Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America’s Hometown Paper Fed-Up with MDA

Open Carry Kroger (courtesy

Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America jefe Shannon Watts lives in Indianapolis, Indiana. Despite the fact that the Gannett-owned Indianapolis Star is Ms. Watts’ hometown paper, despite Gannett’s long-standing love of gun control, the paper’s had it up to here with the anti’s antics. A gun ban at Kroger? Let’s get realthe headline proclaims. Underneath, editorialist Tim Swaren addresses MDA’s campaign to convince the Kroger supermarket chain to ban open carry. Swaren, a journalist who desires the mythical and misguided “sensible conversation” on gun control, a writer who shows no love for the NRA, takes Shannon’s strategy to pieces . . .

Of all the issues that Moms Demand Action could target, is banning firearms in the produce section really a public safety priority? A representative of the organization wrote in an op-ed in the Cincinnati Enquirer that “at least 16 shootings and demonstrations by gun extremists carrying firearms” occurred in or near Kroger stores in the past two years.

Note that the statistic, cited without documentation, doesn’t break out the number of actual crimes from “demonstrations by gun extremists.”

Now, I’m not a fan of the gun-rights folks who show up in public places carrying AR-15s and other heavy firepower. But however extreme they may appear, almost all of them are law-abiding citizens. Barring these people from Kroger wouldn’t make you or me any safer while buying a loaf of bread.

Would a ban have prevented any actual crimes? That’s unlikely. The demand here isn’t to ban all guns from Kroger. It’s merely to bar those handful of customers who feel the need to flaunt their Second Amendment rights by openly carrying firearms into a store.

In other words, WTF? A question that we’ve been asking since this website began. But it’s wonderful to see a pro-gun control newspaper questioning the eminently questionable “logic” underpinning the antis’ anti-gun agitprop. For those of us who saw the horrific beat-down outside Kroger and drew the reasonable conclusion – a good guy with a gun would have helped matters – it gets better:

An Indianapolis case illustrates another inherent problem with the Moms Demand campaign. Three years ago, a manager at a Northwestside Kroger pulled a handgun to stop an apparent armed robbery. The manager, who later resigned, acknowledged that he had violated a company policy that barred employees from having guns on Kroger property.

Here’s the thing: the violence occurred despite the company’s ban on guns at work. The manager, apparently aware of the policy, chose to carry a gun to work anyway.

There’s no reason to believe that the new policy would be anymore effective than the old one in preventing actual violence.

But the lack of real-world impact in this instance doesn’t really matter to the Moms Demand crowd. Their new advertising campaign is about symbolism, not practical results.

Swaren doesn’t quite get there. He sees MDA’s ruse, but he doesn’t identify what’s inside the Trojan horse: civilian disarmament. He backs off for “balance.”

And that’s a common problem, on both sides, in our never-ending debate about guns. I’ve yet to meet anyone — lifetime NRA member or gun-control hardliner — who isn’t appalled by the murder and mayhem that plagues cities across the country. But we continually get caught up in symbolic gestures and philosophical arguments that pull us apart rather than settling on practical solutions to preventing violence.

Hey Tim! The NRA has a practical solution for preventing violence: armed Americans! What’s MDA’s practical (as in effective) solution for preventing violence? They don’t have one. It really is as simple as that. [h/t AO]


  1. avatar John Boch says:

    Just another unforced error on the part of the brainiacs Bloomberg has hired for $50 million.

    I’m not sure where he found these rocket scientists, but I’m glad they’re incompetent.


    1. avatar LarryinTX says:

      I don’t know they’re incompetent. The position they support is indefensible, the only recourse is lies, lies, and more lies. Any truth shows them to be morons.

      1. avatar Neil D says:

        The problem is that if a lie is repeated often enough many people will believe it to be true and not take the time to find out if it is actually true, or not. Some of these same people will then start to repeat the falsehood thinking it to be true and perpetuate the lie. Hitler did this very effectively in his time. It’s called propaganda. But, my guess is that most of us reading this know that. The challenge is to get to the good folks that have not had their false beliefs challenged and change their minds. A formidable task.

        1. avatar Roscoe says:

          That’s why Swaren called Watts out on her BS undocumented “statistics” which are thrown out for public consumption with the help of equally disingenuous MSM for the sole purpose of demonizing peaceful law abiding gun owners through false, unsupported propaganda.

          As you state, lies repeated often enough become reality to the misinformed uninformed.

  2. avatar tdiinva says:

    This may be Bloomberg’s/MDA’s “Stalingrad Moment.” They have decided to force Kroger to do their bidding by doubling down on Kroger’s rejection of their demands. Kroger’s customer base is deep inside pro-Second Amendment territory and for every one customer who is scared away by MDA’s campaign there are probably 5 who will never again shop at Kroger again if they submit to MDA’s demands. [I am sure a majority of customers don’t care one way or another] Like all businesses, Kroger is about the bottom the bottom line means that they will tell Shannon to pound sand.

