Moms Campaign for 'No Guns Allowed' Signs in Local Businesses

"It’s hard to tell a criminal from a law-abiding ‘good guy’ with a gun," says one mom distributing the signs in the Moms Demand Action campaign.

Local moms against gun violence attended a rally in Chicago as part of One Million Moms for Gun Control last year. Some members of the group went on to form Moms Demand Gun Action. | Submitted photo.
Local moms against gun violence attended a rally in Chicago as part of One Million Moms for Gun Control last year. Some members of the group went on to form Moms Demand Gun Action. | Submitted photo.

Will businesses in LaGrange, Western Springs and other west suburban communities display "No Guns Allowed" signs in their windows?

A group of local moms is asking now that Illinois allows residents with permits to carry concealed weapons.

Nicole Chen, of Western Springs, gathered other moms at her home after the Sandy Hook school shooting in December 2012 and they decided to join the Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America campaign. 

Chen's anti-gun efforts were first profiled on Patch in February 2013.

Throughout Illinois, they've passed out 2,000 postcards carrying the "No Guns Allowed" message, Chen said.

“I prefer to shop in places where I feel safe,” said Katherine Mudd, of Western Springs, who's been distributing the cards. “My safety and comfort level are compromised by concealed weapons in private businesses."

The group's national Facebook page has 114,000 followers.

Chen told Sun-Times Media that one business in Countryside posted a sign. The reaction has been supportive but business owners seem reluctant to post a sign, Chen said, which surprises her.

“Maybe they don’t want to offend anyone; it’s a political issue, and it evokes feelings," she said.

In 2013, the group successfully pushed Starbucks to ask customers not to bring guns to its stores. 

For the moms undertaking the local effort, they see this as a matter of safety.

"If I see someone carrying a gun in public, in a store, how do I know if they have a permit or not?” Chen asked. “Unless they paste their permit on their sleeve, it’s hard to tell a criminal from a law-abiding ‘good guy’ with a gun.”

Clarification: Article revised to clarify the nature of the anti-gun violence meeting profiled in February 2013. 

What do you think? Does it matter to you if a business won't allow patrons to carry concealed handguns in the store?

Billy Gallagher February 27, 2014 at 03:30 PM
Dear Moms Demand Action and to the "editor" of this story who wrote the headline based on this quote: "If I see someone carrying a gun in public, in a store, how do I know if they have a permit or not?” Chen asked. “Unless they paste their permit on their sleeve, it’s hard to tell a criminal from a law-abiding ‘good guy’ with a gun.” You are sadly exposing yourselves as having a complete lack of brain power. IL is a CONCEALED carry state. If you see anyone carrying a gun in public, that is in fact, against the law. The fact is that you will NEVER see anyone carrying in this state. They will have their weapons hidden from your view at all times. You will be 'forced' to feel 'unsafe' all over this state and town, etc as it is now the law that ppl can in fact carry. Your interference and attempt to circumvent the law will not prevail. Smart business owners know that by banning an entire group of customers spells doom for them. And NEWS FLASH for you folks: Bad guys will still walk into stores with 'no guns' signs. Hope that makes you feel 'safe'. Please, get a life and go volunteer at a hospital or old folks home if you are this bored.
ed breyer February 28, 2014 at 12:26 AM
Is this group of moms serious? Apparently they need to look up the definition of "concealed". You will not see guns being carried by those who have taken the required 16 hours of training and passed the rigorous background checks required to obtain a concealed carry license (CCL). That means a bad guy - who has and never will comply with gun laws (or door stickers) - also won't know whether or not he will be stopped by a CCL holder from hurting others. Accordingly, he may be less apt to act. The beauty of CCL is that even those who have no desire to carry a gun (or those like these moms who don't believe in self defense) - benefit from the uncertainty it creates for the bad guys. Stores/restaurants who post those "No Guns Allowed" signs will become the favored target of bad guys because they prefer defenseless "soft targets". Consider that shooting sprees typically occur in "Gun Free Zones" and you'll realize that you're at a greater risk there then in establishments that allow lawful Concealed Carry. Oh by the way, the successful experience of other states who have long allowed Concealed Carry indicates that we won't become the "Wild West".
Max Howard February 28, 2014 at 06:38 AM
Well, any business that posts this sign can count on not receiving any of my business. Judging by the turnout at town hall when they discussed implementing additional firearms ordinances (which was overwhelmingly rejected BTW) I will not be alone.
John Pappas February 28, 2014 at 07:17 AM
Businesses need to remember this is a constitutional right that the U.S. Federal court system has affirmed for Illinois, and all 49 other states. The hystrionics of radicals who wish to try and intimidate people and businesses into giving up their rights and ignore the law should be ignored. This long standing trampling of a key article of the Bill of Rights has finally been reversed by our judicial system in Illinois, and properly so.
CLM February 28, 2014 at 07:26 AM
Check out James O'Keefe & Project Veritas on YouTube: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wt1Zy_ASNyA They went around asking people to post "Proudly Gun Free Zone" placards on their home lawns. Not too many takers! It's asinine to post a sign saying "Yep, we're unprotected!" I am actually very offended when I walk into a business with labeling to this effect. It tells me that that business doesn't believe in the 2nd Amendment and posting signs such as these weakens a fundamental right that was granted to us by our founders. And this is happening by citizen assent! The government at large is taking away the rest of our constitutional rights in secret or by dictum but this one is going down by ill-informed citizen assent. For freedom loving individuals I would also encourage you to check out New Hampshire's Free State Project at www.freestateproject.org. It's the anti-Illinois. We plan to move there and escape this sorry state within 2 years. They have open carry & concealed carry and it's one of the safest states in the nation.
Andrew J. McGuire February 28, 2014 at 08:10 AM
Someone needs to explain to these moms the facts about conceal carry, the bad guys have and always will be carrying their guns with or without more laws or signs, all they're doing by labeling a business "gun free" is telling the bad guys there's no one concealing a gun in this business, not to mention It's illegal and always will be to have the gun visible, the whole point is to finally give law abiding citizens the right to protect themselves against the bad guys. It's always been a right but Illinois and Chicago have somehow prevented us from exercising that right the past few decades.
BSERIUS February 28, 2014 at 08:57 AM
I am a small business owner, I do not own a gun , I do not plan on owning a gun , I will never display any type of sign like this ,,,,
BSERIUS February 28, 2014 at 08:58 AM
Also, Sandy Hook and virtually all schools,,, Guns were banned Theaters ,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,Guns are banned Military bases,,,,,,,,,,,Guns are banned Chicago ,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,Guns have been banned and are still virtually banned, ------------------- and where are the shootings taking place ????
Warren February 28, 2014 at 09:01 AM
Posting a sign "Mentally deranged psychopaths and murdering thieves not allowed" might not be effective but would at least address the real problem.
DrK February 28, 2014 at 09:42 AM
