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Thread: Carrying to a business lunch?

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    I don't carry at work because it's against company policy. I used to, but the Marine in me kept screaming that I was disobeying orders and I was a nasty pig.So I keep it in the car but put it on when I go to lunch and when I leave for home.

    I have a CCW so I can wear whatever I want and carry. I always wear business attire, sometimes with a coat or jacket.

    Here's the question: I have been invited to a business lunch. Knowing that you've only been with this firm for two months and the sight of you walking into the restaurant to sit with business partners strapped (thanks governor kaine) would probably stiffen the gentry; and knowing you will probably be asked to ride with the company president in his car...

    WHAT WOULD YOU DO??

    I don't want to freak these people out. But it's a public place and I'm fully within my rights to carry my firearm legally, as I do everywhere else.

    My best option so far is to wear a coat until we get there. Casually take it off when we enter. Be extremely pleasant.

    Here's the nightmare scenario, I get to the door and there's a big fat "No Guns Allowed - defensless victims inside" sign!

    "Excuse me Mr President, may I leave my rather lovely Kimber .45 in your glovebox? Heheh...thanks..."

    :?

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    Accomplished Advocate peter nap's Avatar
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    That's a decision you have to make and my answer is certain to draw fire.

    If it were me, I'd put it in the trunk!

    I mean YOUR trunk!

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    Rey

    You have to ask yourself: "Do I want to be 'outed' now or later on?"

    You will be sooner or later, so it's just a question of when.

    In this case, you may want CC first in orderto "feel out" where these other people's heads are at (re: the RKBA, CC/OC, etc.) and take it from there. You don't want to make things unpleasant at work for you later onif it's notREALLY necessary to do so (that's just being prudent).

    Besides, you can always OC NEXT time if you want.

    -- John D.

    (formerly of Colorado Springs, CO)

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    Well, first questions that come to mind for me are whether your company has a policy about keeping firearms locked in employee vehicles on company property and whether your vehicle is in fact parked on company property.

    Second, I'm assuming that you would be riding with someone else... which, to retrieve your firearm, you would have to go to your personal vehicle to acquire your firearm in the first place.

    Third, what's preventing you from driving your own vehicle to the establishment in your own vehicle so that you would be able to leave your firearm in your vehicle if the restaurant is a defenseless victims zone.

    Lastly, although you're well within your right to carry, some things to consider are the outcome for you from this meeting, whether them knowing you're armed will arise suspicion and you could be subject to random searches of your person or vehicle for firearms (if company policy says it can) now that they would have even the slightest inkling of a thought that you could be armed on the property.



    This is one of those individual choices that nobody can really answer unless they're in your shoes. You may attract some unwanted attention or make an unwanted impression if they're anti-gun, or if they're pro-gun, you could be looked up to for it.

    Personally, with my company atmosphere and the job market not so much in my favor (and the fact that I can't keep a firearm on my person or in my vehicle with company policy), and If I was in your situation, I would have to go unarmed... unless I were to park my vehicle off company property, drive to the restaurant myself, etc. And on top of that, with the way things work here, I would probably be suspected to be carrying on my person or in my vehicle, which they may view as cause for unwanted "harassment" wanting to search my person, affects and vehicle, and if I were to declinewould possibly result in my dismissal, so I would be coerced into allowing a search, because if I have nothing to hide... I wouldn't mind if they check... right?

    I think you have to figure out what the potential rammifications of both are. Be a sheep for an hour or so or face suspicion for the rest of your employment with your company.

    Granted, the argument could be said that even being a sheep for an hour could result in being dead forever... but you do haveone advantage, being a carrier, you are used to (or shouldbe) beingalert of your surroundings and what's going on.I would assume that mostsheeple are typically oblivious of their surroundings.

    At risk of drawing fire for leaving the impression that I would suggest going unarmed... if you do decide to, I would say that while there, in your mind... have a plan. Imagine scenarios and what you would do if a threat were to present itself.

    Just because someone has a firearm doesn't mean they're invincible. Remember, it's not the gun that does the harm, it's the people. The gun is a tool. To be an effective carrier and effective at self defense, your mind does most of the work, your gun is just a tool. If you have trained your mind, but are absent the tool, it doesn't mean you're 100% vulnerable. You just need to be more resourceful.

