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Toby Keith's 'Gun Problem'

The newly opened restaurant has a "no guns" policy, which has led to a bit of a fight on the establishment's Facebook page.

Toby Keith's restaurant doesn't allow guns. (Patch photo by Greg Hambrick.)
Toby Keith's restaurant doesn't allow guns. (Patch photo by Greg Hambrick.)

For a country music star with a hit single titled, "Bullets in the Gun," the sign on the restaurant bearing Toby Keith's name has come as a bit of a surprise.

"NO GUNS PERMITTED," reads the sign on the door of the newly opened Toby Keith's I Love This Bar and Grill in Woodbridge.

According to FOX 5 TV, the sign has outraged gun-rights advocates in Virginia, which allows citizens to openly carry firearms into restaurants and bars — if the restaurants and bars are willing.

Virginia state law allows bar and restaurant owners to ban weapons from the premises, as long as they prominently display a gun-free sign in the establishment. 

The no-guns policy has been targeted on the Toby Keith restaurant's Facebook page.

"Won't be using your establishment or buying songs until you turn away from your anti NRA views," one user wrote. "Get it right and repent quickly."

Another user commented, “I am now ashamed to say I was ever a fan of yours [T]oby. You truly are a hypocrite.”

Others on the Facebook page defended the policy and the restaurant.

"Toby, whenever I'm in VA, I will come and support your restaurant and buy your cd's," another user wrote. "For you gun-toting buffoon's I think it's hilarious how you are criticizing a private business owner who does not want people open carrying in a bar/restaurant."

And some customers interviewed by FOX outside the bar did not seem to mind the policy.

"Well, I think it's a great idea," customer Jayne Marconi told FOX. "Anywhere there's an establishment that serves alcohol, I'm going to tell you right now, alcohol can make you do funny things. So that [pointing to the "no guns" sign] absolutely makes me feel more comfortable."

Keith's franchise, which is owned by Arizona-based Capri Restaurant Group Enterprises LLC, has expanded to more than a dozen cities nationwide since opening in Oklahoma City in 2005.

