice first? You have asserted, without any evidence, that Bruce’s actions were antagonistic. My counter-argument is above.

          As far as I can tell, your position is that open carry like what Bruce did has no effect on anyone’s second amendment rights one way or the other…

          Asked and answered already. I said that Bruce’s personal exercise of his rights has no affect on your personal exercise of your rights. You have mistakenly extrapolated that statement into some sort of universal application that I never stated.

          …it’s his right to do it…

          Indeed, it is. And I have this silly notion that we should all leave each other alone and not try to dictate to each other how we each should exercise our rights.

          …and you like it.

          I urge you to go back to any and all open carry-related comments threads, and find one place where I gave my personal opinion on open carry, other than that I personally choose to carry concealed. You have mistakenly assumed that, because I defend the rights of open carriers, that I like (or even have an opinion on) open carry.

          This brings us to my still unanswered question. What’s the purpose of the antagonism?

          You still have not provided any evidence that any antagonism exists.

          Cutting through your BS, you’re saying you won’t answer the question because you don’t think anyone should be antagonized by Bruce’s actions.

          Antagonism is active, not passive. Someone like Mary can take offense at Bruce’s actions, but her taking offense does not constitute antagonism on Bruce’s part.

          Whether Bruce meant to or not, Bruce ought to know that sipping his coffee with body armor and a rifle at Starbucks is going to antagonize people.

          Let’s assume that he actually is wearing body armor. (I don’t think that’s a given, just because Mary said so; but that’s beside the point.) Why should anyone take offense at that? Is the body armor going to jump off of his body and suffocate someone? Likewise with his rifle: is it going to jump off of his shoulder and stock-whip someone in the side of the head?

          I have zero concern for perpetually aggreived people taking unreasonable offense at things that have absolutely no impact on them.

          If he’s not helping second amendment rights (Wyoming is already super gun friendly), why do it?

          It’s a right. He doesn’t have to justify his lawful actions to you or to anyone else. Who made you the gatekeeper for justifying someone’s chosen, lawful means of exercising a right? Here’s a thought: it’s none of your, my, or anyone else’s business why.

          It’s really about basic respect for others.

          How has he disrespected anyone? He hasn’t even interacted with anyone. If you take disrespect at the sight of someone lawfully exercising a right, then you are the one with the problem, not the person minding his own business while lawfully exercising that right.

          And don’t start with “Mary Keane didn’t respect Bruce’s rights.” Two wrongs don’t make a right.

          Bruce did nothing wrong.

          When it accomplishes on useful purpose, exercising your rights in a way that’s bound to bother people just because you can is childish.

          No, what is childish is believing that your own irrational fears should dictate how other people live their lives, and exercise their freedoms and rights.

          I’d be all for Bruce or anyone else who open carries in a place where it’s illegal as part of an effort to challenge a law.

          So, it’s okay if Bruce exercises his rights in a way that you find acceptable, in a scenario where his exercise of those rights is actually unlawful? So: civil disobedience in exercising rights is good, but (allegedly) flamboyant exercise of rights in a lawful manner while minding his own business and engaging exactly no one is bad?

          So as long as Bruce is willing to get arrested to help further gun rights for all, it’s okay for him to exercise his rights. But if he’s merely lawfully exercising his rights for his own purposes, it’s not okay.

          Control freak much?

        • From Chip “I urge you to go back to any and all open carry-related comments threads, and find one place where I gave my personal opinion on open carry . . . .”

          This is kind of my point. You avoid directly stating your own opinions like the plague, but write thousands of words trying to tear down other peoples’ opinions in the most minute of detail. What’s your deal?

        • This is kind of my point. You avoid directly stating your own opinions like the plague, but write thousands of words trying to tear down other peoples’ opinions in the most minute of detail. What’s your deal?

          My personal opinion on open carry is not relevant – and that is part of my larger point: it’s a right, it’s lawful, and it is none of anyone else’s business what, where, why, or how someone chooses to exercise a right in a lawful manner. I think it is wrong for anyone to dictate their personal opinion upon another regarding another’s lawful exercise of a right.

        • “Paul G: “people” used by itself in a sentence does not necessarily mean all people. “The people,” “all people,” or “everybody” means all people. Your comment itself make it abundantly clear that you understood my sentence. More importantly, what’s the point of arguing semantics?”
          “People” used in a generic manner can only by assumed to mean people, generically speaking, absent other cues. You are the one trying to argue semantics. It is like saying “dogs have good noses……”.

  44. I think if the folks managing the local Starbucks want this dude gone, they need to inform him.
    However, I also am of the opinion the author of this letter feels entitled to some ‘right to feel safe’.
    Huh, I don’t recall that ‘feel safe’ bit from the Bill of Rights. Must just be me…

  45. “with a gun, bullet-proof vest and assault rifle”

    Today I learned that these so called assault rifles aren’t guns. Though it would explain how they can stand there straight faced and say they aren’t coming for our guns.

  46. This dude is a turd – he’s exactly the type of person that will get them to change laws. I too wish Bruce would go away and stop scaring the hipsters sipping their fancy coffee’s. My guess is he might actually be one of the anti’s, because I have a hard time believing the open carry folks are this retarded.

    • Wow, yet more open-carry bigotry.

      …he’s exactly the type of person that will get them to change laws.

      Can you cite any laws that “they” have changed, as a result of people lawfully open-carrying?

      • Chip. No one here is against open carry. Myself and others think that our gun rights can’t be taken for granted and should be defended on many fronts. OC should be reserved for times when it is necessary or acceptable. Nothing in politics is guaranteed.

        • Chip. No one here is against open carry.

          I beg to differ. There are plenty, quite vocal, commenters who disparage so-called “open carry ninjas”, and the like.

          OC should be reserved for times when it is necessary or acceptable.

          This is an anti-open-carry position.

          I don’t see how dictating to each other how we should exercise our rights is helpful, or indicative of full support of the rights protected by the second amendment.

          I don’t see how the disparagement for those who choose to open carry long guns is materially any different from Bloomberg trying to dictate the ounces of soda that may be served at one time, or how much salt may be applied to food. Control is control. Infringement is infringement.

          That the controlling, busybody, concern trolls in this case otherwise support RKBA doesn’t change the underlying fact that some people are trying to dictate to other people the appropriate, acceptable way to exercise God-given, natural rights.

        • Now, Chip. Let us be reasonable. Take my state of Missouri. If put to popular vote OC AND CC WOULD FAIL! We need all the votes we can get. Pissing off the public can only blow up in our faces. From a standpoint of principle your views make sense but history goes to the winners, I just wanna win…

        • Take my state of Missouri. If put to popular vote OC AND CC WOULD FAIL! We need all the votes we can get.

          *Waves from Brentwood*

          Yeah, I’ve got a bit of experience with Missouri. I lived here for 10 years. Bought my first gun here, and got my first CCW here. Missouri is a pretty darn gun-friendly state, and the legislation only continues to get more and more gun-friendly.

          People like Nixon and McCaskill only get elected because they pay lip service to issues such as gun rights. The rest of the state votes overwhelmingly Republican/pro-gun, both in the federal delegation, and in the state legislature. That legislature just overrode a Nixon veto of pro-gun legislation, and the most recent election just saw a VERY gun-friendly constitutional amendment pass a ballot initiative (i.e. a popular vote).

          So, I find your fears to be unfounded.

      • Arlington Texas city council has banned open carry of firearms AND replica firearms at city council meetings. Politicians are more likely to respond to public opinion than the law or even long term results.

        • Arlington Texas city council has banned open carry of firearms AND replica firearms at city council meetings.

          And that action was tied to lawful open carry prior to the ban?

