Guns at Starbucks? Pushing the Right to Bear Arms in Public

Don’t be “flashing your piece on the lanes,” kids.  These Starbucks cowboys have every right to carry those pistols, but does anyone really want to live in a community where they’re always reminded that people have the ability to easily murder each other?  It makes me a bit uneasy, but I would rather be uneasy than lose the right to be a cowboy myself.

From The Christian Science Monitor:

Small groups of armed Californians have been turning up at cafes and coffee shops with handguns holstered to their belts to raise awareness about gun rights and what they call unfair limits on concealed weapon permits.

The loosely organized “Bay Area Open Carry Movement” will gather in the Presidio, a national park in San Francisco, on Saturday, just days after a new law took effect allowing weapons to be carried in national parks and wildlife refuges.

David LaTour, a student at San Jose State University, has been carrying his Springfield XD 9mm handgun on his hip for about a month now and plans on attending the event, in which gun rights advocates will be picking up trash in the park and, they hope, talking to anyone interested in state gun laws.

California allows its citizens to openly display and carry unloaded weapons without a permit, but many gun advocates complain that the state is too restrictive when it comes to issuing licenses to carry concealed weapons.

“I looked into concealed carry permits, but unless you’re well-connected it’s impossible to obtain,” says Mr. LaTour. However, he says, “I personally prefer open carry because of the visual deterrent.” (Monitor report: “Cities’ gun restrictions begin to topple”)

[Read more at The Christian Science Monitor]

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  • http://lovewithoutsound.blogspot.com/ adam

    Ban all guns. Mass produce swords.

    • pb

      It's just as illegal to have a sword strapped to you as a .357.. but I agree with you :-)

  • gest

    “does anyone really want to live in a community where they’re always reminded that people have the ability to easily murder each other?” Well lets get something straight – killing is not the same as murder, murder by definition is unlawful killing isn't it?

    And there's another assumption here – that there's much of a community in the first place. If there is, both the “citizens” and the police may not be so insecure about an unloaded weapon, but people can't seem to distinguish between their own psychological reaction and a physical object, which in itself has no meaning. Do people feel differently when someone in uniform is carrying a weapon vs. a pedestrian? What's the rationale there? Does it make sense to automatically trust the authority figure because they wear some kind of uniform? That just means they've been given the power and certain rights that other people don't have, it tells you nothing about their character. This is supposed to make you more secure and at ease?

    People need to recognize the real liability is their emotional and psychological immaturity, and just plain stupidity along these lines.

    • Polymorpheous

      well put.

      would it be more comfortable for people to conceal carry? guaranteed those that choose to open carry are not the problem gun owners. criminals don't apply for permits to carry. and those are the gun owners people need to be concerned about.

      if someone's right makes someone else uncomfortable, then what? should we have no rights? as to not offend anyone by exercising said rights?

  • Polymorpheous

    california's gun laws are unbelievably restrictive, yet has gun crime gone down in their major cities?

    • 5by5

      No, because the gun has nothing to do with either increasing or decreasing the crime. Irrational national drug policy that criminalizes a medical condition, combined with poverty, insufficient or poor policing, and the erosion of the social safety net have more to do with crime than the guns do.

      The only thing a gun does, it make it far more likely that in the commission of any particular crime, someone will die.

    • jacobsloan

      If I'm not mistaken, over two decades, gun crime has plummeted in California's major cities, which are now among the safest in the nation.

  • dumbsaint

    This concept is so bizarre to me. I understand that it's peoples right to bear arms over there and so forth but is it really necessary to do it publically, where people bring their kids? 'Just because you can do something, doesn't mean you should.' Y'know, common sense.

    • http://profiles.yahoo.com/u/PDDVWRQVUPMKRGHURIEQVNYWHQ Sean

      you do understand what bearing arms means right, bearing them isnt keeping them hidden away useless in a vault.

      • dumbsaint

        Sure, you understand the difference between 'right to' and 'must do' yea?

        • http://profiles.yahoo.com/u/PDDVWRQVUPMKRGHURIEQVNYWHQ Sean

          a right is meaningless unless it as actively used,
          the same as freedom of speech and assembly

          • dumbsaint

            Exercising a right used without reason is also meaningless. In this case exercising your right means introducing a tool which sole purpose is to blow a fleshy hole through someone into environments where it is completely unneccesary.

