NRA Chides 'Open Carry Texas' over Carrying AK-47s into Restaurants
On May 30 the National Rifle Association's Institute for Legislative Action (NRA-ILA) released a statement on the open carry demonstrations that have been recently carried out in Chipotle, Jack in the Box, Chili's, and Sonic restaurants in Texas.
These are the demonstrations where members of Open Carry Texas (OCT) legally carry AR-15s and AK-47s into restaurants as part of their bid to see the open carry of handguns legalized in the Lone Star State. The NRA-ILA described the demonstrations as "downright weird" and "counter productive for the gun owning community."
Because of these demonstrations, Chipotle, Jack in the Box, Chili's, and Sonic have all requested that law-abiding customers not bring guns in their restaurants--and this comes at a time when Texans are on the cusp of electing Attorney General Greg Abbott (R) to the office of governor, and he, in turn, has already announced his determination to make the open carry of handguns a reality.
Why harm this? Why push the envelope now by sitting down next to a family of four with an AK-47 slung across your back while your fellow demonstrators hover around you with AR-15s slung across theirs?
The NRA-ILA believes these demonstrations and tactics simply aren't "neighborly" and that they are "out of character for the big-hearted residents of Texas."
Here is an excerpt of the NRA-ILA's statement:
As a result of these hijinx, ...popular fast food outlets have recently requested patrons to keep guns off the premises. In other words, the freedom and goodwill these businesses had previously extended to gun owners has been curtailed because of the actions of an attention-hungry few who thought only of themselves and not of those who might be affected by their behavior.
...Using guns merely to draw attention to yourself in public not only defies common sense, it shows a lack of consideration and manners. That's not the Texas way. And that's certainly not the NRA way.
To be fair, OCT leadership recognized that their tactics need to be adjusted and on May 23 issued a joint statement with Come and Take it Texas, Texas Carry, and Gun Rights Across America asking members to refrain from "taking long guns into corporate businesses unless invited."
There is too much too lose and nothing to gain by ruining the opportunity Texans have to see the open carry of handguns legalized once Abbott is elected.
Follow AWR Hawkins on Twitter @AWRHawkins Reach him directly at firstname.lastname@example.org.