COSTCO - A recent company change of attitude?
This is from the Jackson Hole Tea Party.com BLOG page, an item I wrote.
Locally, well not too local, an anti-gun attitude was met in Pocatello, Idaho.
For years the Costco big box store got some business from this shopper while wearing a side arm, all the time with little or no attention by the staff. Discussions occurred with employees, in clear sight of the side arm. They were questioned on the location and availability of goods. Then on Thursday, September 13, all that changed.
This shopper was challenged by the greeter at the door saying, “you can not enter carrying a gun”. The action was questioned and the reply was that it was “policy”. It was pointed out that no signs were visible citing any restriction of entry with a firearm. The employee replied that the policy was printed in the membership form. The warehouse general manager was not available but an assistant manager repeated the policy.
I was directed to leave the firearm in the car, but the potential hazard of doing that while shopping was explained. The safest place for the side arm would be on my hip. The hazard to the shopper and the store of being denied the tools for legal self defense while in the store were explained, all to no avail. When it was asked the answer was “no, they did not have a secure locker where firearm carriers could leave their side arms”. Law enforcement officers who are NOT in uniform and not on duty are also asked to leave. What happened with Costo to cause this sudden change in activity? We were not told.
The clear option was to inform the manager that the membership would be canceled and shopping will be done at a more friendly store. We then visited the Sam’s Club store in Idaho Falls and, while wearing the side arm, specifically talked to the management about their policy. In a word the reply was “no problem”. The shopper membership is now at Sam’s Club in Idaho Falls, about 100 miles less travel to do the shopping.
What can you do?
When you encounter a block along your path of freedom, note it, check the facts and then act, or at least speak out. Inform those blocking your path that you will take your business elsewhere - and then Do So. Apply the “No Guns - No Money” lesson and cards mentioned above when you encounter the occasional restriction.
In response to the above one Blog reader raised the following issue to which I replied as below.
"If I were in a big box store and I saw someone with an exposed firearm, I would leave immediately Not knowing why that person was armed, I would not stick around to find out."
My reply was;
The person carrying a firearm legally (not criminal intent) IS the person you want out in public. They can defend themselves and therefore those around them.
The person open carrying is NOT out to cause trouble or attack anyone. Criminals would have hidden agendas and weapons, and they would ignore any signs or store policy anyway.
The open carrier does so for several reasons. 1) clothing may not be sufficient to properly conceal the firearm, especially in summer warmer days. 2) Concealed carry may not be an option (not a resident of the state, etc) 3) Open carry can make it easier to bring a firearm into action if needed. 4) Open carry makes it easier to identify the person carrying a firearm - AND that makes him a possible FIRST target for the criminal. This is a known and accepted risk. 5) Open carry makes it easy to strike up a conversation with a knowing and unafraid person. I have had MANY very good conversations over the years.
If I had been carrying concealed I would have just walked in and no one would have been the wiser. Contact me any time for a free and easy familiarization and training session with firearms.