            You want protection? I guess a gun brings a little bit of that. Personally the kind of protection I value is that offered by a society where I can send my kid to a school where theree is only a negligble chance that they will be shot dead. If the guns aren't there it simply cannot happen. And if the government turns nasty and casts me out of my land and I have to beat them off with my improvised sword-chucks then I'll at least have the comfort that no kids had to die so I had a better arsenal at my disposal.

  • Rich

    There is an old saying “Those who live by the sword, die by the sword” and this can equally be applied to a country, and indeed the U.S is dying by the sword, considering there are over 10,000+ gun related murders every year, whereas in Australia which has very tight gun regulations there is just 59 per year. If we want to change something in our country…….we vote :)

    • http://profiles.yahoo.com/u/PDDVWRQVUPMKRGHURIEQVNYWHQ Sean

      i will never under stand how a nation who started out as rebels and criminals allowed themselves to be so beaten by their government that being told what they can view on the internet and even what video games they are allowed to play, dieing by the sword is the best way to go, I'd take it over the oven or the gas chamber, or the slow suffocation of the serf.

      • dumbsaint

        The Simpsons isn't the best way to study history.

  • 5by5

    Actually what cracks me up most about all this foolishness is that most of this overt gun carrying occurs in communities where NOTHING IS HAPPENING.

    Right in the middle of ultra-boring suburbia, or some silly hick town nobody gives a RAT'S ASS ABOUT and can barely find on a map, where frankly you don't even have anything interesting enough to steal, much less murder for, the (predominantly) white men with cowboy fantasies run about scared to death of….. WHAT?????

    Nobody's coming to “get” you. Nobody CARES!!

    The real question I think that should be asked is not, “Why do you want to carry a gun?” or “Do you think you have a right to carry a gun in public like this?” but rather, “Why in flipping hell are you so scared of your own bloody shadow?” “Why are you so scared all the time, that you think that to merely leave your home and walk on the streets in a civilized First World country, that you need to be armed to the teeth?” “WHY ARE YOU SUCH A PUSSY?”

    I mean, is it just that these people are afraid to die? Well get over it! You're going to die one way or the other. In fact, you've been in the process of dying from the moment you were born, so deal already, and stop unnecessarily endangering the rest of us with the prospect of CROSSFIRE BETWEEN MORONS.

    And for those advocates who think this is how you'll defend yourself against “the government”, characterizing you as a moron is too kind. The irony is you're most likely the same kind of dweeb whose supported every sabre-rattling Republican since time began who has ballooned the Defense budget to such ridiculous proportions, that it now encompasses fully 55% of all spending the government does.

    And I hate to break it to you, but they've been spending this money on more than just a weapon that would be comparable to that pathetic pop gun you've got stored in your closet (where it's more likely that your kid will get ahold of it, than a government agent).

    No, “the government” has TANKS, and NDU-tipped bunker buster bombs, and cluster mines, and giant sonic fuck-you mobiles, and drones, stealth bombers, and flying fortresses that will kill you before you even know they're there, and last but not least, NUKES that'll peel your skin off and give you a permanent orange afro and turn the dirt to glass in a 3000 degree instant.

    And you gave them the weapons! All because you were scared of still OTHER people.

    Pathetic.

    The only Republican you SHOULD have been listening to was Eisenhower, and the speech he made while walking out the door of the White House, about the DOMESTIC THREAT posed by undue power whether sought or unsought, by the military-industrial complex.

    • http://profiles.yahoo.com/u/PDDVWRQVUPMKRGHURIEQVNYWHQ Sean

      the reason you keep weapons isn't out of fear,
      you keep them because an unarmed man is a serf.

      • 5by5

        The serfdom is more a product of your thinking than anything else. If your mind is free, no man can take that away, even if he takes your life.

    • gest

      “..stop unnecessarily endangering the rest of us with the prospect of CROSSFIRE BETWEEN MORONS.”

      Well in your own words:

      “WHY ARE YOU SUCH A PUSSY?”

      Actually I wouldn't assume you are, just as many who do not necessarily want to die a premature death doesn't have existential angst over it. And of course, being as well informed as you evidently are, you know that's just how some people are. So once again, in your own words:

      “so deal already.”

