Salvation Army to some donors & shoppers: ''Merry Christmas...and STAY OUT''

Ohioans For Concealed Carry has begun to receive complaints from concerned concealed handgun license-holders, who say they're disappointed to see new discriminatory and dangerous signs banning CHL-holders going up at Salvation Army thrift stores throughout Ohio.

Consider the following exchange between one former Salvation Army supporter and officials at the Salvation Army:

    Sent by: "Paul R*****"
    To: [email protected]
    Date: 11/06/2004 07:43PM
    Subject: No Firearms sign

    After receiving a request to "man the kettles" this year, I went to your
    local office and found a "no firearms" sign on the door.

    I have donated in excess of $200 every kettle season and have donated
    services in the past. Since you put up
    the sign, you have indicated that you no longer want either.

    I have made arrangements to remove your organization from my will and have submitted your name to the state web site list of those unfriendly to concealed cary license holders.

    I will make my usual donations to those who hold my beliefs.

    Sadly, you have posted notice to any person intent on criminal activity that there is little danger in robbing your offices. THEY will pay no attention to your sign. Unfortunately most victims are killed to prevent identification, not because of resistance. I know some of the employees there and would be extremely upset if anthing should happen to them.

    In parting, those of us who have undergone the extensive background check and undergone the training (in my case administered by Ohio Police Academy firearms range instructors) are much safer to associate with than your average citizen. I have never committed a crime, EVER, I have no mental instability and the Sheriff and chief deputy (who know me) agreed
    that I was suitable to have a license.


    Subj: Re: No Firearms sign
    Date: 11/8/2004 2:43:08 PM EST
    From: [email protected]
    To: "Paul R."
    CC: [email protected]

    Dear Mr. R*****,

    Thank you for sharing with me your concerns over the Army's firearms

    Kindly note that this policy is not a reflection on who you are. We are most grateful to you for your passionate support.

    The Salvation Army moved forward with this policy to keep in align with our Territorial

    We fully support each constitutional right in our beloved country. I pray
    that you will give consideration in supporting your local Salvation Army
    this year. May God richly bless you.

Despite their response, Paul R. wasn't the first person to tell OFCC he is placing something else in the kettles this year:

"Every time I pass a 'collection pot' I put a "No Guns--No Dollars" card in," he said, before adding: "I intend to give privately this year."

Click on the "Read More..." link below to read another letter from a former Salvation Army donor - Jim Irvine, Chairman, OFCC PAC.

December 2, 2004

The Salvation Army
PO BOX 15149
Cleveland OH 44115-0149

RE: No firearms signs.

Dear Sirs:

Last year my family donated $100 in cash to the Salvation Army, and some other goods to your store in Strongsville. This year, I have non cash items valued at several hundred dollars, including a desktop or a laptop computer. We also planned to increase our cash donation.

I also do extensive volunteer work with Ohioans for Concealed Carry. (OFCC) OFCC was largely responsible for the passage of Ohio’s concealed carry firearms law this year. Using statistics from the other 45 states that previously allowed concealed carry, we were able to show that armed citizens pose no risk to businesses or citizens. In fact they often come to the aid of would be victims during a life threatening emergency when police are not present.

Your “no guns” signs do not keep guns out of your stores. They only keep law abiding people (including off duty law enforcement) from stopping a criminal who would otherwise kill one of your customers or employees. They are dangerous, because they advertise to criminals that you and your customers are easy targets.

Ironically, Ohio requires more training that any of our neighboring states, yet you only prohibit guns in your Ohio stores. IN and PA require no training for a license, yet have had no problems with license holders “shooting people in stores.” Still more ironic, I am licensed to carry in every bordering state except WV, but not in the store in my own town. Why?

I hope that you reconsider your errant policy. If signs are removed, I will once again consider you for donations, but this year I will donate my money and goods to an organization that cares for the safety of it customers, employees, and community; one that allows a person to defend their own life.

Your Christmas card notes sadness this time of year. Having your mother raped or father murdered is sad. Sadder still is a policy that disarms good people for criminals.


James Irvine
Strongsville, OH

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