    (Intelligence + Awareness + Training+ Firearm) > (Stupidity + Firearm)

    Being that most criminals fall into the "Stupidity + Firearm" category, even minus the firearm one could still have an advantage.

    (Intelligence + Awareness + Training) > (Stupidity + Firearm)



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    Regular Member vt357's Avatar
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    I have been in pretty much the same situation Rey. Unfortunately I like my job - so in that situation I have to leave it in my car. You could always go to the company president before hand and bring up the issue. Sometimes those company policies are just copy and paste from some HR department guidebook. The higher-ups don't always agree with or sometimes even know about those minute rules. The odds of you being in a hardship from losing your job is much higher than needing your firearm for self defense at lunch. (I know I know... the whole better to have it and not need it than need it and not have it ... but sometimes you have to weigh the chances of an event versus the consequences for your actions.)

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    Campaign Veteran Freeflight's Avatar
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    I'm with Peter Nap on this one too... What I would say will draw lots of fire...(if you have read any of my posts you will know what I would say)

    you have to weigh all the risks and benefits and decide. I have been forced to be a sheep for an hour or two... once ortwice in mylifeand I have a really big Knife and Mace for those few and far between occasions...




    And what country can preserve its liberties, if its rulers are not warned from time to time that this people preserve the spirit of resistance? Let them take arms....The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time, with the blood of patriots and tyrants"

    Thomas Jefferson in a letter to William S. Smith in 1787. Taken from Jefferson, On Democracy 20, S. Padover ed., 1939

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    cloudcroft wrote:
    Rey

    You have to ask yourself: "Do I want to be 'outed' now or later on?"

    You will be sooner or later, so it's just a question of when.

    In this case, you may want CC first in orderto "feel out" where these other people's heads are at (re: the RKBA, CC/OC, etc.) and take it from there. You don't want to make things unpleasant at work for you later onif it's notREALLY necessary to do so (that's just being prudent).

    Besides, you can always OC NEXT time if you want.

    -- John D.
    That's the thing, brother, this is Virginia. If the restaurant serves alcohol you CAN'T CC!

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    Campaign Veteran deepdiver's Avatar
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    I think this is one of those "if you have to ask, you already know the answer".

    If you could CC the entire time, no harm, no foul. But that OC in the restaurant (stupid, stupid law) probably not worth it. I assume lunch is in a good part of town. I assume from what you have said that you like and want to keep your job. So here's the quandry:

    What is the likelihood that this will be the one time you need your pistol if you don't carry
    vs
    what is the likelihood that you jeopardize your employment or upward professional mobility if you do carry.
    Bob Owens @ Bearing Arms (paraphrased): "These people aren't against violence; they're very much in favor of violence. They're against armed resistance."

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    Well you could approach your upper management team and get their opinion. As many here stated you could drive your own car. It may or may not be that touchy of a subject internally to the company in that regard, however you might want to consider how your actions may affect your company whilst at lunch. Let's take a walk down what if lane shall we?

    What if your company management okays your carrying to lunch, you drive your own car because that's the safest place for said weapon if the establishment is police response friendly verses public protection friendly. You get there and it is public protection friendly. You wait (or meet) with the rest of the group your having lunch with, openly carrying as required. Everyone has a great lunch, discussions go smashingly well. Seems like your company is about to gain a windfall and benefit from the fruits of the effort. Then the client calls up and says "Well, I'd love to do business with you but I'm not sure I trust a company that employs people who carry weapons in public." - sure a stretch and probably a big one at that, but that's the bitch of what if scenarios and Mr. Murphy. It could happen..... that's all I'm saying.

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    72Malibu wrote:
    Well, first questions that come to mind for me are whether your company has a policy about keeping firearms locked in employee vehicles on company property and whether your vehicle is in fact parked on company property.

    Second, I'm assuming that you would be riding with someone else... which, to retrieve your firearm, you would have to go to your personal vehicle to acquire your firearm in the first place.

    Third, what's preventing you from driving your own vehicle to the establishment in your own vehicle so that you would be able to leave your firearm in your vehicle if the restaurant is a defenseless victims zone.

    Lastly, although you're well within your right to carry, some things to consider are the outcome for you from this meeting, whether them knowing you're armed will arise suspicion and you could be subject to random searches of your person or vehicle for firearms (if company policy says it can) now that they would have even the slightest inkling of a thought that you could be armed on the property.



