The owner of a Beaumont, Tex. gun shop on Tuesday explained why his employee was wearing a banana suit and an AK-47 to promote the store's grand opening this weekend.Yeah, because not being able to openly brandish automatic weaponry everywhere is totes like segregation, man!
"To help people know where the new spot is, we stuck a costume mask on him, pointing a sign toward the store. He happened to be open-carrying. It's not uncommon in Beaumont for people to be doing that," Derek Poe told TPM, explaining that multiple businesses in the area promote their stores with sign holders.
Poe, who owns Golden Triangle Tactical, added that the employee wore the banana suit to make himself look less threatening while carrying an AK-47.
"And the banana suit was so he would look less alarming," he said.
The employee was cited by police Saturday for soliciting near a roadway without a permit.
"He was legally open-carrying, so they couldn't pin that on him," Poe said. "What the police have been doing is selective enforcement. It's a form of harassment, intimidation tactics used by Beaumont PD. They didn't even know what he did wrong. They were down there, one of the police officer's going through her phone and her code book trying to find something to pin on him because you can open carry in Texas."
Poe also defended his employee's choice to open carry, invoking a civil rights hero in the process.
"There's necessarily no reason to open carry," he said. "Rosa Parks didn't really need to sit where she did."
The purpose of his little antic? Don't say I didn't warn you; I did. As Poe is quoted in the article, "I understand where some are coming from -- afraid of it. Here they're not used to it. That's what the whole reason for the Liberty movement, the open carry law is for, it gets people used to it and desensitizes them to seeing firearms."
Every space is gun space!
Edited to Add: Folks, contrary to Mr. Poe's practice, this is not to be taken as a primer: