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Eric
18 September 2013, 04:46
http://www.starbucks.com/blog/an-open-letter-from-howard-schultz/1268
It looks like they can have my gold card back as soon as it runs out.


An Open Letter from Howard Schultz, ceo of Starbucks Coffee Company


Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Posted by Howard Schultz, Starbucks chairman, president and chief executive officer

Dear Fellow Americans,

Few topics in America generate a more polarized and emotional debate than guns. In recent months, Starbucks stores and our partners (employees) who work in our stores have been thrust unwillingly into the middle of this debate. That’s why I am writing today with a respectful request that customers no longer bring firearms into our stores or outdoor seating areas.

From the beginning, our vision at Starbucks has been to create a “third place” between home and work where people can come together to enjoy the peace and pleasure of coffee and community. Our values have always centered on building community rather than dividing people, and our stores exist to give every customer a safe and comfortable respite from the concerns of daily life.

We appreciate that there is a highly sensitive balance of rights and responsibilities surrounding America’s gun laws, and we recognize the deep passion for and against the “open carry” laws adopted by many states. (In the United States, “open carry” is the term used for openly carrying a firearm in public.) For years we have listened carefully to input from our customers, partners, community leaders and voices on both sides of this complicated, highly charged issue.

Our company’s longstanding approach to “open carry” has been to follow local laws: we permit it in states where allowed and we prohibit it in states where these laws don’t exist. We have chosen this approach because we believe our store partners should not be put in the uncomfortable position of requiring customers to disarm or leave our stores. We believe that gun policy should be addressed by government and law enforcement—not by Starbucks and our store partners.

Recently, however, we’ve seen the “open carry” debate become increasingly uncivil and, in some cases, even threatening. Pro-gun activists have used our stores as a political stage for media events misleadingly called “Starbucks Appreciation Days” that disingenuously portray Starbucks as a champion of “open carry.” To be clear: we do not want these events in our stores. Some anti-gun activists have also played a role in ratcheting up the rhetoric and friction, including soliciting and confronting our customers and partners.

For these reasons, today we are respectfully requesting that customers no longer bring firearms into our stores or outdoor seating areas—even in states where “open carry” is permitted—unless they are authorized law enforcement personnel.

I would like to clarify two points. First, this is a request and not an outright ban. Why? Because we want to give responsible gun owners the chance to respect our request—and also because enforcing a ban would potentially require our partners to confront armed customers, and that is not a role I am comfortable asking Starbucks partners to take on. Second, we know we cannot satisfy everyone. For those who oppose “open carry,” we believe the legislative and policy-making process is the proper arena for this debate, not our stores. For those who champion “open carry,” please respect that Starbucks stores are places where everyone should feel relaxed and comfortable. The presence of a weapon in our stores is unsettling and upsetting for many of our customers.

I am proud of our country and our heritage of civil discourse and debate. It is in this spirit that we make today’s request. Whatever your view, I encourage you to be responsible and respectful of each other as citizens and neighbors.

Sincerely,

Howard Schultz

UWone77
18 September 2013, 04:59
I don't know how you guys drank that overpriced, over roasted coffee in the first place.

Army Chief
18 September 2013, 07:22
I invested in a high-end Jura automatic coffee machine for the home long ago, so Starbucks outings aren't all that frequent for me; that said, this is not welcome news.

We can debate the wisdom of the whole open carry thing as a sidebar, but the real issue here is that, if stores begin posting signs, then the stated "preference" could very well become a felony for CCW holders in many states. Something we apparently brought upon ourselves, sadly enough.

AC

zero7one
18 September 2013, 08:40
I don't know how you guys drank that overpriced, over roasted coffee in the first place.

Right?!?!?! How bout some Forza?

Jerry R
18 September 2013, 13:28
He only seems to mention "open carry" ----- Concealed Carry okay? If it is concealed, they won't know anyway. I don't do StarBucks (I'm a wuss I guess) too strong (spelled BITTER) for me.

