September 8, 2014 3:43 pm -

The bakery-cafe chain Panera announced on Monday that it is asking customers not to bring firearms into any of its 1,818 outlets in 45 states. The move was voluntary, following what Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America said was “months of discussions” with the company, Detroit Free Press reports.

Panera joins Starbucks, Chipotle, Target and other restaurants and retailers in making such a request or changing the store’s policy.

Open Carry advocates in Chipotle

Open Carry advocates in Chipotle


[su_center_ad]Panera said in a statement that it strives to create cafes “where customers and associates feel comfortable and welcome.”

“To this end, we ask that guns not be brought into this environment unless carried by an authorized law enforcement officer,” the statement said. “Panera respects the rights of gun owners, but asks our customers to help preserve the environment we are working to create for our guests and associates.”

Panera CEO Ron Shaich said its request “is simply we recognize everyone’s rights, but we also recognize that we are building communities in our cafes and are where people come to catch a breath.”

Shaich added that Panera was “respectfully requesting” customers to leave their firearms at home, but will continue to follow state and local firearms laws.

Some Open Carry activists have ignored requests from outlets in the recent past.

“Moms are the consumers-in-chief of our households and we will reward companies that take a stand for our families’ safety,” Shannon Watts, founder of Moms Demand Action said.

Moms Demand Action have launched a petition drive and ad campaign calling on Kroger stores to prohibit open carry in and around its stores.

“Our long-standing policy on this issue is to follow state and local laws and to ask customers to be respectful of others while shopping,” Kroger said in a statement last week, according to Detroit Free Press. “We know that our customers are passionate on both sides of this issue, and we trust them to be responsible in our stores.”

The problem with that is, most of us do not trust strangers walking around in family-friendly establishments with rifles strapped across their backs, simply to make a political point. [su_csky_ad]

D.B. Hirsch
D.B. Hirsch is a political activist, news junkie, and retired ad copy writer and spin doctor. He lives in Brooklyn, New York.

8 responses to Panera Announces: Don’t Bring Guns Into Our Restaurants

  1. Obewon September 8th, 2014 at 4:24 pm

    Families and most customers flee if they see any open carry paranoids too scared to buy food or coffee without bringing in their arsenals.

  2. Palli September 8th, 2014 at 4:29 pm

    RE: John Crawford’s death in Walmart I’m not so sure about “authorized uniformed law enforcement officers.

    A note to law enforcement: If you want the respect of citizens POLICE YOURSELVES.

  3. tiredoftea September 8th, 2014 at 7:16 pm

    I suppose Panera’s metrosexual count will decline without the above well dressed examples showing up anymore.

  4. Larry Schmitt September 8th, 2014 at 7:30 pm

    Cue the protest of Panera’s infringement of their 2nd amendment rights. Oh, wait, they don’t even know what Panera’s is, let alone do they shop there.

  5. juicyfruityyy September 8th, 2014 at 7:57 pm

    I wouldn’t shop at a store that allow weapons. That includes convenient stores. How do you know that the person is not going to rob you? Or assassinate everyone in the place? Leave the guns at home. Or, put them in a hot running dryer. LOL

  6. Skydog2 September 8th, 2014 at 9:16 pm

    You must live in a bad area if you need a gun while eating in your local Panera.

  7. Palli September 8th, 2014 at 11:42 pm

    Since they write they will follow state and local laws, what could the management do if guntotters came in? Do most state allow management to display a no-gun policy that has to be respected? Other than lose customers like my family, what can they do if their policy is challenged?

  8. Viking September 12th, 2014 at 3:18 pm

    Amy Mek
    ‏@AmyMek Sep 9

    Fresh Off Their #GunFreeZone Announcement! Armed Robbers Hit .@panerabread! … #tcot #NRA #2A

    91 retweets so far. The only problem is the “Fresh Off Their #GunFreeZone Announcement” armed robbery actually occurred in December.

    Oh well, who needs facts and/or credibility? We have gunzzzzzz!

    View photo