The company that owns most of Southern Arizona’s Pizza Huts has reversed policy and is allowing customers to carry firearms into the restaurants if they are legal possessors.
Patrick McKinney, vice president of operations for Tucson-based Pizza Hut of Arizona, said he began reconsidering the company’s policy of prohibiting guns after reading a newspaper article about the state’s new concealed-carry law.
That law, which goes into effect July 29, allows people 21 or older (and not prohibited from having a firearm) to carry a concealed gun without a permit.
McKinney and his staff held a meeting about the issue and began to remove the restaurants’ signs banning firearms during the first week of June, he said in a written reply to questions.
The policy for employees, the one which prohibits guns, remains unchanged.
The issue of customers with firearms is confronting private business owners as Arizona’s gun laws become more liberal, and as gun-rights advocates press for public acceptance of carried firearms.
The issue may be particularly poignant in the case of Tucson Pizza Huts. In 1999, three employees of a Pizza Hut near the corner of East Broadway and Pantano roads were shot to death in an attempted robbery by two teens.
“We will never forget the tragedy of those murders in 1999 and what happened may have shaped our feelings about guns forever,” McKinney wrote.
I don’t understand what two robbers with guns has to do with customers (or employees, for that matter) with guns. But it’s pretty much par for the course.