“I prefer to shop in places where I feel safe,” said Katherine Mudd, of Western Springs, who's been distributing the cards. Well, Katherine, if you truly "want to feel safe", I suggest you avoid ANY business that has posted a "no guns allowed" sign and has thereby made itself a gun-free zone that is hospitable to criminals. Do you honestly believe that a 4"x6" sign will deter a killer, when innumerable laws have not been able to? You and your cohorts are beyond naive...you are dangerous!
jack kielczynski February 28, 2014 at 11:12 AM
Why not post "NO CRIME ALLOWED" signs ladies! That may keep criminals away. Do the 'No Guns Allowed' signs also extend to Police Officers in plain clothing? Retired Police Officers who have the right to carry concealed weapons by State Law already? Who will enforce this silliness? The Cashier, the busboy? Please find a better use for your spare time ladies!!
Bill Inaz February 28, 2014 at 02:17 PM
<i>"“I prefer to shop in places where I feel safe,” said Katherine Mudd...“My safety and comfort level are compromised by concealed weapons in private businesses."</i> Two points: 1) No 'sign" will make you safe and, 2) People intent on criminal activity are not the type to pay a whole lot of attention to 'signs'. I wonder how Katey would 'feel' walking into a store that had a sign that said Beyond this sign there are no worries. The air smells of roses, everything is safe and all the children are fed? If you think about it, would a criminal dare bring a gun in there? You got that right.
jack kielczynski February 28, 2014 at 06:52 PM
Wouldn't it be much, much easier to just post a sign like, "No crime allowed"! Or 'no criminals allowed beyond this point!? Then no one would feel the need to carry a concealed weapon anywhere. Because the criminals would just stay away!
ed breyer February 28, 2014 at 10:06 PM
Lots of logical and accurate comments have been posted. I'd love to see a follow-up comment from any of the moms in this organization or quoted in the article. Do they still believe a sign on a door will keep criminals out? Do they still believe anyone legally carrying a gun is evil/dangerous? Are they still against self defense? Have they at at least realized that "concealed" means "hidden"? It's awfully quiet in their corner.
Md February 28, 2014 at 11:46 PM
At least one of these moms have never spoken to the reporter or editor of the Patch. The Patch plagiarized another interview from another reputable source, embellished, misquoted and misled in this article. legal action is being sought against The Patch and its editor. We'll see how long they let this post remain on the website. The Patch is no longer a reputable source for news of any kind.
jack kielczynski February 28, 2014 at 11:59 PM
Ok, now let's all hold our breath until the 'Mom's' admit they were wrong!! Likely to never happen! Anyone who would believe what they purport to believe, likely also would 'never' admit they were 'wrong'!!
CLM March 01, 2014 at 09:04 AM
Wrong or not, unfortunately, these signs are still popping up at local businesses. I feel violated every time I see another one. Business owners, stand up and DO NOT AGREE to put these signs on your front doors! You have constitutional rights too! Just because some female who probably does want to do a good thing doesn't realize just how naive & ineffective she is being and how destructive to ACTUAL safety the practice is, please educate her instead of agreeing to post a sign that does nothing but infuriate other more informed patrons. Whenever I see one of these signs I DO comment to the management saying I am offended by the sign. If all like-minded folks would do the same perhaps the signs would come down.
jack kielczynski March 01, 2014 at 10:23 AM
A sign is just that, a sign! Not a law, but a request! I personally will carry my weapon anywhere it is 'legal' to carry it. I will definitely not patronize those establishments as often, but I am not going to be bullied into submission. When a cashier pulls out a pair of handcuffs, I will begin to worry. Until then I will continue to enjoy my right to carry a concealed weapon, I am a retired Police Officer and have carried for years, everywhere, it won't stop now because of an 8X11 piece of paper! Someday, one of the 'worried Mom's' may thank me! You never know!! Holding my breath for that public correction!
ed breyer March 01, 2014 at 11:39 AM
I'm plan on getting a CCL permit but until I do I hope CCL holders ignore those signs so that if a bad guy does what they typically do (finds a place with soft targets) there will be a CCL holder there to potentially save my life or that of a friend or family member! Besides, if it's properly concealed it will never be seen unless it's needed. Meanwhile, I'd like to find a place that will make up a batch of similar looking window decals - but instead of picturing a pistol with the red circle/slash - I'd replace the gun image with the words "SELF DEFENSE". Covertly adding my sticker next to the ones these mom's support would better convey to patrons and store owners what the signs really mean (i.e. self defense not allowed). Of course, I will also only enter such establishments if there are no other options - and will voice my concern to the owner/manager.
Stanley Hill March 01, 2014 at 02:34 PM
All the sign does is tells the criminal that it is a safe place to steal, rob, kill because they don't have a gun to stop him and his gun!
Larry N March 03, 2014 at 02:44 AM
