Entries in Open Carry (5)

Wednesday
May162012

Open Carry Saves Lives and Reduces Crime

Open carry is legal in 28 states without restriction.  In another 14 states, a license is required.  As ABC entitled a recent report, “Open carry is on the rise.” 

Shane Belanger is the head of the Maine Open Carry Association.  He organized a rally where attendees were carrying openly.  He told ABC news that the purpose of the public display was to accustom people to seeing guns and realize that they are not threatening.

As San Bernardino County (California) Sheriff’s Sargent, Dave Phelps said, “Gang members aren’t known to open carry.”  Criminals by definition dont obey laws and if open carry were legal, criminals would continue to illegally carry concealed weapons.

Other reasons for open carry include providing a visible deterrent to crime and providing more comfort and quicker access than concealed carry.  A 1985 Department of Justice survey of incarcerated felons reported that 57% of the felons polled agreed that “criminals are more worried about meeting an armed victim than they are about running into the police.”

Researcher Dr. Gary Kleck found that 92% of criminal attacks are deterred when a gun is merely shown (or, rarely, a warning shot fired).  By inference, this means that open carry would have the effect of deterring crime in the same way that a thief might choose another restaurant when he sees police eating at his intended target.

Also, larger handguns with more potent ammunition are easier to carry openly.

A mayor in New Mexico recently proposed banning open carry in his city.  A hearing was held in Ruidoso, New Mexico with an overflow attendance.  In defiance of the mayor, but consistent with the state’s explicit constitutional protection of the right to open carry, many who testified were openly carrying.  The mayor’s proposal was shot down, so to speak.

 Awareness of an armed citizenry has been shown to lower crime.  In 1982, Atlanta suburb Kennesaw required all households to have a gun.  The residential burglary rate subsequently dropped 89% in Kennesaw, compared to the modes 10.4% drop in Georgia as a whole.

Ten years later the residential burglary rate in Kennesaw was still 72% lower than when the ordinance was passed.

No wonder open carry is on the rise.

Monday
May142012

Oklahoma Governor Says She Will Sign Open Carry

Oklahoma Governor Fallin said on Saturday at the State Republican Convention, that she she will sign SB1733 into law.  Once signed, the law will go into effect on November 1 of this year.  OK2A, a Second Amendment Civil Rights group was instrumental in passing Open Carry legislation in Oklahoma.

 OK2As ultimate goal is constitutional carry. Citizens didnt lose our rights overnight, nor will they regain them overnight.  The all or nothing attitude of some of the guns rights organizations reap more of nothing. That recently happened in North Dakota when open carry died in the legislature.

SB1733 isnt everything OK2A wanted but it is a step toward Constitutional carry.  Another bill, already signed by Governor Fallin, that will go into effect on November 1 will help get Oklahomans to their ultimate goal. 

SB1785, which grants reciprocity to people from constitutional carry states, blows holes in any arguments against constitutional carry.  If residents of the constitutional carry states dont need a government permission slip to exercise their Second Amendment rights, why should Oklahomans?  If someone from Arizona can be trusted, why not an Oklahoman? 

OK2A is compiling a list of nightmare stories about the OSBIs inability to properly manage the application process.  If you or someone you know has had problems getting their permit on time or have been rejected for some minor misdemeanor from years gone by, they want to hear about it.  You can report these stories on the OK2A forum.  Click here for the forum website.

Texas is falling far behind in the fight for gun rights.  Most states require no permit to carry a holstered handgun openly. Yet incredibly, Texas is one of only 6 states to outright ban open carry! Yes, thats right, law abiding Americans can open carry without any permit in Pittsburgh and Seattle, but not Dallas or Houston.

Even if you dont plan to open carry, Open Carry legislation in Texas would allow citizens to carry full size handguns without the threat of being arrested by over zealous constables and other law enforcement officers, if their weapon is accidently exposed or prints under their shirt.  Sign Texas Open Carry petition here

Saturday
May122012

Oklahoma Senate Approves Open Carry Handgun Law

A bill to allow concealed-carry permi holders to openly carry handguns in Oklahoma is headed to the governor, who is expected to sign the legislation that passed the state Senate on Thursday. Oklahoma honors the Texas CHL, so Texans will soon be able to legally open carry in OK but not Texas!