Army Chief
18 September 2013, 13:31
He only seems to mention "open carry" ----- Concealed Carry okay? If it is concealed, they won't know anyway. I don't do StarBucks (I'm a wuss I guess) too strong (spelled BITTER) for me.

Actually, his letter requests no guns on store property. He may have been reacting to open carry, but he makes no such distinctions in the written request, which raises serious potential problems for CCW in many states.

AC

UWone77
18 September 2013, 13:51
Right?!?!?! How bout some Forza?

Ha! Cheap shot. I don't drink coffee.

UWone77
18 September 2013, 15:07
I have a hard time blaming Starbucks for their stand when you have these common sense folks patronizing their stores.

http://i1016.photobucket.com/albums/af282/richdkim77/StarbucksOC_zps25e0fdc3.jpg (http://s1016.photobucket.com/user/richdkim77/media/StarbucksOC_zps25e0fdc3.jpg.html)

Jerry R
18 September 2013, 17:29
Actually, his letter requests no guns on store property. He may have been reacting to open carry, but he makes no such distinctions in the written request, which raises serious potential problems for CCW in many states.

AC

I went back through the letter and stand corrected. Thanks AC.

FortTom
19 September 2013, 19:02
Has anyone actually seen this letter from Starbucks? I'm not defending them, but for years they were smeared by a never ending internet email allegedly from a soldier or marine in Iraq. Said troop had requested some coffee from Starbucks and allegedly received a scathing response that basically said Starbucks wouldn't support the war effort or troops (murderer's) and other descriptions, and no they wouldn't send coffee. (all paraphrased). I was in Starbucks this morning, and didn't see any signs requiring me to disarm in order to get a cup of coffee that I happen to like. It turns out that Snopes and other fact check sites and media found the whole Iraq-Coffee thing to be a hoax, but not without a great deal of discontent and fiscal cost to Starbucks, from people who actually thought they were doing a great thing (myself included) by personally boycotting Starbucks. If this is true then I have to wonder why there are no signs here banning CCW on their premisis. If this letter is legit, then I can do without Starbucks, but I'd hate to see them on the receiving end of another internet hoax.

FT

Vic
19 September 2013, 19:10
The blog and letter are official. Also, he was interviewed on the local news either last night or the night before.

There will not be any posted signs as this is a request and not an outright ban.

browcs
19 September 2013, 19:22
I hope the friends of the fools who thought it a good idea to take a long gun into a private business gave them the mother of all throat punches.

KevinBLC
19 September 2013, 19:23
I hope the friends of the fools who thought it a good idea to take a long gun into a private business gave them the mother of all throat punches.

Or for letting his GF carry an XD

Computalotapus
19 September 2013, 19:31
Or for letting his GF carry an XD

This had me rolling haha

FortTom
19 September 2013, 20:23
The blog and letter are official. Also, he was interviewed on the local news either last night or the night before.

There will not be any posted signs as this is a request and not an outright ban.

Thanks, I missed the link to their site, and the fact that it's a request and not a ban is alright with me, in the sense that I'll still get a cup of java there, when I feel like it. Thanks for straightening me out as far as the validity of this thing.

FT

IRacknBack
19 September 2013, 23:23
I don't even see a sling on that AR so he'd have to carry it in his hands which could EASILY be construed as brandishing. What a douche.

Army Chief
20 September 2013, 03:19
Not to put too fine a point on all of this, but the inescapable conclusion for me is that we did this entirely to ourselves. I'm half-surprised that the company didn't just direct a total prohibition ... even if it remains to be seen how this will actually be implemented across the nation.

OC isn't necessarily stupid in-and-unto itself, but it is needlessly confrontational (at best), and sometimes making no statement at all is the far wiser course to take. We gained nothing of value here, unless you happen to think that shocking a few soccer moms is high art.

