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We’ve seen more than a few comments – here and sprinkled around the Intertubes – in the last few days advocating a boycott of Cinemark Theatres over their gun-free zone policy. And they’re hardly the only chain with a no firearms policy. As RF reported, finding a venue where he can both carry his Caracal C and see The Dark Knight Rises is no mean feat. At least in his neck of the woods. So next time it comes to a choice between catching Hollywood’s latest on the big screen and going in naked (ballistically speaking, of course) what will you do? [FYI: we hear that some gun owners going to cinemas that ban legal firearms are doing so wearing empty holsters.]

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  1. I’m fortunate enough to live in a state where carrying into businesses that have “no firearms” signs is optional from a legal standpoint. As such, I carry into anti-gun places regularly and walk right past the signs. I won’t boycott these places, I will simply ignore their silly signs and exercise my right to protect myself and my family from their “gun free” patrons that periodically shoot such places up.

  2. Luckily I can carry where ever I want ’cause I’m LE. I did have an issue at Six Flags while they were still in Houston. Before going through the metal detector at the front gate (which they installed because of numerous gang bangers going there) I informed them of my piece. They wanted me to leave it in a locker at the front office which I refused to do. They reluctantly let me in after I signed an affidavit that I was LEO…even after seeing my identification…they had a special form already made up. The only reason I didn’t turn around and leave was because my young kids were with me at the time and had been promised a trip to the park. I never went back.

    If I were a CCH I would not patronize Cinemark. However, they should know why people are refusing to come to their premises…people should call and tell them the reason why they won’t be spending their money there. I don’t go to the movies anyway except on extremely rare occassions, so Cinemark is not an issue…I’ll just go somewhere else if the need ever arises.

    • “[…] I can carry where ever I want ’cause I’m LE.”

      Some animals are more equal than others.

        • Outside LE can legally carry under the Law Enforcement Officer Safety Act of 2004. They can’t be legally disarmed by NJ.

    • You were on private property. if you are not on officials business either disarm or leave. You are just a law enforcement officer you are NOT special. If I am on private property I must disarm if asked or leave.

  3. I don’t carry. Id probably go to the theater if they had a movie I wanted to see but I don’t go to movies very often.

  4. If we claim to be champions of liberty, then the third option is not acceptable. Regardless of whether or not an establishment’s signs carry the force of law, we should respect a private property owner’s rules and authority regarding his property.

    Besides, if a business makes it so obviously clear that you are not a welcome patron, why insist on giving them your money?

    • Unless indicated by statute, a business owner’s policy does not carry “the force of law.” If I refused to comply with a policy, the business owner has the option of shrugging it off and serving me anyway. Of course, if she asked me to leave, I would because then it’s trespassing.

    • “we should respect a private property owner’s rules and authority regarding his property.”

      Why is that? Respect is earned. The commercial property owner who declares its property a “gun free zone” is giving society a pretty clear indication that he or she does not “respect” an individuals’ personal safety. This lack of respect is just being returned in kind if you ignore the stupid sign and carry anyway. Maybe if they step up to the plate and install metal detectors and have armed security I might consider returning the “respect.” Otherwise, my respect for them is hanging low.

      On a related topic, it’s high time we push our legislators for a law that holds commercial landowners strictly liable in tort for deaths or injuries to guests and invitees caused by third parties, in situations where the landowner has banned private concealed carry of firearms. Cinemark should be liable to the families of all of the victims due to its failure to protect its guests and invitees from harm caused by the deranged shooter. I think a jury verdict of 5-10 million dollars per death would send the right message.

      • The business owner by denying you having your firearm on you is not being disrespectful. This is America and he has rights just as you have. Do not like do not
        spend any money there.

        If anyone is being disrespectful it is you.

        • Maybe I am being disrespectful. Good thing I don’t give a flying f**k. My personal security is more important to me than anybody else’s feelings.

          Besides, a business owner’s property rights will sometimes get balanced against the rights of the public. See e.g., Pruneyard Shopping Center v. Robins, 447 US 74 (1980).

          As for your option of just not patronizing the business. Certainly, I do that when I can. What are you gonna do when every grocery store in town adopts a “no gun” policy? Last time I checked, “hunting and gathering” may be a great hobby but its a crappy lifestyle.

        • If they can ban firearms, they should also be able to ban blacks and women.
          It’s not disrespectful, those people can shop somewhere else.

        • “The business owner by denying you having your firearm on you is not being disrespectful. This is “America and he has rights just as you have. Do not like do not
          spend any money there.

          If anyone is being disrespectful it is you.”


          I love the hypocrisy of someone who expect his right to be respected, but pisses on everybody else.

