Starbucks Frowns Upon Firearms

It’s a busy morning at the Starbucks down Milwaukee Avenue. The coffee shop is bustling with friendly employees and the aroma of freshly brewed coffee. The pumpkin-spiced latte has made its seasonal return for the fall, but it doesn’t seem to be the only new item on the usual menu.

In an open letter to Starbucks customers during the early month of September, Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz requested all of their caffeine and tea drinkers to no longer bring their firearms into Starbucks stores or their outdoor patio areas – even in states where open carry is permitted. The letter shows that the only exception for this request goes toward authorized law enforcement.

Samantha Marshall, the manager at the Starbucks down Milwaukee Avenue location, said she and her employees are not allowed to comment on the issue. A call to  Starbucks headquarters also yielded no response.

Keely Floyd, a junior nursing student from Houston, said she doesn’t have a concealed handgun license, but members of her family do. She said in regards to Starbucks telling their customers to leave their guns at home, she thinks it has the opportunity to make the franchise a safer place, but she also sees the situation in a different light.

Floyd said in this day and age it might be beneficial to carry a gun anywhere because of all the recent shootings in the United States. She said she understands where Starbucks is coming from, but Floyd emphasized how it could be just as safe if someone has a gun in order to defend themselves.

Another Starbucks customer and Texas Tech student, Will Rose, said he does not agree with the new Starbucks policy. In fact, he said he has considered boycotting the place.

“If people are going to come in somewhere and shoot you, they’re going to do it whether you tell them they can or not. It really doesn’t matter. I mean yeah, there’s a law against killing people, so we don’t kill anyone anymore right?” he asked sarcastically. “It’s dumb. If someone is going to stop someone from shooting someone else they have to have a gun. People who obey the law are the people who are punished by the law.”

So whether you consider to carry a concealed handgun or not, Starbucks requests you leave them at home – it might simply depend on how badly you want that pumpkin-spiced latte.


About Lauren Estlinbaum

Entertainment Director    —    Journalism major, Class of 2014
Lauren Estlinbaum grew up in Pearland, Texas, south of Houston (go Texans). She is a journalism major with a minor in apparel design. Lauren would like to work for either a fashion or lifestyle publication post-graduation. As she likes to say, she considers fashion magazines survival guides.

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