Guns and Butter: Can They Mix Peacefully?


A civilized choice for opponents of a new Tennessee law that permits weapons to be carried into bars unless the owners explicitly forbid such carry:

Details from the

Ray Friedman, a Vanderbilt University management professor, and his daughter, Toni, started the site.

"Since most Tennesseans do not want guns and alcohol to mix, we believe that letting customers know which restaurants allow guns will put pressure on restaurants to post No-Gun signs (which they can do under the new law)," Friedman wrote in an email to supporters Friday night. "We want to use the free-market to limit the effects of the new gun law. Also, we hope that this will be an organizing model that can be used in other parts of the U.S., not just Tennessee."

While I disagree with the idea that wider ability to carry weapons in public deserves public opposition at all, spreading information is always a better choice than regulation.

Tom Knapp at Rational Review notes that the site might also be called .

NEXT: No Prescription Requirement for Robitussin

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  1. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve wanted to walk into a place and start shooting the shit out anyone there, only to have my plans thwarted at the door by a “No Guns Allowed” sign.

  2. Doesn’t the TN law make it still illegal to be drinking alcohol if you’re carrying? So how is anyone mixing guns and alcohol (legally)?

    WA has a wacky standard for whether you can carry or not in a restaurant/bar: do they allow people under 21 in the place? If yes, you can carry. If no, you can’t. Even if a place serves alcohol, but lets people bring their minor children in, you can carry. But even if a place doesn’t serve alcohol (like, I have been told, strip clubs in WA), but is 21-and-over, you can’t carry.

    1. In VA you can carry in an establishment that serves alcohol, but not concealed carry. You have to wear your gun in a holster openly, with your jacket off, for example. Only in establishments that don’t serve alcohol can you carry concealed.

      The Second Amendment Sisters like to go out for brunches all wearing their weaponry openly while sipping Mimosas. The service they receive is alway impeccable I’m sure.

      1. Might wanna check the laws, as of July 1st, in Virginia, you can now carry concealed, but can’t drink.

        1. Correct. In VA, if you have a concealed carry permit, you now can legally carry concealed in establishments that serve alcohol, but you cannot consumer alcohol.

          1. Not only can you not consumer alcohol, you also cannot consume it while carrying concealed in such an establishment.

    2. Well, the DD could carry, but that wouldn’t really be mixing alcohol and guns.

    3. WA isnt that wacky. That is basically KY’s law too – what is wacky is that your strip clubs dont serve alcohol.

      KY distinguishes between bars and restaurants – no carry in bars, carry is fine in restaurants. The tricky part is the 21+ only bar-section of a restaurant follows the bar rule.

      Thus, if Im concealing and go to an Applebee’s, I have to be seated in the outer ring, not the inner bar area.

      1. If you are going to an Applebee’s, it’s time to turn the gun on yourself. Or at least your tongue, for the numbing effects.

        1. Yeah, that was my thought, it was just an example, since their layout is ubiquitous.

          I could have made a reference to the bar section of Browning’s, but who would get that? Have you even been there? Hence the Applebee’s reference.

          1. I’m just being an asshole.

            By the way… Is The Beer Store downtown any good? I’m going to be staying at the 21C soon and I was wondering if it was worth the trip.

            1. Yes it is. Kind of pricy, because of what they carry, but they carry a bunch of stuff you cant find elsewhere. HOWEVER, they are also not pricy, in that you can buy a single and have them pour it into a glass and drink it there. Which even if expensive, is far cheaper than bar prices. They usually have a small number of interesting things on tap too.

              The place is kind of hipster douchebaggy, but in a good way, not a PBR way.

              If you are down there, you can hit Browning’s for dinner, since I mentioned it. Good beer and good food. Its on Main at the baseball stadium. Not far from The Beer Store on Market. Both are kind of a long walk from 21C (not undoable, but you are passing a lot of other stuff), but Browning’s has a plethora of parking as long as the Bats are not playing.

