Target: Don’t Bring Guns Into Our Stores

targetHuffington Post – by Alexander C. Kaufman

Target announced Wednesday it is adopting a no-guns policy and, in a statement, asked that customers not bring guns into stores.

Even customers in localities where guns are allowed will be subject to the chain’s new policy.

“Bringing firearms to Target creates an environment that is at odds with the family-friendly shopping and work experience we strive to create,” Target’s interim CEO John Mulligan said in a statement.  

The decision follows protests orchestrated by Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America, a gun control group that in recent months achieved what once seemed like an unlikely goal: convincing many major American companies to take a stance on guns.

“Target’s decision shows that moms calling for reasonable reforms can move giants,” said Erika Soto Lamb, the communications director for a coalition of gun reform organizations that include Moms Demand Action.

The third largest retailer in the U.S., Target is the biggest company yet to ban the so-called open carry of guns in its stores. (It should be noted that the company’s logo is literally a target of the sort used at shooting ranges.) The Minneapolis-based company has about 1,700 stores in the U.S. and brought in more than $70 billion in revenue last year. ChipotleChili’s and Sonic have made similar statements in recent months.

The moms’ group and pro-gun activists have been warring over retail turf for the past few months, pushing businesses to take a stand on the issue. The pattern has played out like this: a pro-gun group stages demonstrations at a location of a major national chain, bringing rifles into a store or parking lot. Then, the moms’ group puts out a statement and urges the chain to prohibit guns.


In Target’s case, the Moms’ group surfaced photographs early last month of men from a pro-gun group called Open Carry Texas toting rifles in a Dallas-area store. Then the Moms’ group launched a national petition to ban guns in Target that garnered more than 350,000 signatures, according to Lamb. The Moms’ groupstaged a small protest outside the retail giant’s shareholder meeting in Dallas on June 11.

A week later, Open Carry Texas returned, rallying in the parking lot outside a Target in Irving, a Dallas suburb. When members of the Moms’ group gathered outside a San Antonio-area Target days after that, they were asked by a Target employee to leave.

Chipotle was the first major company to ask customers not to bring firearms in its locations in May.

Soon after, protests by the same cadre of gun-toting activists prompted bans at Chili’s Bar and Grill and Sonic later that month.

open carry

C.J. Grisham, the founder of Open Carry Texas, did not immediately respond to an email from The Huffington Post requesting comment.

It’s an unexpectedly bold move by Mulligan, Target’s long-time financial chief, who has served as interim CEO since Gregg Steinhafel resigned in May. Target’s revenue and reputation has suffered since hackers stole millions of customers’ credit- and debit-card records last December.

“They’ve got a lot on their plate right now,” Kenneth Perkins, an analyst at Morningstar, told HuffPost. “They’re trying to sort through stuff and sometimes decisions have to be made to move the company forward.”

Ted Marzilli, CEO and global managing director of YouGov BrandIndex, which tracks the perception of brands, said Target has waded into a dangerous waters by taking a hard stance on a political issue.

“This is going to play different depending on the state you’re located in,” Marzilli told HuffPost. “Perhaps a more nuanced approach to this might have been a more savvy way to play it politically.”

Walmart, which sells more guns than any other company in the world, has no plans to follow Target’s lead. A spokeswoman for the retailing giant said it does not plan on making any statement on firearms.

Ben Hallman and Kim Bhasin contributed reporting

12 thoughts on “Target: Don’t Bring Guns Into Our Stores

  1. Wow. I see where this is all going. They are going to go to every single store and company in the country until they get them to ban guns from all of the stores. Since they can’t do it for all stores in one shot, they will go store by store, just like they are going state by state with their policies.

    I tell ya, I’m running out of places to go these days. Anyone got any ideas? These corporations all need to be abolished big time. I guess Target doesn’t really matter, seeing as how they steal people’s credit card information with their scanners.

    Also, I’m surprised that Walmart allows people to carry guns in their stores, seeing as how they wanted the people at the Bundy Ranch rounded up and destroyed.

    1. Oh, this one is easy. 🙂 Any store that is a gun-free zone is now a commerce-free zone. I do not have to shop at Target. Time to rediscover the independent Mom and Pop shops and support the local businesses….right? If they have already been killed off in your area, perhaps they will return. In the meantime, most anything you want can be bought online. Yes, even toilet paper.

