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MI: Gun Carriers Walk into Ponderosa Steakhouse

  1. http://www.wilx.com/news/headlines/83486052.html

    Updated: 10:00 AM Feb 4, 2010

    Gun Carriers Walk into Ponderosa Steakhouse
    They say they were simply exercising their rights

    Posted: 5:15 PM Feb 3, 2010
    Reporter: Liam Martin
    Email Address: [email protected]

    LANSING -- Quite the scene developed outside Ponderosa Steakhouse in South Lansing this past Saturday afternoon.
    About seven men walked into the restaurant, packing guns -- open for all to see in holsters on their hips. A short while later, Lansing Police showed up to show the men out.

    A verbal argument between the gun carriers and officers ensued, caught on camera by a bystander (the video can be viewed at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IzPTi8heUTQ).
    "The open carriers were of course not happy, because they were minding their own business, doing a lawful activity," said Tyler Hilliker, a gun rights supporter who was at Ponderosa on Saturday.

    Under Michigan law, people with legally registered handguns can openly carry them in public. Some of the men who walked into Ponderosa, in fact, were members of the Michigan Open Carry. They were holding a meeting to discuss gun rights.

    Only thing is, private property owners can refuse them.

    "My analogy would be: If you come to my home, that's private property. I can decide who I want and my home and who not," said Teresa Szymanski, captain of the Lansing Police Department's South Precinct.

    Officials from Michigan Open Carry say the owner of Ponderosa greed to let them hold a meeting at the restaurant. But he says he didn't expect the meeting to be held on a busy Saturday -- and certainly didn't expect the men to bring more than handguns.

    "At first, we looked the other way on the handguns," said owner Dennis Holleran. "And then some gentleman shows up with an assault rifle, and that was just too far over the top."

    That's when an assistant manager decided to call police. The open carriers say about 10 officers arrived on the scene and began harrassing them.

    But LPD say no one was arrested and notes they're now working cooperatively with Open Carry to ensure this doesn't happen again.

    "I think the taxpayers of Lansing want us to respond to gun calls. But at the same time, we need to be aware of individual rights."
  2. "Yes, I'll have the mesquite grilled 4 ounce petite filet and a side order of 125 grain Speer Gold Dots."
  3. http://www.michiganopencarry.org/

    The objectives of Michigan Open Carry are:

    • To educate and desensitize the public and members of the law enforcement community about the legality of the open carry of a handgun in public.
    • To exercise a natural right to self defense using the most efficient and common tool, a handgun.
    • To demonstrate to the public at large that gun owners are one of the most lawful segments of society and they have nothing to fear from the lawful carry of a firearm.
    • To protect our right to self-defense.
    Methods to accomplish objectives are:

    • To distribute information via email, mail, telephone and in person to local law enforcement agencies.
    • To have periodic and informal gatherings in public places throughout the state while open carrying our handguns.
    • To contact the media, conduct interviews, relate pertinent information on the internet, write articles and letters to the editors all on the legality of open carry.
    • To participate in larger public events, festivals, car shows, etc., and staff an information booth about open carry.
    • To stay informed of and act against infringing legislation.
    • To always be ambassadors of good will in regards to the safe and lawful carry of a firearm.

    Open carry is more than open carry
    Brian G. Jeffs, 1st President, MOC, Inc.

    It&#8217;s true that open carry has many advantages: a faster draw, a larger caliber handgun and greater round capacity; sure it&#8217;s been show to deter crime, and it is immensely more comfortable to carry in warm weather, but it is much more than that.

    Open carry brings gun ownership out of the closet. It shows your friends and neighbors, your state and your country that you are not afraid of taking on the responsibility of protecting yourself and the ones you love from evil. Open carry is a visible expression of our natural right to self preservation. Open carry makes a statement that we are not afraid to stand up to the &#8220;politically correct&#8221; ideology that has created a nanny state, where the government is there to help us if we just do as they say, and a pox on anyone that disagrees.