              Also, if you get naked in front of your hotel window, wave to a friend of mine, her office gets a good view of this apparently.

              1. 10 Blocks on Main from 21C to Brownings.

                4 Blocks from Brownings to Louisville Beer Store. So, its 14 from 21C. However, between Brownings and LBS, you pass the taproom for Bluegrass Brewing, so thats 3 good beer options within a tightly compacted area. BBC brewery (as opposed to BBC Brewpub, which is in St Matthews) is at Main & Clay, 2 blocks from Brownings and 2 blocks from LBS.

                1. Also, also, BBC Brewpub has two downtown locations, theatre square on 4th, and across from new basketball arena very near 21C. Not sure if the latter is actually open yet though.

                  The Brewpub and Brewery were once owned by same people but split with both keeping the name, which is very confusing.

                  1. Never been to BBC but we try to hit Cumberland Brews when we’re in town for Knob Creek.

                    1. Cumberland is my least favorite Louisville area brewery. Which isnt an insult.

  3. OT — did anybody hear Terry Gross’s howler-ific interview of Stephen Breyer today? Somebody needs to fisk that bad boy.

  4. “We want to use the free-market to limit the effects of the new gun law. Also, we hope that this will be an organizing model that can be used in other parts of the U.S., not just Tennessee.”

    I agree that limiting guns in bars everywhere will necessarily mean less violence, but…

    Actually, you know there are still places all over this country–and especially in and around Tennessee–where going out and getting drunk on a Saturday night and looking for a fight is considered a favorite pastime.

    And just ’cause the owner gets to decide that his customers can’t have a gun, I’m not sure that means the bar owner can’t carry a gun…

    Regardless, using “the free-market” to deal with such things is exactly the right approach. …’cause one size just doesn’t fit every situation.

    This may be hard for some post-yuppies to understand, but there are lots of places in this world, for instance, where they don’t have “dive bars”–they just call ’em “bars”.

    If you know you’re gonna have to bounce people out of your bar three or four times a Saturday night (like you always do), I’m not sure making a “free-market” attempt so that things don’t escalate to a shoot out is necessarily irrational.

  5. I agree that limiting guns in bars everywhere will [not] necessarily mean less violence, but…

    Fixed it.

  6. In GA businesses can post a “no guns” sign. That means they can deny entry or ask you to leave if you’re packing. It is not a crime to have a firearm in a “no guns” establishment unless you refuse to leave when requested. Then it is misdemeanor criminal trespass.In a lot of other states an owner posted “no guns” sign means it is a crime to carry there- no good.

    1. To prohibit firearms, a business serving alcohol must post signs stating (1) the property is posted under authority of Tennessee law; (2) weapons or firearms are prohibited from the building, property, or portion thereof; and (3) possessing a weapon in a posted area is a criminal offense.

      As I thought TN law is fucked up. Is it a criminal offense if you get caught with “outside” candy in a movie theater too? What about eating in a restaurant w/o shoes?

      1. What is the offense? If it is identical to trespassing, then that’s probably OK. The logic being that the sign already notified you that it is trespassing to be here with a gun, so if you bring a gun here you are guilty of trespass.

        Now, if they have some BS “having a gun” crime like they have for possessing a weapon within 1,000 feet of a school… that’s pretty jacked up.

    2. KY law is same as GA on this. The posted sign means absolutely nothing. After all, even without posting they can ask you to leave and its trespassing if you dont.

      GA’s goofiness is banning carrying ANY place that serves alcohol, which I guess would include Catholic masses but not Baptist services (I have no idea on GA’s law on carrying in church – KY originally banned it, but allows it now after it was requested by a group of ministers).

    3. In Texas it’s a criminal offense to carry where a business has a sign forbidding it. Annoying.

      1. Only if the sign meets extremely specific requirements which very few places bother to read and comply with.

  7. So, signs work for a bar if the issue is carry-or-non-carry, but not if the issue is smoking-or-non-smoking.

    And before anyone cites second hand smoke, guns have a non-zero chance of reducing the lifespans of people in proximity to them, and so (potentially) endanger those employed on the premises in a like manner.

