Huffington Post recently reported a list of 7 companies “that don’t want guns in their stores.” However, three of those companies allow concealed carry, and one of these three allows open carry as well.
Here is HuffPo’s list of companies that allegedly don’t want guns in their stores: Whataburger, Chipotle, Panera Bread, Sonic, Chili’s, Starbucks, and Target.
And here is the first problem—the very first company on the list, Whataburger, only bans open carry in their restaurants. They still allow concealed carry. Moreover, the AP describes Whataburger president and CEO Preston Atkins “as an avid hunter with a concealed carry license.”
Here is the second problem—on the same day that Target CEO John Mulligan “respectfully [requested] that guests not bring firearms into Target,” the company’s PR group manager made sure to stress that Mulligan’s request did not amount to a prohibition. On July 2, 2014, she said pointedly, “This is a request and not a prohibition.” Because of this, on July 3, The Washington Post ran the following headline: “Target announces but won’t enforce gun ban.”
The third and biggest problem with the list is that Starbucks never banned open carry or concealed. Persistent claims to the contrary are disingenuous at best.
Following Moms Demand Action’s 2013 campaign to get guns banned from the company’s stores, Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz said the coffee giant was not going to ban guns in its stores, but he did ask that customers quit carrying guns in the open just to make a point.
On September 18, 2013, the AP reported that Schultz even indicated that customers who continued to open carry would still be served. He simply asked pro-gun customers to be less flamboyant in the way they handle the issue.
Follow AWR Hawkins on Twitter: @AWRHawkins. Reach him directly at firstname.lastname@example.org.