    Open carry can lead us out of this stupor and deliver us once again to the days when a man could stand tall and be proud of his community, his state, and his country.

    When you open carry you are saying to the world, I&#8217;m my own man, I&#8217;m able and willing to defend myself, my family, and if need be my community, my state, and my country. It also states that I&#8217;m willing to stand up and speak truth to authority. It&#8217;s shameful that we as law abiding citizens must stand up to authority, the very authority that we have empowered, when questioned about our lawful right to openly carry a firearm. But stand up we must. The open carry of a firearm speaks volumes and it&#8217;s says much more than just open carry.
    Another link http://www.miopencarry.org/page.php
  4. Dang, Only now does someone tell me I can't conceal a large caliber, high capacity handgun. if only they had told me thirty years ago this was the case I would not have conceal carried Fullsize 1911's, Browning Hi Power, Sig P226, S&W 4506, glock 22, or an XD9. In the hot a humid swamp of SW Florida.

  5. That all varies by person, and by the stakes of getting found out with a gun.

    If non-LEO, and carrying in an anti-gun town in an anti-gun state, then it isn't so easy to conceal full-size.

    Besides, the AK tends to print a little :rofl:
  6. I just don't know what to think about this, I didn't watch the vid but there should never be an argument over this, if asked to leave then do so. Write letters, make PH calls later but not at the time.

    I think the place was OK with handguns but the assult rifle did the trick for this group, I open carry everywhere but I'm not slinging my AR15 over my shoulder and going out to eat or to the mall. In my opinion this group didn't help their cause on this day.
  7. Just paint the tip orange and you don't have to conceal.

  8. Did our little friend Leonard move to Michigan?
  9. "At first, we looked the other way on the handguns," said owner Dennis Holleran. "And then some gentleman shows up with an assault rifle, and that was just too far over the top."

    Nope, we can't expect any pushback whatsoever as a result of legal OC. Another happy ending, "Because I can". :upeyes:
  10. Reminds me of one of my wife's favorite sayings: "John, it's not what you say that pisses me off so much....it's how you say it".

    The video has been removed from the link; but I'm guessing any argument with LE didn't help the cause much with regards to public perception.
  11. Search kwikrnu on youtube and he has more vids of him being detained...

    for open carrying a black powder pistol IN HIS HAND
  12. Hmmm, I see that being used in future responses. :thumbsup:
    Here is another link... http://www.youtube.com/OpenCarryMI
  13. Morons. Bringing a rifle was WAY out of line. People like this are not doing any of us any good.
  14. The objectives of Michigan Open Carry are:
    • To educate and desensitize the public and members of the law enforcement community about the legality of the open carry of a handgun in public.
    • To demonstrate to the public at large that gun owners are one of the most lawful segments of society and they have nothing to fear from the lawful carry of a firearm.

    Methods to accomplish objectives are:​
    • To always be ambassadors of good will in regards to the safe and lawful carry of a firearm.

  15. The assault rifle brought might not have been classified as a rifle in Michigan. If you have an AK side folder that is capable of firing in the folded position and is 30" or less is classified as a handgun in Michigan..and must be registered as such.
  16. And how interesting it is that the same "because I can crowd" will have a fit when a police officer does something because they can. But will condone and support anything that an activist does "because they can"
  17. I support open carry for those who want to do it(Its not for me), but I agree w/ the above. That was just stupid, and they got the reaction they were looking for. Then telling the cops their jobs, etc.. Don't stand there and argue w/ the police when they are called because you're acting like a fool.

    These guys are a disgrace. I hope Michigan Gun Owners are clobbering these guys.


  18. Yup, just takes one adolescent acting idiot to ruin everything...what did he 'honestly' think was going to happen by bringing an AR, what a fool.
  19. I rarely open carry and have no problem with people who do so regularly. There is a time and place for everything and a dining establishment is no place for an AK. If they want the general public to get used to the open carry thing, they had better ease them into it. Exactly how do you have dinner and still have complete control (with kids walking past your table) of an AK? Do you use it as a fork?
    If i was in this restaurant with my family and this group walked in, I would monitor their activity and have no issues. Once the moron with the AK came in i would get up and leave. Reason being, I'd already be carrying and wouldn't want to be associated with nor detained along with this nutbag.
  20. Judging from the video, that AK is actually an AR. Kinda grainy video, but the reflection of the spring on the dust cover gives it away.

