Gun Laws & Legislation

Virginia Citizens Defense League President Responds to Target Store Gun Policy

Guns and Gear Contributor
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John J. Mulligan, Interim President
Target Corporation
P.O. Box 9350
Minneapolis, MN 55440

Dear Mr. Mulligan,

I am the President of the Virginia Citizens Defense League, a gun-rights organization in Virginia, with 6,000 members and 26,000 subscribers to an email alert system we offer.

While I understand that the lawful carry of firearms in Target stores will continue to be allowed based on local and state laws, I must say that Target’s statement that “…bringing firearms to Target creates an environment that is at odds with the family-friendly shopping and work experience we strive to create” is unbelievably offensive to gun owners.

Gun ownership is as American as apple pie and baseball. Guns are what gave us the freedoms that we now enjoy and guns continue to protect those freedoms and to protect the individual lives of America’s citizens.

Yet that statement from Target sounds like gun owners are somehow unwholesome or unsavory and do not belong in the same building with families and Target employees.

Why would Target choose to insult, besmirch, and belittle America’s 80 million gun owners, from military veterans and retired police officers to the mom and dad that simply want to be able to protect their families in an emergency? Self-defense is a very real concern. Crime can, and does, happen anywhere and at anytime, and that includes in and around Target stores.

Gun owners love their families and respect the families of others. Gun owners are “family friendly.”

Target had the perfect policy by following the law and should have simply repeated that policy and let the debate fade away. If someone doesn’t like the current law, then they can try to change it. Target gained nothing but a black eye by insulting gun owners in an effort to mollify a small, but obnoxious, group of gun prohibitionists and I was saddened to see that happen.


Philip Van Cleave