          A rather arrogant attitude..

        • TMZ is actually surprisingly reliable as long as you’re paying attention to the stories they report as fact, and ignore the “Guess who was seen with Lindsey Lohan last night!” type stories.

          Actually, even on those latter ones, they seem to have the thread of truth well before most other agencies pick it up. In some cases, they’ve had “confirmed rumors” for 2-3 months before it hits the mainstream press.

        • It’s worth noting that TMZ filed their story on this lawsuit at 4 AM EST today (here) and it didn’t hit Drudge until about 7:37 AM EST (look here, it’s not on the 7:36 screenshot, it’s there on the 7:38).

        • The lawsuit isn’t just going after Cinemark for failing to take reasonable precautions against illegal entry, and it isn’t going after the theater for actively preventing people from defending themselves.

          The guy is suing Warner Bros. for producing a movie with violence in it (even though the plaintiff really wanted to watch the movie) because “somebody has to be responsible” and suing the psycho shooter’s doctors for not monitoring their patient.

          I hate Cinemark’s policy as much as all of you, and I feel bad for the people who had to live through this horrifying event, and even worse for the people whose loved ones died…but this lawsuit is stupid. It’s just one more in a long train of stupid lawsuits that show over and over again how our society is unable to take responsibility for anything or admit that sometimes bad things just happen. So instead we make yet another law or file yet another lawsuit to punish somebody (anybody…doesn’t matter who), and everyday life gets choked by regulations, while the real problems never get solved.

      • You have no “God given rights” on my business property. I have Constitutional rights on my property to ban guns. Businesses ban guns for a variety of reasons, such as fear of a ND causing injury of a bystander who then sues the business, or the owners are simply afraid of guns.

        At my business, guns are allowed concealed. I personally ignore no gun signs when I carry. If I’m asked to leave, I would happily leave.

        So what?

        • So if your customers have no rights on your property can you string up the people that short you? No? Then yeah, you can ask people who you catch carrying to leave if you really feel like being that much of a tumor, and even call the cops if they refuse to leave and thus trespass, but that is IT. You don’t have the authority to say what rights people do and do not have simply because they are giving you money for a service you offer. You should have no expectation for people to obey a sign that makes no sense, or rather you should be thanking them for obeying the SPIRIT of the sign and not shooting the place up, since that’s what the sign is really and for some reason actually trying to prevent. The mechanism for the sign to accomplish this is unknown to me.

    • Henry and I will agree to disagree. Henry believes that property rights are above all. I believe that life rights are above all.

      In my opinion a property owner has authority to keep their property and manage the conduct of visitors on that property. The property owner does not have the right to do anything they want to visitors — especially subjecting visitors to dangerous environments or making their visit conditional upon the owner’s wishes to do anything they want. Rape is rape and murder is murder whether you are a visitor on someone’s property or not. This very fact shows that property rights have limits — and sensible ones at that I will add.

      The farthest I would go is to say that a property owner can demand that an armed visitor keep their firearm in a holster which covers the trigger (an obvious management of conduct for safety reasons) and further demand that the visitor not intervene on the owner’s behalf if a criminal attacks. Anything beyond that interferes with the visitor’s liberty and life rights — which exist regardless of where the visitor is standing.

      • I don’t think that the right to property is more important than the right to life. We have both property rights and life rights, and neither can be unjustly violated.

        Obviously, a property owner cannot violate a patron’s life rights based solely on presence on the property. Similarly, a patron cannot violate an owners’s property rights based on his desire to enter the property.

        In the private sector, no one is being forced to interact. If a property owner has unreasonable rules regarding entrance, don’t go in. But if you choose to go in, don’t violate the rules just because you don’t agree with them.

        And, the question still remains… if a business is so vile that it requires an abdication of your rights as a condition of entrance, why give them your money?

        • “… if a business is so vile that it requires an abdication of your rights as a condition of entrance, why give them your money?”

          I agree 1000% there.

          And that gets to the heart of the matter. Can anyone really expect anyone else to abdicate their rights no matter what the circumstances? I say no.

        • Henry Bowman, I don’t disagree with you about the willingness to give money to those that would disarm me, and when I have an option, that’s what I do. In this specific case I disregard the signs and go anyway, because I’m usually going to the theatre with several friends, and I’m not going to mess up everyone else’s good time to make a point. I simply shut up, go along, and keep it concealed.

      • While it is the right of a business to ban guns on their property, it is also my right not to patronize them. If people start to realize that their life is not worth a hour or two of entertainment then this business and others like them that ban ones self defense will loose their income, or should!

