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Concealed Firearms Now Legal in Arizona Bars!

posted 11:56 PM EST, Tue September 29, 2009
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Concealed Firearms Now Legal in Arizona Bars! © Photo Credit: Illuminaut

As of today, gun toting Arizonians are welcomed into bars, as long as they conceal their weapons and refrain from drinking alcohol while inside.

The new law, which has received substantial National Rifle Association (NRA) support, allows almost 140 000 people in Arizona who hold concealed weapon permits to bring their guns into bars and restaurants that serve alcohol, unless the proprietor specifically prohibits weapons in a sign posted at the door.

Many bar and restaurant owners oppose the law. Mark DeSimone, a bar owner in Phoenix, said that although he has posted a sign prohibiting guns that he hates the way this makes his establishment look, saying, "It looks scary. It looks to somebody like, should I go in this place because they obviously have a problem with people bringing weapons in."

He says ultimately though, barring guns was more important, commenting, “You don't want people to even have a stick. When I take steak knives out (for customers), I look for the ones that don't have pointy ends."

Others though, respect their patrons’ right to bear arms. Jane Riddle, who owns the Mexican restaurant chain, Valle Luna, said that she and her family decided to allow firearms in their three restaurants after they “decided it was in the best interest to not prohibit law-abiding citizens from exercising their rights under the Second Amendment."

Gun owners who consume alcohol while carrying a concealed weapon, or those who bring their gun into an establishment that has prohibited concealed weaponry, face a fine of up to 500 and up to 30 days in jail.

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