    This is one of those individual choices that nobody can really answer unless they're in your shoes. You may attract some unwanted attention or make an unwanted impression if they're anti-gun, or if they're pro-gun, you could be looked up to for it.

    Personally, with my company atmosphere and the job market not so much in my favor (and the fact that I can't keep a firearm on my person or in my vehicle with company policy), and If I was in your situation, I would have to go unarmed... unless I were to park my vehicle off company property, drive to the restaurant myself, etc. And on top of that, with the way things work here, I would probably be suspected to be carrying on my person or in my vehicle, which they may view as cause for unwanted "harassment" wanting to search my person, affects and vehicle, and if I were to declinewould possibly result in my dismissal, so I would be coerced into allowing a search, because if I have nothing to hide... I wouldn't mind if they check... right?

    I think you have to figure out what the potential rammifications of both are. Be a sheep for an hour or so or face suspicion for the rest of your employment with your company.

    Granted, the argument could be said that even being a sheep for an hour could result in being dead forever... but you do haveone advantage, being a carrier, you are used to (or shouldbe) beingalert of your surroundings and what's going on.I would assume that mostsheeple are typically oblivious of their surroundings.

    At risk of drawing fire for leaving the impression that I would suggest going unarmed... if you do decide to, I would say that while there, in your mind... have a plan. Imagine scenarios and what you would do if a threat were to present itself.

    Just because someone has a firearm doesn't mean they're invincible. Remember, it's not the gun that does the harm, it's the people. The gun is a tool. To be an effective carrier and effective at self defense, your mind does most of the work, your gun is just a tool. If you have trained your mind, but are absent the tool, it doesn't mean you're 100% vulnerable. You just need to be more resourceful.

    (Intelligence + Awareness + Training+ Firearm) > (Stupidity + Firearm)

    Being that most criminals fall into the "Stupidity + Firearm" category, even minus the firearm one could still have an advantage.

    (Intelligence + Awareness + Training) > (Stupidity + Firearm)

    Malibu:

    Yes, my company has a no guns policy on company property, but the parking lot we use is part of a larger office building, not necessarily rented or leased by my company.

    As far as anything preventing me from taking my own car - my boss saying "ride with me" is pretty much all it would take. haha.

    But I'm not worried about them trying to search me or anything. They're not the witch hunt sort IMHO, and if they asked I'd tell them the truth anyway. But you have made several extremely valid points that I will definitely consider. I may just go to lunch and say, "Baa".

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    All in all you guys are pretty much in sync with each other on this topic.

    (Wow.)

    I can say with relative impunity that I would have to up and slap the president's wife for them to fire me (I am that good ). But, like bohdi's scenario, why jeopardize the company's standing by my representation to other business associates. That would definitely be a non-promoter if I ever saw one. It really is a sensitive area and just to not push it, I'll leave it in the trunk.

    (MY TRUNK)

    But if it's ever just acompanylunch....that'll be different thread altogether.

    Thanks guys.

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    Since you're new to the company I'd wait to exercise your rights while you feel out the company. It's easy for them to get rid of you now as you're probably not knee deep in anything important, but once you've shown yourself as a valuable asset they'll have to weigh that before taking any action.

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    You also left out the scenario where the restaurant is NOT posted, but is still gun-unfriendly.

    Imagine the restaurant management making a scene while you are out on a business lunch. Not very pretty.

    Your other option that no one mentioned is to become a Commonwealth Attorney. It's my understanding that these are exceptionally responsible folk who don't have this dilemna to contend with.

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    Rey,

    Sorry...not up on VA OC/CC law.

    And since you're probably 100% law-abiding -- probably like everyone else here (except for the "One Percenters" if you will) -- I won't offer any other viable solution even though it works for them.

    Good luck,

    -- John D.



    (formerly of Colorado Springs, CO)

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    Regular Member Neplusultra's Avatar
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    Rey wrote:
    I don't carry at work because it's against company policy. I used to, but the Marine in me kept screaming that I was disobeying orders and I was a nasty pig.So I keep it in the car but put it on when I go to lunch and when I leave for home.

    I have a CCW so I can wear whatever I want and carry. I always wear business attire, sometimes with a coat or jacket.

    Here's the question: I have been invited to a business lunch. Knowing that you've only been with this firm for two months and the sight of you walking into the restaurant to sit with business partners strapped (thanks governor kaine) would probably stiffen the gentry; and knowing you will probably be asked to ride with the company president in his car...