        However, I have a different take on private property rights. If I want to ban you or your gun or your shoes or whatever on my private property (my home) thats my right. BUT,,,,,,, At the same time I don’t use my private property for public business either.

        Any business that relies upon the public for revenue should do one of two things, allow people with legal carry to carry, or provide a secure entrance and armed security to be present at all times. They should also be held completely responsible for any of the aggressor/customer with malicious intent that happens to gain access with normal people and harms them if they don’t allow for legal personal defense or provide a secure environment. Without such measures, that private business with public access should not be allowed to operate.

        A business is required to provide other measures such as hand rails, fire safety devices, floor covering types, lighting and so on for customer safety before they can even open their doors to public business access, so why not personal defense? Why is personal defense such a taboo? Private property rights? It makes no sense to me at all.

        If I see any sign that is no guns allowed, enforceable or not, I do not go in. Never have, never will. That sign is a invite to public massacre for crazies with weird agendas.

    • I’m with you solidly on this one, Henry. If the owner posts, I’ll go elsewhere. First, I’m not going to barge in where I’m not welcome. Second, property rights are important to me, and they were so important to the Founders that they created the 4th Amendment.

      I always get a kick from people who insist that their property rights are important, but not the property rights of others. Usually, we call such people criminals.

      • I can’t carry because I’m in Illinois but if it’s something like concealed carry and “don’t ask don’t tell” I’m not too worried about offending peoples property rights. If they never know you have your self defense gun on you, then no harm no foul and if they notice and ask you to leave, then you leave.

  5. You left out an obvious option.

    “I can’t afford movie tickets because I spend all my money on firearms and ammo.”

  6. There’s a line here, and each man or woman has an opinion on where it should be. From where I sit, everyone who reads this blog is way far over on one side of the line, while the Brady folks are equally far to the other side. The vast majority of Americans (whom we sometimes uncharitably dismiss as “sheeple”) don’t like guns. They generally support the Second Amendment — in theory. But they are very uncomfortable in the presence of a gun that’s not holstered below a badge.

    No theater chain, corporate restaurant or national business is going to publicly revoke a “no firearms” policy. We can make all the noise we want, but I would be very surprised if Cinemark reversed their policy because of our boycott. And we just don’t have the media support that GLAAD does. So go ahead and boycott and make your voice heard, but don’t hold your breath.

    As for moi, I never considered not carrying at the movies (concealed, of course). I haven’t seen any signs at my theaters and even if I did, I would wait to be asked to leave. But who’s going to know? It’s dark in there.

    • Speak for yourself. I OC every day here in Arizona, both where I live now and also in the nation’s 5th largest city, Phoenix (where I used to live, and am moving back to). Not a single jimmy is rustled. Not a single crap is given.

    • one of the local supermaket chains in St. Louis area (Schnucks) took down their signs in the face of a boycott and media publicity. They also didn’t take highly to the fact that the media pointed out the signs were meaningless and had run stories on the stores being robbed. So much for criminals reading and obeying.

  7. It’s a pretty cheap yes to boycott because they don’t have any theaters in my part of the country. We only have Regal theaters in town and they don’t have a posted policy. And I’m not going looking for one. So don’t tell me.

  8. I don’t think Cinemark — or any establishment — will care if armed citizens boycott them. First of all only 1 out of 20 or so adults are armed in the general population. Second, many of those armed adults would not even be aware of a boycott. So I can picture that Cinemark would stand to lose something like 1 or 2 out of 100 potential theater goers due to a boycott. Their execs won’t lose any sleep over that.

    • Actually, one or two percent drop in revenue is considered a very bad thing for a business.

      • Especially one with narrow margins like a theater. Don’t they have to fork over the majority of ticket revenues, and that’s mostly why concessions are so pricey?

  9. I live in Texas. I ignore “no gun signs” that are not legally binding (i.e. they have to be “30.06” signs, from the relevant section of the Penal Code, to be legally binding here). That said, I avoid Cinemark theaters because they are usually trashy.

  10. I don’t go to the movies too often, so a boycott from me would be meaningless.

    Stoll, it c ant hurt to try as long as its publicized.

    I still think the victims shld file a lawsuit. Cinemark disarmed its patrons and singularly favored to protect them.

  11. I don’t go to the movies too often, so a boycott from me would be meaningless.

    Stoll, it cannot hurt to try as long as its publicized.

    I still think the victims shld file a lawsuit. Cinemark disarmed its patrons and singularly favored to protect them.