        • Yes Chip,Typical reactionary politicians.

          http://www.star-telegram.com/2014/04/22/5758290/arlington-council-votes-to-ban.html#storylink=misearch

          They also banned handing out leaflets and copies of the constitution at intersections, an idea I originally liked, however a federal judge disagreed:(from the Fort Worth Star Telegram) “Justice O’Conner … said that the U.S. Supreme Court has held that ‘handing out leaflets in the advocacy of a politically controversial viewpoint … is the essence of First Amendment expression’ and that ‘no form of speech in entitled to greater constitutional protection.’ ”

          http://www.star-telegram.com/2014/07/14/5970206/federal-judge-shoots-down-arlington.html#storylink=misearch

        • So, really, nothing changed:

          State law already prohibits concealed handguns at governmental public meetings, but Arlington did not have an ordinance addressing the antique black-powder pistols, replica pistols or long-barreled guns that Texans are allowed to openly carry.

          And it only applies to Arlington City Council meetings:

          Shortly thereafter, the council voted unanimously to ban weapons or simulated weapons from being brought into City Hall or other city buildings where public meetings are being held.

          I would almost file this under they’re free to set their own rules for their own meetings, but given their equal disdain for the first amendment, it’s clear that it was just a bunch of wanna-be tyrants acting tyrannical.

          It’s still not a state law, and affects nothing more than council meetings. But hey: chalk it up as a loss.

        • The point is politicians will (almost) always run for cover unless bolstered by an informed public. We have a long way to go informing the public as to the value of a society with a distributed resistance to crime. Samuel Colt’s great equalizer isn’t of much good to people who think Obama or the police are going to save their lives and their fortunes! I don’t think open carry does much to inform the ignorant. Maybe the empty holster is a better symbol (at least until we can bag a few terrorists!).

  47. I’m sorry, but the letter writer has no “right to feel” anything, especially safe. What if there are people who are afraid of dogs? I know someone who is, of any dog, of any size. By her logic, she should be required to never take her dogs out of the home so my friend can “feel safe”.

  48. I’ve said it before, this kind of BS is just giving the antis ammo. If you think in -your-face open carry will ever help our side please pull your head out of your ass. The gun battle is political as much as it is legal. Ever hear of judicial activism? It’s nothing new and if enough people want it SCOTUS can/will invent new interpretations. Yeah I know cold dead fingers and all that crap, wouldn’t it be easier to just play smart?

  49. For the record, in a vacuum, I wholeheartedly agree with “Bruce’s,” actions. There is absolutely nothing wrong with walking around strapped and yoked up in and of itself, but the venue is an issue.

    Starbuck’s is a business, and they have the right to serve or not serve or allow or not allow anything they want. If a man is sitting in their establishment wearing a vest and carrying a rifle, it can be said that they tacitly endorse it. Endorsing this behavior probably isn’t good for business, because, rightly or wrongly, it bothers whole swaths of customers, who might go elsewhere.

    Does “Bruce,” have the right to do what he’s doing? Yes. Is it the equivalent of exercising your 1st Amendment rights by saying the N-word repeatedly? Also yes.

    “Bruce,” is not serving the cause.

  50. I think it is disrespectful when we parade into someone’s business while trying to make a political statement. Sure open carry is a right, but in general places of business want to AVOID playing politics as it hurts their bottom line. So let’s keep doing the OC marches and rallies out in public spaces, those certainly have their place. But when you’re going into Starbucks, Target, or anywhere else, please consider leaving the long guns at home. Consider it?

  51. +1 Mama Liberty. I thought Wyoming liked guns. Do I think the AR is over the top? Yep-but I live in Illinois and can’t get away with it. Does this gal get all twitterpatted when she sees an armed cop?

  52. Stop shrieking everyone. This letter is a fabrication. If someone was dressed like that and showed up at a local café at the same time and day every week, gun grabbers would be waiting with cameras to photograph the man.

    Once again, we have to impress upon gun grabbers that it is an attack on our humanity when gun grabbers advocate dictating what personal property we can own and possess. The appearance of that personal property is NOT relevant.

    As for the hypothetical portrayal of “Bruce”, so what? Maybe he has a credible threat on his life. And rather than stay holed-up in his home forever, he goes out in public ready as best he can be. What do we all say about gunfights? If we knew (or had reason to believe) that we were going to be thrust into a gunfight that we could not possibly avoid, we would bring a long gun. And if terrorists ever launch a coordinated attack around here, we might all find ourselves schlepping a long gun in public.

  53. Personally, this guy wouldn’t disturb my sense of security after observing him for a few minutes. Conversely, depending on all the nuances of the surrounding circumstances, he would be apt to piss me off incredibly.
    I agree that the side-arm is less shocking. As an example, the Dunken Doughnuts near my former NJ home was patronized by a woman in her 40’s wearing ordinary street-cloaths and a revolver. No one paid attention to her; not even the Catholic school girls getting their morning jolt before school.
    OCT is facing a really peculiar circumstance where they can legally carry long-arms but not side-arms openly. They are politicking to get side-arm OC. Sometimes some of them have arguably crossed the line of decorum; but, remember, this is TX where the line of decorum is drawn in a different place than it is in the North Eastern States.
    If he were in a hunting State and carrying during hunting season and dressed in red he would fit right in. Vary any one of those subtleties and he would cross the line of decorum.
    The acid test is whether a particular behavior pisses-off more people than the number who are – or can become – acclimatized to the behavior. This is really hard to measure; you can’t use a meter or calipers. The OC crowd probably should pay attention to the feedback they are getting from PotG. We are on YOUR side. If our sense of the matter is that you are being counterproductive then you should probably pay attention to US. You don’t have to honor the one or few hoplophobes who are writing letters-to-the-editor. Neither these hoplophobes nor we PotG are your audience. Your audience is the UN-committed voter. If WE PotG are inclined to believe that you are annoying more UN-committed voters than you are winning, then that is the signal to attend to.

  54. Same “Mary Keane”?

    http://www.wyomingnews.com/articles/2014/04/25/news/19local_04-25-14.txt#.VCGWP5RdU1I

    From the article:
    Mary Keane, president of the Cheyenne Triathlon Club, said she can’t wait for the city to add more safe cycling options to the roadways.

    “People might be annoyed by the bikes on the road initially,” Keane said. “But they will get used to us pretty quickly. It’s really great to have a lane available that isn’t full of cars or potholes. The main thing is safety.”

    Hmm.. Interesting. So she doesn’t mind pushing her lifestyle on others, but has a problem with others? Sounds like a typical “demanding” MDA member to me!

    • She sounds like one of those fvcking transplants to me. Scared to death of guns, despite moving to a pro-gun state, and then having the audacity to bitch about it…

      and then the bike lanes? haha of course. because why not? frisco had the same thing, so why shouldn’t wyoming?

      (god i hate transplants. go die of cancer you lot)

  55. From Me
    Cheyenne [via TTAG]

    This is in open letter to Mary Keane, who sits at Starbucks every morning with her two slobbering Golden Retrievers:

    I am writing this letter to TTAG because I do not feel comfortable saying this to your face, being that your two dogs seem overly protective of you and approximately 1.5% of Americans are attacked by dogs each year.

    I look forward each weekend to spending time at Starbucks with my wife. But we decided about a month ago not to go if you were at Starbucks: We do not feel safe with you and your dogs there . . .( I might feel safer if Starbuck’s hadn’t asked that patrons who legally possess firearms “leave their firearms at home”… but I digress )

    Last Sunday morning, we drove through the parking lot and checked to see if you were there. You were walking away from the store, so we decided to stay.

