Society

Amid Gun Rights Debate, Texas Barbecue Restaurant Offers Discount For Open Carry (Photos)

| by Reve Fisher
Brooks' Place Barbecue.Brooks' Place Barbecue.

After the state’s open carry law came into effect on Jan. 1, a barbecue restaurant in Texas is offering a discount to those who openly display their firearms.

Trent Brooks, owner of Brooks' Place, a Houston-area award-winning barbecue restaurant, offered a 25 percent discount to customers who partook of the state’s controversial open carry law on New Year's Day.

“Its not something new, we've always supported that, we've always had signs saying guns are welcome, so we just decided we would give a discount to those that are carrying a gun,” Trent Brooks told KTRH.

The discount was available on Jan. 1, the first day that the firearm initiative was the law of the state. Since then, it has changed to 10 percent for both open and concealed carriers.

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“We're going to gain some customers and we're probably going to lose some customers, I don't know why we would lose any when the gun was already there in the first place,” Brooks said of his marketing decision.

The open carry law forces many businesses to take a political side in the gun debate. Restaurants and other businesses may opt out of open carry by posting a 30.07 sign that explicitly bans the presence of openly visible firearms, reports Texas Monthly.

While small restaurants might be willing to openly display their political views, corporations may prefer to take a “neutral” stance, which is no longer possible now that open carry is written into law.

The CEO of Whataburger, a restaurant chain that does display the 30.07 sign in its branches, explained its decision in a statement. Although it supports the gun rights community, “From a business standpoint, though, we have to think about how open carry impacts our 34,000+ employees and millions of customers.”

Open Carry Texas, an organization that helped propel the initiative, wants business owners who ban open carry to know that financial consequences may arise. The group sells packs of cards for open carry supporters to leave at businesses displaying 30.07 signs.

The website Gun Free Business showcases a list of businesses that have yet to display 30.07 signs. The site wants visitors to encourage those organizations to ban guns on their properties.

Sources: KTRH, Texas Monthly / Photo credit: Brooks' Place, Texas Monthly