Joe Porter December 31, 2013 at 10:57 PM
James Evans, you are wrong so please stop talking before you hurt yourself. TABC requires signs of certain types the sign you see at a restaurant does not keep out CHL holders, only non licensed people who have a firearm. Toby Keith doesn't own this place and he don't make the rules. The second amendment says way more than anything about a militia, but as the militia is made up of ALL MALES(not you fussy wimmins) between the age of 16 and 35, hmmm yep your argument is invalid. so please stop using left wing socialist drivel as reasoning, read the law as a certain left wing socialist said. I agree that the owners and mrs Keith have the right to refuse to allow firearms, I have the right to refuse to give them my money.
Phil Brooks January 01, 2014 at 12:38 AM
Joe Porter, The Second Amendment says ways more than anything about a militia? Huh? That's all it says. It was the Supreme Court who said otherwise, but all that amendment refers to is a well-regulated militia, not for everyone to have the right to bear arms. // And a militia is made up of all males from 16-35? Says who? You're just making stuff up.
Sandra Williams January 01, 2014 at 03:07 AM
Phil, your wrong, the militia was for every man and to be regulated, but not by the federal government, that was what our founding fathers were against, Britain tried to confiscate Americans guns, the second part of the 2nd. Amendment says. "The right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed, " two parts. Do you think "the right of the people," is collective? if so, that means the 1st Amendment " the right of the people "free speech," is also collective, not individually. Same with the 4th. Amendment: "the right of the people." "The right of the people" in the 1st., 2nd. and 4th. Amendment are individual. National and State guard? no, their under federal control, Our founders put in the 2nd. Amendment to restrict the federal government. Why do you think the feds want to confiscate the 100 million guns in 80 million households now? "The Militia is composed of free Citizens. There is therefore no Danger of their making use of their Power to the destruction of their own Rights, or suffering others to invade them." Samuel Adams, to James Warren, January 7 1776
DC Murphy January 01, 2014 at 03:23 AM
Toby Keith ain't no real country boy...and he wouldn't make a pimple on the Hags ass!
Robert Johnson January 01, 2014 at 07:14 AM
Any logical gun owner knows that booze and guns don't mix. Here in Phoenix AZ, a very gun friendly state, there are many places that have a "No guns allowed" and nobody seems to take issue with that.
fairfield newcomer January 01, 2014 at 09:30 AM
The same people beating up Toby are the same ones defending the duck dynasty dolt for his right to voice his opinion, "double standards are us", say what I like and I'm all for you, say what I don't like and you're a bad guy, a bunch of jerks and I'd rather be in an arms free drinking establishment.
Eric S January 01, 2014 at 10:17 AM
Some of you have no given this any thought past your own agenda of self-defense. Did any of you consider the fact that allowing firearms in such an establishment causes severe liability problems? Ya wanna be mad? Be mad at the laws that allow lawsuits against a business owner because a customer went and got stupid. THAT is the cause of this prohibition by the restuarant. Next up...do you actually think it was Keith's idea? Ya think maybe kinda it coulda been the lawyers? Their job is to protect the business, not make friends. And so they did, they did protect the business and they did not make friends in doing so. Next...this notion of drinking and carrying...some of you haven't done any research. In PA it is legal to drink and carry. Where are all the drunken shoot-outs? I'll wait while you look that up. Go back to 1989 when it became legal. This IS a matter of private property rights, not 2A rights. And finally, this is all coming from a strong advocate of the 2A. I have been carrying for 34 years now. Some of you need to get around more carriers because apparently you think some of us are complete idiots. Some of you need to see the bigger picture, you're far too focused on a selfish perspective. The rest of you...carry on.
Sandra Williams January 01, 2014 at 10:41 AM
Eric S, other restuarants and businesses allow concealed carry, why would only Toby Keith's be affected? I am mad at the politicians who care more for criminals than do the law abiding citizens, that's one reason that not only I'm a Tea Party member, but one of 7 of our area's Tea Party coordinators. You know, part of the group (R) Senator McConnell said are "bullies" that "should be punched in the nose."
Phil Brooks January 01, 2014 at 10:42 AM
Sandra, You're missing one thing. The Second Amendment was phrased the way it was because there was no standing army at the time it was written.
Sandra Williams January 01, 2014 at 10:45 AM
Fairfield newcomer, the difference in Phil Roberts story and Toby Keith's, is self defense. As a CCW holder, my hubby and I will not patronize any business that doesn't allow CCW, check this link out and you will see the difference. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M1u0Byq5Qis
Sandra Williams January 01, 2014 at 10:59 AM
Phil Brooks, no, our founding fathers phrased it that way because they knew what a central government standing army "could" do, confiscate all firearms just as the British tried to do. They weren't going to hand the federal government the right to possibly onfiscate their firearms just as the Bristish tried to do. The Militia was an entity to keep the federal government in check, our founding fathers knew there would be politicians who would try to confiscate all our firearms, just as the commies, oops democrats, and RINOs are trying to do today. Eighty million gun owners are a formidable militia.
oldgringo January 01, 2014 at 11:27 AM