    I wonder if you know that you left behind a bunch of frightened, angry people who spent about 45 minutes talking about you and how frightening, unsanitary, and inconsiderate you and your dogs are.

    If your fantasy is to be a part of the Annual Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show, there are so many other appropriate places to show your dogs: the Local Dog Park, the privacy of your own home and bird hunting.

    On the other hand, if you want to leave this world a better place, there are so many organizations here that could use your talents, energy and time. I will pray you find a better use for your time that gives people hope and respect rather than fear and anger.

    I am also asking everyone that frequents Starbucks and thinks that non-service dogs at a coffee shop are inappropriate to email Starbucks corporate headquarters and let them know.

    It’s time the silent majority stands up and asks for our right to live our lives without fear, dog slobber, pet dander, wet noses, and leg-humping to be respected.

  56. Not sure about anyone else but i read the letter via the provided source link. I then, just as i do after reading a story posted here read the comments to said story. I see several posters who frequent said overpriced coffee franchise and know the dastardly villian. Feel free to release your pearls as it would seem he is a local rancher and apparently rather friendly and easy going regular at said establishment. These other regulars who know said tooled up warmonger (note i typed that while clutching my pearls and had someone fan me as i needed one hand to type) apparently have never witnessed anyone being scared or terrorized by his terrifying arsenal. The claims of the gun movement being set back decades by the bad image this villainous goon has portrayed seem to be founded in the same place as the pearl clutchers hoplophobia. Yes I am pulling that out of my rectum and since I’m already doing so, allow me to pull some more. Considering that this took place in Wyoming, a constitutional carry state that happens to be mostly rural and Ms pearl clutcher states that she loos forward to spending time at a over priced coffe shop with her dogs (I really don’t get that. Does she not appreciate the majestic beauty of the state she lives in?), I would posit that she’s likely transplant from someplace that does not believe in the natural, civil and constitutionally protected right to keep and bear arms and now whats to make Cheyenne into a similar utopia, unfortunately troglodytes like Bruce aren’t cooperative.
    Have I been sarcastic and snyde? Absolutely. Very intentionally so. I’m starting to feel like its groundhog day. Its the same thing over and over ad nauseum. We are the POTG, yet we are harder on each other than the antis are because someone has a different viewpoint on how to expand our rights. Personally the whole hearts and minds thing so far as gun rights are concerned is crap. The right to keep and bear arms is pretty clear, don’t like it tough shit. The whole trying to placate the antis and hoplophobes is how we allowed ourselves to be put into the position of having to fight to be “allowed” to exercise our rights. Think about how ridiculous that is. Is this an extremist viewpoint? Perhaps. Am I an absolutist. Absolutely! Give me dangerous freedom anytime.

  57. You dont have a right to not be afraid. Grow the fvck up, you busy body yuppie…

    That is the very problem with our country is this cancer growing among society where people believe they have a right to feel safe, even if it means infringing upon others’ rights.

    If he’s not doing anything wrong or illegal, STFU and stay off the 911 line. The person calling the cops over this should be fined for improper use of an emergency telephone line.

  58. Part of winning a campaign for change is having some cultural literacy. You have to understand the arguments and undergirding philosophies of those you seek to persuade, identify the faults or weaknesses, and then act/argue in a way that causes them to confront and navigate those weaknesses.

    I don’t see this guy accomplishing that, any more than an abortion protester would by standing outside Starbucks with graphic photos of dismembered human embryos. I’m pro-gun. I’m pro-life. But in both cases, I would feel I was contending with a person who is so immersed in their issue and so detached from the mainstream that they are suspect. I would feel cautious and on guard. At best they don’t care if they ruin everyone’s morning, and at worst they are nutcases.

    Things can become so combative and confrontational that you have to plow through/over anyone’s objections to assert your rights. But that’s not where we are in this fight. We’re winning, and this guy is jeopardizing that, frankly.

  59. So let me get this straight. This guy walks into a coffee shop armed, pays for a coffee, sits down and doesn’t bother anybody?

    And people are scared that he will someday just snap and start shootin’ up the place like Yosemite Sam?

    And these same people don’t want to be armed (which is their choice) and don’t want others armed because they think it’s not plausible that someone else who is deranged will come in from the outside and start shootin’ up the place like Yosemite Sam?

  60. THIS is EXACTLY what I have been saying. Stunts like this only help the Anti-gunners and hurt our side. People will never be ok with going about their business with some guy with an AR on his back. It is time to knock this bullshit off, because if we don’t there WILL be laws put into place to prohibit this.

    • People will never be ok with going about their business with some guy with an AR on his back.

      I’m 100% comfortable with it.

      People who aren’t are ignorant, and have irrational fear. That AR, and all of its cousins, are used to commit fewer homicides every year than either hammers or baseball bats. Further, over 90% of gun crimes are committed with handguns – usually concealed, and usually concealed and possessed illegally.

      Based on surveys of incarcerated felons, criminals overwhelmingly prefer to use handguns to commit their crimes, because a handgun is concealable – which they prefer both in order to maintain the element of surprise over their victims, and because they wish to avoid drawing attention to themselves before and after their crime.

      Criminals don’t walk around with rifles strapped to their backs.

  61. Perhaps we might agree that in general, for the prudent-minded who do provide for their own defense and that of others — under most circumstances one is likely to encounter in common social environments, a ‘hand-gun’ is sufficient enough to serve the intended purpose.
    A holstered hand-gun in no manner violates the actual ‘Rights’ of any other person.
    That said;- in highly-notable contrast, a person carrying a rifle in said ‘common social environments’ — such as coffee shops, diners, grocery stores or, for that matter uncased anywhere in a city — immediately signals DANGER. Period.
    Such actions are, simply put — “A REALLY BAD IDEA” for more reasons than anyone should have to explain in detail.

    “Even back in the day when it was common to see pick-up trucks most everywhere with rifles and shotguns hanging on racks in the rear cab window, no one ever carried ‘em into diners, markets or any of the like. Simple reason bein’ there’d be no reason for it, on account of that‘s what pistols are made for.”

    • That said;- in highly-notable contrast, a person carrying a rifle in said ‘common social environments’ — such as coffee shops, diners, grocery stores or, for that matter uncased anywhere in a city — immediately signals DANGER. Period.

      [citation needed]

      What actual, documented “DANGER” has open carry of long guns presented? What crimes have long gun open carriers committed?

      The claim of danger, without any sort of documented evidence of crime committed by long gun open carriers, is specious. Fear of such danger is ignorant and irrational.

      • There are potential dangers sure. Let’s be realistic, if everyone started open carrying MSRs everywhere; there would be NDs, there would be accidents, more people would get shot. This is just simple statistics. Even if the accident rate is fixed (would probably increase as more people carried; the assumption being the less familiar would be the newer additions to the carry pool) – then total incidents would increase.

        I’m not saying ‘omg ban them’; but that is what would happen. No different than more drivers = more accidents. It’s just math.

        Ignoring all that, there are plenty of things we don’t do that aren’t dangerous that are a nuisance; so even if we say it’s not dangerous, it’s still rude.

        Tell you what Chip. Next time you go to the movies; start loudly talking on your cellphone and then proclaim to everyone that it’s not a danger to anyone else. Then tell me the expression on your wife/child/SO’s face and let me know how that works out for you.

        Better yet, take your daughter or wife to a movie she really likes then let me know your reaction when someone else starts yakking. I’m sure their response about how it’s not dangerous will go over well.

        It’s legal for me to carry a toolbox; but I don’t carry it around when I’m not using it. Because that would be stupid.

        Keep the long guns in your truck and the sidearms at your side.

