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Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Seacowboys, Oct 22, 2006.

  1. Seacowboys

    Seacowboys Senior Member Founding Member

    <TABLE cellSpacing=0 cellPadding=3 width="100%" border=0><TBODY><TR><TD></TD><TD>[FONT=Verdana, Arial, Helvetica]Costco Bans Guns

    Fellow newslinks editor Bruce Kraft learned the hard way about Costco's gun ban. Below is his story.
    Mark A. Taff
    "Here is the longer version of events, as I posted on the local carry forum:
    We were on our way to the Renaissance Festival site to finish picking stuff up, and make sure that the refrigerator was properly cleaned, etc. so we decided to go to the Eden Prairie CostCo, instead of the one in Coon Rapids which is where we normally shop. It was cool outside, so I was wearing a heavy flannel shirt over my polo shirt and shoulder holster. I was carrying my usual Para-Ordnance P-14, with a stainless finish. As we came in I flashed the membership card to the greeter, and paused to take off my flannel shirt. We spent about 35 minutes in the store, going all the way through, down most of the aisles. No one said anything.
    We arrived at the registers, and got rung out. I paid, and as we are getting ready to head out, Brian came up and said that "for the comfort and safety" of their employees and guests, he asked that I leave my gun outside.
    I said "No problem, sorry if I caused any fuss." I then asked if this was the policy of the Eden Prairie store, or a company-wide policy. He said it was company policy. I asked if I could get some sort of written statement or copy of the policy, because there were 35,000 permit holders in the state of Minnesota alone who were going to want to know about it.
    Oh, and since they didn't want me in their store could they please return my groceries. Brian said "Oh, no, your perfectly welcome to shop here, we just" at which point I cut him off saying "You just asked me to leave, so obviously I am *not* welcome here, and neither is my money." (I have played out scenarios like this in my mind for several years, it was gratifying that he kept giving me all the right straight lines).
    So he took my receipt and said he would return the groceries. This was made a little more difficult because I paid with an ATM card, so they couldn't just refund it the way you do a credit card, he had to pull cash out of the safe (but more about that later).
    The other guy I talked to, whose name I never caught came out with a copy of the policy, except it looked like it was the body of an e-mail that had been sent out to someone. I had a line at the top saying PRINT ON LETTERHEAD and no name or signature at the bottom.
    I asked if I could get something on letterhead, or at least with a real live person's signature on it, so they disappeared into the back office again.
    Brian returned with my money, but apparently was frightened of me, because he gave the cash to Dianne (my fiancee). She noticed this, and said she could barely keep from laughing, because he wouldn't even look at me (even though I was standing about 6 inches from her) and his hand was shaking as he counted the money back. For those of you who don't know me, I am 6'4", 340 pounds with a shaved head and about 4 inches of beard. And my surgeon said I had the biggest chest cavity she had ever worked in. So I guess even without a .45 in my armpit I am a little intimidating.
    At this point Other Guy showed up again, and I asked him why there was any sort of "safety" issue with my carrying in the store. He replied that they didn't know anything about me, except that I had a gun. Oh, bless him, another perfect straight line.
    "But you do know things about me. By virtue of my having a permit to carry a weapon, you know that I have never been convicted of a felony, or even a violent misdemeanor in the last 10 years. You know that I don't have any drug or alcohol addiction, and no history of mental problems. And you know that my county sheriff doesn't consider me a threat to myself or others. Do you know all of that about any of your other customers?"
    He had no reply. After about a half-hour, I got tired of waiting, and left with the assurance that they would mail me a copy of the letter on company letterhead."
    Bruce continues:
    "BTW, their letter is misleading, I never raised the issue of civil rights, because I firmly believe that companies have every right to ban whomever they please, I just think it is not fair for them to hide the fact."
    You can read a pdf of the
    letter Costco sent to Bruce.
    "We at Costco welcome your feedback." <CITE>-- www.costco.com<CITE>
    What a grand idea! Call Costco at 1-800-774-2678 and give them your feedback on their gun ban policy.

