With Texas’ new handgun open carry law going into effect on January 1, six businesses have taken pains to be sure Texans understand that open carry of handguns will not be tolerated in their establishments.
Open carry of long guns is as legal as football in Texas, and it is not uncommon to see a Texan walking with a rifle or other long gun in plain view. But a law to allow the open carry of handguns was just passed during the 2015 legislative cycle and signed by Governor Greg Abbott (R) thereafter.
It is the law of the land starting January 1, 2016.
The six businesses that want to be sure Texans do not carry openly in their stores, however, are:
1. H-E-B Grocery Stores — Forbes previously reported that customers began seeing the anti-open carry signage on the more than 300 H-E-B stores in December. The signs say:
Pursuant to Section 30.07, Penal Code (trespass by license holder with an openly carried handgun), a person licensed under Subchapter H, Chapter 411, Government Code (handgun licensing law), may not enter this property with a handgun that is carried openly.
2. Randall’s Food Markets — Like H-E-B, Randall’s is putting the Section 30.07 signs up by their entrances.
3. Whole Foods — Whole Foods is also putting the Section 30.07 signs by their entrances.
4. Torchy’s Tacos — On December 30, Torchy’s Tacos posted an announcement on their website informing customers that the open carry of handguns will be prohibited in their stores. The announcement said:
The open carry law in Texas is not an easy issue, as our involvement in it has proven. After overwhelming customer response and concern, Torchy’s Tacos will prohibit open carry in our restaurants.
We thank you for your patience as we addressed this issue. As always, thank you for your feedback. We look forward to keeping Torchy’s a Damn Good (and safe) place for our customers and employees alike.
Torchy’s Tacos will likewise post Section 30.07 signs by their entrances.
5. Gringo’s Mexican Kitchen — On December 28, the Houston Chronicle announced that Gringo’s Mexican Kitchen “would not welcome patrons seeking to carry firearms openly.”
6. Jimmy Changas — Changas is owned by Russell Ybarra, who also owns Gringo’s, and have announced they will “not allow patrons to carry firearms openly.”
Once the law allowing open carry of handguns takes effect, Texans with concealed handgun permits will have the option to carry their guns in plain sight if they so choose. And Reuters reports that this means “nearly 1 million people in Texas” will be eligible to carry openly.
Those nearly one million Texans just cannot carry openly in H-E-B, Randall’s, Whole Foods, Torchy’s Tacos, Gringo’s Mexican Kitchen, and Jimmy Changas.
Follow AWR Hawkins on Twitter: @AWRHawkins. Reach him directly at firstname.lastname@example.org.