        • There are potential dangers sure. Let’s be realistic, if everyone started open carrying MSRs everywhere; there would be NDs, there would be accidents, more people would get shot. This is just simple statistics. Even if the accident rate is fixed (would probably increase as more people carried; the assumption being the less familiar would be the newer additions to the carry pool) – then total incidents would increase.

          I’m not saying ‘omg ban them’; but that is what would happen. No different than more drivers = more accidents. It’s just math.

          Except that it’s not.

          Firearms ownership and carry are both trending upward, and NDs and deaths by accidental firearm discharge are decreasing, both in number and in rate.

          Ignoring all that, there are plenty of things we don’t do that aren’t dangerous that are a nuisance; so even if we say it’s not dangerous, it’s still rude.

          How is open carrying a long gun rude? It has no more impact on anyone than if I’m carrying my tennis racquet bag slung over my shoulder. It doesn’t threaten anyone. It doesn’t interfere with anyone. It doesn’t even interact with anyone. It’s an inanimate object being carried in an unthreatening manner.

          Tell you what Chip. Next time you go to the movies; start loudly talking on your cellphone and then proclaim to everyone that it’s not a danger to anyone else. Then tell me the expression on your wife/child/SO’s face and let me know how that works out for you.

          What does yakking in a theater have anything to do with exercising the constitutionally protected, God-given, natural RKBA?

          Maybe if someone carries a long gun into a theater, and when he sits down, the long gun blocks the view of the patrons behind him. I do suppose that would be rude.

          Better yet, take your daughter or wife to a movie she really likes then let me know your reaction when someone else starts yakking. I’m sure their response about how it’s not dangerous will go over well.

          When I’m in a theater, I’m carrying. In the rare times we go to the movies (such is life with young kids), we only go to theaters where carry is legal. By choice, I carry concealed.

          You know what I’ve noticed, in the few years I’ve been concealed carrying? It’s made me less likely to get upset over stupid little things. It makes me more aware that I have no business instigating altercations, much less escalating them, because at all costs I want to avoid an escalation that would necessitate me using the tool that I’m carrying.

          So whereas before, when I wasn’t carrying and might have addressed the loud-yakker directly and asked him to respect the rest of the patrons by keeping quiet, now, I wouldn’t. I would go find a manager and complain, and let the theater deal with it.

          (Though the bigger issue now is not phone talkers, but phone screen users. The visual distraction is often worse than what used to be an auditory distraction.)

          It’s legal for me to carry a toolbox; but I don’t carry it around when I’m not using it. Because that would be stupid.

          Rights are not a matter of “need” or “want”. I have a minimal toolbox in my car – right next to the road hazard kit, fire extinguisher, and first aid kit. The spare tire hangs off of the back door. I’m not using any of them at any given time, but I sure wouldn’t want to be without them when the emergency need for one of them presents itself.

          Keep the long guns in your truck and the sidearms at your side.

          And how many ounces of soda in my cup? How much salt on my food? How many calories in my meal?

    • Such actions are, simply put — “A REALLY BAD IDEA” for more reasons than anyone should have to explain in detail.

      Logical fallacy, used as a means to avoid having to defend one’s assertion.

      The two reasons that I’ve seen proffered:

      1) The long gun open carrier is inherently dangerous – utterly disproved by crime statistics.
      2) The long gun open carrier is counter-productive, and will only facilitate more restrictive laws – no such laws are being passed, meanwhile the laws actually passing are reducing restrictions

      Any other reasons?

      • Re #2, Texas will be an interesting test case. It’s where a lot of rifle open carry has been occuring, and their legislature wasn’t in session this year.

        I’ve heard some claims that pistol OC WOULD pass there but that legislators are now thinking the issue toxic. IF that can be proven (big if–actual quotes from legislators would be useful here) then that would constitute harm to the cause, I think. (Needless to say a ban of LGOC coming out of Texas next year would certainly be strong evidence.)

        • Interesting. Where are you hearing “toxic issue” from?

          Folks here from TX have clearly stated the issues has momentum and looks at least possible for passing. Nothing is written is stone, of course, and selection bias can be at work.

          I wonder.

          Texas is indeed the test case for these anti-LGOC claims. Personally, I don’t buy the claims, at least not as stated. If the claims were “this COULD hurt us elsewhere,” I’d be more sympathetic. But the definitive nature of the statements often made really rankle me. It’s simply objectively unsupported.

          But, one thing cannot be objectively disputed: the long gun itself is no more likely than a handgun (concealed or otherwise) to just jump up and start killing people on its own.

          As a group, we either buy into our own slogans and claims or we don’t. Either the gun is the problem or it isn’t. Manner of carry and length of barrel are red herring distractions, and allowing ourselves to be divided over these types of things is the reason their are made into “issues.”

        • Get real SteveInCO, this is Texas! No further restrictions on second amendment rights are likely from Texas legislatures in the near future. I do believe that the “rude” nature of OC protests are reducing the chances of passing Pistol OC here in the Lone Star State. The public need to be de-sensitised somehow. Maybe wearing a holster with a copy of the U.S. Constitution in it like an Open Carry Tarrant County member wore to city hall would be effective. http://www.star-telegram.com/2014/04/22/5758290/arlington-council-votes-to-ban.html#storylink=misearch

        • JR and Tyce, I was speaking very hypothetically, and the “toxic” reference is third hand, and I did say I’d need proof.

          OK, let me respond to a few things I saw in your responses. “This could hurt us elsewhere” is indeed the most common argument (that isn’t just “Geez, homos don’t carry them”) I see, and of course argument can be endless over whether having a bunch of chains ask us to leave our guns at home is harm or not. It’s certainly not legal harm to the right, but I do think it’s “social norm” harm; I’d hate to live in a country where virtually every large retailer disapproved of firearms and though we aren’t there yet, I could imagine many more jumping out there with “requests” and then many posting signs and starting to trespass (or 30.06) people. A trend that needs to be nipped in the bud.

          It’s certainly true that guns don’t jump off the wall when not handled and kill people. This is in large part why when open-carrying, you should endeavour to keep your paws off the gun, *especially* off the grip/trigger area. (Some latitude should be given for long guns that need to be shifted every once in a while.) The more “inflammatory” photos of LGOC were of people handling their weapons, and (for propaganda purposes) it really doesn’t matter whether it was a posed photograph. I have little difficulty with MOST of the photographs of LGOC protests I’ve seen, but there are those outliers that (apparently) showed people behaving irresponsibly/unsafely with their firearms.

          At times in the past JR has mentioned a standard of “don’t violate the four rules” but I don’t think that’s strong enough for off-range (and outside of actual gunfights). A standard like that would make it OK and unobjectionable to walk around with your handgun in your hand so long as you keep your finger off the trigger and don’t point it at people.

          Tyco, I’ve seen (and repeated) the suggestion that Texas activists wear a T-shirt that reads “I’d rather be carrying a handgun.” It has the virtue of instantly explaining WHY they are demonstrating in the particular way they are demonstrating.

        • This is in large part why when open-carrying, you should endeavour to keep your paws off the gun, *especially* off the grip/trigger area.

          Now this, I agree with completely.

          There is a difference between a long gun slung over the shoulder, and one held in the hands. (Just as there is a difference between carrying a handgun holstered and in the hand.) The former cannot in any way be construed to be intended to be menacing. The latter, especially when carrying in pseudo-low-ready, can reasonably be construed to be menacing.

        • On the topic of “social norm harm” from the chains, the only point I’d add at this time is that I don’t think very many people really know about all that. Some percentage of the population that includes some gun owners, some anti-gun folks, some huffpo followers, etc.

