A Denny’s restaurant in Belleville, Illinois made news when five plain clothes police detectives wearing badges were asked to leave the restaurant because a detective’s gun made a diner uncomfortable.
Establishments need to set and enforce reasonable policies. In Arizona, an establishment may post a “no firearms allowed” sign, which applies to those who have permits to carry a concealed weapon. Businesses should have the right to allow firearms on their premises or not. In the same way restaurants may post a no-shirt-no-shoes-no-service sign, they should be able to allow firearms on their premises or not. Then, they must decide how to address policemen and their firearms. After the incident Denney’s apologized saying, ““Denny’s policy permits law enforcement officials to carry their firearms in the restaurant and we regret any misunderstanding.”
Often, the word “misunderstanding” is used to cover what is actually a mistake. The Denney’s manager asked the police officer to leave. There was no misunderstanding. It was a glaring error on the part of the manager. A better apology would have been, “We regret that our manager failed to apply our no firearms policy correctly.”
When I have followed up on a poor service complaint, I have been told, “Sorry, there seems to be a misunderstanding.” My reply is that there was no misunderstanding. I explain that they promised to deliver the order today, but did not.
King Solomon wrote, “He who conceals his sins does not prosper, but whoever confesses and renounces them finds mercy.” (Proverbs 28:13, NIV) When we slip up, it is better to confess and make amends than to blame the problem on a “misunderstanding.”
Steve Marr, Your Christian Business Coach
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