For Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America, every day is opposite’s day. If you or I were lobbying to Kroger’s supermarket chain to allow legal carry in their stores – which they already do – we’d highlight incidents where Kroger disarmed customers and employees were victims of violent crime. See? we’d say. A no-guns policy leaves innocent Americans relatively defenseless against criminal predation. Over at huffingtonpost.com, Moms jefe Shannon Watts uses these real-world incidents as proof that Kroger shouldn’t allow legal carry in their stores. Huh? you say. Here it is from the horse’s mouth . . .
The moms’ group decided to take action in response to recent demonstrations by open carry activists in Kroger stores in Ohio and Texas, and after conducting research that identified more than a dozen shootings on Kroger property since 2012, said Erika Soto Lamb, a spokeswoman.
“Kroger employees shouldn’t have to determine whether the person holding a gun in the frozen aisle is someone dangerous or someone making a political statement,” Lamb said.
Conflate much? I mean, how many of those shootings were the result of open carry or, for that matter, legal concealed carry? Why none! But I would point out that anyone holding a gun in the frozen aisle should just let it go, let it go, let it go. Holding a gun in a grocery store is an excellent indication that something illegal’s going down.
Or maybe about to go down, and the person holding the gun is attempting to stop it. Which would be a good thing, not a bad thing. Here in the real world. Back in Shannon’s world . . .
In a letter sent to Kroger CEO Michael Ellis last week, Moms Demand Action founder Shannon Watts said those existing laws aren’t sufficient to keep customers safe.
“In most states, gun laws are exceedingly lax, especially when it comes to the open carry of firearms,” Watts wrote. “In many states, virtually anyone can openly carry a loaded gun without going through any licensing, permitting or training.”
Moms Demand Action has logged a dozen shootings that have taken place inside a Kroger or in the parking lot of one since 2012.
In June 2013, a 2-year-old girl was shot in a Kroger parking lot in Stone Mountain, Georgia, after a customer tried to intervene in an attempted mugging.
In February, in another incident in Georgia, a 42-year-old man shot and wounded two Kroger customers at a store in Lawrenceville, east of Atlanta.
Again, how does this argue against legal carry? And where, HuffPo, are the other ten incidents? Just for fun [/sarc] I Googled “Kroger parking lot rape” and found this story [via onlineathens.com]:
Lawyers for a woman kidnapped from a Kroger supermarket parking lot and then raped reached a settlement with the grocery company in a lawsuit the woman filed against Kroger following the attack . . .
The victim, a 23-year-old Athens restaurant manager at the time, was kidnapped at knife-point by three men as she walked to her car in the parking lot of the Kroger store on College Station Road late one July night in 1994 . . .
Six other crimes were committed in that same parking lot between Oct. 17, 1988, when a woman was robbed at knife-point, and July 13, 1994, when the rape victim who sued Kroger was abducted, according to Gilbert Dietch of Atlanta, another of the woman’s lawyers.
Five of those previous parking lot crimes were directed at customers, and a Kroger employee was the victim in another, he said. Several involved violence, including a beating with a billy stick and a threat using a tire iron, he told a Clarke County jury as the trial opened Monday.
But only one of the incidents — the beating — was ever reported to Kroger’s ”risk management” division in Atlanta, according to testimony by a Kroger security expert Monday.
Should have been a defensive gun use? Yes. If you Google “Kroger armed robbery” do you find dozens of examples? You do. Should Kroger force its customers to disarm to shop in its stores? I’d like to see them try.
The basic idea that the Moms are selling – a non-guns policy would make Kroger customers safer – is so ludicrous that even HuffPo writer Ben Hallman felt obliged to end his puff piece with a disclaimer:
It’s impossible to say whether these incidents would have happened if Kroger were to advertise a no-gun policy. Gun advocates are quick to note that criminals are unlikely to abide by polite requests to leave their guns at home.
True dat. And well done Kroger for issuing the following statement:
Contacted on Friday, company spokesman Keith Dailey said the grocery chain had no plans to change existing policy, which is to abide by state and local laws.
“Millions of customers are present in our busy grocery stores every day and we don’t want to put our associates in a position of having to confront a customer who is legally carrying a gun,” Dailey said. “We know that our customers are passionate on both sides of this issue and we trust them to be responsible in our stores.”
As they have been.