      I actually pretty much agree with you, just not into the drama.

  • nykh

    “but does anyone really want to live in a community where they’re always reminded that people have the ability to easily murder each other?” I live and work in one such community, Baltimore Maryland. Do the fact check your selves to see the extremely high murder rate in this city, also check the facts, Maryland has some of the strictest gun laws in the country. Obviously they do not work. The criminals carry guns, acquired illegally and use them often. I, on the other hand cannot unless I wish to be a criminal. So like the drug laws in this county, the gun laws do nothing to stop the use of illegal guns by criminals, and do not work.
    I would happily go to this Strarbucks, it is a good bet that it wouldn’t be robed, or a patron mugged.

  • http://thefirstchurchofmutterhals.blogspot.com/ mutterhals

    I don't mind law abiding citizens carrying guns.

  • Gest Jr.

    So when the Black Panthers legally carried weapons in public it was a statement against government oppression.

    But when a Starbucks employee does the same, he's a “cowboy.”

    Black Panthers > Starbucks.

    Got it.

    • 5by5

      Considering that the government itself really WAS out killing black men at that time – especially ones that dared stand up for their community – I'm inclined to agree with Malcolm X that their carrying was merely intelligence. I'm also certain they would have put down their guns just as soon as people stopped harassing them. And I'm certain that the main purpose of the Black Panthers was to do things like provide free child care, hot lunches, job assistance, and the kinds of social services that the federal government SHOULD have been providing, but wasn't. It was more about self-determination than violence. But violence was thrust upon them all the same, because they were inappropriately unapologetic for the likes of some, and dared challenged the powers that be, who don't like to share.

      Nobody is similarly threatening some fluffy white guy in suburbia.

      CALM DOWN.

      The fact is, that much of this silliness is due to people listening to the batcrap crazy demagogues on the radio whipping them up into a fear frenzy. And much of it has to do with their own internalized racism. It's no accident that the Klan and the NRA were born at the same point in history.

      Some white folk are still irrationally afraid of the black man. And this time, that uppity negro done got himself into the White House as something OTHER than a servant. So that sort is absolutely losing it's shit over it.

      To people like that, I say, let go of your fear, and act more intelligently. Learn to share your toys.

      • guest

        I’m not sure if you’re going to read this, as it has been nine months since you posted, but the NRA and the KKK are the anti-thesis of each other. One was started by Former Union soldiers (the NRA) and the other was started by former Confederate soldiers. You need to brush up on your history, if you believe that Johnny Ribs and Yankees hung out together. If anything, gun control is racist, (and discriminates against the poor in general) and the NRA stands up for the rights of minorities to own guns.

  • conniedobbs

    New rule – Anytime you see someone openly carrying a gun, you must grab your closest same sex friend and start making out with them RIGHT THERE. It doesn't matter if you're gay – the law says you are allowed to make out with anyone you want. When you're done with your tongue battle, you must utter the words “God Damn, that was like licking the devil's sperm off of Jesus' face!” Because, after all, the 1st amendment is one better than the second.

  • GoodDoktorBad

    There is little if any honour in carrying a gun around on your belt. I doesn't matter whether your a cop or civilian. The gun is there to strike the fear of death into people, the same fear, by the way, that prompted them to carry a gun in the first place. So, now what do we have? A bunch of fearful people running around with weapons of instant death on their belts.

  • gest

    “..stop unnecessarily endangering the rest of us with the prospect of CROSSFIRE BETWEEN MORONS.”

    Well in your own words:

    “WHY ARE YOU SUCH A PUSSY?”

    Actually I wouldn’t assume you are, just as many who do not necessarily want to die a premature death doesn’t have existential angst over it. And of course, being as well informed as you evidently are, you know that’s just how some people are. So once again, in your own words:

    “so deal already.”

    I actually pretty much agree with you, just not into the drama.

  • guest

    I’m not sure if you’re going to read this, as it has been nine months since you posted, but the NRA and the KKK are the anti-thesis of each other. One was started by Former Union soldiers (the NRA) and the other was started by former Confederate soldiers. You need to brush up on your history, if you believe that Johnny Ribs and Yankees hung out together. If anything, gun control is racist, (and discriminates against the poor in general) and the NRA stands up for the rights of minorities to own guns.

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