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Thread: Why Open Carry? -- What Would You Include?

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    I'm working on a handout that I can give to people as part of my own little educational campaign to drum up support for open carry in Texas. What points would you bring out to help people understand the benefits of open carry?

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    Well the obvious of course:

    Its a constitutional and god-given right.
    It deters would-be criminals from acts of violence.
    It is very functional for carriers in the Texas heat.



    I think the beautiful thing about OC is that it and all of it's benefits are so obvious. I think it would be prudent to include a Frequently Asked Questions of all the common anti's counter-arguments and how we address them. And of course links to this site and TXCDL.org too.

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    I heard a police officer say he likes open carry because it allows him to know in advance that someone is armed.



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    Felid`Maximus wrote:
    I heard a police officer say he likes open carry because it allows him to know in advance that someone is armed.


    I thought about that too, but I'm not sure that Texans would appreciate that part, not as a selling point anyhow. Texans are typically (and justly, I would say [I'm a Texan haha!]) are atleast somewhat paranoid of their government taking their guns.


    I think the probably the FIRST thing to be on the Faq would be "So, what, you want to go back to the 'Old West'? Answer that by saying how the 'Old West' was actually a much, much safer place than modern-day city life, and then go on to say that it's not what we're looking for. Rather that we want to exercise our rights as Americans to Bear the arms that we Keep openly, as a deturrance from crime. Cite how an estimated 2.5 million times a year firearms are used in self defense, most of the time the mere presence of a firearm in the right hands fends off a criminal act, without ever firing!

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    It's hard to imagine the great state of Texas having an opencarry problem....

    One would think it had been taken care of long ago while G.Bush was Gov.

    We're all pullin for you folks there to be brought onboard...good luck.

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    Crime deterrant

    Public display of a God given right

    Statement of having taken on the responsibility for your own safety

    2A activism

    Crime deterrant

    Accessibility to the most useful selfdefense tool

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    Keeps crazies from killing more people at restaurants, in front of their families.

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    Only free men can protect themselves (and other innocents). Slaves aren't allowed to.

    Because this is America, not China or Russia.

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    Luby's Cafeteria in TX
    McDonald's in San Ysidro, CA
    Tacoma Mall, Tacoma, WA
    "All that is required for evil to prevail is for good men to do nothing." - Edmund Burke


    "I like people who stand on the Constitution... unless they're using it to wipe their feet." - Jon E Hutcherson

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    I posted this on another thread but it fits. "Thieves and other bad guys will usually size up an opportunity before they act. An openly carried firearm may deter a robbery or assault. Even when armedthemselves bad guys don't like to get shot. So they will just shop elsewhere sincethere is an abundance of sheeple available for the picking. A firearm carried CC only reacts after the assault has begun. To pull or show it sooner is brandishing. CC is great for stopping an assault but it does little in the way of prevention. Then of course not carrying at all leaves you completely at the mercy of the BG. Good luck on that. So you are left with the following three choices. OC for prevention. CC to stop a crime in progress.Don't carry and be a victim. Choose your own comfort level."

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    I have an issue with the "It's Your Right" line as the primary point on an informational flier.

    It tends to imply one should do something because they can, not because they desire to do so.


    It is also your right to go stand in front of the local courthouse, and say "hippy biibbity boob-ul-nuts" while dancing Riverdance, as each person walks by. After all, such an action would be protected under the First Amendment.

    But just because you can, doesn't mean you do.


    My point is this: Think of it from the perspective of the person receiving the flier.

    What would you think if a group of four persons were outside the Post Office, two singing "hippy biibbity boob-ul-nuts" while doing the Riverdance, while two others handed out fliers letting you know that it is your natural RIGHT to do so?

    My response would be along the lines of: "Ok, then... Thanks for letting me know." But, by no means, would I be convinced that next Tuesday, I need to head on over to the local park, and do some Riverdancing.


    A flier should contain, primarily, information about WHY one should carry a firearm.

    My favorite is the ole' health insurance / spare tire / seatbelt arguement.

    Why do you have/use (insert from above)? Not because you want to pay for it/use it, but it would be foolish not to have/not to use.

    Additional information would be local police response times, specific citations of violence in your community where everyone was helpless, information on local clubs and saftey instructors, etc.

    The key is MAKE IT PERSONAL. Give the person information that shows the problem, and the solution.

    Including information on your local, county, and state laws is helpful. Including information on rights guaranteed by your State Constitution and the Federal Constitution is important. Just don't make it the FOCUS of the flier, but rather a PART of the overall picture.



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    Also, Mr. Oleg Volk has provided the RKBA community with incredible imagery to support activism.



    A copy of my correspondence, by email, with him:


    My initial letter:

    Dear Mr. Volk:

    I would like to find out about obtaining permission to use some of your very compelling imagery as educational materials.

    I am active in the right to keep and bear arms fight, and I love the simple way your work conveys a point, much more effectively than I can.


    Please let me know what I need to do to use your materials.


    Thank you.

    Sincerely,

    (Name Removed For Forum Purposes)


    His reply:

    As long as you are using them to promote RKBA, you are welcome to use any of the posters and gun-related illustrations. Only commercial uses require a discussion because of a few images that have restrictive model releases.