          What is the percentage of the total public? I sure don’t know. But I’d be wiling to be that it’s small. Or small-ish. If you stopped a random 1000 people on your average good-sized city street and asked them “What is Target’s position on guns in their stores,” my guess (speculation) is that most would say either “They allow them” or “They don’t allow them” and very, very few would say, “Technically and legally they allow them but they have made a request that folks don’t carry.” I could, of course, well be wrong.

          As for the four rules, holstered, shouldered, whatever…yeah, I can see your point. I think I have mostly trotted that out in response to “the moving target” of what is acceptable. Acceptable long gun carry is indeed a moving target…some say “Okay, if it is shouldered,” others say “hand’s off,” others say “leave it at home,” etc.

          So, I get curious about that…and the four rules point is simple a “return to baseline.” There’s no doubt that if someone was walking around with a handgun in their hand, it would be seen as completely differently than if it were holstered.

          To restate what you said about the four rules…they are for gun handling, not gun carry.

          I know it’s a pipe dream to imagine getting POTG to agree on what parameters of LGOC are “okay.” Some days, I think it would be easier to get everyone to settle on one caliber. 😉

          I am amazed at how contentious an issue this is within our own ranks. Well, less so that it is contentious, because that’s fine. Not every has to agree for us to remain a healthy community. What I mean is how hateful some POTG are to / about others on this issue. It’s not just “hey, not for me.” It’s name calling and in some cases, pure white-hot hatred.

        • I’m not surprised by the hatred at all. The 2A is a cause believed in quite passionately, and when you perceive that someone is repeatedly and willfully scoring own-goals (once is a mistake, doing it again is childish stubbornness), you get furious at them.

          Now whether or not it IS an own goal is one question. But if you want to know why some people get furious with OCers who insist on OCing, that’s why. Their fury is based on what they believe is happening, and it’s futile to talk to them about rights, because what they see is stupidity and irresponsibility. They honestly don’t care if the OCer has the legal right to do what he’s doing; in their view he’s being irresponsible with side effects that hurt everyone else. Hence the often repeated mantra of “Just because you can do it, doesn’t mean you should.”

          To draw an analogy, if your favorite football team had an incompetent player on it, whose hands seemed to be made out of teflon as he fumbles the ball again and again, but the coach kept sending him in, you’d probably direct a ton of vitriol at the coach and that player, and that would be because you love that team. Under those circumstances you’d probably get a bit impatient with people who accused you of “eating your own.” Your motivation is to see your team win, and that might mean attacking people (even people supposedly on that team) that get in the way of it happening.

          Now you may be intending to reply that in fact the LGOCers aren’t in fact hurting anything. Well you know what? In explaining the hate directed at LGOCers, it doesn’t matter. The LGOC haters are acting on their perception of the situation, not yours. Demanding that they stop “eating our own” won’t work. You have to work on changing their perception of what’s going on, not on attacking their actions (which make perfect sense in their context).

        • “On the topic of “social norm harm” from the chains, the only point I’d add at this time is that I don’t think very many people really know about all that.”

          At this point, I’d agree. But it’s early yet. I suspect what we will see will be phase II: concerted campaigns to get Starbucks, Chipotle’s, Target, etc. to toughen their symbolic statements into policies and even start posting their stores. We are already seeing places make the initial statement without any LGOC “excuse” for it, so that first phase is taking on a life of its own, and building up momentum. Which frees up MDA resources for Phase II. If enough of this goes on subliminally, John Q. Public will start to get the idea that guns in public are considered gauche.

          MDA is working for social change, not just legal change. They want to kill the gun culture.

        • “The LGOC haters are acting on their perception of the situation, not yours. Demanding that they stop “eating our own” won’t work. “

          Fair enough. Good point.

          “You have to work on changing their perception of what’s going on, not on attacking their actions (which make perfect sense in their context).”

          Well, for what it’s worth, has not OCT (and maybe even OCTC…I lose track sometimes) stated changes in their approaches to try to minimize the ‘negative press?’ I seem to remember something about that a few months ago.

          But, there still lies two fundamental problems. Well, three, really.

          (1) Some POTG do disagree with LGOC; we get a lot of “leave the long gun at home” and “not a place for it.” It’s not really about the R in RKBA, but they don’t think it’s right to do it.

          It doesn’t matter why the OC-ers are doing what they are doing, or even how they do it. They are criticized not just for being activists, but for LGOC.

          The anti’s have been engaged in a culture war, and in terms of controlling the language and subtle “thinking” about guns, they have made a lot of progress toward their goal. This is one example.

          (2) That which is “acceptable” is a moving target, and it can be moved toward or away from individual freedom. All too often, the talk, even among us, is away. See above comment about culture war.

          (3) Some of us seem to refuse to believe that OC stuff is about something bigger…and every time it comes up, there are numerous posts about how OC (handgun or rifle) is tactically not the best solution or “I see someone with a gun, I’m going on Condition Red.”

          I get that some folks just have not heard the news…that was my point above about the chains and social norms – it applies to our side as well. But sometimes these comments come from folks that DO know what is going on, and they seem to me to be purposefully obtuse.

          So, you are saying their perception of the situation is wrong and we should work to correct them. I agree. Someone posts, “This is not about SD with a rifle, it’s about getting a law in their own state changed” that ushers in a whole slew of predictable comments, ranging from “I still don’t like OC” to “Yeah, but while they are getting their law fixed, they are getting mine worse [unsupported by evidence, at least so far]” and all manners of stuff.

          So, what’s the solution? Continue to stand on opposite sides of the room cyber-shouting at each other in the hopes of being heard? I suspect a lot of it is “just noise” at this point.

          Personally, I think I good start would be if our own side would stop calling people “idiots” and “retard” and other colorful pejoratives, tone down the “hate” just a big and stop acting like the wholesale anti’s. THEY are good at name calling and making emotional arguments and missing logic and facts. We chastise and openly ridicule them for that. But then, many on our side do the exact same thing on this OC issue.

          (The inconsistency is a bit baffling sometimes, but passion – emotional response – is human nature, I guess).

          Solutions to complicated “human” problems come from starting with common points and working from there. With anti’s, if we (for example) start with “We agree that we want to lessen crime,” then demonstrate that their solution does not work, we can “have a discussion” about what does.

          Similarly, with the anti-OC among us, starting with common point of “RKBA” should illuminate the path forward. For some reason (that I think you hit above), it doesn’t.

        • Personally, I think I good start would be if our own side would stop calling people “idiots” and “retard” and other colorful pejoratives, tone down the “hate” just a big and stop acting like the wholesale anti’s. THEY are good at name calling and making emotional arguments and missing logic and facts. We chastise and openly ridicule them for that. But then, many on our side do the exact same thing on this OC issue.

          First they came for the tacticool douche long-gun open-carriers, and I didn’t speak up, because I wasn’t a tacticool douche long-gun open-carrier. Then they came for the handgun open carriers, and I didn’t speak up, because I wasn’t a handgun open carrier. When they came for me, there was no one left to speak out.

        • (Needless to say a ban of LGOC coming out of Texas next year would certainly be strong evidence.)

          It would also be clearly unconstitutional, and would de facto outlaw hunting at the same time. In TX? Outlaw hunting? I’m not thinking that will even be attempted.

        • Larry,

          “Unconstitutional” hasn’t stopped jack. EVERY gun restriction is unconstitutional, yet Texas itself restricts hand gun open carry. And as for hunting, they could make an exception to an OC ban for rural areas and/or hunting (Florida has an exception for fishing, so there’s some precedent), either of which would kill the demonstrations.

    • A holstered hand-gun in no manner violates the actual ‘Rights’ of any other person.

      With this statement, you imply that carry of a long gun does, in contrast, “violate[] the actual ‘Rights’ of [an] other person.”