    WHAT WOULD YOU DO??

    I don't want to freak these people out. But it's a public place and I'm fully within my rights to carry my firearm legally, as I do everywhere else.

    My best option so far is to wear a coat until we get there. Casually take it off when we enter. Be extremely pleasant.

    Here's the nightmare scenario, I get to the door and there's a big fat "No Guns Allowed - defensless victims inside" sign!

    "Excuse me Mr President, may I leave my rather lovely Kimber .45 in your glovebox? Heheh...thanks..."

    :?
    Why don't you just talk to the President during lunchtime prior to the date and ask him what his thoughts are? Tell him why you carry, why you think it's a good thing, that you're a former Marine, that you don't expect to ever use it but want to be prepared to defend yourself or others if the need arises, etc. See what he says.



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    Just a few years ago I was walked out of a company following a front page picture and story that detailed my lawful carry at a school board meeting.

    For the first few weeks after the article folks would joke in the halls, ask questions regarding lawful carry, etc. Multiple senior management in other departments privately shared with me that they carried concealed, were strong supporters of the 2nd Amendment, etc.

    Shortly after the article there was a significant change in management. Their philosophies and mine were not compatible across many areas...including the 2nd Amendment.

    Despite company policy that forbid carry anywhere on company property including personal vehicles...I was always safe.

    Yes, I was carrying deep the day they walked me out and had no problem maintaining my composure.
    Yes, it was worth it for me.

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    As a partner in a company, I know our HR documents says no weapons on company property (ie, the office itself since it is in an shared office building). I'm sure it was a copy/paste from an HR manual somewhere, and the company is located in MD.

    However, I can guarantee, that unless someone brandished/threatened with a gun, on company property, it would never be enforced. All of the partners are either progun or at least neutral gun.

    HR People tend to do alot of copy/paste, to CYA mostly, and I'm sure that was the scenario in our case (that and being a MD company). I know that I was not privy to the document before it was released, or I would have talked with one of my partners about it ahead of time.

    Makes me glad I only goto the MD office a handful of times a year. Keeps me from having to cross the River Styx.. ugh.. I mean potomac. I know I've carried it in the vehicle there and back a few times.

    I am half tempted to have the policy rewritten to exempt "Company authorized personel" or some such nonsense.

    Not sure if that helps...

    Jason

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    I would not take the chance. It will change the entire discussion the lunch was designed for.

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    Silver, nice original observation. No B.S., I don't think many thought about how carrying the weapon might do exactly what you state. I hadn't, not that I'm some sage but occasionally I say something smart.

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    the Marine in me kept screaming that I was disobeying orders and I was a nasty pig.
    You are a pig Schmuckitelly, you want to carry a gun in MY COMPANY!!, Get on my quarterdeck - NOW - to slow - mountain climbers - go!


    Seriously, I wouldn't do it.

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    Rather than post this in the forum where I found the link (Illinois) and risk being WOT, I am quoting and posting my response here instead.

    I will say that I only skimmed through the forum before posting this, so please forgive any obiously repeated questions.

    Rey wrote:
    I'm in the same boat to a point. My company also has a policy against it. In the Virginia stateforum I posted a topic regarding a business lunch. It's actually quite interesting what fellow OCers responded with

    http://opencarry.mywowbb.com/forum54/9729.html

    What I'm doing now is empty holstering to work on the premise that since I wear church clothes to work everyday it's a pain in the ass to keep putting my holster on and off everytime I go to my car for lunch, etc. so i just keep it on. it's part of my everyday wardrobe anyway.

    Trust me. I know this is not a good idea for most people. but i'm pushing the envelope so to speak. i mean, they're not gonna ban empty holsters anytime soon, and my demeanor is always pleasant and respectful and it educates them as well.
    I park on the public street right off our parking lot so as to avoid the "may we search?" question...but guess what, your state and mine (Nevada) are both at-will states. They can fire me for any reason they want. They'll make something up about tardiness, poor performance, insubordination, etc. But if they think my eyes are too blue, they can fire me.

    So, even though I am technically within the LETTER of their rule (I am not on company property with a firearm), am I within the SPIRIT of the law (I have a firearm within easy access during the work day)? Doesn't matter, they can fire me because my tires aren't inflated properly.

    A few other questions.

