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Moms Group Pleads with Target to Ban Guns In Stores

Shoppers ride an escalator near a Target Corp. store at the Atlantic Terminal Mall in the Brooklyn borough of New York, U.S., on Friday, March 7, 2014. The U.S. Census Bureau is scheduled to release retail sales figures on March 13. Photographer: Craig Warga/Bloomberg via Getty Images
Photograph by Bloomberg via Getty Images

If you think the last place you'd expect to see someone carrying an AK-47 is in the home goods aisle of your local Target, you may want to think again. The retail giant is apparently one of many stores that has no rules against customers carrying guns — a fact that has led the group Moms Demand Action in Gun Sense to launch a petition to change all that.

The group recently was successful in getting the popular burrito chain Chipotle to ban "open carry" policies, which then led other chains like Chili's and Sonic to voluntarily follow suit. But the group's sights shifted to Target after recent rallies by gun enthusiasts had them marching through popular stores where families shop — including Target — while holding their guns and ammunition proudly.

In a subsequent press release, Moms Demand Action said that "gun extremists have been demonstrating at Target stores to promote their agenda of intimidation."

"Target is where moms shop ... [and] go with their children," added Erika Soto Lamb, a spokeswoman for Moms Demand Action.

While Target has yet to respond with a ban on guns, they did issue a statement that said: "The safety and security of our guests and team members is our highest priority. Target does not sell firearms or ammunition and, as it relates to this issue, we follow all state and federal laws."

In the first 24 hours alone, the petition reportedly earned over 10,000 signatures. Moms Demand Action, which was started by a stay-at-home mom after 2012's devastating Sandy Hook shooting, launched the petition just this Tuesday.

The group has since partnered with Mayors Against Illegal Guns and includes many notable supporters, including Michael Bloomberg and Warren Buffett, who serve on its advisory board.

Do you believe guns should be banned from Target and other family stores? You can sign the petition here.

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