      Please explain the “rights” of others that are violated by a long gun carried slung over the shoulder of the carrier?

      • We get it Chip…you’re a mental giant…and your efforts to point out leaps of logic, assumptions of fact or conclusions that you disagree with in everyone else’s posts prove it.

        • We get it Chip…

          I know, right? Heaven forbid I should hope for discourse free from logical fallacy, where people with different ideas can debate those ideas on their merits.

          Note: resorting to ad hominem in lieu of a logical rebuttal is one of the main tools of the gun control crowd. It’s really not helpful to emulate them.

  62. An open letter to people with irrational fears:

    My rights trump your irrational fears.

    Sincerely,

    Everyone who values their rights

  63. Uh…wait…she doesn’t feel comfortable saying this to his face, but feels completely comfortable with posting a public comment that identifies her by name, by sight, and by when she frequents? “I look forward each weekend to spending time at Starbucks with my boyfriend and two dogs”.

    How does she know his name is Bruce?

    This reeks more of political statement than honest letter, request, or discussion point. …and this coming from a guy who’s not a huge supporter of the need to suit-up and sling-on when running for an “orange mocha frappuccino”.

  64. Seems to me the armed citizen is ensuring his own desire (it isn’t a right) to live his life without fear. He might have been attacked by a Chihuahua when he was a child, and harbors anxiety towards dogs.

  65. Sure it’s his right to OC. It’s also my right to yell the “n-word” in the middle of the street. But I don’t do that because I’m not a douchebag.

      • “constitution only means whatever in the F the SCOTUS says it means”

        Which is exactly what the Constitution says should happen, too.

        • No, it most certainly does not say that. Scotus was not empowered by the Constitution to judge constitutionality. See Marbury v Madison for more details.

        • Back in the day private citizens owned every kind of weapon the government had. It must have been OK with the framers so how come I can’t go into Cabela’s and buy a nuclear bomb? Shouldn’t it be a constitutional right? Obviously this is not the 18th century and some things had to change INCLUDING THE INTERPRETATION OF THE CONSTITUTION. The constitution is not some rigid thing that never changes with the beholder and if youthink SCOTUS can’t up and decide that the 2A only applies to militias you’re wrong! We’re only 3 SCOTUS seats away. Better be careful who you piss off, gun owners are in the minority and we can’t hope to make it without the help of non owners.

        • SCOTUS has the responsibility for interpreting the Constitution, but that only occurs once on any question. To actually CHANGE an interpreted clause requires an amendment, not simply a change in SCOTUS makeup. Roe v Wade is a good example. I do not think it was decided correctly, but it was decided. To change it requires an Amendment. Likewise, RKBA. You might say “nanny-nanny-boo-boo, we’ll just change it anyway!”, and you may hear in return “If you do, we will shoot you.” Pass an amendment or drop it. I don’t recall anyone trying in either example.

  66. I now live in Arizona where a week doesn’t go by that I do not see an OC, but I have yet to see anyone carrying anything other than a pistol outside the range or out in the desert…and this includes the police. If you really want to reestablish acceptance of OC like AZ, no tacticool in public, at least not yet. Take it in steps. And by the way, being someone who carries a pistol everyday, why in the world would you want to go tacticool everyday with a long rifle? It has got to be a royal PITA to carry that crap simply to get a cup of burnt coffee.

    • I believe “Freedom from Fear” was one of FDR’s four freedoms.

      Which were a crock, conflating two real rights with two claims on others. And now we see the damage he helped do to the concept.

  67. I’ll tell you what – Nobody has an inherent right to Starbucks.

    If the owner didn’t want Bruce there, which I’d imagine is a decision they might make if their other patrons were unhappy with him, then they’d kick him to the curb. Likewise, they might keep him around if they didn’t see him as a problem.

    In other words: The writer needs to go to a different coffee shop. Not “Bruce”.

  68. “I look forward each weekend to spending time at Starbucks with my boyfriend and two dogs”

    uh oh, dogs can be dangerous. a lot of kids are scared of dogs. they might bite. I demand you keep them at home! (not really, i welcome your dogs as long as they are properly trained and don’t hurt anyone–i don’t presume that your dogs are dangerous just because they are a certain breed, either).

    And to those attacking this guy.. we don’t know anything about it. People made a big deal about the whole chipotle thing but then it turned out the story that was presented was 100% wrong and the photos were selectively cropped and the reality was the chipotle manager had welcomed them iirc.

    In this case, it doesn’t sound like anyone was being threatened. So don’t be too quick to judge. I don’t feel threatened by people walking around with their dogs. Or with huge cars with high HP engines that can go way above the speed limit. Or rifles. Or gasp *minorities* with guns. Etc. I give people the benefit of the doubt. Be aware of your surroundings, trust but verify.

  69. Well, I wrote the following comment below on the wyomingnew.com article about this guy and they deleted it. Guess they don’t want too much of a pro gun common sense comment.

    Not too long ago in our history as a country an African American man would have walked into this store and been feared and had the police called on them only for exercising their constitutional rights as a free individual. But, as a people we have taken steps to broaden our mind and be open and understanding. We have learned not to judge and be afraid of people based on their skin color. At least most of us have. Now days I think it’s safe to say that people of color can freely enter a Starbucks and sit down with a coffee without fear of the police being called for no other reason than their appearance in most cases, unless they are exercising their constitutional rights by open carrying of course.

    We have come a long way since the 60’s and 70’s when people would see a black man enter a cafe and call him names and tell him that he should find another place to eat. He only wanted to exercise his rights as a free individual under the constitution without being feared, mocked or told he should find somewhere else to go all because of his appearance. People were uncomfortable around him because they were ignorant, hateful, racists. That ignorance still lives on today but we are better. Thankfully we have come a long way since those days. Yet, here we find a man trying to have a cup of coffee, and people filled with fear, ignorance and hate calling the police on him because of his appearance while he is sitting peacefully exercising his freedoms under the Constitution. How far have we really come?

  70. It’s time the silent majority stands up and asks for our right to live our lives without fear to be respected.
    I want to tell this to the Moms, and Bloomy, and the ATF, and Holder, and all the other ANTI-gun nuts in this country. We gun owners are the silent majority, and we deserve, nay, demand, the right to live without fear. That means we demand to be able to defend ourselves from the growing criminal element.

  71. Everyone should check out Jerry Mikulek’s youtube video on open carry. I think he covers the issue better than anyone . Executive Summary: Don’t be a Douche.

      • I thought a douche was a “friend” that tried to stop a “friend” from doing something perfectly legal, and harmful to nobody. Or decided that his friend could not think for his self.

        • Ha. Can you say backlash? If we push OC too far it will be shoved up our asses. Much disagreement, but I think the folks on my side of this are right amd hopefully we can win some over. The idea that “rights” can’t change with public opinion is simplistic and dangerous as gun owners are in the minority.

        • The idea that “rights” can’t change with public opinion is simplistic and dangerous as gun owners are in the minority.

          We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.

          (Rights, in fact, cannot change. They can be denied through abuse of power, but they cannot be separated, because they are unalienable. Rights come from God, not from government, because humans have been endowed with those rights, by God.)

          That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed,

          (Governments are instituted to ensure that the less-powerful are not denied their rights by the more-powerful. Governments only have powers enumerated by the governed. Thus, governments that use their power to deny rights to the governed represent the most extreme form of tyranny of man over other men.)

          That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness.

          (Because rights are bestowed by God, are unalienable, and inherent to every human, when government exercises that ultimate tyranny to deny rights to the governed, those who have had their rights denied through an abusive government have the moral authority, as derived from their rights endowed by God, to overthrow that government in order to restore their unalienable rights.)

