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Absolute Outdoors in New Kent, VA

Absolute Outdoors in New Kent, VA

Virginia Citizens Defense League

Virginia Citizens Defense League

Covington VA --( A Virginia Citizens Defense League member brought to our attention a “No loaded guns” sign on the door of Absolute Outdoors in New Kent.

EM Ed Levine sent them an email to confirm that policy.

First, let me say that many gun stores have a “no loaded guns” policy.

That’s because, unlike pretty much any other public place around, people are actually drawing guns and handling them in a gun store. That said, many stores have a better policy of saying that a person can have a holstered, loaded handgun as long as the gun never leaves the holster while the owner is in the store.

So, if the “no loaded guns” was indeed Absolute Outdoors’s policy, it wouldn’t be the best policy, but it wouldn’t be uncommon for such a business.

However, the response Ed got back was, well, unbelievable and uncalled for.

We report, you decide.

Here is Ed’s email to Absolute Outdoors:

On Jun 30, 2014 10:04 AM, wrote:

Hi -

Someone told me that you guys have a sign on your door that prohibits the lawful carry of firearms by customers (unless they are law enforcement). [PVC: Here I will note that Ed should have said “...the lawful carry of a LOADED firearm by customers…” However, this would have been a good opportunity for the gun store to set the record straight.]

I just wanted to confirm that before I put the word out to 30,000 Virginia gun owners.


Ed Levine
Founder – Virginia Open Carry
Executive Member – Virginia Citizens Defense League
NRA – Life member and Instructor
GOA – member

The response back to Ed: In a message dated 6/30/2014 11:16:22 A.M. Eastern Daylight Time, writes:

You need to add to your list of titles:

In desperate need of a life
life long member of the tiny dick club
Just plain stupid

Now that better describes you.

Rick Baker, owner

I’m usually there everyday so you should drop by and see me little man.

Sounds like Sarah Brady wrote that clever response to Ed. Ed was in the Marines, so I’m not so sure that the “little man” thing fits him very well.

There are lots of gun stores out there and I know that I, for one, won’t be headed to Absolute Outdoors anytime soon. I’ll be spending my money with gun dealers that treat gun owners in a friendly and respectful manner. There are plenty of them out there.

Virginia Citizens Defense League, Inc. (VCDL). VCDL is an all-volunteer, non-partisan grassroots organization dedicated to defending the human rights of all Virginians. The Right to Keep and Bear Arms is a fundamental human right. Visit:

  • 38 User comments to “If You Like Being Insulted, Do We Have A Virginia Gun Store For You”

    1. I hope you’ll do a follow-up on this story in about a year. You can feature the new tanning salon or whatever business is operating there at that time.

      Or maybe the building will just be empty.

    2. That Rick Baker is either in the wrong line of work or a total ahole ! Prob.both ! I don’t know how the s o b stays in business !

    3. Cameron on July 3, 2014 at 9:18 PM said:

      I live right down the road from that place. Needless to say I will not be setting foot in there. Much happier giving my business to Degoff’s in Mechanicsville.

    4. Native Son on July 4, 2014 at 5:39 AM said:

      As his inventory sits on the shelf he can contemplate his Customer Service decisions and their relation to his lack of business(insert crickets chirping here).

    5. icetrout on July 4, 2014 at 6:02 AM said:

      rather go up the road to Walmart… hear that Mr.about to go into bankruptcy… lol :P

    6. Cecil on July 4, 2014 at 7:27 AM said:

      The response was harsh, but the initial email was a blunt threat. I would have said the same to Mr. Levine, maybe not as harshly, but the email sent to the store was full of swagger and threat.

    7. John Carr on July 4, 2014 at 8:10 AM said:

      Jerry’s sporting goods in Weston Wv had a sign like this on their store. Since Jerry sold out I’m not sure if the new owners still display the sign. I always thought the sign was a little strange.

    8. Michael J. on July 4, 2014 at 8:20 AM said:

      I agree with Cecil…an exceptionally poor way to bring what should have been constructive criticism to light by Mr. Levine. That said, the response reflects wholesale stupidity by the store owner and would certainly make me pause in doing any business with him. No winners here, on either side.

    9. Feltre on July 4, 2014 at 9:17 AM said:

      If he was banning loaded firearms for safety reasons he should have made his argument rather than being a jerk. That is just not good business. There are many other places to get what he sells.

    10. Leonard on July 4, 2014 at 10:01 AM said:

      Personally, I don’t like rude, snarky people, magazines or blog editors. If someone in a store treats me rudely, I let them know, and I don’t spend my $$ there. Simple econ-101. If a columnist continually smacks people down (who aren’t there to defend themselves) I cease reading their stuff. Both the challenge (yeah, it was a smug challenge) and the response sucked immensely.

    11. Ol' Vet on July 4, 2014 at 10:05 AM said:

      Obviouly your man isn’t in the businss of talking with folks. You don’t send an insulting email and expect to get some nice reply. Who gives a shit what his titles are. So this turkey ruins the guy’s business because he so arrogant that he can’t even ask a question but in an insulting manner.

