|Asbestos suit at the ready|
I think Starbucks statement is offensive, undoubtedly pushed by an attorney, and sadly an attempt to be "politically correct." Those who know me, know my opinion on PC. I firmly believe we have a right to carry where, and how, we wish, and we should not be questioned while doing so. That said, I strongly feel that the "demonstrations" at Starbucks were ill-advised and did more to harm the cause than to help. Good tactics can win a battle, bad tactics can lose the war.
Showing up en masse, carrying rifles and shotguns, is really not a way to win hearts. "Because I can" might be true, but it's an excuse, not a reason. I hear comments about "normalizing" the sight of a gun in public. But face it, we had a known libtard company, and even though they really don't agree with the 2nd Amendment, they publicly stated that they would follow the law of the land with regard to guns. That's pretty much normalized right there. As thanks, a group of "activists" went out of their way to make other customers of the company feel uncomfortable. As irrational as the hoplophobe's fears are, their money spends at Starbuck's too. Frankly, I wouldn't feel comfortable walking into that "pro-gun" crowd myself, for the same reason I generally avoid gun shows.
I have no objection to "open carry," I do object to "carry for protest." I choose to carry a gun for my personal and my family's defense, and for no other reason. It's not a show. Despite the claims of "I prefer open carry as a tactic," it's obvious the "appreciation" groups showing up at Starbucks with rifles slung over their shoulders were not doing so for any self-defense needs. Heck, if someone told me they need to be in a group, armed with rifles and shotguns to buy coffee, my response would be they should find a safer place to buy coffee.
For all intents and purposes nothing has changed, other than a pointless statement, and a lot of bad publicity for gun owners. Of course this move by Starbucks will only embolden our foes. Starbucks has never specifically allowed or disallowed guns in their stores. They have said all along this not their battle, they take no sides and made following local law their policy. Some gun owners weren't happy with being allowed to carry like they always could, so they decided to make Starbucks their pawn. As expected, and as they warned, Starbucks got fed up and issued an admittedly weak and PC message. The company has not banned guns, they essentially said, again, please, leave us out of it. They have asked gun owners to refrain from opening carrying, but did not forbid it on their stores. They specifically say in their employee direction accompanying the statement that employees are NOT to ask any one to leave for carrying.
So now the anti-gunners get to play it up as a win. All because a bunch of gun advocates decided to make a "statement," instead of simply carrying their guns as they always did, to which Starbucks never objected. Why would anyone go out of their way to antagonize someone who was not restricting their rights? That's not defending your rights. It's just stupid.
Now the calls for boycotting Starbucks have switched from coming from the hoplophobes to coming from the gun rights side. I've never been much on boycotts in general. I do buy Starbuck's coffee on occasion, and will probably continue to do so. It's convenient to my travels. I happen to like my coffee on the bitter end of the scale anyway. And, I will continue to exercise my rights as I see fit. My right to self defense does not come from the 2nd Amendment, nor is it mitigated by a sign.
The pro-gun crowd can rant and rave about the new Starbucks attitude, but our side owns this one. We all know the four rules of gun safety. But some have forgotten the first rule of gun ownership, don't act like a fool.