Levi’s CEO Asks: Please, No Guns in Our Stores
At the very peak of this year’s Christmas shopping season (during which most Americans do a quarter of their yearly shopping) Chip Bergh, the CEO of Levi Strauss & Co.,asked his customers to turn his stores into gun-free zones:
As CEO … I feel a tremendous responsibility to share our position on the issue [of gun rights and gun safety], now, at a time when clarity is paramount…. So, while we understand the heartfelt and strongly-held opinions on both sides of the gun debate, it is with the safety and security of our employees and customers in mind that we respectfully ask people not to bring firearms into our stores…. It boils down to this: you shouldn’t have to be concerned about your safety while shopping for clothes or trying on a pair of jeans. Simply put, firearms don’t belong in either of those settings.
Since many of his stores are located in shopping malls, what Bergh is asking is that people who have firearms leave them at home, or in their vehicles — turning those malls, as well as his stores, into gun-free zones.
Gun-free zones are just what unhinged criminals are looking for: places with lots of people present who are unable to defend themselves. John Lott’s Crime Prevention Research Center (CPRC) published a report two years ago showing that 94 percent of mass public shootings between January 2009 and 2014 took place in gun-free zones.
That report was followed by a similar study, this time from Stanford University, that confirmed the CPRC study: Going back to the beginning of 2002, of the 54 mass shootings (involving a shooter targeting people at random), the shooter chose gun-free zones 37 times. Of the 17 times a shooter choose a location where guns were legally allowed, a third of the attacks were ended when the shooter was confronted by an individual legally carrying a firearm.
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