Cinemark Theaters: What's good for Texans not good for Ohioans

Following is an account of one grandfather's efforts to protect his grandchildren while going to the movies:

    Subject: Visit to your theater today, 11/26/04
    Author: "Mark"
    Date: 11/26/04 8:35 PM

    I took my grandchildren earlier today to see the movie 'The Polar Express' at your theater. Unfortunately your theater has posted signs barring entry of licensed handgun holders such as myself, and I was forced to visit another theater.

    I find it disturbing that you are disarming me, a person who has passed a FBI background check, has no criminal or felony record and has been trained in the safe use of firearms. What you have done is created a criminal protection zone by disarming law-abiding citizens. Do you honestly believe that a criminal will honor your request to not conceal a handgun and enter your theater?

    I am asking you to please review your policy and advise me of your decision in writing. I would appreciate a response to this email/letter.

    Thank You,

    Mark H****

A short response from the theatre manager followed:

    -----Original Message-----
    From: 283 Valley View [mailto:[email protected]]
    Sent: Monday, November 29, 2004 5:53 PM
    To: "Mark"
    Cc: Charly Street
    Subject: Re:Visit to your theater today, 11/26/04

    Mr. H****:

    I am sorry you feel that this policy is unacceptable and disturbing to you.

    As a company we have adopted this policy. I know that much consideration from the home office policy makers was taken in adopting such a policy. We are family oriented and just the same as you are offended that you can't carry your firearm, there are many patrons that would be concerned (in a family environment) that you are carrying. We do have off duty police officers very visible in our building who carry to ensure as safe as an environment for all as possible. You could go to Cinemark.Com and voice your concerns to corporate if you wish.


    Ms. Truhn
    General Manager

When copying OFCC on this correspondence, Mark added the following observations:

    I didn't bother to go in the theater after seeing the sign, but I have to admit, I have never seen a LEO off duty in ANY theater - makes me awful suspicious of just what goes on there. There also is the
    safety issue in walking to and from the car. Finally, if my weapon IS concealed and there is never an incident, just HOW would that upset other patrons?

As has been demonstrated in many "no-guns" businesses in Ohio - criminals, by definition, do not care about prohibitions, and will certainly ignore, or perhaps even be drawn to, stores that advertise that their customers' have been rendered defenseless by company policy. Does Cinemark honestly think that criminals will obey the signs?

According to their website, Cinemark USA, Inc. operates 299 theatres and 3,202 screens currently in 33 states in the United States, and internationally.

There have been some reports over the past few years on Internet discussion lists of a ban being enforced by Cinemark in certain other states. However, calls made by OFCC to randomly-chosen theatres in Indiana and Michigan discovered that signs are not posted at those locations. Posts at chat sites indicate signs are also not posted in Georgia. And according to the Texas State Rifle Association, Cinemark REMOVED signs from Texas theatres in 2003 after movie-goers in the company's home-state rose up in protest.

How else can Ohio residents interpret this policy but that Cinemark doesn't trust residents of Ohio to practice the same responsibility that has been exercised in their facilities by residents of so many others?

Corporate Office:
Cinemark USA, Inc.
3900 Dallas Parkway, Suite 500
Plano, TX 75093-7865
Alan Stock, President
E-mail: [email protected]
Telephone: (972) 665-1000
Fax: (972) 665-1003

Customer Service Email:

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