    1. avatar Indiana Tom says:

      Kroger’s customer base is deep inside pro-Second Amendment territory Dang straight it is.

    2. avatar Raul Ybarra says:

      Actually, I think MDA managed to dodge that bullet. Panera came out just in time with their “request” to allow Shannon to make the Kroger story go away.

      Convenient, eh?

  3. avatar Renegade Dave says:

    That lady’s hammer is down.

  4. avatar LJM says:

    Condition 3

    1. avatar Chris in NC says:

      Maybe condition 2, Hammer down on chambered round?

      1. avatar Rusty Chains says:

        Could be a DA 1911, not real common but you can’t write it off. Still if she is carrying empty chamber she needs a bit more training on why the 1911 was designed to be carried “cocked and locked.” Some education about why an empty chamber in any pistol that is worthy of being in your holster is a bad idea.

        1. avatar Chris in NC says:

          Maybe she is used to carrying a Makarov in a Spetsnaz style EFA-2K auto-cocking holster. It brings us back to the ol’ adage, “Prepare with what you’ll wear.”

        2. avatar Another Robert says:

          @chris: Whatever it is, it ain’t a Mak, and it ain’t a Tok. Looks like another 1911 clone, but truthfully I can’t say for sure

      2. avatar Marcus (Aurelius) Payne says:

        My eyes aren’t keen enough to tell, could it be half-cocked?

  5. avatar Daniel Silverman says:

    Wholly crap!!! It is like lighting sent down from the heavens!! I mean the guy has a dose of reality check moment. Frightening I know.. By his own admission a manager broke company policy, and guess what, it stopped a crime!! OMG!
    You know it is bad when your allies turn against you.

  6. avatar Tom W. says:

    I need to check my safe, as another “expert” referred to an AR15 as “heavy firepower”….mine are all pretty light, and historically have been called a poodle shooter.

    Those fast leetle bullets can get heavy I suppose.


    1. avatar Geoff PR says:

      A Standard Poodle can have a very un-pleasant disposition.

      I believe some have used them as guard dogs.

  7. avatar Scrubula says:

    Just saying, it is completely impossible to end violence. There will always be people willing to intimidate, harm, or kill an innocent person just to get the cash in their wallet. Whether they choose to use an untraceable firearm, a kitchen knife, a baseball bat, a hammer, or their hands does not matter. Sometimes it’s not even a robbery, like the mob at kroger in tennessee.
    People unwilling to accept reality cannot be reasoned with.

    1. avatar Jus Bill says:

      There will always be people willing to intimidate… an innocent person just to get the cash in their wallet.

      Like Shannon Watts. Or the Space Cadet and his breathing prop. Or the Brady Bunch.

  8. avatar Dirk Diggler says:

    Not to be too picky there, Shannon’s hometown paper is the Zionsville Times Sentinel ( . . . . and they haven’t given her any hometown love in a few years:

    (2 stories in 4 yrs is pathetic. even more so when 1 of the stories is about her now FAILED art gallery)

  9. avatar Garrison Hall says:

    “But we continually get caught up in symbolic gestures and philosophical arguments that pull us apart . . .”

    Exactly. In the minds of gun-control activists, like prohibitionists, anti-porn crusaders, climate change activists, and PITA, it’s always about making symbolic hash-marks. They don’t much care about the actual changes the actual changes the symbols are supposed to promote. They just want their symbols in place and recognized.

    1. avatar Jus Bill says:

      Uh, it’s PETA. But PITA is accurate too.

    2. avatar Jay-El says:

      FROM: SW

      OK everyone lets all use the term gun extremist everytime we talk about gun owners or anyone who opposes us OK?????? Dont ever say “law abiding gun owner” or “responsible gun owner” except for when you say “he was a lawabiding gun owner until he wasnt” 😉

      Remember everyone our goal is to make gun owners seem less human and we can do that by associating them with the most evil thing we know guns!!!!!!!!! You can also say gun bullies i luv that word 2!!!!!!!!

  10. avatar JR_in_NC says:

    “I’ve yet to meet anyone — lifetime NRA member or gun-control hardliner — who isn’t appalled by the murder and mayhem that plagues cities across the country. “

    Projection Fail.

    I don’t know who he has met on either side of the issue, but that’s a pretty bold statement.

    I think it fair to say that there are a lot of us, on both sides, appalled at the murder and mayhem that plagues the cities.

    Problem is…one side wants to talk about it; the other side wants to do something about it. For example:


    1. avatar Another Robert says:

      I think you missed the meaning of his statement.He’s saying everyone on both sides of the issue is appalled at violence. Or did I miss the import of your comment?

