Since more restrictive gun control measures are a nonstarter in Congress, Mom’s Demand Action for Gun Sense, an organization supported by former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg, has been on a crusade in recent months to pressure retailers and chain stores into banning firearms from their properties.
Many of the anti-gun group’s targets — including Chipotle, Starbucks, and Target — have acquiesced to their demands. But Kroger, one of the United States’ largest groceries stores, isn’t bending to the pressure, according to this recent story from the Wall Street Journal:
“When a company like Kroger doesn’t have a policy around guns, it seems to send a signal to gun extremists that they tacitly support or even endorse things like open carry,” said Shannon Watts, founder of Moms Demand Action.
A spokesman for Kroger, which also owns chains including Harris Teeter and Fred Meyer, said corporate policies abiding by state and local laws are sufficient to protect customers. “Millions of customers are present in our busy grocery stores every day and we don’t want to put our associates in a position of having to confront a customer who is legally carrying a gun,” said Kroger spokesman Keith Dailey. “We know that our customers are passionate on both sides of this issue and we trust them to be responsible in our stores.”
Keep in mind that many states in which Kroger has stores allow residents to carry, provided they’re properly licensed or in compliance with state and local regulations.
The Second Amendment — which includes not just the right to keep and bears arms, but also the right to self-defense — doesn’t matter to Mom’s Demand Action. The organization is asking its supporters to sign a petition demanding that Kroger ban guns from its stores and to tweet at Kroger using the hashtags #GroceriesNotGuns and #MomsDemand.
What Mom’s Demand Action is doing is intimidation. There just isn’t another word for it. Thankfully, Kroger is standing strong in the midst of this. The grocery retailer isn’t a legislative body, and it wants to respect local laws and its customers, who are well within their rights to carry or not.
Here’s hoping Kroger continues to stand strong against this intimidation.