    Most of those guys handled themselves just fine, wish the big guy could have gotten his point across without being belligerent.
  21. The assistant manager should have used his right to personally ask the man with the rifle to take it back outside, or tell them that the whole meeting would have to leave. He could have left the police completely out of it, and everything would have went much smoother.

    But I suppose now he's on TV telling his local news anchor that he was too scared to speak to them himself.
  22. Gee, I wonder if they would have had the problem if they put into practice the, "Concealed" part of, "Concealed Carry?" I seriously doubt it. On that same note, if there is no Gun Buster sign on the door, then they can legally carry there anyhow. They could have kept their guns concealed, still held their meeting, the police wouldn't have shown up, and everyone would have gone home happy. As for the Semi-automatic rifle, what the heck did that idiot think was going to happen when he showed up with it? Talk about bad judgment. I have seen so many times that the opened carry movement has done things that are over the top and questionable. They are too blunt and bold. This is not the way to get those that are afraid of guns to come around to their way of thinking. All that the fearful see is just another nut job with a gun. Sure, we know they aren't nut jobs right? :whistling: Opened carry may be legal in many places. I open carry on my own property sometimes, but not in public. The reason, the very thing that happened in this case. Opened carry, in most cases anyhow, is a sure way of getting into hot water. Even if your not doing anything wrong, it is still not a good idea in public. Sure it sucks, but that's the way it is. Does it need to change? Maybe. Is doing what these people did the way to go about it, especially bringing a semi-automatic rifle to a restaurant? In short, NO.
  23. +1 :thumbsup:
  24. Well said. The rifle was way over the top and certainly did not present a good image for the open carry movement in any way what so ever. Also, I agree that if we ever expect the general public to accept opened carry, concealed carry, and firearms in general, they have to be eased into it and be educated in the truths about firearms. What the nut ball did with the rifle is the perfect poster photo for the anti's.
  25. The Ponderosa Steakhouse is a disgrace to the name.
  26. Especially if your in a park hiking and trying to get the attention of the police!

  27. It's people like this that go looking for trouble that make gun owners look bad.

    I have no problem with open carry but sometimes people have to push it too far.
  28. Wow, quite an event. I am happy the right to OC is available, however I rarely exercise that right. The only manner in which I do is if I remove my cover garment in a restaurant (i.e. suit coat) and I always ensure I sit strong-side in. The rest of the time I'm 100% concealed.

    I have to agree with the others that the AR was excessive. The guy looks just ridiculous in the photo, I mean REALLY? An AR?!?! Again I'm all for the right but its no wonder the police were called. I can see the sheep within calling the police the SECOND the AR waltzed through the door, at first they probably didn't know if it was going to be a mass execution, robbery or something else.

    Bottom line, there is a time and place for everything. Exercise your right to OC, prepare to deal with the public, police and educate, don't invite trouble.
  29. Well said. Many people are not, and never will be, comfortable around firearms no matter how hard you try to make them. We need to be respectful of that. Don't upset the herd. I live in Michigan and am happy to even be able to carry at all. Don't ruin it for the rest of us. These guys were foolish at best.:rant:
  30. Assault Rifle??? no other word to explain other than "DUMB$SS" AN to think the rest of the MOC. group even though he was one of their should have takem out behind the wood shed an kicked him in the squash. An all out attempt to a civil meeting turned out to nother other than a $hitstorm. Way to go idiot.
    This reply not intended for the OP that i quoted using his own reply.
  31. Interesting tidbits from interweb searches:

    Since the incident, the President of MI OC has resigned.

    Then the Regional Co-ordinator quit.

    So did the Sergeant-at-Arms.

