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Thread: Open carry in bars, when the only restaurants are bars...

  1. #1
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    Open carry in bars, when the only restaurants are bars...

    Have read the excellent posts citing the legality of open carry in Montana's bars, the illegality of concealed carry in certain places in addition to bars, and the general recommendations to avoid carrying in bars as if Montana were one of those states which go out of their way to make them illegal.

    Armed with that knowledge, when faced with a situation in which a small town had only restaurants as bars and my children needed to frequent the restrooms during a rodeo event sponsored by those establishments, I unconcealed and walked in with confidence I would not be breaking the law while in the bathroom line.

    Disappointedly, ran into some rude servers who confronted me and demanded I leave and not return with my firearm, as is their right to request under state law as representative for a private property. When I asked politely if they were asking me to leave based on private policy (which was not posted and doesn't have the rule of law in MT anyway according to the other research on this topic) or State law, they insisted the same law that restricts carrying on federal property also prohibits carry of any kind in bars. On my way out, I showed them them the published law on my cell phone and left as requested, noting that I had uncovered and walked by two LEOs providing security while entering and exiting the restaurant over 5 times in the period of an hour. Just like proving a LEO is misinterpreting a law doesn't work, barmaids are hard to convince otherwise.

    I have never been asked to not carry anywhere in WA state where it is legal, so imagine my shock when my first challenge is in Montana that claims far more constitutional freedoms than most states.

  2. #2
    Regular Member MontanaResident's Avatar
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    I've been in bars and open carrying. Where was this? If in a big city, Missoula, Billings, Helena, etc, I wouldn't be surprised.

  3. #3
    Regular Member acmariner99's Avatar
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    Montana is where a lot of Canadian and Cali expats go to ruin people's freedom. (Missoula, Billings, and Helena in particular.) I got accosted by a Helena police officer after OCing there. OCing in Washington State as stated above is a non-issue.

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    Arrow OC in helena

    Quote Originally Posted by MontanaResident View Post
    I've been in bars and open carrying. Where was this? If in a big city, Missoula, Billings, Helena, etc, I wouldn't be surprised.
    Helena USED to have a law preventing any loaded guns in the city limits. I with the help of the NRA attorney had them remove the law from the books as it violates state preemptive Law.

    There are a lot of progs thanks to Canadians/Californians/ Left college kids are our bane. I am trying to get the legislature to ban out ouf state students from VOTING in Montana. I urge you to do the same!

  5. #5
    Moderator / Administrator Grapeshot's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by brianbonner View Post
    Helena USED to have a law preventing any loaded guns in the city limits. I with the help of the NRA attorney had them remove the law from the books as it violates state preemptive Law.

    There are a lot of progs thanks to Canadians/Californians/ Left college kids are our bane. I am trying to get the legislature to ban out ouf state students from VOTING in Montana. I urge you to do the same!
    Student voting rights is off topic for this thread and may also be considered off topic for OCDO generally. Will have to dwell on that some after researching the laws more, but that is a subject for another time and place.
    You will not rise to the occasion; you will fall back on your level of training. Archilochus, 650 BC

    Old and treacherous will beat young and skilled every time. Yata hey.

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    Regular Member Emmeric's Avatar
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    There's an additional issue when it comes to bars that reaches above the law. There is some goofy bureaucrat within the licensing of bars and liquor stores in the state of Montana that has taken it upon himself to inform licensees that all carry in a bar is prohibited.

    This is called "regulatory creep." Problem is, the licencees believe it and just pass it along - even those who are pro-carry.

    I had this issue at a liquor store in Butte. I was polite, asked for the store's email, and then forwarded the attorney general's response that there was no such law as was being claimed (that all guns are strictly banned by state law from liquor stores and bars).

    I was graciously informed by the liquor store after this that I could carry at any time as long as the law didn't change.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Emmeric View Post
    There's an additional issue when it comes to bars that reaches above the law. There is some goofy bureaucrat within the licensing of bars and liquor stores in the state of Montana that has taken it upon himself to inform licensees that all carry in a bar is prohibited.

    This is called "regulatory creep." Problem is, the licencees believe it and just pass it along - even those who are pro-carry.

    I had this issue at a liquor store in Butte. I was polite, asked for the store's email, and then forwarded the attorney general's response that there was no such law as was being claimed (that all guns are strictly banned by state law from liquor stores and bars).

    I was graciously informed by the liquor store after this that I could carry at any time as long as the law didn't change.
    I would think that a defamation suit against this public official is in order. Make him spend some cash for his transgressions. Many would certainly find in the plaintiff's favor I would imagine.

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