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Starbucks says guns unwelcome - abc27 WHTM

Starbucks says guns unwelcome

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HARRISBURG, Pa. (WHTM) -

Starbucks is asking gun owners not to bring their guns into its cafes.

The request was posted in an open letter on the company's website Tuesday and is getting mixed reviews.

Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz said the company is respectfully requesting that customers no longer bring firearms into its stores and outdoor seating areas, even in states where "open carry" is permitted, unless they are authorized law enforcement personnel.

In an exclusive CNN interview, Schultz said Starbucks is not banning firearms.

"We are not pro or anti-gun," he said. "However, we do believe that guns should not be a part of the Starbucks experience. We are respectfully requesting that those customers who are carrying a gun just honor the request and not bring the gun into Starbucks."

Schultz says both anti-gun and pro-gun groups have used their stores as a political stage for the gun debate.

Many gun owners are speaking out against the request.

"I think gun owners will boycott them now," said Richard Greenberg, owner of Mechanicsburg Ordinance.

Greenberg, who has been in the gun selling business for 20 years, says many of his customers will not be a fan of Starbucks' request.

"The majority of people don't carry openly, they don't advertise that they have a gun. The personnel there probably aren't going to know if someone is carrying," Greenberg said. "It is not going to be the legal gun owner carrying a gun for which he has a license to carry that is going to cause the next mass shooting."

Many customers at the Starbucks in Carlisle were not aware of the "no gun" request Wednesday, but the few who did supported the idea.

"I think it is the stores right to ask. It is their property and it is their decision," Whitney Wells of Carlisle said. "I think you can leave the gun in the car and you do not need to bring it in the store. I do not think you really need it in Starbucks."

 

On the Web: http://globalassets.starbucks.com/blog/an-open-letter-from-howard-schultz/1268

 

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