  12. Where does this notion a business such a Cinepark or Costco (another anti-gun company in my area) is deserving of “respect” come from? Why would I respect a corporate entity that is enacting policies that are in direct conflict with the 2nd Amendment and my right to self defense? I owe no faceless corporation respect, especially if it doesn’t respect our Constitutional rights. I shop at Costco because of the savings. If I were to boycott them the only one that would be hurt is me and my family, I would have to pay more for food. If I did boycott Costco it would be meaningless to them as they wouldn’t know or care of my boycott, it’s an exercise in futility. So I continue to shop there for my own benefit while ignoring their silly signs that have no force of law. It’s their choice to hang it and it’s my choice to ignore it.

    • Where does this notion that an individual like MilitaryArms is deserving of “respect”? Why should I respect MilitaryArms’ property rights when my rights are at stake?

      Doesn’t sound so good on the other foot does it. Luckily here in OR I have yet to find a business with a no gun sign but if I did I would respect their rights to manage their property in anyway they see fit and to not do business with them. Why would you want to go some place that doesn’t want to do business with you in the first place?

      I would ask that you ask yourself how you would feel if you gave specific instructions to someone at your property and they choose to ignore it? What if you said, “Hey guys no smoking in the house,” and you find someone lighting up in your bathroom?

      • Richard your example of asking people not to smoke in your house is not an equal comparison regarding property rights.

        A property owner has a right to ban smoking in their building because smoke damages their building and second-hand smoke causes diseases to the owner and other guests. Even more importantly, the guests who want to smoke are not at risk of dying if they cannot smoke.

        A fire extinguisher analogy may be easier to understand. Imagine a property owner who hates fire extinguishers, has no means to stop a fire, and whose property is a tinder box with obstructed exits. Such a property owner has no right to tell me I cannot carry a fire extinguisher on my belt or on my back. And they certainly do not have a right to tell me I cannot use a fire extinguisher to save my life if a fire starts.

        I will say that the property owner could ban guests from waving fire extinguishers around and holding their hands on the lever to operate it when there is no fire present. That is managing conduct (how to hold and carry an extinguisher) for safety reasons. (Fire extinguishers are heavy and hard; you could cause a serious injury to someone if you happened to bash them in the head with one when waving it around. And if you accidentally discharged the extinguisher, the gas/dust could cause breathing and or vision problems for people.)

        • I meant it as an example of how a property owner (public or private) has the right to set the rules on their property.

          Let me give you another example. Lets say thru your friends you know a guy that loves guns but is unsafe from them. Lets say when talking about them he likes to pull out his gun and show it off. So he is coming over to your house would you tell him leave his gun in the car?

          And now for a real world example when government is allowed to subjugate one’s property rights (or one’s labor). See the link below about what government gets to do when there is no concern with the rights of others. Again I don’t agree with Cinemark’s or the photographer’s policies but it is there right to set the rules on how their property is used.

        • localities have zoning rules to prevent people accidentally destroying others’ property due to hazardous conditions, and the right to life and thus self defense is far more basic than zoning. Your rights are paramount as far and NO FURTHER than you start infringing on those of others. You have a right not to get shot up in your business, by all means put up a sign discouraging criminals from pulling out guns with no provocation and beginning to fire.

        • Richard,

          In the second example that you provided, I would NOT tell the man he has to keep his gun in his car. I would tell him he has to keep his gun in his holster unless a criminal or animal attacks someone.

          My approach respects everyone’s rights. Your approach does not respect the man’s rights. Saying it another way, your approach says that a person has no rights unless they are on property that they own.

    • You know, if they don’t respect his property rights he can deter and or fight them with his weapons. The respect has to be earned and the property rights have to be protected, that’s what gives them meaning. The difference is that he has the power to enforce that do not smoke rule

  13. For the price of today’s tickets and an unhealthy movie-theater popcorn, I can buy a good book or two that provides hours more entertainment than a ninety minute film with sometimes obnoxious people in the audience. Seriously, I don’t OC or CC yet I’m going to boycott the chain in support of gun rights. I also do not like the attitude my fellow gun owners have been reporting from Cinemark Corporate in response to their emails and phone calls. Seems to me their no-guns policy was probably cooked up between their legal, public relations, and insurance provider.

  14. The only Cinemark theatre near me is in a rapid decaying mall. I wouldn’t set foot in the parking lot without a gun.

    I think we need legislation to make the owners/operators of gun free zones financially liable for the safety of their patrons. If you’re going to prevent me from carrying a gun on the premises, you should be legally accountable for my safety. Just as I am legally accountable for what I do with my gun. I’d go so far as to say businesses that don’t prohibit lawfully carried firearms should be indemnified against lawsuits resulting from a defensive gun use.

