Cardboard Rifle Triggers Controversy In Oceanside Strip MallScreen Shot 2016-11-30 at 4.27.44 PM
Brendon Von manages a gun store in a strip mall in Oceanside, CA, called Firearms Unknown. In an attempt to draw in Black Friday business, Von displayed a sign outside of his store. The sign is made of cardboard and it is a rifle. The sign is causing a lot of controversy and upsetting strip mall shoppers to the point of the police having to intervene.
A gun shop manager’s unusual sign is upsetting pedestrians and motorists passing the strip mall. Sistina Taele, a tourist visiting Oceanside said, “It looks like a machine gun. It is pretty aggressive.” People have called the police and reported a man with a fake rifle.
Von said, “A couple people just going by flipping me the bird, either scolding me or yelling some type of obscenity out their window. It kind of frustrated me that someone would call and make a false statement like that knowing it is a cardboard sign that’s very flimsy.”
Von says that he was asked to either remove the sign or at least change it. “I respectfully said no,” he said. Von plans to use his constitutional rights and refuses to be quieted. “It’s kind of a slap in the face as a veteran,” Von said. The Marine veteran fought for his rights and lost friends in the fight for that freedom.
Von’s controversial sign not only drove in customers but it also sparked a First Amendment debate too. Von said, “All the amendments matter. You hear about a lot of stuff today. You know, this matters, that matters. Well, I matter and my rights matter. Every American matters.”