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Bridget Johnson

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July 2, 2014 - 1:13 pm

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Gun-control advocates flocked to the side of Target today after the retail chain asked gun-permit holders to not pack heat inside the store.

“As you’ve likely seen in the media, there has been a debate about whether guests in communities that permit ‘open carry’ should be allowed to bring firearms into Target stores. Our approach has always been to follow local laws, and of course, we will continue to do so. But starting today we will also respectfully request that guests not bring firearms to Target – even in communities where it is permitted by law,” interim Target CEO John Mulligan said in a statement today.

“We’ve listened carefully to the nuances of this debate and respect the protected rights of everyone involved. In return, we are asking for help in fulfilling our goal to create an atmosphere that is safe and inviting for our guests and team members,” Mulligan continued.

“This is a complicated issue, but it boils down to a simple belief: Bringing firearms to Target creates an environment that is at odds with the family-friendly shopping and work experience we strive to create.”

Sen. Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.) responded by running down to Target to buy a couple bags of candy.

“Today, I shopped at Target because it’s doing the right thing on guns,” Blumenthal said. “Target knows that allowing customers to carry guns in its stores is not consistent with providing parents and their children with a safe and secure place to shop. I applaud Target’s decision to change its gun policy – a decision that reflects growing public support for gun safety across the country. Customers are no safer when they carry guns into Target, or any other store or restaurant.”

The group Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America began putting pressure on Target to keep guns out of its stores after open-carry advocates posted pictures online of shoppers with their guns.

“I am pleased that Target has announced its commitment to prioritize customer safety by asking guests not to bring firearms into Target stores,” Sen. Chris Murphy (D-Conn.) said in a statement. “As noted in a letter to Target’s CEO last month after a loaded gun was found in the toy aisle of a South Carolina Target store, when policies are not in place to prohibit firearms in stores, everyone is at risk. Today’s announcement demonstrates a strong sense of responsibility by Target’s management, and follows the customer-friendly approach other companies, such as Starbucks and Chipotle, have taken to prohibit firearms in their establishments.”

“The fight against gun violence in our communities isn’t something any one person or organization can take on alone. I applaud Target for the implementation of this policy, and encourage other retailers to follow their example,” Murphy continued. “I also want to recognize the advocates, consumers, and everyday citizens who pushed Target to ban guns in its stores. These advocates are working tirelessly to encourage Congress and private organizations to take a stand against gun violence, and I’m proud to stand with them every step of the way.”

Blumenthal and Murphy have failed to advance stricter gun-control laws in the Senate after the Sandy Hook shooting in their home state.

Bridget Johnson is a veteran journalist whose news articles and opinion columns have run in dozens of news outlets across the globe. Bridget first came to Washington to be online editor at The Hill, where she wrote The World from The Hill column on foreign policy. Previously she was an opinion writer and editorial board member at the Rocky Mountain News and nation/world news columnist at the Los Angeles Daily News. She is an NPR contributor and has contributed to USA Today, The Wall Street Journal, National Review Online, Politico and more, and has myriad television and radio credits as a commentator. Bridget is Washington Editor for PJ Media.
All Comments   (2)
All Comments   (2)
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Suck on them Werthers, Dick Blu.
8 weeks ago
8 weeks ago Link To Comment
The perfect non-response to the emotion-driven, intellectually challenged, low-information anti-gun nut. Asking law-abiding gun owners to not carry in the store carries no weight in Texas. If they post 30.06 signs, then they can expect to lose a lot of money. But so far, the retail companies that have been pressured by Mom/PR Exec Demanding Action have done this public request activity to shine them on. No doubt Every Town for Gun Bans (Bloomberg’s new organization) will claim another populist victory, Target will wait for the cameras and microphones to disappear, and it’s back to business as usual. And it IS business. Very doubtful Target will post those 30.06 signs in Texas just because one female PR executive contrived a conniption. Lots of Texas real moms will ask Target what will you do to protect my children when I shop at your store. Target will say we’re not legally required. Moms ignore Target, carry for their children’s protection, or take business elsewhere. A truly safe family environment cares about being able to actually protect the children. Who better than those who love them?
8 weeks ago
8 weeks ago Link To Comment
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