I took the above picture last night, after being asked to leave Lamberts BBQ restaurant in Austin, Texas. Although I scanned the door for legal 30.06 (no concealed carry) and 30.07 (no open carry) signs before entering, I missed the cute little graphic banning open carry on the lower part of the door. I walked in with my Wilson on my hip. Before I tell you about my conversation with the manager, some legal clarification . . .
If an armed Texan walks into a business displaying a 30.06 or 30.07 sign, he or she can be charged with a Class C misdemeanor — no notice required. Someone drops the dime on the gun schlepper, the cops show up and issue the armed American what amounts to a ticket. If convicted, a violator would be charged a fine. His or her license to carry would not be revoked.
Regardless of signage (or lack thereof) if an anti-gun establishment asks an open or concealed carrier to leave — either orally or via a written card — and the violator refuses, he or she can be charged with a Class A misdemeanor. If convicted, the gun owner would lose their license to carry for seven years.
So when the Lambert’s manager approached and asked me to leave because of the chi-chi no open carry sign in the window and their policy for same, he was well within his rights to do so. Initially, I made no objection. I simply put my shirt over my gun. Done! Uh no . . .
“You still have to leave and store your gun in your car,” he asserted (nicely).
“But the sign says ‘no open carry,'” I pointed out, confused. “I’m concealed carrying now.”
“Yes,” he agreed, “but now we know you have a gun.” “Wait, you allow concealed carry, right?”
“Yes, but now we know you have a gun,” he repeated.
In other words, Lamberts allows concealed carry as long as they don’t know about it. So if they see a concealed carrier printing, removing his gun in the bathroom, or his shirt rides up too far, he or she is ejected. Because guns.
Again, it’s Lamberts’ right as a private business to set the rules for carrying firearms in their restaurant. I’m not happy about it; I was exercising my natural, civil and Constitutionally protected (against government infringement) right to keep and bear arms. I was a law-abiding customer trying to spend [a relatively large amount of] money in their business, posing no threat to their patrons or staff. Potentially protecting same.
In my mind, I should have been welcome. I wasn’t. So be it. I recommend that all potential customers of Lamberts and other anti-gun rights establishments refuse to reward their prejudice with their patronage. Let that be the unseen sign re: open or concealed carry.