    1. “So, signs work for a bar if the issue is carry-or-non-carry, but not if the issue is smoking-or-non-smoking.”

      Gee, you think there might be a discrepancy there somewhere?

      In California, when the smoking ban was first proposed, it was argued on the basis of employee safety. The argument was that restaurant employees didn’t have a choice where to work, so the smoking ban was ostensibly to protect them–not the customers.

      It’s interesting that when the issue is looked at it from the perspective of the customers’ rights and the property owners’ rights, they seem to come up with the right answer.

      When we make dumb assumptions like that employees don’t have a choice about where they work, we come up with dumb solutions that aren’t consistent with anything else.

      1. Gee, you think there might be a discrepancy there somewhere?

        Well, that was my whole point, but yeah.

        In any event, I’m wondering if i can replace my cig habit with carrying a gun. Least i could go to a bar then.

      2. Least i could go to a bar then.

        Ignoring the unrealism of the prospect of me paying higher prices for drinks, naturally. Or of wanting to drink somewhere i can’t control what’s playing on the TV and don’t have access to my computer.

        1. I got the point.

          You hit the nail on the head.

    2. I wish. I’d love to see establishments that allowed smoking. I’m fine with it most of the time, like in cafes where I am, but I refuse to go to out for dinner with my girlfriend to a place that allows smoking (romance, obviously, but she also has asthma).

      This seems to work fine in Japan, where a whole hell of a lot more people smoke and it’s far more acceptable to do so in restaurants.

      Back in the states, though, in my college town they banned smoking without a license and threw on all these other requirements, driving some clubs out of business, like the friendly neighborhood hookah man. I don’t normally care much for the stuff, but the dude at that shop was really knowledgeable and had a great beer selection to go with it. And smoking is the entire fucking reason someone would patronize such an establishment.

      1. I haven’t been by those places in years, but I imagine if they tried to close the hookah places in Los Angeles, there’d be some mighty pissed off Persians in Westwood!

        There’s a whole ethnicity there whose parents and grandparents were chased out of Iran by religious fanatics who wanted to impose such ridiculous restrictions…

        Now I’m not saying the freedom to smoke a hookah is the moral equivalent of every evil thing the Mullahs have ever done, but isn’t it ironic that Carl Reiner and Co. banned something the Mullah’s themselves wouldn’t have taken away?

        Soccer Moms in Irvine saw something on Oprah and don’t want to breathe second hand smoke when they go to Elephant Bar–now the Persians in Westwood gotta hookah on the DL…

        Yeah, sure, smoking regulations–one size fits all. It works that way with everything too. Ridiculous.

    3. guns have a non-zero chance of reducing the lifespans of people in proximity to them

      I reject this proposition.

      Simply being “in proximity to” a gun has zero effect on your lifespan.

  8. Oh, and can somebody give me a clue to the butter reference?

    1. You’ve never heard of this?

      But maybe it’s actually a reference to the Do-Re-Mi song.

      1. Damn, well, guess I’ve conclusively proved that I’m not an economist.

        And “Do Re Mi”?! Now you’ve really lost me.

      2. That article does a terrible job of explaining it, though. “Guns vs butter” is more a classic example of the production possibility frontier (i.e. the stuff you can make from the stuff you have) than a model for civilian and defense spending.

        The classic graph shows the trade-offs when you divert an increasing amount of the resources for producing butter to guns or vice versa. For example, if you start mining fertile farmland for iron ore, you can make a few more guns but you lose a lot of butter.

        1. Oh, actually, the production possibility frontier article uses guns and butter in every single example.

          My work is done here.