    12. brian winters on July 4, 2014 at 10:21 AM said:

      At least in free America you have a choice of going to anoter store and carying. IN NJ no legal cary so we do not have a problem Note one nj gun range and store I occasionally go to has a sign posted no loaded guns except for on duty police. They then go on to specify if you are off duty or retired please do not carry in their store. Since they are one of the only public rages for 20 miles they can get away with it.

    13. I thought it might of been for Insurance reasons but he did not state that,so that being said I would not deal with that gun shop either..

    14. Ace Kincaid on July 4, 2014 at 12:15 PM said:

      In Sacramento, I saw a sign in a gun store that said please remove mask and unload gun before entry. I thought it extremely funny.

    15. Had the same problem hear in Ma even though he war the only ons that had what I want I left and will never go back

    16. GunnyChuck on July 4, 2014 at 2:55 PM said:

      Sounds like the place not to shop. Been in a gun store before where employees talked down to customers, never went back and let others know about the place. Pass the word and maybe this guy will get the message.

    17. Stealth on July 4, 2014 at 3:43 PM said:

      Yeah… There is a large store in Ct ‘HOFFMAN’S who whenever the local liberal news needs an ‘opinion’ goes to- pure idiots just like this store in New Kent, Va. Once, I went in about 12 years ago. I asked the guy ( one of the owners ) if I could see some short barreled revolvers for concealed carry. He looked at me and irritatedly motioned to a gun case about 30 feet away- filled with all used guns, mostly ‘junk’.. I went back to the front counter- and said, ‘no..I’m looking for NEW/QUALITY revolvers’ and he again motioned me to the far back of the store where a couple of OTHER losers gave me the runaround.. I walked out. I sent an e-mail to the store, informing them that I’d been handling firearms for 45 years (at that time ) was certified firearms Instructor, and DUE to the way I was treated- would NEVER go into their store again, NEVER recommend it and tell this story ( here for perhaps the HUNDRETH TIME… Gun Store owners like these reflect on us ALL!!!

    18. Bob Irwin on July 4, 2014 at 4:12 PM said:

      The signs on The Gun Store in Las Vegas say:
      You are welcome to carry your loaded firearm here Please leave it in your holster unless an emergency arises. At that time judicious marksmanship will be appreciated. Thank you.

    19. PUNISHER on July 4, 2014 at 4:46 PM said:


    20. Janek on July 4, 2014 at 5:42 PM said:

      You got to remember some of these gun ‘shoppes’ are being run by the recently prosperous class of ‘firearms elites’. LOL

    21. Oldclimber on July 4, 2014 at 5:55 PM said:

      I recently wrote what I hope was a blistering comment on an open carry group that was parading (maybe preening) around with high capacity, semi, long guns. For the reason you do not need this kind of firepower, unless the Chinese drop a hundred invading paratroopers in your neighborhood, I call it a childish display and rank it with kilowatt car sound systems at full blast, Harleys with no mufflers, crotch rockets at 150 + mph, pickup trucks with 6 foot wheels, etc. Our society has “inspired” the fringe to some personalized and ludicrous vanishing point. There is nothing wrong with being armed, with say, a 1911 45 and a spare mag or two, concealed. But when you feel the need to go on some animal display, in-your-face, f u, parade of hysteric sensationalists, please, keep you gun, and your pecker, in your pants.

    22. Frank Morris on July 4, 2014 at 6:02 PM said:

      Just curious what VA statutes say about such signage. For example FL statutes specifically prohibit such crap, but SC laws allow it with quite specific sign size, color, type face, etc. Is VA too stupid to write laws that address the issue at hand?

    23. Terry Story on July 4, 2014 at 6:48 PM said:

      There is a gun store in Lancaster, CA. that has a sign like that on their door as well, but the reason that they do is that they don’t want a lot of gun handling in the store leading to AD’s, and I consider that a valid reason to post a sign of that nature. There is no reason that you would carry a loaded firearm into a store where every employee is armed and there are fully loaded rifles in the shelves under the counters. I feel very safe in that store and I know that those folks behind the counter are very capable of taking care of their customers. Not all firearms dealers engender that kind of confidence, but these guys definitely do!

    24. MixWestMike on July 4, 2014 at 7:28 PM said:

      This will ensure this business fails, but that may have been the owners goal.

    25. I stand firmly for the God-given right of all of us to keep and bear arms (this is not a 2d Amendment right – the right to keep and bear arms predates the Constitution, and is the birthright of free people everywhere.) However, I also firmly stand for the rights of property to set whatever conditions they want for entry onto their property, e.g., if they demand that you have to hop on your left leg to come onto their property, that is also their right, if not smart. I can think of some very valid reasons for making such a requirement, and all of us gun owners need to grow up a little, and not be so sensitive, or make mountains out of molehills.

    26. USpatriotVet on July 4, 2014 at 9:22 PM said:

      In my state this gun shop would be done in a month. Many law-abiding gun owners in my state and we respect our 2nd Amendment rights, but we do expect that in return for our business, or we go somewhere else-period! Business-101, don’t piss off your customers and don’t get yourself negative press, or you won’t be in business long.