Dear "concerned moms": Your intentions and efforts are noble, but misguided. If you truly desire a sense of safety (real or perceived) while shopping, you should welcome the constitutional RIGHT for one to protect their person and family. For a moment, extract emotion from the CCW debate: A logical analysis would reveal that those seeking CCW permits have an extreme prejudice to adherence of the law. Permit holders have (will have gone through) a fairly high hurdle of training and financial commitment just for the privilege of obtaining/maintaining a CCL. In addition, they represent a class of citizens that have been deemed clear of any felony history and/or violent criminal activities. Because these citizens represent law-abiding proclivities, they will be keen to respect current laws and regulations - lest they lose their privilege to possess a CCL. FBI statistics prove lower crime rates per capital in areas where citizens have the option and legal ability to protect themselves. In addition, FBI, gun-crime statistics have been DECREASING steadily over the past 20 years - against the backdrop of increasing, legal gun purchases (significantly over the past 5 years). The criminal class, on the other hand, is not at all concerned about gun laws and regulations, as by their nature - they are law agnostic, and specifically seek out the defenseless. Further, those businesses choosing to post a "no gun" sticker on their window, are merely indicating/broadcasting that only the criminal-class are allowed to carry concealed guns into their business. Regardless of your personal ability or political tendencies, US citizens have been endowed with the great responsibility of protecting not only ourselves, but our republic. The leftists who pursue a relentless disarmament of the general populace, will in the end guarantee it's demise. One must realize that the Bill of Rights is just that - a bill of rights, not a bill of wants. Where the 1st Amendment is liberty's voice, the 2nd Amendment is liberty's teeth. Both have been under vicious attack of late, and without both in equal standing, come authoritarian control and oppression. So in conclusion, "concerned moms", the law-abiding, citizen that may be standing right next to you in your favorite place of shopping (with a completely concealed gun) may be the only reason you get to see another day with your child/loved one. Maintaining liberty and individual freedom isn't easy, but complete security (or the illusion of it) requires the absence of both.
CLM March 03, 2014 at 07:16 AM
O-o-o-h Larry N, you're good! Very nice, well thought out & written response!
ed breyer March 15, 2014 at 10:29 PM
Well, my wife and I were about to go into Nicksons in La Grange this weekend when I spotted the NO CONCEALED CARRY sticker mentioned in the article. We decided to eat elsewhere. I will stop in when I have more time to discuss my concerns with the owner/manager - in hopes they will reconsider. But until then we'll take our business elsewhere out of principle.
avlisk March 26, 2014 at 05:40 PM
This group is acting on illogical emotion instead of rational common sense. I was with them last year, until my ignorance was pointed out to me, so over the last 5 months, I have educated myself. I am now shopping for my first gun, ever, and just joined the NRA yesterday. Dear Moms, education is a wonder thing. You ought to try it. We want our kids to have a bit more protection than a scary sign.
Tango April 18, 2014 at 10:40 AM
So you base your actions on "feelings"...seems a pretty common tactic when you cannot base your argument on any sort of statistic. While your comfort level may be increased, your safety really is in no danger from anyone who has gone through the longest training session (and paid the 2nd highest fee to exercise a right in the country) as well as submitted themselves to 6 background examinations. Nor is you in danger from CCW holders anywhere else. Take for example the number of studies that have indicated that Concealed Carry holders are 5.7 times less likely to commit a violent crime and 13 times less likely to commit any crime than non-permit holders...studies conducted by a number of agencies of different states that enacted CCW since 1986, not the NRA or anybody related to the firearms industry. If there were studies that supported the concept of CCW holders increasing crime don't you think the politicians who were fighting CCW would have brought them up in the hearings? Wouldn't the state have presented them when Moore v Madigan was being argued? Of course they would, and the news outlets in Chicago would have heralded the figures. They did not bring them up because they do not exist, just as the obligation for the government to protect the individual does not exist, and has not since South v Maryland in 1856. The people with guns doing the killing are the criminals, not the citizens who just want to be left alone. Although I find it amusing that they are referred to as an "anti-violence" group instead of a group that actually seeks to ban firearms... a group that was "deeply disappointed" and "outraged" that any sale of guns to law abiding citizens was going to occur in Chicago after years of unconstitutional denial under color of authority. Despite the "grassroots" front, in reality they were a well funded (now wholly owned) subsidiary of Michael Bloomberg, run by a professional public relations executive with experience ranging from being public affairs officer for Missouri Governor Mel Carnahan, the Missouri House of Representatives, the Missouri Department of Economic Development, Vice President of Corporate and Public Affairs at Fleishman-Hillard, Director of Global and Public Affairs at Monsanto Corporation, Director of Global Communications for GE Healthcare, then Vice President of Corporate Communications at WellPoint, the nation's largest health insurance corporation. And despite their claims of wanting to encourage a "conversation", they also have a wonderful history of erasing any opinions from their website or Facebook pages that are not in lockstep with their public positions. But she's "just a concerned mommy" and an "accidental activist". Sure. Just like my having gone through the police academy (tying for top score in shooting qualification) becoming an multi-discipline instructor (both nationally and in multiple states) and having over 300 hours of additional training only gives me a "passing familiarity" with firearms.


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