Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz sent a message to gun-owners on Wednesday: "Please don't bring your weapons into our stores."
"Starbucks is not a policy-maker, and in fact, we are not pro- or anti-gun," said Schultz. "However, we do believe that guns should not be part of the Starbucks experience. And as a result of that, making that decision, we are respectfully requesting that those customers who are carrying a gun, just honor the request and not bring the gun into Starbucks."
The message went out on Wednesday after the company was roped into a gun debate last month when a group of gun-owners announced they would hold a "Starbucks Appreciation Day" to recognize the chain for allowing people to bring guns, where it was permitted by state law.
Local gun rights activist Scott Smith, with Open Carry Texas, said he was surprised by the move and is thinking about boycotting the shop.
"We're talking about boycotting and going to other local coffee shops," said Smith. "We have sent them letters. We have sent them e-mails. I believe we have even made phone calls."
Schultz also stressed on Wednesday that his recent request is not a ban.
"The reason that it is not a ban is that we don't want to put our own people in a position of having to confront somebody who is carrying a weapon," Schultz said. "And so those customers who will bring in the gun -- we hope they won't -- we're still going to serve them. We're not going to ask them to leave."
Smith said he carries his gun because he does not want to be in a position where he can't protect his own family and the recent request by Schultz without an official ban may confuse customers.
"I think it's confusing," he said. "And I think it's going to cause a lot of issues. Personally, I think he either needs to say 'yes' or 'no.' If you really don't want people in there, then you need to make that statement."
A coalition that includes family members of victims of the Sandy Hook shootings has also asked Starbucks to reconsider their policy.