Tags: whataburger | open | carry | law | gun | texas

Whataburger: Open Carry Law Stands in TX but No Visible Firearms Allowed

By    |   Tuesday, 14 July 2015 10:22 AM

Texas may have an open-carry law, but Whataburger is not allowing the practice in its restaurants.

According to UPI, the fast-food chain based in the Lone Star state banned the open carrying of firearms in its nearly 800 southern restaurants as chief executive Preston Atkinson released a statement July 2 on the company’s website.

“We haven't allowed the open carry of firearms in our restaurants for a long time,” Atkinson said. “It's a business decision we made a long time ago and have stood by, and I think it's important you know why.”

“We've had many customers and employees tell us they're uncomfortable being around someone with a visible firearm who is not a member of law enforcement, and as a business, we have to listen and value that feedback in the same way we value yours,” Atkinson said.

While open carry is not permitted, concealed carry is, and Atkinson, himself a hunter and concealed carry permit holder, added, “Whataburger supports customers' Second Amendment rights, and we respect your group's position.”

“We proudly serve the gun rights community . . . From a business standpoint, though, we have to think about how open carry impacts our 34,000+ employees and millions of customers,” he wrote.

Texas passed open carry legislation for gun permit holders earlier this year. The law will be enacted Jan. 1, but businesses may refuse to permit the practice if they wish.

Texas Restaurant Association CEO Richie Jackson told The Associated Press he thinks Whataburger is paving the way for other restaurants to make similar announcements.

“Given the number of units that they have in Texas, they just wanted to make it very clear as to where they were going to be, and I would expect to see a number of restaurants follow,” Jackson said.

Open Carry Texas founder C.J. Grisham told the AP that Whataburger caved to “fear mongering.”

“I think most gun owners that know this policy are simply not going to go to Whataburger, like me,” he said.

Other business such as Target, Starbucks, Jack in the Box, Chipotle, Sonic, and Chili’s have also enacted firearm bans.

Twitters users were mixed on the decision:

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Texas may have an open-carry law, but Whataburger is not allowing the practice in its restaurants.
whataburger, open, carry, law, gun, texas
Tuesday, 14 July 2015 10:22 AM
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