    First, the open holster thing is OK for the college protest they're doing to demonstrate the problem with those college carry laws. But doesn't wearing an empty holster every day get unwanted attention? And I don't mean from the people at your office that others have mentioned below. Even if your senior management is OK today, they could be un-OK tomorrow. Or their new insurance policy, lawyer, HR director, pick a tightass, might change the policy, or their might come new management...but not them.

    No, I'm referring to the people who will never hassle you about the empty holster: the would-be thief who sees you exit your car with an empty holster and have good reason to assume you left your firearm behind. Especially if it's your daily routine, which it sounds like it is. Good reason for him to choose your car over someone elses...

    And how do you avoid potentially "brandishing" your firearm each time you handle it to holster/unholster - especially if/when you take passengers with you?

    Last, my personal feeling is that OC is a personal choice one must make with serious consideration. For the positives, there are some admitted dangers. Seeing your OC weapon might make you a first-target, but like me, you've considered this possibility and weighed it against the potential to stop the situation before it starts with increased awareness and possibly deterring the crime in the first place.

    But doesn't an empty holster suggest you might still be armed (CC), and thus make you a first-target anyway? Except, the empty holster is empty, so you have no way to defend yourself, thus multiplying (against your favor) the very reason many of us cite in support of the 2nd amendment....

    Consider, that defenseless victim sign on a store is an advertisement for criminals to "shop" there. Your empty holster is like you being defenseless in that store while also wearing a t-shirt saying you have $5000 cash in your pocket.

    Tim

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    "How true am I to my convictions?" "What's my honor worth?" Noble questions, indeed.

    If it were me, I'd leave the heat and focus on the purpose of the lunch - business. I can't carry as often as I'd like (such as at work), but I make it a point to carry where I can, and call it good. One of the benefits to getting people involved in both open and concealed carrying is that it increases the odds that some responsible person is armed, even if it happens to not be you that day. For my part, I wouldn't want to possibly shift the focus of the meeting from the business.

    Besides, if something did happen, it would be an opportunity to impress the boss with your hand-to-hand skills!

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    I CC everywhere.

    Unless they actually have a means of determining if I am carrying; metal detectors.

    Those places, I just plain don't go.

    No force shall compel me to the contrary while I still draw breath. Period. Should any entity attempt to alter this, a very severe price shall be paid by it; certainly higher than attempting to rob me of my Freedom could possibly be worth.

    So, for the 'normal' people, I'm probably not a good person to ask for advice. ;-)

    No way someone as low as an anti-humane employer would change my mind.
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    It sounds like the concensus of the forum is to leave it (I am shocked!). I don't really like the answer either, because I'm in the same boat, but this was a great way to discuss and consider it.

    Edit: My personal opinion, be very low key and deep conceal. You won't have 1-2 second access, but you will still have it if you hear some crazy employee violating policy. And if you're asked to be searched, DENY, even if it means your job, if they find it, it's your job anyway. Who's to say your boss didn't try anyway despite your objection, and assaulted you in the process by twisting your arm or groping you? Not to mention that denying you the right to leave is kidnapping in many states. Low key might be hard now though that they've seen you with the empty holster :-)

    Brings up an interesting point though. I think employment is one of the few cases where necessity may give way to necessity. I have a need to be armed to defend myself, but maybe the need to bring home a paycheck trumps it (I often argue both sides of the equation. I'm wrong every time, but that's OK because I'm also right every time).

    What other things in life give way to personal defense? My child has to go to school, but even though carrying on school grounds is not permitted, it's easy to get around by dropping her off at the public sidewalk right in front of the school. So that doesn't count. I have to eat, but I don't have to go to a restaurant, I can buy groceries, or go hunting (I am armed after all). What besides employment REQUIRES you to be defenseless? Jury duty? Air travel (or travel of any kind considering the huge differences in laws between the various states and the risk of your normal, peaceful, every-day activities become felonious)?

  25. #25
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    I, personally, would OC if I felt like it. I'm not trying to be patronizing, but I have better things to do than worry about silly policies and what "people think."

    In my own experience, standing strong on your convictions is worth at least as much as doing what people expect you to do.

    Then again, I'm not in a circumstance remotely like you describe, so don't take that as advice.


    Edit: one thing I will say though. What the hell kind of jobs do you guys have where you even seriously consider the possibility of being searched? Count me out.

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