Permitted open carry looks like a done deal in the Lone Star State. After considering the practical, political and editorial advantages of open carry, I’ve decided I’ll wear my gat on my hip as and when it’s permissible by law. In Austin. A city where the public radio announcers have northern or neutral accents (if you know what I mean). Schools are out, of course. As are restaurants and bars displaying the “51%” sign (where liquor accounts for more than 50 percent of their trade). And businesses displaying the 30.06 “no guns allowed” sign. Which doesn’t include Starbucks. If you recall . . .
Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America pressured the Seattle-based coffee chain to ask customers to leave their guns at home. Note: request. Without posted, legally-compliant signs, the request does not have the force of law. So I carry concealed at Starbucks. As do thousands of of gun owners, I’m sure. It’s a “they don’t ask, we don’t tell” entente cordial.
Students of history will tell you that European agreement led to World War I. So what would happen if and when I open carry at my local Starbucks? Given the general demeanor and dress sense of my fellow customers (God bless yoga pants), I assume someone will complain to the staff, who will ask me to leave. Obviously, I will comply. But that will not be the end of that.
If enough people open carry at Starbucks, the company might change their firearms policy from a gentle, generally ignored request to an outright legal ban. Which would make Starbucks off-limits to the majority of gun owning customers, who carry concealed. In other words, open carrying at Starbucks could be seen as a selfish act of political grandstanding – as opposed to a Rosa Parks-like civil rights demonstration.
OMG! Did he just compare open carrying at Starbucks to Rose Parks’ stand for racial equality? Damn straight. But again, what would be the point? OC at Starbucks isn’t likely to achieve anything other than bringing attention to something that’s not going to change, against a backdrop of general win.
Help me out. Should I (and others) press the issue? Or just carry concealed or shun Starbucks and call it good?