  2. ghrit

    ghrit Ambulatory anachronism Administrator Founding Member

    There is nothing about this policy in my membership agreement either. Wonder why --
  3. yonder

    yonder No Despot's Servant

    Just to be fair here, why were the people in Costco ever aware of the gun?

    Concealed Carry is meant to be just that: concealed. If the protagonist of this story had kept his gun concealed like it was supposed to be all along, there never would have been an issue.
  4. Seacowboys

    Seacowboys Senior Member Founding Member

    He probably drew-down on some mean old woman that broke line.
  5. Clyde

    Clyde Jet Set Tourer Administrator Founding Member

    when you carry it in out armpit, it isn't really concealed once you take your shirt off. It appears it was more of an "open carry".
  6. TnAndy

    TnAndy Senior Member Founding Member

    This was at a Costco in Minnesota. From the MN Dept of Public Safety FAQs on pistol permits:

    If I have a permit to carry a pistol do I have to conceal the pistol?

    No. Minnesota’s Personal Protection Act is a permit to carry law, not a conceal and carry law.

    But it also MN Law states that any business can request you not carry in their establishment and you must comply....they can either post on the doors, OR they can have their personel do the 'requesting'......either is legal.

    Although I also wouldn't shop anywhere that has this stated policy, I also think many business have more of a "don't ask, don't tell" policy.

    They AREN'T gonna go to the point of pissing off gunowners by posting the doors, but if you insist on displaying your iron, they will use the "tell ya" policy. Best thing all around for this guy to have done was to kept his flannel shirt on, done his shopping, and had an incident occurred that REQUIRED use of his firearm, get it out then.

    I think that's what you'll find the majority of permit holders do.
  7. monkeyman

    monkeyman Monkey+++ Moderator Emeritus Founding Member

    They have every right to say I cant carry there and I have every right to NOT spend money there and to let others know about their policies so they can also NOT spend money there. The only people their policies will keep from carrying are those who carry for self defence legaly, no criminal will pay any attention to them and this is basic common sense so I figure anyone who normaly dose carry and is involved in any kind of incident where they could have avoided harm by being armed would have a REAL good case against them for negligance since if they are saying you cant protect your self then they take on the responsibility to do it for you. Would love to see them, after loseing loads of money from those who carry, get hit with a few million in law suits over it.

    I know one of the guys here in MO kind of got the message to one of the home improvement stores when his wife picked out over $10k in stuff to redo their kitchen and he started to bring in the check book to pay for it (it was already rang up) and after seeing their 'no CCW' sign told the manager they wouldnt be buying stuff there due to their policy then to add insult to injury sent him a copy of the reciept where he bought the stuff from their competitor with a card that said 'no guns=no $'.
  8. TnAndy

    TnAndy Senior Member Founding Member

    'no guns=no $'

    I agree.....if they are so stupid as to post this on their door, this is exactly my policy as well.....and they know that, which is WHY most of them don't post it.....just like the Costco in the article that started this thread.

    But I suspect if you were to actually ASK what the policy is in a business, especially a bigger chain type, you'd find youself with few places to shop.

    The few times I have seen this on a door, I make it a point to go in and confront a management/owner type. Went into a store in Asheville, NC one day while wandering around downtown with my wife.....wasn't even the kind of store I'd have even gone in except for the fricking sign.....some kind of old hippie art/junk store. Confronted the owner with a couple questions:

    "See you have a No Guns sign on your door....why is that ?"

    OldHippe "We don't see any need in people carrying guns"

    "Uh.....you DO realize that the only people that pay any attention to that are the people that already obey the law, right ?.........that someone intent on doing harm is not gonna be stopped by a hunk of inked cardboard..."

    OH.....mumbles something....

    "And you do realize by posting that, you actually make yourself a target for someone that is out to commit a crime with arms ?"

    OH....now just a glare....

    "And are YOU willing to accept full responsibility for any harm that comes to someone complying with your policy IF they were harmed by the fact they are unarmed and hurt during a robbery ?"

    More glare.

    "Well, much as I'd like to shop here, I just can't bring myself to buy anything in a place with such stupid policies......see ya'll later"......not that I would have bought any of that artsy-fartsy stuff anyway.
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