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Thread: does age make a difference?

  1. #1
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    I'm 21 and often open carry a taurus 627 (7rd .357 w/4" barrel). The other day I was having a couple loads of dirt delivered and yet again I was confronted about my weapon. I made sure to have my hands away from my weapon at all times but I still got a very puzzled look and a 'what's with the sidearm' question. I explained that I can't carry a cop so I carry this (pointing, NOT touching my weapon). He asked 'if it was THAT bad of a neighborhood' and I said no and left it at that. He gave me a very puzzled ' A L R I G H T???' and went on to dump the dirt.

    This is by no means my first run in with a questioner. I've seemed to have had more questions/looks than most any other member on here. I'm guessing that I'm also one of the youngest member's here as well. I was just wondering if you all think age has anything to do with how many questions/looks you get. I think that most people who see a 30+ year old person with a gun on their hip would assume that you're just an off-duty LEO of some sort. But being so young, it's obvious that's not the case with me. So what do you all think, does age make a difference?

    I would post a pic but everything I have is too big.

  2. #2
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    I'm sure it could. With my age and military haircut, I am sure that most think I am a cop. I would expect to get a few more questions if I didn't "look the part". It wouldn't bother me one way or the other though.

  3. #3
    Founder's Club Member OC-Glock19's Avatar
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    I'm 43, but I look younger than that, and I usually have my 11 and 5 year-old daughters and my wife with me when I open carry. I'm pretty sure that I don't look like a cop, but that could be open to interpretation. I guess most folks think that criminals don't take their familieswith them when they commit crimes, so they feel safer than they might if I were alone and open carrying.

  4. #4
    Regular Member VAopencarry's Avatar
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    Your age could have something to do with it. I think, generally speaking, people are less trusting of younger folk then older folk. JMO
    "The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots and tyrants." - Thomas Jefferson

  5. #5
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    Age and appearance as well as actions/attitude DO make a difference. Try this.

    Imagine sitting in a restaraunt and seing a 30-40 yr old man or woman (clean cut and dressed decent) enter with a gun on their hip. The get seated and politely order teir meal and act like any other patron.

    Minutes later, a young man or woman enters, also with a gun on their hip, with baggy, dirty, obscene or otherwise non-clean cut clothes and acts like they own the place andbehaves rudely.

    Which one do you instinctively watch for trouble?

    Imagine that both are dressed and act similarly. (clean cut or slob) Which one do you watch?

    I'm not saying all younger people are rude, inconsiderate slobs and jerks. I'm just trying to illustrate a point.

  6. #6
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    Society will always classify people based on their demographics, and some assumptions about people have a higher probability of being accurate than others (usually the ones which are the least p.c., such as profiling young muslim men as terrorists...). In terms of how people react to open-carry, most older peopledon't automatically trust a person of a younger generation to act responsibly (likely because of the evidence of rebellion and lack of personal responsibility rampant inour generation). I personally don't trust many people much farther than I can throw them, regardless of age or how they're dressed. But there are a few things which I look out for in people as a sign of trouble, and evidence of maturity (not age) is a big one.

    If you can stand up straight and look someone in the eye when speaking to them, keep your ball-cap on straight,not say "Yo" to everyone you meet, don't wear a 'hoodie' in the summertime,and not have to pull up your pants every 30 seconds, I probably won't give you a second glance (or laugh). Young people live to draw attention to themselves, consequently, that very attitude is a recognized sign of immaturity.

    The image is frustrating, but that's all it is... An image. Don't lose sleep over it.

    Stick to your guns,

    molonlabetn

  7. #7
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    Thanks for the input. I always try to carry myself in a respectful manner, even more so when I carry. I wear clothes that actually fit, always make eye contact, keep my hands observable at all times, and always talk in a respectful and polite manner. I basically try to break the rule of thumb with people my age. By that I mean to act in a civilized manner. About the only thing that would set me apart is my facial hair, I have a goatee that's about an inch long at times. I try to keep it trimmed but get lazy at times.

  8. #8
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    Age and appearance make a HUGE difference. You can take me for example. Im 19, have pretty long hair, and my usual dress is an untucked t-shirt and a pair of shorts. When most people see me carrying (not knowing that I'm very respectful and courteous), they get freaked out. It's all about profiling.

  9. #9
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    cs9c1 wrote:
    I'm sure it could. With my age and military haircut, I am sure that most think I am a cop. I would expect to get a few more questions if I didn't "look the part". It wouldn't bother me one way or the other though.
    Being young, and having a short haircut. I also get the "He must be military or Law Enforcement" assumption.

    ProguninTN

  10. #10
    Regular Member possumboy's Avatar
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    I get asked no matter how I dress. I sometime dress every nicely, and sometime nothing but a ragged t-shirt and dirty blue jeans (I OC at the dump all the time). The biggest confrontation came when I was in a 3 piece suit with my jacket off.

    I get questioned a lot, mostly by people that are curious as to "how" I can carry a gun - not "why" I carry a gun. Many people do not know that it is legal in Virginia and several other states. This is where education come in...

  11. #11
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    I've only just learned about OC, and last night tried it for the first time at WalMart and Albertsons. I'm 22. I did notice a lot of looks and I definately didn't look like a cop, but nobody questioned it. I was wearing a tucked in button up shirt and nice jeans. I imagine I'll get a lot more questions in the future, since I live in a big city, and I think it's based on age.

    Let me look at it from my point of view 2 days ago, when I didn't know that OC was legal... I would have been confused about seeing someone in their 40s carrying. I would have probably confronted someone in their early 20s. Glad i know now. I'll still confront someone open carrying, but only to shake their hand.

  12. #12
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    Good work, keep it up.

    Get your quips ready for folks who ask questions about OC. Great opportunity for positive public relations.

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