          The Declaration of Independence goes on to assert that the dissolution of government is, essentially, the “nuclear option”, that must be invoked only due to the most egregious of abuse of power, and to list just such abuses committed by the Crown.

          The point is: rights do not change, even if human tendency is to abuse power in order to deny the rights of less-powerful humans.

        • Keep telling yourself that. If the antis can get the 3 supreme court nominations they’re looking for you will get a civics lesson you will never forget. We best be making friends, not enemies.

        • Scotus can’t repeal an amendment, but they can interpret it out of existence. They can simply claim that a ban on weapon type X is not an infringement.

          I agree with those here who maintain that the actual objective right cannot change. But it can be denied wrongfully. And I suspect that Mike from St. Louis is worried about that happening, and just not being careful enough in his phrasing. (Or to put it another way, I think he is conflating the objective right with the right as honored in the law and jurisprudence.)

        • Thank you Steve. Ultimately our rights are only what we believe them to be. Nothing but ether. Don’t think for a minute that the gun grabbers can’t win, this battle will never be over.

        • The SCOTUS certainly can not address questions over and over, changing the rules every year or two. If some try to do such, they will find themselves resigning or dead very quickly. It has never happened, and it will not. As with many others, their authority will not survive the death of their integrity.

      • “We best be making friends, not enemies.”

        There it is…a call to “compromise.” Compromise on rights and how to exercise them never ends well.

        You ever try making “friends” with a rattlesnake? You’d have a better chance of that than making “friends” with a solipsist control nut like the lady that supposedly penned that letter.

        The only way to make “friends” with anti-gunners is to give up your guns. And that won’t stop them, either. After guns, it will be something else.

        • I’m saying that the majority of people in this country will not accept carry a la Bruce. That is a big problem and knowing when you are going too far is good, right? I like OC but too many people like this Bruce idiot will give the antis all they need to get things going their way.

        • “I’m saying that the majority of people in this country will not accept carry a la Bruce.”

          Prove it. Show date to support that assertion.

          I assert most people don’t care, so long as Bruce is not doing anything threatening. My assertion is just as founded as yours.

          Just because a bunch of Statist anti-gun blowhards claim from the mountaintops that they represent “most people” does not mean they do.

          “Bruce idiot”

          Steve_in_CO…get this?

        • What you are claiming is clearly wrong, yet you cannot see it. “Carry a la Bruce” as you put it, is ALREADY accepted by everyone in this country, supposedly this fictitious woman bitches about it, but she has not STOPPED him, has she? Have the police stopped him? Have other customers stopped him? Then his carry is accepted. And you are wrong! Simple, huh?

        • @JR

          “Bruce idiot”

          How does that impact any point I’ve made? He’s calling one specific OCer an idiot, not the whole class of them. And even if he had, I don’t deny that some people hate all open carry. I don’t think it’s as many as you do, but it’s certainly > 0.

          BOTH sides of this debate really ought to calm down and quit assuming that condemnation of one person in a group is condemnation of all–and this is a case in point, since it appears you’re using this swipe at an individual as evidence that the swiper hates all OC.

          (Now it’s possible I misunderstood why you pointed this out to me, in which case I apologize.)

  72. So, he’s been doing this for awhile and idiots are still peeing their pants? Clearly he’s not going to hurt anyone or he would have already. What a bunch of idiots.

  73. Ugh. I really hate these “open carry vs. retail establishment” articles. There is such thing as right to opinion, and if this person opposes this overly armed coffee lover in Starbucks, that’s fine. If it was an issue that I disagreed with, I may choose not to give that place my business.

    This private business doesn’t want this guy in their place with an AR. He better respect their rights. It’s their call. Formulate your opinions based on that. If I was a coffee shop owner, I personally wouldn’t want him in my shop either. If I deny him, and others hear about this and decide not not give me their business because of this, fine. Open carry may infringe on on the rights of others, and vice versa. Want to open a pro-open carry AR coffee shop? That’s your prerogative.

    Vote Libertarian.

    • Did I miss something in the above article? Did Starbucks in fact ask him to leave?

      From what I read, it looks like this woman wants to impose her “wants” onto everyone else. She went into Starbucks and saw something she did not like…not once, but numerous times. So, her answer is to ask that person not to do it?

      It sounds like a ridiculous analogy, but what if she does not like blue shirts. Is she going to write a similar letter to me if I wear a blue shirt into her favorite Starbucks? (Hypothetical, of course…I loathe Starbucks and will not give them a single cent).

      She’s seeking control of a situation in which she has not moral basis to seek it, much less assert it. A man is drinking a cup of coffee. For some reason she does not like him being there.

      Her choices are simple: go there and be uncomfortable, or don’t go there.

      But no, instead, she seeks a third choice…the immoral one. She seeks to force him to change his behavior so that she can have what she wants.

      Her solipsist world view should not be condoned. It is immoral for her to assert some self declared “right to have what I want” at the expense of another free citizen that has caused no harm.

      We should not let this be about the gun. It’s not. Like nearly all “gun control,” it’s only about “control.”

      Her “letter” is the equivalent of “Mommy, that little boy got the last chocolate ice cream cone, and I wanted it. Go take it from him and give it to me.”

      • Whatever the reason, someone was unhappy with this guy. If it’s a business, respect their rights. If it’s a customer, it’s up to either the business, who will take the complaint into consideration and adjust business practices accordingly, or the consumer, who will decide if his/her needs have been met.

        If Starbucks decides whether one is right over the other, it’s up to you to decide if their decision is in accordance if what you believe.

        Your choice.

        Vote Libertarian.

        • “Whatever the reason, someone was unhappy with this guy. If it’s a business, respect their rights. If it’s a customer, it’s up to either the business,”

          Which is entirely the point in this story.

          The lady did not apparently complain to the business. She is writing her dumb “open letter” to HIM.

          This story is about one customer telling another, “I don’t like you and I don’t want you to come back, so I can go there.”

          It really has nothing to do with guns or Starbucks. It’s one woman who thinks she has standing in the universe to demand what she wants all the time and in every way.

          If she had complained to the manager and the manager asked him to leave and he refused, I’d be willing to be the vast, vast majority of us here would be saying he was wrong.

          But, she has no God-given right to go to Starbucks. She has no moral right to ask another customer not to go.

          If she does not another customer, that’s HER PROBLEM. If it’s something she feels strongly about, she can complain to the business owner/manager. As you say…they can agree or disagree.

          Forget the gun. What if Bruce just used some aftershave she does not like. Does she have any moral basis to ask him to leave, or write this letter asking him to not go there?

          In this particular story, the problem is hers and hers alone. We have no evidence that other customers are bothered or that the manager cares. The manager can refuse service but has not done so.

  74. This reads like a troll article, minus the usual cantankerous argument against guns. The letter reads as if it targets a specific person but the true agenda is more obvious at the end.

    “I am also asking everyone that frequents Starbucks and thinks that guns and assault rifles at a coffee shop are inappropriate to email Starbucks corporate headquarters and let them know.

    It’s time the silent majority stands up and asks for our right to live our lives without fear to be respected”

    It’s not about Bruce, it’s about personifying an event to get more drones to write a letter to Starbucks….

    • Perhaps that’s the real game plan here. Starbucks long ago made a “request” to leave the guns at home. Now they face pressure to be a little more forceful about it. Maybe put up signs. MDA is going to build on the prior concession by Starbucks to get even more out of them, like an interrogator in a gulag builds on one minor bit of cooperation from the prisoner to elicit more cooperation.

  75. He is exercising his rights just as much as Mary is. If she doesn’t like it, she can go elsewhere.
    If the company doesn’t like it, he can go elsewhere.

