chipotle bans guns

Chipotle Bans Guns, Caves To Pressure From Bloomberg Backed Group

Denver- Chipotle has decided to ban guns in their stores after caving to pressure by Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America, a Michael Bloomberg backed gun control group.

After photos surfaced on social media of armed representatives of Open Carry Texas at a Dallas-area Chipotle, Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America began circulating a petition that received over 10,000 signatures, according to a press release by the group.

Subsequently, the Denver based company on Monday afternoon released a statement that said:

The issue of gun ownership or gun rights has become one of the most contentious debates in the country. Chipotle has never taken a position on this issue, as we focus instead on our mission to change the way people think about and eat fast food.

Recently participants from an “open carry” demonstration in Texas brought guns (including military-style assault rifles) into one of our restaurants, causing many of our customer’s anxiety and discomfort.  Because of this, we are respectfully asking that customers not bring guns into our restaurants, unless they are authorized law enforcement personnel.

Historically, we felt it enough to simply comply with local laws regarding the open or concealed carrying of firearms, because we believe that it is not fair to put our team members in the uncomfortable position of asking that customers refrain from bringing guns into our restaurants.  However, because the display of firearms in our restaurants has now created an environment that is potentially intimidating or uncomfortable for many of our customers, we think it is time to make this request.

We acknowledge that there are strong arguments on both sides of this issue. We have seen those differing positions expressed in the wake of this event in Texas, where pro-gun customers have contacted us to applaud our support of the Second Amendment, and anti-gun customers have expressed concern over the visible display of military-style assault rifles in restaurants where families are eating. The vast majority of gun owners are responsible citizens and we appreciate them honoring this request. And we hope that our customers who oppose the carrying of guns in public agree with us that it is the role of elected officials and the legislative process to set policy in this area, not the role of businesses like Chipotle.

According to Forbes, C.J. Grisham, founder of Open Carry Texas, said there was no demonstration at Chipotle, simply a meal after an open carry event. “We don’t go there just to carry guns into a restaurant. We always let the manager know we’re coming. We try very hard to make people feel comfortable,” said Grisham.

Grisham said his group’s policy is to send an unarmed person into a restaurant to seek permission to dine and to warn staff and customers in advance. “We’re peaceful, we’re looking for a place to eat, but we have guns,” he said. “If we’re not welcome, we’re not going to spend money there.”

Previously, Chipotle had refused to prohibit open carry inside its stores even though it had every right to do so as a private business, with representatives saying, “We follow all local laws and plan to continue to do so.”


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