    The site that hosts MI OC's bulletin board popped us with a notice reminding readers that the two weren't connected, views didn't match, ...

    Maybe our issues (mine included) aren't with the organization itself. Regardless, dude with the AR has his head in his fourth point of contact.
  32. What's that old saying?

    "There's one in every crowd."

    Happyguy :)
  33. I agree only more ammo for the anti's and law to stop open carry. i live in michigan and i find this a blow to our state. like he needed an assault rifle.
  34. Assault rifle? Do we know in fact that it is?:cool:
  35. According to another post on another forum, it was an AR15.. so given the general opinion of the uninformed, slanted media.. Yes it was an assault rifle.

  36. Apparently the AR carrier is a fellow who goes by the handle "Kimberguy" on the opencarry.org forums. Here's a link to the bruhaha thread:


    What gets me is the sheer arrogance of some of those guys. Who the flock in their right mind thinks that carrying an AR into a busy restaurant is a good way to "desensitize" the public to the practice of open carry?? I am all for open carry, and even I would be freaked out if some dimwit were to do that.

    "Because I can" is not a reason for G-d's sake! Stupidest maneuver I've ever seen as far as open carry goes. Reminds of the jackass who sauntered around the state park with the folding AK with the tip painted orange.
  37. [​IMG]
    They were looked down upon in their time too.... :whistling:
  38. Apple & oranges fyrecrotch. Your comparison is completely dissimilar.
  39. Nice try but while not the same they are still an exercise of individual rights despite laws and society's view.
  40. Confirms Sam's post... Interesting first few posts...
  41. Therein is the difference. No laws forbid the actions of the group in the OP.
  42. In my state or yours? :whistling:
  43. Their state.
  44. Again, nice try. :whistling:
  45. I'm a CCW instructor and a big gun rights proponent.
    Open carry of a handgun won't get a second look from me.
    It's legal here in NM and I see it fairly often.
    Open carry of a rifle on a sling in an urban setting and I'll think you're an idiot attention whore. I'll be watching you as I leave. I don't want the drama in my life that you'll be attracting.
    Carry a rifle in your hands while walking towards the restaurant my family is in and you're liable to have my gun pointed at you. Especially after the high profile "take-over" robberies we had in Albuquerque a while back.
    Sorry dude, but carrying a rifle in an urban setting is the 2nd Amendment version of yelling "Fire!" in a theatre.
  46. Incident took place in Michigan, their state. Answer isn't going to change.
  47. Inspired by the "Because it's my right" crowd:

    I wonder how the crew will feel when I, on my next traffic stop, approach the driver with an open-carried AR. I wonder what their response will be when I come to their house to take a burglary report, 6920 on a three-point. Will they support my right to carry when the "sheep" complain about the scary officer? Will they denounce the militarization of police?
  48. Didn't answer the question which didn't include their state for a reason.


    Like the image above, stare at it long enough and I'm sure you'll see it.
  49. Well said. I'm all for it too but bringing a rifle in a restaurant is a bit too miuch. I don't care if you're trying to make a statement or whatever it just proves you're an idiot.

    I had a convo with a county sheriff deputy about this incident a few days back and asked him about what he thought. He said that the issue that came up was that if you're sitting in a booth and the firearm isn't visible, it's considered concealed. Similar to the motor vehicle issue. Once you're in it's concealed. Now for a CCW holder that's no problem but if someone was open carrying in a restaurant without a CCW and sits in a booth where the firearm isn't in plain view he could be breaking the law. I'm not sure I agree with that 100% but at the same time I can see the problem. And the moron with the AR-15 over his shoulder just put the last nail in the coffin.
  50. Check out the posts about the OC meeting at MIGUNOWNERS>ORG this has really been beaten to death, I don't believe this will happen again. Bringing a rifle to an OC meeting even if it does fall under the tech. definition of a pistol in Mich. this does tend to freak out people. I too would be on alert. ( I also at times OC) Brian Jeffs is a good man who will rethink about letting someone OC a rifle to the next get together.