The bill, approved by a 33-10 vote, would allow those with a concealed-carry handgun permit to openly carry their firearms in holsters after November 1. Those without such permits can obtain a gun permit and openly carry a firearm if they meet legal criteria, pass a background check and undergo firearms training.

Republican Governor Mary Fallin, a member of the National Rifle Association, has said she would support a responsible open-carry bill. She has five days to sign or veto the legislation, which affects about 125,000 people in the state.

Some 44 states allow some form of open-carry firearms. Eleven require permits to do so.

Tim Gillespie, director of OK2A, an Oklahoma City-based Second Amendment advocacy group, said allowing the open-carry of firearms will lead to a decline in the crime rate, based on statistics from other states.

Texas remains one of a handful of open states to ban open carry of handguns. Governor Rick Perry has said he would sign a bill authorizing open carry in Texas.

The best reason to support open carry is because it pisses off the Brady Bunch and the rest of the left wing pussified gun grabbers. Thats good enough for me!

Support Open Carry

Thursday
Mar222012

Open Carry Passes Oklahoma Senate

The Oklahoma Senate passed a measure last week that would allow for open carrying of guns.
Senate Bill 1733, by Sen. Anthony Sykes, R-Moore, heads to the House after securing Senate approval by a vote of 34-9.  The measure would allow those who have a concealed-carry permit to openly carry a gun or carry concealed in Oklahoma.

Oklahoma has been on the verge of an open carry of firearms law for several years. Former Governor Brad Henry vetoed the last measure that passed in 2010.  Current Governor Mary Fallin may get a chance to sign an open carry bill into law.

The law would require those applying for a firearms carry permit to show they can load, unload, fire, and clear a gun as well as pass a gun education course.

You can send a message to the Texas Legislature and Governor Rick Perry, who has indicated he would sign an open carry bill, by clicking here

We hold that all citizens who may lawfully purchase a handgun be allowed to carry openly in public in the State of Texas except for those places prohibited by law. We also call for state preemption of all handgun laws concerning open carry in Texas.

1. Every individual has the right and responsibility to defend their self against unjustified threats of death or serious bodily injury.

2. The Constitution of the United States guarantees the right of individuals to keep and bear arms.

3. Criminals are not deterred by rules, regulations, and laws forbidding the possession of weapons. A man bent on mass murder will not be stopped by a rule forbidding him to have a gun.

4. It is well known that the requirement to conceal a handgun for the purpose of protecting self, friends, and family can be difficult especially in Texas with our extreme heat since a person will usually have to wear a jacket to properly conceal a handgun and to avoid printing.

5. The requirement to conceal a handgun can make it difficult to draw the weapon should the life of the carrier or the life of someone else be in danger.

6. A criminal will not open carry a weapon because he does not want to draw attention to himself. We believe that a citizen openly carrying a handgun lawfully will be a deterrent for crime.

7. Ten states including Arizona, Alaska, Idaho, Kentucky, Montana, New Mexico, South Dakota, Virginia, Vermont, and Wyoming all allow open carry of handguns without a license. Twelve states including Connecticut, Indiana, Iowa, Georgia, Maryland, Massachusetts, Minnesota, New Jersey, North Dakota, Rhode Island, Utah, and Tennessee allow open carry of handguns with a license. In fact, Texas is one of only SIX states in the entire United States that completely bans open carry of handguns.

8. In these states, Open carry is very common and it does not alarm law enforcement or other citizens.

For the foregoing reasons, we residents of the State of Texas affirm and assert that all citizens who may lawfully purchase a handgun be allowed to carry openly in public in the State of Texas except for those places prohibited by law. We also call for state preemption of all handgun laws concerning open carry in Texas.

