12/27/2013

Toby Keith restaurant in Virginia posts ban on concealed carry guns? Keith has strongly supported Concealed Carry in the past

Back in 2011, Toby Keith was quoted as having quite strong views supporting concealed carry laws.
 “I’m all about good people, licensed and trained, carrying a concealed weapon,” Keith said. “The bad guys are always gonna be carrying guns. There are so many guns in the US and so many bad people that do harm with ‘em. If just one percent of the non-felons would go get their concealed weapons license and carry a gun where they can, one percent puts you in a pretty good position of being somebody that could save a bunch of people’s lives.”   “If somebody asked me ‘Why do you have one? What are you afraid of?’ I’d say, ‘I ain’t afraid of nothing. I carry so I don’t have to be.’”
Yet, Keith has a new restaurant chain where he has a "NO GUNS PERMITTED" sign at the door.  From Fox's DC affiliate:
A big country star opened a huge, new restaurant last week in Woodbridge, Va. But a house rule for the new establishment is roiling some Virginians: no guns are allowed inside.
Toby Keith is not only a hugely successful country star (and actor), he also has personally opened a couple of restaurants, and through other companies, has now expanded those establishments into about a dozen cities.
The latest Toby Keith restaurant opened in Woodbridge. Prominently displayed on the front door is a sign saying: “NO GUNS PERMITTED.”
Virginia happens to be a gun-friendly state, where it’s quite permissible for citizens to strap on a weapon and go into a bar or restaurant, as long as the weapon is clearly visible. State law is silent on the issue of drinking while openly carrying a gun. (State law does prohibit most citizens who are legally carrying a concealed weapon from consuming alcohol, but they, too, are allowed to go into a bar or restaurant.) . . .
Might this simply be because Keith hired someone to run the restaurants for him?


UPDATE: A couple of days after the original post, the restaurant offered an explanation for their policy:
The Facebook page of Toby Keith's I Love This Bar and Grill in Woodbridge posted on Saturday:

"While we understand and respect every person's right to own and bear arms, we at Toby Keith's I Love This Bar and Grill, with guidance from the State of Virginia and based on insurance regulations, have adopted a no weapons policy. It is our desire to provided a safe, enjoyable and entertaining experience for our patrons and staff."
This type of posting is extremely unusual.  I have lived in Virginia for some years now and I can't recall a time when I saw such a posting. That is important because it gets to the perceived risks. Why is Toby Keith's restaurant so different? The statement issued doesn't really explain this difference in any way.

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3 Comments:

Blogger RS said...

I believe the Virginia restaurant is a franchise, not a Keith-owned restaurant.

12/27/2013 1:13 PM  
Blogger SemperFlyBoy said...

I have read that the issue revolves around the fact that VA allows open carry and there is no law against consumption of alcohol by open carriers. Concealed carry holders cannot legally consume alcohol in VA. The restaurant fears that if they serve alcohol to an "open carry person" and later this person is involved in an incident, that they will have a liability problem. The sign banning guns is therefore a CYA action more than an anti-gun sentiment.

12/28/2013 10:58 PM  
Blogger John Lott said...

Apparently, the statement about insurance came out on Saturday, a couple of days after my original post. In any case, if you live in Virginia, you would know that this type of posting that just doesn't occur. I have lived in Virginia for some years now and I can't recall a time when I saw such a posting. That is important because it gets to the perceived risks. Why is Toby Keith's restaurant so different? The statement issued doesn't really explain this difference in any way.

12/29/2013 1:52 AM  

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