Be the Gray Man. Not the ham-and-egger creating a stir, just because he might technically have the force of law behind him if/when someone objects. Those who go looking for a fight will eventually find one. Starbucks is merely the latest example.

AC

rob_s
20 September 2013, 04:04
we did this entirely to ourselves.

Agree completely, if by "we" you mean the dirt-shooting, AR-as-male-Barbie-doll, no training, ignoramuses that have been attracted to the "gun culture" in the past decade.

Those two idiots in that picture, and pretty much every other one I've ever seen in various Starbucks open-carry photos, are not my "we". These open carry nitwits are to my kind of gun owner what the Branch Davidians are (were?) to Christianity.

Jerry R
20 September 2013, 07:41
Be the Gray Man.

AC, my sentiments exactly. While I live in an OC state, I don't want anyone knowing I'm carrying. I just want to live my life (safely) and be left alone.

FortTom
20 September 2013, 12:01
So, as you folks don't want to be branded as "gun nuts", etc..etc.. you definitely have absolutely no compunction in lumping us who choose to OC in our states, with the morons pictured with a rifle and OC handgun in Starbucks? Chief, don't tell me what to be, so as to suit what you think gun owners should be, that is to be seen as you wish to be seen to yourself. With enough friction coming from the anti-crowd, we (gun owners) are probably more splintered in how we should be seen, what and how we should carry, and comparing our intellectual capacity, to that of someone who is obviously in need of a kick in the butt, than the very united anti 2A folks. Our side suffers from enough fractured stances, which I feel folks like yourself help create, and pales in comparison of unity that the anti-2A folks portray. If you choose not to carry OC, then by all means, don't. I've never seen a single problem with it here, although I would admit there are limits and places that I wouldn't OC. We don't have a "technicality" in our state law, in KY, we have the total authority of the law.

FT

Army Chief
20 September 2013, 13:26
FortTom,

I actually own a house in Kentucky, carry on a Kentucky CCW and am pretty familiar with the laws and political climate are there. Frankly, I love the Bluegrass, and respect the approach they have to all-things-firearms; that said, we have to keep in mind that those in many other parts of the country do not enjoy these same atmospherics. Change the setting, and the very same actions can generate a much different kind of response. Not everyone in New England, for example, grows up with a .22 in their hands. Many people fear guns, and they may have good reason for it.

From my perspective, the problem with Open Carry is that is seems to be about making a statement that really doesn't need to be made. It strikes me as the sort of debate that young, cocksure males want to stir up simply because they can, with little thought given to whether or not it really makes much sense as a means of advancing the cause. As I've said before, that doesn't make me oppose the practice as a matter of principle, nor do I pre-judge, but you have to admit that there a lot of clowns out there trying to carry the banner for the movement. Crappy guns, crappy holsters, zero training ... and a burning need to rub their freedoms in everyone's faces.

No, this is not an accurate reflection of every OC proponent, and I know that. At the same time, it does speak to more than a few of them, and this is what the public sees, responds to and generates corporate responses like those we've just seen from Starbucks. Honestly, who is the idiot among us that ever expected this to play out any other way? We as a community forced their hand, and got an all-too-predictable response: your guns are not welcome here.

This could all have been avoided if they didn't even realize that we had our guns with us in the first place.
Think about it: we picked a fight that never had to happen at all. Our own doing entirely.

I'm not going to dwell upon the fact that OC also not only gives up an important tactical advantage, but it is worth keeping in mind here that it can actually makes things worse in that regard by drawing unwanted attention to the man with the gun. Instead, I'll be gregarious and suggest that I could even see doing it myself under certain circumstances. I just think those circumstances are a lot more limited for me than for most, because my real objective is to be left alone to exercise my freedoms without drawing attention from, or seeking to influence, anyone else. It is not their business. They can make their own decisions on the matter.

