Earlier this week the Chicago-based National Gun Victims Action Council released a statement promoting a boycott of Starbucks on Feb 14th. I do not usually pander to the fringe anti-gun lobby, but something about this whole crusade bothered me. Well, a number of things. First, let’s look at the facts . . .
On January 30, 2010, Starbucks landed in the middle of a political mess. Two other Bay Area chains refused service to people that were following California law and openly carrying unloaded handguns. The group from opencarry.org moved on to another coffee house in the area, which happened to be Starbucks.
When the mainstream media got wind of the story, they quickly turned the open carry demo into a heated debate about private property owners’ firearms policies in general, and Starbucks’ rules in particular. Gun control advocates pressed Starbucks CEO Howard Shultz: why had the chain allowed loaded guns on its premises?
What happened next shocked just about everyone around the county. Starbucks decided they would follow state law where the store was located. If you’re legally allowed to carry a firearm in your state—whether that’s concealed or openly displayed—you could do so inside a Starbucks.
Despite numerous letters and appeals from The Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence, National Gun Victims Action Council and other gun control groups, Starbucks refused to budge on this subject. As far as they were concerned, the issue was settled.
Starbucks profits were up 10% last quarter again, so obviously they are doing something right. If gun control advocates don’t like Starbucks’ policies or their coffee, the solution is easy enough: don’t patronize their stores. There are plenty of businesses I no longer patronize because I don’t like their policy on something.
That doesn’t mean that I’ll try to organize a national movement to try to pressure a company to change its policies. They’d have to do something seriously out of line, and do it to millions of like-minded people.
NGVAC claims to represent 40 million people all over the county. At last count only 99 of the purported 40 million have cared enough about the movememt to “like” them on Facebook. That math works out to 0.0000025% of their “membership.” Or right around 1 in 400,000.
They make a number of false claims, such as the picture of the FN FiveseveN handgun with a caption of “Capable of penetrating a cop’s vest.” This is a lie and they know it. The only way that a FiveseveN is going to penetrate a soft armor vest is with armor-piercing rounds which are not for sale to civilians.
The NGVAC also claims that you increase your risk of “being a victim of gun violence” just by being in a state that allows concealed or open carry. They claim that a Glock is to blame for shooting 31 rounds in 15 seconds, killing 6 and injuring 14 in Tucson. They blame the gun and they blame the “lack of laws.” No one blames the person that pulled the trigger.
But just as the gun control group has the right to stay away from Starbucks, we have the right to support them. There are several pages and Facebook groups to help get the word out about Starbucks Appreciation Day.
If you can open carry in your state (and feel comfortable doing so) then open carry in your local Starbucks to show your support. I will be there, at least a few times that day with my Sig on my hip for all to see. If you can’t, at least spend a $2 bill and thank the barrista for their employer’s support of your Second Amendment rights.
Edmund Burke said that “All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing.” Well here’s something you can do to protect your rights against those who would disarm us against evil.