      I have a strong feeling there are more Americans who are not against guns, than there are Americans who want to ban guns.

      If these folks vote with their feet and their dollars, it will only be good for the local economy. We do not need those corporations. We already see this happening with the local food, real food, organic food/anti-GMO movement and interest by a growing number of Americans.

      As for family-friendly, I also think there are more families in more communities across America who are inclined to own guns and teach their children how to use them, than there are families who fear guns and want to ban them. Those are mostly in the cities, and that is a small fraction of landmass of this country.

      This corporate policy can definitely backfire. 🙂 Bring it on.

  2. I thought the same thing, oddly enough. I had a feeling this was a plan or a plot to get us banned one store brand at a time. I don’t know which companies are gun friendly and which ones aren’t at this point. Target doesn’t matter to me, because I don’t shop there anyway, but I can see how this will escalate one company at a time. Hopefully gun friendly companies will start posting their doors as such and we’ll know who to support.

  3. whats going to be really funny…is when they cant figure out why their sales numbers drop and their parking lots are empty..this should happen to every anti american anti bill of rights Mother Fing stores

    what kind of store names themselves “Target” and doesn’t sell guns or ammo anyways
    I got no use for!

    1. “what kind of store names themselves “Target” and doesn’t sell guns or ammo anyways”

      I know, I always ask myself that same question. It kinda defeats the purpose of calling it “Target”. It’s like calling a place “Burger King” and not selling burgers.

  4. call Target1-800-440-0680
    got some young lady in Manilla Phillipines,
    asked to speak to someone in the US
    transferred and waiting
    tell them they will no longer get your dollars for trampling your Constitutional Rights
    after waiting I was greeted by Muhamid in Canada…North American Union is in effect at Target

  5. Target is queer friendly -don’t shop there. Wally world is the plantation store – don’t shop there either. Mom & Pop local stores only – even if it means paying a little more.

  6. The only way to stop this will be to impact each corporation and their financial bottom line enough to change it. And this will need to happen fast enough to get other companies to stop the progression. This gun ban in businesses is spreading across an increasing number of major corporations. Think about it. What corporation or executive that has had several highly publicized failures in recent years would in their right mind suddenly take up a highly politically charged topic and risk further damage to revenues and brand image? This is likely an indicator that the high level traitors in the government are continuing to either directly or indirectly influencing these corporations to take steps to limit or eliminate our Constitutional rights.

    Picket the stores on public sidewalks and carry guns (where currently lawful) and use signs. Educate and influence others to join the boycott until the company reverses their policy and apologizes. Spend your money elsewhere. If they don’t back down then keep pushing until they go out of business or we cause them to lose enough revenue to pay the highest price possible in lost revenues and damage to their brand image for their decision. Keep track of every fiat dollar that you spend elsewhere and publicize it.

    Our family used to spend an average of roughly $100 a week at Target. That has now ended. That’s $5200 a year they’ve lost just from our family per year in revenue. Multiply that by say 100,000 families (2,000 families per state or roughly 32 families per county) and that’s over 1/2 Billion dollars in lost revenue annually.

    This is just one more corporation, that is either complicit with the government, or aiding and abetting the destruction of our Constitutional rights by placing their corporate policies over our Constitutional rights. Just like the telecoms they may willingly be doing both. Our congregation will be encouraged to take the appropriate steps to boycott and protest against their actions. We will seek a pledge from each member of the church to boycott each company that attempts to limit or eliminate our unalienable rights. We will also seek to inform and educate as many people as possible outside of our congregation. We hope each of you will do the same in your respective community and congregation.

  7. …..carry guns (where currently lawful)…. The right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed.

  8. This is not new for Target. Where I live Target does not even sell water-pistols, or at least through last year. I rarely shop at Target for that reason and have not been at all this summer.
    It is also my understanding that, at least in the past, Target was a SUBSTANTIAL supporteR of Handgun Control Inc., now called Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence.

  9. does it mean anything if they dont have metal detectors at the door?

    all they have done is invite robbers to come and rob them.

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