Gun owners are showing up at Starbucks locations today to express their support for the company’s purportedly pro-gun policies. Second Amendment advocates are lending their appreciation to the coffee spots as part of a new, annual event they’ve launched called “Gun Owners Support Starbucks Day.”

So, until 11 p.m. tonight, supporters will be flocking to their nearest coffee shop to grab a cup of joe in support of their constitutionally-guaranteed right of self-defense. The Washington Post has more about the campaign:

Many people who love guns and coffee particularly appreciate Starbucks. In the 12 states with unfettered rights to “open carry” a gun, including Virginia, and the 16 others that are mostly open carry, Starbucks has rebuffed attempts by gun control activists to keep guns out of the national coffee shop chain. [...]

Starbucks first got drawn into this debate several years ago, and has tried to stay steadfastly neutral. Spokesman Zack Hutson told me Thursday that “our longstanding position is to comply with local laws in the communities we serve. We think that’s the right way to ensure a safe environment for our partners,” which is both employees and customers.

Alas, we now have “Gun Owners Support Starbucks Day.” Ed Levine, founder of the group Virginia Open Carry, told WNEW-TV about how the initiative came to fruition. Some individuals who oppose guns apparently tried to have him thrown out of Starbucks one day for carrying a firearm.

When these people decided they’d launch a boycott of the company for refusing to make gun carriers like Levine leave, the advocate said he was motivated to take action in support of the coffee chain.

Gun Enthusiasts Launch Support Starbucks Day to Honor Coffee Chains Defense of the Second Amendment

Photo Credit: Facebook

So, he’s encouraging gun rights enthusiasts to observe the “holiday” by spending $2 at Starbucks today. A Facebook event page setup to advertise today’s festivities reads, “Spend $2 at Starbucks to support a company that supports YOUR human rights, especially the most important right of all, self-defense and the 2nd Amendment.”

“I’ve got a pocket full of $2 bills that signify the Second Amendment,” he said while at one of the Virginia-area coffee shops. “We tip them and we show them we support them, supporting us.”

Here’s a description of ”Gun Owners Support Starbucks Day,” as posted on the group’s official Facebook page:

In February of 2012, Some anti-gun groups decided they would boycott Starbucks since Starbucks remained neutral on the “gun issue”. Starbucks follows the laws of the state the stores are in. Ed Levine, founder of Virginia Open Carry decided to hold a counter event on 2/14/2011 that went viral and hundreds of thousands of gun owners nationwide supported Starbucks.. and even paid in $2.00 bills to signify support for the Second Amendment. Starting in 2013, gun owners will make 2/22/XXXX their “Support Starbucks” day.

Gun Enthusiasts Launch Support Starbucks Day to Honor Coffee Chains Defense of the Second Amendment

“Gun Owners Support Starbucks Day” founder Ed Levine (Photo Credit: Facebook)

It’s no coincidence that Feb. 22 (2/22) was chosen. Each of the 2s stands for one of the three rights the Founders enshrined into the constitution. Here’s how the group describes these rights:

2 = defense of ourselves.
2 = defense of our families and communities.
2 = defense of our great country.

A separate fan page has been setup to advertise the event for next year and beyond, as those organizing it are planning to make it an annual happening.