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    kingmonkey wrote:
    I'm working on a handout that I can give to people as part of my own little educational campaign to drum up support for open carry in Texas. What points would you bring out to help people understand the benefits of open carry?
    More rapid access to the firearm in the unthinkable event it was needed.

    Deterrent. Criminals choose the weak and defenseless. The fact they can see you are neither keeps them away.

    Concealment is difficult or impossible in some circumstances, seasons, or clothing.

    Laws alone can not secure freedom of expression; in order that every man present his views without penalty there must be spirit of tolerance in the entire population. -Albert Einstein

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    Felid`Maximus wrote:
    I heard a police officer say he likes open carry because it allows him to know in advance that someone is armed.

    This is what I've been told by 2 or 3 LEOs.

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    I'll add another one thats not on the list---safety! A gun in a belt or a shoulderholster is about the safest way to carry. With a deep concealment or IWB rig, there is always the chance of an accidental discharge, which can do considerable damage to you!

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    DopaVash wrote:
    Well the obvious of course:

    Its a constitutional and god-given right.
    It deters would-be criminals from acts of violence.
    It is very functional for carriers in the Texas heat.



    I think the beautiful thing about OC is that it and all of it's benefits are so obvious. I think it would be prudent to include a Frequently Asked Questions of all the common anti's counter-arguments and how we address them. And of course links to this site and TXCDL.org too.
    I wouldn't go so far as to say it was a "GOD" givin right....but it is a right of ours in the constitution.




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    Diver_59 wrote:
    DopaVash wrote:
    Well the obvious of course:

    Its a constitutional and god-given right.
    It deters would-be criminals from acts of violence.
    It is very functional for carriers in the Texas heat.



    I think the beautiful thing about OC is that it and all of it's benefits are so obvious. I think it would be prudent to include a Frequently Asked Questions of all the common anti's counter-arguments and how we address them. And of course links to this site and TXCDL.org too.
    I wouldn't go so far as to say it was a "GOD" givin right....but it is a right of ours in the constitution.


    You don't think that God has given you the right to protect the very life that he gave you?

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    icode wrote:
    Diver_59 wrote:
    I wouldn't go so far as to say it was a "GOD" givin right....but it is a right of ours in the constitution.
    You don't think that God has given you the right to protect the very life that he gave you?
    I don't think Diver is saying that God gave you life, but not necessarily the right to protect it. I think Diver is saying to leave the "God" premise completely out of the argument.

    From a logical and practical standpoint, I think leaving God out has more merit than leaving him in.

    Logically, by leaving God in as a premise, you open up your argument tomore avenues of attack. Opponents may argue against your gun rights byarguing that you must substantiate yourpremises:

    1)God exists.

    2)God gave man life.

    3)God gaveman the right to defend the life given in #2 (yes, this is a separate step you would have to substantiate, if challenged).

    From a practical standpoint, leaving God out broadens the appeal of the argument to those who don't believe that gods exist. Without God, the argument for gun rights is still solid and encompassesnot onlythe religious but the non-religious as well.
    "The principle of self-defense, even involving weapons and bloodshed, has never been condemned, even by Gandhi . . ."--Dr. Martin Luther King Jr

    He who cannot protect himself or his nearest and dearest or their honor by non-violently facing death, may and ought to do so by violently dealing with the oppressor. He who can do neither of the two is a burden.--M. K. Gandhi

    "First they ignore you, then they ridicule you, then they fight you, then you win." --M. K. Gandhi

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    DanM wrote:
    icode wrote:
    Diver_59 wrote:
    I wouldn't go so far as to say it was a "GOD" givin right....but it is a right of ours in the constitution.
    You don't think that God has given you the right to protect the very life that he gave you?
    I don't think Diver is saying that God gave you life, but not necessarily the right to protect it. I think Diver is saying to leave the "God" premise completely out of the argument.

    From a logical and practical standpoint, I think leaving God out has more merit than leaving him in.

    Logically, by leaving God in as a premise, you open up your argument tomore avenues of attack. Opponents may argue against your gun rights byarguing that you must substantiate yourpremises:

    1)God exists.

    2)God gave man life.

    3)God gaveman the right to defend the life given in #2 (yes, this is a separate step you would have to substantiate, if challenged).

    From a practical standpoint, leaving God out broadens the appeal of the argument to those who don't believe that gods exist. Without God, the argument for gun rights is still solid and encompassesnot onlythe religious but the non-religious as well.
    Understood, I believe this is why many have begun using the term "nature given right". Even if "you" don't believe in God "you" must believe that we have certain "natural" rights. Of course if "you" don't then the argument is pointless

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    I posted here http://opencarry.mywowbb.com/forum55/10996.htmlsomething along the lins of the topic being discussed in this thread. I will go there, copy and paste it here for you. I would be interested to hear from you.

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    Here was my post -- more appropriately posted here onthis thread:

    "Thanks for your reply about Alderwood Mall. I'm new to concealed carry and have obtained my CPL and have been reading like crazy all the laws pertaining to it, but lately have become very interested in open carry.