    27. Wgumcd on July 5, 2014 at 12:21 AM said:

      I have to completely agree with the shop owner! It has nothing to do with your carrying concealed and safely holstered while inside, but everythin to do with the safety of handling a loaded gun in a close environment, and the potential of ” let me show you mine” syndrome which seems to prevail. ATF and many cities are looking for any reason to close a gunshop, not to mention the insurance fiasco, and police report for a completely avoidable accidental discharge by a no ammo or loaded guns policy. It has nothing to do with the disrespect of the 2nd ammendment or permit/armed citizen!!! It’s just common sense! Admittedly Rick could have stated this better, but imagine his frustration of having to not only deal with all the bureaucracy daily and challenges of running a business, but then you additionally as a writer supposedly on their side! You should have researched these facts before offering up what is clearly an uninformed opinion. I can assure you that most likely the employees guns aren’t empty! Certainly one of the safest places on the planet!

    28. Larry Schillinger on July 5, 2014 at 4:56 AM said:

      To the guy that doesn’t like people open carrying rifles. You are one of the types that anti-gunners love. What part of “shall not infringe ” do you not understand? Are you really afraid of these guys because they are carrying a rifle? I can just see the antis rubbing their hands together like the wicked witch smiling with joy. I know all of you lily livered types are afraid you might offend someone and they may want to take you rifles away. I hate to break your bubble, they already do. Where were you 20 years ago? Remember when every pickup had a rifle in the gun rack? Every time you start to think you are, the antis become more aggressive; they will want to take just a little more don’t you know. It is time to stand up against the antis, stop worrying about offending someone, start teaching the true meaning of our God given rights and what our Constitution means and stands for. Give the antis an inch, and they will take the whole road. STOP DEFEATING YOURSELF, STAND UP FOR YOUR RIGHTS, NOT GIVE THEM AWAY. When you are willing to give away your rights, you make me very anger, because you are giving away my rights too. By the way, I do not live in Texas where this has been occurring but I will never tell someone they can not express there God given right and lawful right to carry. Stupid, just can not fix stupid! Now folks, am I being too direct?

    29. Smitty6398 on July 5, 2014 at 9:50 AM said:

      MOST GUN SHOWS nationwide request “NO LOADED FIREARMS”

    30. @Smitty,not in Texas ! Maybe them yankee gunbrabber states do ! Dont know and really dont care !

    31. james on July 5, 2014 at 7:25 PM said:

      He could have answered without the attitude,

      “It is my store and I make the rules”.

      We had a small one man shop in my city,
      the guy had large selection of new and consignment items, always had an attitude with customers, demanded a pistol purchase permit before he would let you touch anything, if you did not have the permit he told you to get the &%(# out of his shop. One day the shop was gone.

    32. Gregory Romeu on July 5, 2014 at 8:44 PM said:

      What scares the living hell out of me is that all you supposedly swarthy and intelligent gun owners that are supposed to be trained and alert, paying attention to detail, especially while armed, have ALL failed to recognize that the NAME of the store is AbsoluteLY Outdoors.

    33. @gregory romeu,it scares the living hell out of you that the name is absolutely outdoors ? You got some critical issues going on there pilgrim !

    34. Robert Bruce on July 7, 2014 at 5:41 AM said:

      You really are a self important thin skinned little man. You left out “loaded” in your inquiry and your inquiry had the tone of a nosey liberal, your reaction is like an insulted pouting little kid without proper respect or manners towards a rightful working business owner…he probably is tired of whinning simpering liberal socialists telling him how to run his business and life.Now, you, in immature retaliation instead of solidarity, wish to run down and ruin/boycott his store. IMHO you really are everything he said you are you little egotistical “boy”. Please, grow up, cowboy up, man up and go apologize to this fellow American who “YOU” started on…it ain’t about just “your” pride. And I’m an ex-con who can’t even touch a gun any more. I wish I could go buy a gun from his store. Stick together gentlemen, God is still watching.

    35. VT Patriot on July 8, 2014 at 10:52 AM said:

      Does sound to me like a whole lot of nothing. If I am treated badly in a gun store, or any other store, I just don’t go back. I usually CC, tho in the summer I OC. Not to make a show of how tough or cool I am, but for many other reasons.
      I live in a “FREE State”, and although I’m a staunch supporter ($$) of the 2A, and various organizations, I don’t believe that carrying is ‘cool’ or macho, but may be needed for my survival. Others may have different reasons, and they’re welcome to them.

    36. […] If You Like Being Insulted, Do We Have A Virginia Gun Store For You […]

    37. Never a good idea to be rude its not good business practice whatever the reason.

    38. […] 6 Paul- Here is a store that should know about self-defense.. and about customer service.  Absolute Outdoors in New Kent, Virginia has a large sign in their front window that says “No loaded guns”.  Ed Levine from the Virginia Citizens Defense League asked the store how the policy was enforced.  The store’s owner had this shockingly rude answer. […]

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