    2. Unfortunately, the reference to “Guns and Butter” is used tenuously at best in this article. Guns and butter is a ter describing an economic shift that happens during war time. Whether the people that use the phrase know it or not, the phrase actually suggests a socialistic economy in that when the government is not making guns for war, they are making butter (not literally, but the implication is that the government funds the making of butter.)

      Of course, the term may be used to describe how a free economy responds to large scale war-making. Though since our government is both in the guns and butter industries, I would say that the use of the term is generally more in line with a socialistic worldview.

  9. Ya like buttah, huh?

    1. Now that’s a reference I get.

  10. Guns and Butter: Can They Mix Peacefully?

    Don’t know about mixing.

    But guns are lousy for spreading butter on a roll.

    1. But guns are lousy for spreading butter on a roll.

      Duh, that’s what bayonets are for.

    2. Only because butter rounds don’t fly straight.

    3. BTW, thats how the first bagel was invented.

    4. And butter is only mediocre as a lubricant for guns. Tends to spoil too fast also.

  11. I was waiting for Reason to talk about the Tennessee restaurant/ concealed carry issue because I have an awesome story.

    My favorite bar in Nashville is Jackson’s Bar and Bistro. I am good friends with most of the staff and the owner, Tom Sheffer. Jackson’s consumes an unhealthy portion of my income every year, but it’s worth it to me because it’s an awesome bar with great people.

    Recently, an anonymous server from Jackson’s filed a complaint alleging that it is a violation of Tennessee Occupational Safety and Health Administration regulations to allow permit holders to carry guns into places that serve alcohol, such as Jackson’s. “Server alleges new guns law creates unsafe workplace”. All of the servers I knew said this was ridiculous and the server had no reason whatsoever to make the claim that Jackson’s was an “unsafe work environment”.

    What made me extraordinarily proud was that Tom decided to fight the complaint, and recently received a clearance from TOSHA stating that “Given all the circumstances, it was determined that no condition that created the potential for serious physical harm or death or that a hazard that was reasonably foreseeable existed,” TOSHA inspector David Blessman wrote in his report filed on Tuesday. “As a result, no citation is recommended.”

    So score one for liberty and common sense!

    1. It’s funny how OSHA rules creep into this–always.

      OSHA is an under-reported, pro-union thorn in the side of libertarians and entrepreneurs everywhere.

      1. That’s what’s so damn exciting about TOSHA refusing to issue a citation. It was set up for a classic anti-liberty OSHA clusterfuck, instead common sense prevailed and the complaint was ignored as it should have been. The ambulance chaser who hired represented said anonymous server is repealing the decision, but without TOSHA’s citation he will be ignored.

        We get few to celebrate, but this is certainly one of them.

        1. should read “is appealing the decision”….dammit.

        2. Nice, living in a Team Blue area, I forget that liberty and common sense are the norm elsewhere.

          1. Yeah, me too.

  12. Threadjack!!!!

    Idiot cop nearly caps a teen who was wearing a Halloween costume outside of a Halloween store.…..scary_teen

    Do cops and guns and mix?

    1. It doesn’t say he almost shot him…

      1. “…reports a police officer pointed a gun at…”


        1. Well what? Pointing a gun is not the same as almost shooting someone. You would say he was forced to the ground at gunpoint.

    2. Good thing the kid wasn’t wearing a dog costume.

  13. “While I disagree with the idea that wider ability to carry weapons in public deserves public opposition at all, spreading information is always a better choice than regulation.”

    I couldn’t disagree more. Making bars put up a sign stating whether or not they allow guns is yet another idiotic attempt to nudge society into abridging their own right to bear arms.

    If a bar wants to put up a sign that says “GUNS NOT ALLOWED” then they may, but why should others have to make a decision either way. Carrying a gun into a bar doesn’t necessarily end in someone firing a gun drunk. If someone shoots somebody with a gun (drunk or not drunk) then we already have laws that would put that retard in jail.

    Just enforce the fucking assault murder laws, don’t go around telling bars what signs they have to put up or one day, we will have campgrounds having to put up signs that say “foods with trans fats may not be consumed in our camping areas”. Fucking idiotic nonsense!

    1. Bottom line, leave gun owners alone until they stop leaving you alone with their gun.

      1. I agree with your basic premise wholeheartedly. But given the regulated world (country) that we live in, I do not have a problem with requiring an establishment with having to post what is allowed or isn’t in the context of giving potential customers enough information so they can decide whether they want to enter my place of business or not. (I realize that it would become extremely cumbersome to post everything, but I prefer that to not allowing anything at all.) I guess my point is: I own the property and the business, I can serve or not serve whomever I want. So, if my bar/restaurant/hardware store or whatever allows smoking/carrying a firearm/shitting on the floor or whatever goes against the ‘norm’ I’ll gladly post it as opposed to not being able to be in control of what goes on at my place of business.

    2. I don’t think the law requires a posting if guns are allowed, it just requires businesses to post if they don’t want to allow guns, a perfectly pro-property rights arrangement.

  14. Off Topic:
    Sorry, but I don’t know if this has been shared yet:

    “Seventeen-year-old Luke Angel has learned the hard way that nothing good comes of firing off an expletive-filled email while soused. The British teenager has been banned for life from entering the United States after he sent the White House a curse-laden email directed at President Obama. A police spokesperson told a British newspaper that the note was “full of abusive and threatening language.” Officers visited Angel at his home in Bedfordshire, England, during which time the teen admitted to sending the e-mail, although he couldn’t remember what he wrote. “I was drunk,” he told The Sun. “But I think I called Barack Obama a pr?. It was silly?the sort of thing you do when you’re a teenager and have had a few.” The severity of the punishment has yet to dawn on Angel. “I don’t really care,” he said, “but my parents aren’t very happy about it.”

    1. The British teenager has been banned for life from entering the United States after he sent the White House a curse-laden email directed at President Obama.

      So, in 2070, when this guy wants to come visit his great-grandchildren in New Riyadh, Connecticut, he’ll be shit out of luck.


  15. wow all those garments are so amazing and fabulous I don’t come to your blog as often as I would like, but whenever I do I see some really amazing things keep up the good work! =)

  16. Here’s how information about guns should be spread: make it very difficult to get a licence to carry one and make it widely know that anybody who breaks the fucking law will have their ass tossed on jail.

    1. How’s that workin’ out, Max?

      I used to live in a part of LA where I could hear gun shots almost every other night. It isn’t a long shot to assume most of the people firing those shots already had criminal records…

      So how’s that strategy of yours workin’ out, Max?

    2. Hey Max,
      “anybody who breaks the fucking law will have their ass tossed on (in) jail”,
      sounds good. Let’s apply it to those who have guns illegally before we worry about the people who carry them legally. Sorry if the illegal group are the ones who make up your base ………….I don’t mind if you call me a racist, because I’m not.

      1. “anybody who breaks the fucking law will have their ass tossed on (in) jail”,
        Be sure to tell Rumsfeld.

    3. Uh, Max? In just about every state in the country, a permit or license is required to legally carry a gun concealed, or in some state, to carry one at all. And doing so without the proper permit or license typically is a criminal offense.

      So what are you proposing that’s new, and what the hell makes you think it would somehow magically work better than what has been the law for many years already?

  17. Dissemination of information is always a good thing, sort of a reminder, even if they may or may not act on it. It has a 50-50 result, either those who carry guns (who the hell would carry guns in a pub unless you’re a bouncer) will stop doing so or they just turned a deaf ear.
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    1. who the hell would carry guns in a pub

      Someone who conceals regularly and stops in to a pub for a drink?

      1. Bzzt. The proper answer is “None of your fucking business.”

  18. OH wow, OK this really makes a lot of sense dude.

  19. Can they drink in a gun store?

    1. Of course not, silly. Didn’t you read? Alcohol and guns don’t mix!

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