Thursday
Mar082012

"Open Carry" of Handguns 

The phrase “open carry” refers to the act of law-abiding citizens carrying a properly holstered handgun in plain sight, wherever it is legal to do so, as they go about their daily lives. This includes such mundane tasks as driving to work, walking the dog, grabbing a cup of coffee at Starbucks, or buying a book at Barnes & Noble.

Those who choose open carry are just going about their business while armed, just as do the 6 million-plus Americans who hold concealed-carry permits. The only difference is that open carriers have taken their jackets off or tucked in their shirts.

Yesterday I publicly took a position on “open carry” by signing the online Petition for Texas to pass legislation legalizing open carry. Qualified citizens should be able to exercise their Second Amendment rights with open carry. If Police Officers and security guards can legally open carry, citizens should be able to also. By the way, Texas is one of very few “Second Amendment friendly” states that does not allow open carry of handguns.

I personally prefer concealed carry over open carry but I support qualified gun owners making that decision, not the nanny state.  As responsible citizens in a free society, that choice belongs to we the people. The right to keep and bear arms is an inalienable right like voting its not a privilege (like driving).

Contrary to popular belief, the ability to carry a weapon openly does not come from the Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. Open and concealed carry are regulated by the constitutions and statutes of the 50 states. This is important because those who are opposed to open carry often attempt to characterize it as an oddity of the law or a mischaracterize of the U.S. Constitution, which is simply not the truth.

In fact, in the majority of states, any law-abiding citizen who is not otherwise prohibited by law from possessing a firearm may openly carry a loaded handgun with no license or permit required. In the majority of these 29 states, this right is based upon state constitutional provisions. And while anti-gun activists often argue that the prefatory clause of the Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution brings the intent of the framers into question, the history, tradition, and practice of law-abiding citizens peacefully bearing arms is spelled out time and time again in state constitutional provisions whose interpretation is clear.

In an additional 14 states, citizens who hold a state-issued carry permit may carry openly or concealed as they see fit. It is of particular import that in these states, the legislatures crafted their carry statutes in such a way as to avoid requiring concealment of the firearms thus carried. If open carry were the public safety issue that anti-gun activists proclaim it to be, it is hard to imagine 14 separate legislatures actively passing legislation enabling the practice.

It is also illustrative to note that the majority of these carry statutes have been passed within the last several decades. This demonstrates that such legislative thought is not an anachronism, as often claimed by those who are anti-gun. Rather, such carry statutes reflect a modern, individual-rights focus that finds open carry appropriate when balancing the personal protection interests of its citizens with the state’s interest in ordered liberty.

In attempting to discredit open carry, anti-gun activists often like to ask the question, “How do I know that the person openly carrying is in fact a law-abiding citizen and not a criminal?” This is an attempt to imply that anyone who lawfully carries a firearm is a potential criminal.

The 2006 FBI study “Violent Encounters: A Study of Felonious Assaults on Our Nation’s Law Enforcement Officers” by Anthony Pinizzotto revealed that criminals carefully conceal their firearms, without using a holsters (commonly called “Mexican Carry” in Texas). This report statistically proves that citizens who are openly wearing a properly holstered handgun and are willing to subject themselves to the intense public and law enforcement scrutiny that open carry brings with it are not criminals.

But with open carry legal in some form in 43 states, and with the practice becoming increasingly common, it is not surprising that citizens unfamiliar with the practice might have questions when they first see a neighbor carrying openly. These questions are often directed to local law enforcement, who generally oppose open carry because it results in many more “calls for service” than concealed carry.

OpenCarry.org serves as an educational resource for citizens and law enforcement alike. Their primary goal is to insure that interactions between citizens and law enforcement, respect both the rights of the citizen and the difficult job being performed by the officer. Interestingly, the increasing normality of open carry has helped to ensure that law enforcement officers across the country have been educated about its legality, rendering such encounters less frequent.

So is open carry right for America? In my opinion the answer is a resounding “yes!” Already present in the vast majority of states, the increasing popularity of the open-carry movement is a visible symbol that the right to bear arms remains a vital, core right of American citizens.