Stakeholder Meetings

The Huffington Post is reporting that the Obama Administration has been having informal discussions on gun control policy with both pro-gun and anti-gun groups. Supposedly spearheaded by the Justice Department, these meetings are meant to be a “feeling out process”.

“As the president said, we should focus on sound, effective steps that will keep guns out of the hands of the criminals, fugitives, people with serious mental illness, and others who have no business possessing a gun and who are prohibited by laws on the books from owning a gun,” Justice Department spokesman Matthew Miller said. “We will be meeting with stakeholders on all sides of the issue to discuss how we can find sensible, intelligent ways to make the country safer.”

The article goes on to say that the principal aim seems to be to coalesce support for cleaning up NICS and to require background checks for private sales. Of course, they put it as the “application of background-check standards to private dealers” which is, by definition, an oxymoron as there is no such thing as a private dealer. They also note that magazine bans and the AWB are off the table for now.

Bloomberg’s Illegal Mayors and Chuck Schumer are also mentioned in the article. They compare what Obama was proposing in his op-ed to what MAIG and Schumer are seeking to do with S. 436.

“They have been meeting with us and also with law enforcement groups and industry,” one gun-control advocate said of the administration. “This is what the White House does when they want to put a serious legislative apparatus together … The game now becomes effectively demonstrating, in a way that is meaningful, what we know is the overwhelming support for universal background checks.”

Given the source, HuffPo, I’m taking this story with a grain of salt. I don’t doubt that the Obama Administration has been talking to gun-control groups and anti-gun rights politicians like Schumer, McCarthy, and Lautenberg. However, I’ll believe they are serious about working with both sides if and when reports of meetings with Wayne LaPierre, Chris Cox, and Alan Gottlieb are revealed.

Costco and Guns

Sailorcurt of the Captain of a Crew of One blog has an interesting post about the wholesale club Costco and their policy on guns in the store.

Their policy is that guns are not allowed in the store except for law enforcement personnel. As a membership store, this is, of course, their right to do so. But as Sailorcurt points out, you have to dig to find out this information. It is not in the FAQ’s on their website nor in their brochure outlining the terms and conditions of your membership.

Not that long ago, a West Point graduate who was carrying concealed was shot and killed by police outside a Costco store in Las Vegas. It is still not clear exactly what happened and, while I hate to be a cynic, I expect the outcome to exonerate the Metro Las Vegas police. What is clear is that a Costco employee called 911 and reported a man with a gun in their store.

It is up to you whether you want to deal with Costco or not. For me, it is a non-issue as we don’t have any Costco’s in western North Carolina. We only have Sam’s Clubs and their policy is to abide by the laws of each state and locality with regard to guns. I suggest you read Sailorcurt’s post above and then make up your own mind after reading it.

UPDATE: “nealatkins” below suggests that I’ve been punked. By extension, then Sailorcurt has been punked. The suggestion that this is not really Costco policy is because of the header which leads to Costco’s in-store firearms policy. It reads:

If I just looked at the header I might have agreed. Since I was challenged to “prove” it I will. If you go to and then click on the menu header for Customer Service you will get this:

Once there click on the link to “Membership Information”. You will then get a header that looks like this:

On that page is a section called “How Do I Join?” The fourth item reads:

Membership cards will be issued immediately when you apply in person, or mailed within 7-10 days after receiving the application in the mail. If you desire additional information, please contact our call center at 1-800-774-2678, or e-mail us at customer comments and suggestions.

The part that reads “customer comments and suggestions” is a hyperlink. Clicking on that you will get:

The link to the firearms policy quoted by Sailorcurt begins “” just as the hyperlink to customer comments and suggestions reads “”. I am presuming that they have outsourced either parts of their customer service or IT infrastructure. Checking using whois, is registered to Savvis, Inc. provides data centers and other IT professional services.

Why did I just go to such lengths just to show that the information presented on this blog is correct? Because I strive to do my best to provide honest, verifiable information on guns, gun laws, legal issues dealing with firearms, and gun policy.