I do "get it." In some places and at some times, OC is benign, and even may do some good. I won't argue that point. There are doubtless many dudes out there doing it quite responsibly and putting a fairly good face on the movement inasmuch as anyone can. I'm simply suggesting that there is very little to be gained by it overall, and potentially much to be lost; especially when much of the public views the shooting community as a fringe element in the first place.

To me, this isn't about sticking together to defend the 2A, or getting our message out or even addressing the divisions that some perceive within our community; it's about making smart decisions, being solid citizens and going above and beyond to present an intelligent and cogent defense of our rights. Walking into a coffee shop with a shotgun that is neither needed nor wanted there just isn't in keeping with those goals. If someone walked up to me on the street in middle America brandishing an AR, I would presume that he was unstable, a moron or an active threat. All would be reasonable suspicions.

Do as you feel is appropriate to your own situation, but let us not lose sight of the fact that OC is what led to these battle lines being formed in the first place, and once that happened, there was absolutely no way to win. That is the real point of failure in all of this for me.

AC

Jerry R
20 September 2013, 14:48
So, as you folks don't want to be branded as "gun nuts", etc..etc.. you definitely have absolutely no compunction in lumping us who choose to OC in our states, with the morons pictured with a rifle and OC handgun in Starbucks?

Tom, sorry if you misunderstood my post. I speak for me and me alone. I try very hard not to make generalizations about people. However, things that members of a group do will reflect on the group as a whole - good or bad. Please try to remember the adage "Perception is Reality." It is how "we" are perceived that the group should be concerned about.

FortTom
20 September 2013, 18:21
Tom, sorry if you misunderstood my post. I speak for me and me alone. I try very hard not to make generalizations about people. However, things that members of a group do will reflect on the group as a whole - good or bad. Please try to remember the adage "Perception is Reality." It is how "we" are perceived that the group should be concerned about.
Jerry, I think there are plenty of people on both sides of the OC issue, who seem to make it their life's mission to make the rest of us look stupid. The best we can do about them (I'm referring to folks like the idiots pictured standing in Starbucks), is to marginalize them as much as possible as far as being any part of a legitimate "brotherhood" of (for lack of better word) firearms owners, LEO, military, and other professionals). I suppose my issue is with people who have a certain perspective of how we all must act and behave, or face a public lashing about how much lower we are on the mental rung of the common sense ladder. I'm not referring to your post necessarily but rather, a synthesis of many, many posts that seem to pop up when this subject comes up. In these posts , they usually start by "correcting" attitude, rather than addressing ones ideas, in the most condescending manner, posting past accomplishments as if they were the only folks in the world who may have the same credentials.

Sincerely,

FT

Army Chief
20 September 2013, 18:33
FT,

We got this one figured-out. Just broadcast on different frequencies when the first net call was made. No worries.

AC

Hmac
21 September 2013, 11:43
I don't blame Starbucks a bit. They unwillingly became a focal point for both pro and anit-gun forces. All they want to do is sell coffee. We can thank the pro-gun activists for getting gun rights this negative press. I sincerely hope that those same activists don't plan some kind of backlash in light of Starbucks' announcement and leave their assault weapons at home next time they feel like a cup of coffee.

In this state, a request by a store, written sign, verbal warning, or blog posting doesn't constitute notification of "no guns allowed" for the purposes of trespass. We have to be physically confronted, specifically ordered to leave, then refuse to leave before it becomes trespassing.

rob_s
22 September 2013, 17:11
If the only time you ever went to starbucks was expressly because you could open carry in order to post pictures on your facebook page, you're an idiot.

13SAVAGE13
22 November 2013, 01:11
Even in most sportsmans stores and gunshops they wouldn't allow or appreaciate someone walking around with an unchecked AR in hand, I wish that people would think things out a little bit more before they do something like this for "the cause".
We all know, I guess I should say most, know how freedom should be. knowing unfortunatly doesn't make it so. It takes tact and strategy to win this battle.