Kevin got a reply back from the establishment that prohibited carry in Arizona, which basically revealed the proprietor isn’t the biggest fan of ordinary citizens carrying guns around. That’s making me wonder if there might be a technique that would be more effective for gun owners to try. I live six miles outside of a major city who’s culture and population are not too friendly to the idea either, but I’ve only ever into one place that’s got a sign. I think the reason establishments aren’t quick to post signs is twofold, one is that most of the guns walking around this area are out of sight, meaning businesses and proprietors aren’t really all that aware people are walking around with guns. Two is that they don’t want to risk the signal that their establishment is that kind of place. It’s to the latter that this idea is geared. Let me give you a hypothetical conversation or e-mail:
You: I notice the no guns sign outside. What kind of place is this? Do I have to be worried this is the kind of establishment people want to bring guns to?
Them: Oh no, it’s perfectly fine. There was a chance in state law, and we have to put that there to keep people with guns out.
You: It makes me uncomfortable that you think you have to put a sign up like that. What does it say about the kind of place? They don’t have a sign up at <pick your own competitor here>, maybe that’s a safer place.
Now they will likely try to explain it away, but they will wonder how many customers think the same thing and don’t say anything. Maybe I’m totally nuts here, but I’m suggesting that based on the fact that someone putting up a sign likely isn’t really likely to budge on the issue in terms of philosophy, unless a lot of gun owners complain. Probably not enough will to make a difference.
But if you can make the manager fear that the no guns sign is making customers wonder if their business is kind of a rough place, or that the sign is reflecting poorly on their business, they might rethink it. Obviously that’s not a prescription for every circumstance, but I have to wonder if that could work on some proprietors who aren’t going to be persuaded by pro-gun arguments.