Peter Z. Scheer

The nation’s second-largest retailer has announced that guns are not welcome in its stores, even in states where it is legal to carry firearms.

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

According to The Guardian, the change in policy is a capitulation to gun control activists who have been engaged in counter-protests with gun rights activists:

The announcement comes a month after Target found itself in the middle of a ferocious battle between pro-gun activists and their gun-safety opponents. “Open-carry” activists have been staging protests in several states including Texas, Alabama, North Carolina, Washington, Wisconsin and Virginia in which they walk through retail outlets visibly brandishing weapons as a way of flaunting their right to do so under local state laws.

As a counter-protest, Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense, a national organisation formed in the wake of the Newtown school shooting, launched a petition in which it called on Target to make clear its stance on the carrying of guns in its stores. The petition has attracted almost 400,000 signatures.

Moms Demand Action also organized what it calls “stroller jams” in which members gathered outside Target franchises across the country to ramp up pressure on the chain’s management to make clear its position on guns being brandished in its stores.

— Posted by Peter Z. Scheer

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