Automobiles and alcohol don't mix...Neither do guns and alcohol...If you drink don't drive...If you carry don't drink!...I'm all for no guns in bars...If alcohol is served in restuarants then guns should also not be allowed in these establishments either...Restuarants who do not serve alcohol should allow patrons to carry concealed or openly! For obvious reason restuarants who post Gun Free Zones signs should have security personnel on duty who do carry firearms...As much as some people hate the idea that schools should not have security personnel who also carry firearms...An ounce of prevention may be necessary to secure patrons, the public and or our children from becoming victims of those hell bent on committing evil upon the innocents!
Sandra Williams January 01, 2014 at 11:58 AM
oldgringo, I have no problem with not carrying in bars, but it's the "right" to carry, if one entity is stopped, which one is next? We live in a twin city, meaning Arkansas is in the middle of the Texas and Arkansas state line, all our public schools have armed police walking the campuses and parking lots, for several years, way before Sandy Hook. No shootings yet. Want to read something strange? Our Democrat Governor Bebee signed "Constitutional Carry" into law just 5 or 6 months ago, this is the reason I'm a conservative Independent, I will support a conservative Democrat before I would a liberal Republican. Our (R) Senator Boozman voted for Obamacare, and as one of our area's Tea Party coordinators, we are going to focus on replacing him with a conservative, Boozman is a RINO.
Phil Brooks January 01, 2014 at 12:05 PM
Sandra, Many thanks for the revisionist history and, of course, for labeling people you disagree with ("commies, oops, democrats"). // There's no sense in having a discussion with people like you who are rigid and otherwise set in their ways.
Ned January 01, 2014 at 12:39 PM
Stand your ground Toby. All these nuts that want the nation armed to the teeth need to be reminded that YOU not they represent the majority.
Ned January 01, 2014 at 12:44 PM
Isnt it amazing how many of the gun nuts just refuse to see the two words "well regulated" describing the militia the founding fathers authorized. I just love it when people bastardize the Constitution to make it say what they WANT it to say not what it MEANS.
William T. Rogers January 01, 2014 at 01:05 PM
I have to 'take issue' with those who keep grumbling that Toby Keith has a 'gun problem'. Obviously he has NO problem with guns whatsoever. It's the Gun Nut Bullies, the 'shoot-em up drugstore cowboys', and the Bubbas and Bubbettes who don't have a lick of sense anyway, who 'have the gun problem'. That's all I'm saying....
Sandra Williams January 01, 2014 at 01:10 PM
Ned, what is it about "the right of the people to keep and bear arms" you don't understand?
Sandra Williams January 01, 2014 at 01:13 PM
Ned, what is it about "the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed." you don't understand?
Rick Tocchet January 01, 2014 at 02:41 PM
Ironic, given that I wouldn't eat at a restaurant named after that dope at gunpoint.
Phil Brooks January 01, 2014 at 03:23 PM
Here's one for you gun nuts who seem to be put off by not being able to carry your gun into a place that explicitly says they don't want them on their premises: There are some places down south that still allow smoking in restaurants. What if one of those places put up a sign that said no smoking? Would you be as put off by that as you appear to be about carrying your guns? Yes, I know that the argument is one of perceived personal safety vs. a filthy addiction. Even so, the law gives you the right to carry and use both and it also gives the business owner the right to run his business as he sees fit. But, have at it nonetheless.
Sarah January 01, 2014 at 03:32 PM
Yeah to Toby!
Thomas J Burke January 01, 2014 at 07:47 PM
Gun owners and gun carriers have a right to boycott places that do not allow them to carry their guns. If you feel that you will miss them then that is your problem.
Soapstix 1 January 01, 2014 at 08:13 PM
Boycott away. Nobody needs anyone packing a gun in their place of business. The men who wrote the Constitution did not foresee the future. and how people would be twisting the rights and privilege of carrying a gun. I would not want to be in an establishment, that sold liquor, where guns were being carried.
Len Robertson January 01, 2014 at 08:58 PM
Insurance companies will not insure restaurants and taverns that allow guns on the premises and only a fool of an owner will own a "naked" emporium. It's called a bankruptcy looking for a place to happen. That's what Toby Keith who owns seven bars learned. Of course, none of that matters to gun nuts. Their need to protect themselves from imagined monsters exceeds the need for emporiums to survive.
Sandra Williams January 01, 2014 at 11:17 PM
Soapstix is simply uniformed, Dad worked at a liquor store, if he hadn't had a gun, he would probably be dead today; you see, he was going to be robbed by a robber who was armed and had several rap sheets. Dad didn't even fire a shot just pointed his gun at the would be robber and possible murderer and he literally hit the door when he ran out of the liquor store. Dad called the police, gave a description and he was arrested within hours. This is documented and on record.
Sandra Williams January 01, 2014 at 11:18 PM
Len, how do other resturants get insurance when they allow CCW?
Don Carr January 03, 2014 at 02:40 PM
Sandra, the other restaurants pay the premiums for the liabilities associated with their business. That's how.
Racer Boy January 03, 2014 at 03:15 PM
BTW: Michigan CCW law already prevents CCW holders from "carrying" in an establishment who's primary income source is derived from alcohol sales.
Jimmy J. January 06, 2014 at 08:13 AM
I don't see what the outcry is on this policy that the restaurant has established. It's within their right and the law, plain and simple. You don't like the policy, well the best thing to do besides contacting management is to tell your friends/family not to dine at the establishment.

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