    I’m all for private property rights, and as such, if a business wants to ban guns, that’s their right. I feel that in enacting such a ban, they have assumed a responsibility to protect their patrons/employees/visitors.

    • I believe Cinemark is going to find they are liable under Colorado law. State law says public buildings may prohibit all weapons if they post guards and permanent metal detectors at all entrances.

  15. If a business has a ‘No Guns’ sign, I wear my empty holster, exposed. No one seems to see it(maybe ingnorance of what it is) or if they do, they do not care, and I have never had anyone inquire.

    Nous Defions

  16. Saw the Dark Knight Rises last night in Missouri at a Great Escape theater which is an Alliance Entertainment venue. I don’t know their official policy, but there were no firearm restrictions posted of any kind at the entrance.

  17. I agree that the property owner has rights to control activity on his property…but I believe those rights are trumped by my “Creator-endowed” right to Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness…property owners don’t have the right to endanger my life and the lives of my family by making me give up my lawful means of self defense…

    • They are not asking you to give up anything. They are asking you not to bring a gun on their property. If you don’t agree with them, tell them you’re not doing business with them, then leave. Yes, you may miss a few movies with friends, or pay a little more for food but you will have a gun on you if you need it. Which is more important?

      If you don’t respect their rights, why would you expect them to respect yours?

      • Bruce: the difference is that they are seeking to make their property open to the public, and that entails giving up some of their property “property rights” for the common good.

      • If you don’t want to respect the rights of the public then… don’t open your property to the public as a publicly accessible business?

  18. I haven’t been to a movie theater in eight years. This funny thing called “reading” really made public cinema dull. Netflix doesn’t hurt, either.

    • End Gun Free Zones should be our demand of our legislatures. We should be louder than the gun-grabbers.

  19. Gun sales are way up in Aurora Colorado and elsewhere not that such news will surprise any regulars. Citizens know the gubermint can’t and won’t protect them.

  20. Too simple…they say No Guns in our establishment…I say No I won’t do business with you!!!!’Not going to support any business that won’t allow me, a law abiding licensed CCW holder to carry my firearm on my person while I do business with them!!!
    We have more than one theater, more than one grocery store and more than one health care facility here( population of 10,500) so I will just turn around and go somewhere else!!!!
    And I will say a prayer that the Good Lord watch over those who are in there!!!!

  21. It wouldn’t have mattered if Cinemark was gun friendly. Aurora Colorado municipal code doesn’t allow for the carry of firearms inside the city limits.

    • John: Are you certain of that? I don’t live there, so I’d love to hear from someone who does, but my reading over the past couple days indicates that there were about a dozen cities that had prohibitions on concealed carry, but they all were rendered moot by the 2003 law that the Colorado State Legislature passed preempting all gun regulation to the state level. Denver challenged some parts of it and won (prohibition on sales of assault weapons and Saturday night specials), but I don’t think it touched the concealed carry parts.

      • I live in Englewood, Co and so far as I understand municipalities may restrict open carry but are precluded by state law from restricting concealed carry. Under state law concealed carry is prohibited:
        1. Any place prohibited by federal law (e.g. federal offices or courthouse)
        2. Any property of public school grades kindergarten through 12, unless the firearm remains inside a container in a locked vehicle
        3. Any public building that prohibits ALL weapons which posts guards and permanent metal detectors at all entrances and requires all entrants to surrender handguns to security personnel before entry
        That last bit is going to be the nail in the coffin for Cinemark if they face a jury in a wrongful death civil suit.

  22. If the theater’s gun free zone includes metal detectors with armed guards/screeners, then I would consider going in, otherwise I’m looking elsewhere.

  23. I’ve been basically boycotting cinemas ever since the price of admission hit $10. I wait until the video hits the $5 bin at my favorite box store then watch it at home, where the food is better, the bathroom is cleaner and I can replay a scene if I don’t hear all the dialog manly muttered thru clenched teeth.

  24. We have Regal Theaters in my town. I’ve boycotted them since they put up the “no carry” signs about 10 years ago.There’s two other chains I can use, just like my Wranglers;worn instead of anti-gun Levis since 1980!

  25. There is a reason that we are so fine tooth combed through before we get our ccw in our hands.I think that should be a sign for them to feel more comfortable in letting us in and not have to leave our guns in our cars. I think it is bs that I should have to let someone watch me bring my pistol back to my car just so that they can come break into my car while I am gone and steal the gun. I work hard to keep my record clean and out from under the lawdogs fingers. I think that I deserve this right to carry anywhere the leo are allowed to carry. Afterall, it seems like they look down on us and we are the same people as they are.

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