Sunday, February 07, 2016

Austin Bookstore Offers 10% Discount to Shoppers Legally Packing Guns on Their Hips

That's Brave New Books just below the "1904" sign. Note there's a bank right next door.

It seems there is a bookstore (click on picture for larger view) in Austin, Texas, that is offering a 10% discount on purchases made by customers who are "open carrying" a gun while doing their bookish shopping. That is more amazing than you think...oh, not so much that it happened...but that it happened in Austin of all Texas cities. For those who don't know Texas very well, let's just say that when I visit Austin I sometimes wonder if San Francisco has been transported to Texas and laid atop Austin.  

News come from The Guardian that Brave New Books manager John Bush says:
 “We appreciate it when people take security and defence into their own hands. In a world where mass shootings are happening more and more, when seconds count, it’s up to we the people to protect our community.”
While I personally don't have a huge problem with the open carrying of weapons in public places, I have to agree with the publisher representative quoted in the article as saying that the decision is less a "political statement" than it is a "marketing stunt that preaches to the converted."  

The folks at my favorite Houston bookstore, Brazos Bookstore, had this to say about their Austin rival:
Jeremy Ellis from Houston bookshop Brazos Bookstore told Melville House that he had taken the decision to post signs restricting open carrying on 1 January. “I have always believed that bookstores are forums for all ideas, but I also understand that the free exchange of those ideas can be hindered (if not entirely obstructed) when one party in the conversation holds a deadly weapon,” said Ellis. “I would rather regulate the guns than the conversation, so we respectfully request that all our patrons leave their firearms at home or in their cars while shopping with us.”

You never know what's going to happen next do you?  Even in bookstores.


  1. This posting... you know, for a Canadian [like me] to see this, it's so foreign of an idea, really. I don't even have strong opinions one way or the other on the gun issue, so that's not what I mean. But like, in Canada it is SO massively illegal to have a gun in the first place... concealed or not concealed. Anyone in Canada sporting a gun, and being in a bookstore, whether it was concealed or you had a big sign on your head declaring "I am armed with a gun" -- either way, you would be immediately marched off to jail. [Unless of course you shot the cops who came to arrest you]!

    1. Actually, I think of a P.S. to my above comment. I remember when I went down to Atlanta [twice now] on work-related training courses, and I made friends with a lot of American colleagues there. A lot of them were from Texas, and they were all talking about their guns.
      "Guns?" I remember saying, in an astonished fashion. They all thought I was loony. But seriously, I literally do not even KNOW anyone in Canada that has a gun. I mean unless it is strictly for hunting animals... during a very restricted season of hunting. But like, a gun in your house, or car? It is literally unheard of, here. As in, it is pretty much illegal.

    2. I hear you, Cip, and I understand. When I lived in England, I knew of a couple of gun owners there by permit and I remember that they, by law, had to have a gun safe in which to keep the weapon and that the premises was inspected once a year by authorities to visually see the gun and make sure that it was correctly stored.

      It's just one of those cultural differences that make the world so entertaining to me. I have several guns in the house here, some are generations old, including a shot gun that belonged to a grandfather of my wife's. I feel safer having them around but do hope I never have to fire them again.