- The Washington Times - Sunday, August 11, 2013

As gun rights supporters flocked to their local Starbucks Friday for “Starbucks Appreciation Day,” the coffee giant announced it was closing its Newtown, Conn., store early “out of respect for Newtown and everything the community has been through.”

“At Starbucks we are proud that our stores serve as gathering places for thousands of communities across the country and we appreciate that our customers share diverse points of view on issues that matter to them,” Executive Vice President Chris Carr said in a statement on the company’s website.

Twenty school children and six educators were slain by a gunman at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown in December 2012.

“We also believe in being sensitive to each community we serve,” Mr. Carr continued. “We recognize that there is significant and genuine passion surrounding this topic, however out of respect for Newtown and everything the community has been through we decided to close our store early before the event started.”

Gun owners began staging the appreciation days a few years ago when the company faced pressure from gun-control advocates to ban firearms from the stores. After Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz resisted the move, activists began bringing their firearms to their local coffee shops out of support.

A lot of them weren’t pleased to learn the Newtown store was closing for the event.

SPECIAL COVERAGE: Second Amendment & Gun Control

“I came here to support Starbucks for supporting the Constitution,” Dom Basile, of Watertown, told a local CBS affiliate. “Now, they’re not supporting us.”

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