Gun Control Advocates Target Open Carry At Coffee Shops | WAMU 88.5 - American University Radio

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Gun Control Advocates Target Open Carry At Coffee Shops

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A few dozen protesters silently held signs outside of a Starbucks in Old Town Alexandria to protest against the chain's policy, which complies with local gun laws.
Peter Granitz
A few dozen protesters silently held signs outside of a Starbucks in Old Town Alexandria to protest against the chain's policy, which complies with local gun laws.

By Peter Granitz

A gun control advocacy group is pushing Starbucks to ban handguns in its Virginia stores.

Virginia is one of 43 states that allow residents to openly carry guns. Mary Ester with the Brady Campaign says businesses can opt to ban guns in their own stores.

Starbucks allows its patrons to display their firearms.

"If a group of people walked into Starbucks without shoes, without shirts, they would be asked to leave," says Ester. "What’s more dangerous, or potentially dangerous, no shirt or guns?"

Saturday morning, a few dozen protesters silently held signs outside of a Starbucks in Old Town Alexandria. Some of them read 'espresso shots...not gun shots.'

Fairfax resident Jim Sollo says Starbucks needs to change its policy.

"We just think it’s kind of stupid," he says. "Accidents can happen. People bring their children in here."

A spokesperson for Starbucks did not return a request for comment, but a statement on the company’s website says it will continue to comply with local gun laws.

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