      1. avatar JR_in_NC says:

        I was commenting solely on the quoted statement, which, it would seem, I misread as “never met anyone who IS appalled by murder and mayhem.

        Mea culpa. Thanks for bringing it to my attention.

        (Mods, feel free to delete that comment as “noise” in the discussion. Total reading comp fail on my part.)

    1. avatar IdahoPete says:

      Yeah, I am waiting for the Bloomberg Mommies to take out an ad asking who I would rather see in Krogers – a woman with an AR or a mob of violent “teenagers” who are not carrying guns?

  11. avatar Chip Bennett says:

    Even the Indy Star has more Hoosier Horse Sense than Shannon Watts and MDA.

  12. avatar Dirk Diggler says:

    well, to their credit. . . . CNN finally has the video of the Kroger mob attack up. . . granted, it is not prominently displayed, but it is there

  13. avatar esitue says:

    I do my shopping out of state so my sales taxes will not support the Marxists that run my state I shop at stores that do not actively work to destroy my nation. Think Globally, act localy

  14. avatar Former Water Walker says:

    After seeing that video it would persuade a lot of folks to open carry an AR15. I avoid malls and dark parking lots after dark too. But all I see is the thug football guy knocking out his girl…

  15. avatar Dyspeptic Gunsmith says:

    First, Grammy there obviously has some taste in guns. She obviously knows how to tickle an old man’s fancy.

    Condition 2 or 3 – you guys don’t know. It could be a series 80 style 1911. All she has to do on an 80 series is thumb the hammer back and it’s go time. The whole point of the Series 80 pin block was to enable Condition 2 carry.

    Lastly, it is good to see someone finally see through the MDA nonsense other than us POTG.

  16. avatar Indiana Tom says:

    Three years ago, a manager at a Northwest side Kroger pulled a handgun to stop an apparent armed robbery. Gee, maybe the guys with the ARs in the Produce Department do not look so bad now. We also had a beating and attempted rape in Lawrenceburg IN.

  17. avatar Indiana Tom says:

    “at least 16 shootings and demonstrations by gun extremists carrying firearms” occurred in or near Kroger stores in the past two years. Since when?

    1. avatar Jonathan - Houston says:

      I didn’t even get the statement. Sixteen shootings and demonstrations? Is that sixteen events in all, some of which were shootings, others may be demonstrations, but all of which by so-called gun extremists? Or are they just lumping in whatever number of criminal shootings with whatever number of demonstrations and saying all of these happened in the same period and involved people with guns? So they’re all gun extremists, and they’re all the same gun extremists (whatever that means)?

      I don’t get it. It reminds me of an old Mitch Hedberg joke:

      “I had to take a physical to do this show. They had a lot of weird questions like, “Have you ever tried sugar or PCP?”

      1. avatar Jus Bill says:

        They say “in or near.”
        They mean “in the same state as.”

        1. avatar Another Robert says:

          Sort of like “school shooting” = “drug deal gone sour two blocks away from a community college at 3AM”.

  18. avatar UnknownError says:

    I just wanted to introduce myself. I’ve been reading this site for about a year and just purchased an XDs and got a CCL in Cobb Co Georgia. I was what you refer to as an anti my whole life, a product of liberal parenting… But recently a friend told me about this website and I read through the information about gun statistics. Just wanted to say that this site is well put together and anyone with a brain that reads it can’t help but be swayed.

    1. avatar Sian says:

      Congrats on your newfound thinkingbits and welcome!

    2. avatar Jus Bill says:

      THAT is the power of intelligence in action. Welcome!

    3. avatar Chip Bennett says:


      (Which is an odd thing for me to say, since you’ve been reading TTAG for longer than I have…)

  19. avatar SteveInCO says:

    Kindly quit trolling your off-topic racist crap.

    1. avatar SteveInCO says:

      Never mind, it looks like the racist crap got deleted. Thanks to the mod, whoever (s)he was.

  20. avatar Michael says:

    My local Kroger in NC used to have a “No guns” sign posted on the door, About 2 years ago they removed it.

  21. avatar DaveL says:

    “at least 16 shootings and demonstrations by gun extremists carrying firearms” occurred in or near Kroger stores in the past two years.

    “Mrs. Miller’s 5th grade class experienced 218 instances of mass shootings or split infinitives in the past year.” Who in their right mind counts such things together?

  22. avatar BinCincy says:

    I just saw one of their billboards here, near the U. of Cincinnati campus, surrounded by ghetto, asking Kroger to cave in and ban OC. Most people don’t know what this group is, or what they’re even talking about – some even think they’re some kind of MILF porn stars or something. These anti-gun zealots overestimate their impact, at least if they think a billboard, especially one that’s electronic and shifts messages, is going to gain support.

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