Leah Barkoukis

The National Rifle Association took the opportunity last week to denounce the behavior of an open-carry group in Texas, which they say “crossed the line from enthusiasm to downright foolishness.”

Red Alert has the backstory:

The National Rifle Association is pushing back against the actions of pro-gun activists, namely those with the group Open Carry Texas, for flaunting their semiautomatic rifles while dining at various fast food restaurants and called the demonstrations “weird,” “scary” and downright foolish.

In recent months, members of Open Carry Texas have made a habit of entering fast food restaurants with AK-47s and AR-15s slung across their shoulders. Though open carry is legal in the Lone Star State, the group’s demonstrations caused multiple eateries, most recently Chipotle, to ban firearms at their restaurants.

“It is a rare sight to see someone sidle up next to you in line for lunch with a 7.62 rifle slung across his chest, much less a whole gaggle of folks descending on the same public venue with similar arms,” the statement reads. “Let's not mince words, not only is it rare, it's downright weird and certainly not a practical way to go normally about your business while being prepared to defend yourself. To those who are not acquainted with the dubious practice of using public displays of firearms as a means to draw attention to oneself or one's cause, it can be downright scary. It makes folks who might normally be perfectly open-minded about firearms feel uncomfortable and question the motives of pro-gun advocates.”

Basically, all actions have consequences and responsible gun owners need to consider how such demonstrations will affect others. In the case of the fast food restaurants, their actions backfired.

“[T]he freedom and goodwill these businesses had previously extended to gun owners has been curtailed because of the actions of an attention-hungry few who thought only of themselves and not of those who might be affected by their behavior. To state the obvious, that's counterproductive for the gun owning community.”


Leah Barkoukis

Leah Barkoukis is the Managing Editor at Townhall Magazine.

Author Photo credit: Jensen Sutta Photography