    Regardless how many “Pro-gun” people state he is one thing or another, he is within the law and exercising a right.

  76. I love how the Lib-tard blames the open carrier for wasting Police resources. While he certainly loves the attention, surely he isn’t calling the cops on himself. I would be willing to bet it’s the same Lib-tards calling the Police over & over despite being advised that no laws were broken. What’s the definition of insanity again… ?

  77. Does it strike anyone as unacceptable that NO ONE has apparently has spoken to “Bruce” and asked him the simple question. “Would you mind telling me why you are doing this everyday? I would really just like to hear your point of view, not to judge, just to understand.”

    The possibilities are many and “Bruce”, as a fellow Citizen (presumably), deserves at minimum the opportunity to express his point of view, even if his answer ends-up being. “Mind yer own business and leave me alone. a-hole!”.

    Just seems fair in light of all the commentary generated by this Keane person’s solipsistic, paranoid jeremiad. This whiny, craven, self-appointed pharisee has gotten too much attention from this matter, when all she really deserves is to be told to STFU and mind her own damned business.

    I know there’s lots of debate on the social/political theater of open carry amongst readers here. but it is still “Bruce’s” right to carry both pistol and long gun in public, and as long as Starbucks has limited their “no-guns-please” policy to a “respectful request” they have left the door open and “Bruce” is freely walking through it.
    The whole thing is much ado about a lot of cowardice on the part of Starbucks, Keane.and her sycophants/sympathizers.

  78. Initially, I thought this was a joke letter by a patron to police officers. I was waiting for the whammy at the end , but no, society has made up their mind (via political fear-mongering, especially here is CA) that if you legally carry and are not a COP, you are then a criminal. Criminal by default.

    Hell, I would go up and talk to the guy and see what he’s rocking, but I’m a nerd like that, bc I love guns and like to interact with other gun owners. The last thing I feel is “shame” like most of the lil whiners on here who say “there’s a time and a place for that” and generally that time and place is out of sight or at a range. It’s your goddamned right as a free American to carry. Just like wearing a Speedo (and only a Speedo) into Walmart, it may not be the best choice but it sure ain’t f**kin illegal. All the pathetic whiners on here complaining about a law abiding gun owner who has every Right under 2A…. Shame? No, shame on you, you self-hating Americans with no backbone.

    Now I get to address this idiotic statement: “It’s time the silent majority stands up and asks for our right to live our lives without fear to be respected.” REALLY? REALLY, lady? It’s not the law abiding gun owner who open carries, it’s the thug who will probably conceal his/her firearm and attack you while you sleep. Go after the violent criminals! If god forbid you are hurt by some low-life criminal in an attack, you would prefer to be a victim rather that arm yourself and thwart said scum-of-the-earth? What wonderland do you live in that you think you are immune from criminal activity and what world do you live in where you think the police are going to be there to save you when you need them the most.

  79. Wow- 310 responses here at TTAG in two days, and 88 over at Wyomingnews.net, most also blowing mostly in favor of 2A, and blasting Mary for her neurotic solipsism vs the facts of the situation.

    Is it just me, but doesnt this feel a little too creepy-close to a “swatting”? I mean, there are 6 other Starbucks in Cheyenne, that she could just as easily have gone to….

    And per her own account, the cops have been there before, and handled it. End of story.

    What else does she want, someone to come in and arrest Bruce, or worse? She’s creating a problem where there is none, where the guy has been checked and demonstrably confirmed to be just complying with WYO law.

    This is the sort of fascism that rides just beneath the surface of Progressivism 2.0, that has been on display now at Bloombergs sock puppet org, Moms Demand Action.

  80. Don’t y’all think Mary would be such a nicer person if she stopped trying to be civil and just carried a gun?

      • Rather than the socially apathetic, pretentious, classist consumer zombie that she apparently already is – looking forward to spending time at Starbucks, really.

        And if Bruce had been a woman?

  81. Hey Chip-
    “Situational awareness is good. Paranoia and irrational fear are not. What do you have to fear from someone with a long gun slung over his shoulder, who walks in, orders a coffee, walks out, sits down, and consumes his drink?”

    I wish you knew just how ironic and hypocritical this sounds. The guy that wears this gear and carries an assault weapon IS paranoid and irrationally fearful. That’s why he sits outside Starbucks in his get-up and carries a rifle. A self-appointed “sheriff” he walks down the street thinking he’s going to shoot at the first sign of trouble. I wish we could send you a picture of him and then see what you have to say. My husband and I support the NRA, attend every hunting banquet known to man, carry concealed weapons etc. But this guy makes me very uneasy. He’s just the type (proven by statistics) that would go berserk and start shooting because he’s paranoid and irrational!!!!

    You are also wrong by assuming Mary would be against someone carrying a pistol or even someone who looked halfway normal. She is friends with many people in our community who do just that.

    • “I wish we could send you a picture of him and then see what you have to say.”

      I wish you could too. Because otherwise, hiding as you are behind “anonymous,” there is no reason to believe you are anywhere close to the situation, at all, as opposed to just some anonymous gun-grabber trolling this site pretending to be on our side but dealing with a whacko.

    • I wish you knew just how ironic and hypocritical this sounds. The guy that wears this gear and carries an assault weapon IS paranoid and irrationally fearful. That’s why he sits outside Starbucks in his get-up and carries a rifle.

      And you know this because… you’ve asked him? You’ve talked to him personally, and he has told you his motives? Or you’re just guessing/assuming?

      A self-appointed “sheriff” he walks down the street thinking he’s going to shoot at the first sign of trouble.

      And how many shots, exactly, has he taken? Any at all? Ever?

      I wish we could send you a picture of him and then see what you have to say.

      You don’t know how to upload a picture to the internet? Don’t know how to send an email attachment?

      My husband and I support the NRA, attend every hunting banquet known to man, carry concealed weapons etc. But this guy makes me very uneasy.

      (This just screams “concern troll”.)

      But this guy makes me very uneasy. He’s just the type (proven by statistics) that would go berserk and start shooting because he’s paranoid and irrational!!!!

      Proven by statistics?

      [citation needed]

      Let’s see those “statistics”.

      You are also wrong by assuming Mary would be against someone carrying a pistol or even someone who looked halfway normal. She is friends with many people in our community who do just that.

      Good for her. The next step is keeping her busybody nose out of Bruce’s business.

    • I’m interested Anonymous, since you clearly know Mary quite well, how does she feel about seeing construction workers with their tools (and dirty clothes) in her Starbucks on a Saturday? Once you get over your initial reaction to the obvious, perhaps you and Mary can try being thoughtful and considerate – particularly if you really do care for your supposed right to freedom from fear.

  82. Lately I am more concerned seeing law enforcement rolling up in similarly bulging armor in groups of 2s and 3’s and vehicles made for war than this dude… My 2 cents….

  83. Let me assure you that Bruce does exist. I’ve seen him on several occasions. He does carry not a long rifle but a shorter, black automatic or semi automatic gun (one that takes clips right?) His vest, may just be to carry ammo. It’s full of ammo. I don’t imagine a bullet proof vest would look like that.

    I’ve tried to talk to him. I tried to introduce myself. He was very rude to me. Doesn’t instill a sense of comfort at all. Before I talked to him I just assumed he was exercising his right to open carry which in WY isn’t that big of a deal. However, my personal interaction with him left me wondering if I want to frequent a location where a rude, rifle toting guy hangs out. That’s my decision. It’s his right to be both rude and have his gun across his lap at the entrance. Would I call law enforcement? No. Will I go to that Starbucks when he is there? Depends on how bad I want coffee. 🙂 But that is based solely on my personal contact with him.

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