    "The whole concept of openly carrying a firearm on one's hip, in urban society and in the 21st Century, was intriguing to me. Three-and-a-half years ago my home was broken into andshortly thereafter I boughta weapon and excercised my right to bear arms by obtaining a permit to carry concealed. I read a lot about it and saw the logic in the idea that, if a person can have one's home broken into there is also a random chance one can be violently assaulted (with no provocation!) in or away from one's home.

    "But, it had never occurred to me that a person could open carry, like I said before, in an urban environment and in this day and age. Pardon my candidness and my prior ignorance, but I had assumed that that sort of thing had been regulated away as a possibility long ago. I figured the idea of open carry had gone the way of the Old Western Gunfighter.

    "And that is exactly why, when I tripped upon some links that led me to this site and others where I had the chance to read about real live people exercising their rights to bear arms in an open and visible manner, I became very interested in the whole idea.Questions began to enter my mindafter realizing that it wasn't just a possibility, but was being done by a growing number of people around the country -- questions like,

    "WHY would someone want to:

    -risk being looked at like a deviant by friends, family, co-workers, acquaintances of any kind. (Beingcast as a "deviant" by people in these categories never helps to bring one's character into a favorable light in court when a prosecutor is trying to build a case, or when one is inthe middle of adivorce or child custody proceeding);

    - risk being set-upon, questioned, harrassed, even assaulted and arrested by a majority (as it seems to me) of misunderstood law enforcement officers;

    - risk the possibility of putting one's family finances in jeopardy if one happens to step out of line (evenina very infinitesimally small manner) while carrying a weapon openly and is prosecuted for this small error with the full force of the law -- simply because a liberal-minded prosecutor happens to get a hair up his wazzu about YOU, the new standard-bearer of the gun-toting, right wing militant population heperceives you represent.

    - risk all the attention, all the double takes, the possibility of some busy-body "calling you in" onhis cell phone, the store managers coming up to you to ask you to leave his store, the looks of disdain, the pointing children,and so on... (It seems to me many of you, me included, are not types to go around seeking attention. I'm sure I only need to mention the term "Grey Man" to this readership and the concept is fully understood if not fully embraced.)

    - and most importantly, riskthe possibility that a violent, disturbed, hell-bent person who now has the jump on you because heKNOWS you have a gun andKNOWS you have no clue he's even there, grabs your gun from behind and renders you a non-threat in one manner or another (The readership here likes to be prepared and that is why we carry, so should we be any less prepared for this eventuality?...)

    "So these are some of the bigger questions for which I've been seeking answers, and which I've been asking myself as I consider the idea of OC'ing. One thing I can say is that I have tried it and it was a thrill. I wore my FNP-40 in a holster on my belt on my right hip and my magazines in a carrier on my left and went out my front door, got into my car and drove to Sam's for some plinking. After target shooting there, with a whole team of ATF watching, I walked around the store and bought some Hydra Shock rounds and then left, got into my car and drove home -- all without so much as a raised eyebrow (though I did notice some furtive glances from the ATF guys while I walked around the store).

    "... and WHY did I decide to do that on that day a couple of weeks ago? Because I had the RIGHT to, and because I owned a firearm and could carry it openly, I decided to do it simply to EXERCISE that right. Is Alderwood Mall the next place where I will choose to take my rights out for a walk? Maybe. It's nice to know there's no signage and that others have OC'd there. Talk about a great place to desensitize a few thousand people toward the idea of legally and openly carrying a firearm!

    "But still, the questions remain, so I thought I'd post them up here to see if any of you have the same questions, and if any of you have come to any conclusions."







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    I would carry openly because I'm sort of an "open" sort of man. I wear symbols on my outer garments showing my Christian beliefs, my patriotic stance and my political affiliations. I do the best I can to be open and forthright as to who I am and what I believe.

    Did I mention I'm armed?



    On a practical level, non-concealed holsters are more comfortable and easier to fit and wear. Nor does one have to be concerned about 'printing' or 'showing'.

    On another practical level, it's easier to carry a full sized handgun in a suitable caliber in an open carry holster. No need to compromise on a marginal or minimal caliber just so one can hide it. Mom always said, "Anyone worth shooting is worth shooting well."
    I'm too old to take a beating, don't fight so well and my knees don't allow me to run. Do I carry a gun? Don't ask questions for which you don't want an answer.

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    VonKonig wrote:
    Here was my post -- more appropriately posted here onthis thread:

    "Thanks for your reply about Alderwood Mall. I'm new to concealed carry and have obtained my CPL and have been reading like crazy all the laws pertaining to it, but lately have become very interested in open carry.

    "The whole concept of openly carrying a firearm on one's hip, in urban society and in the 21st Century, was intriguing to me. Three-and-a-half years ago my home was broken into andshortly thereafter I boughta weapon and excercised my right to bear arms by obtaining a permit to carry concealed. I read a lot about it and saw the logic in the idea that, if a person can have one's home broken into there is also a random chance one can be violently assaulted (with no provocation!) in or away from one's home.

    "But, it had never occurred to me that a person could open carry, like I said before, in an urban environment and in this day and age. Pardon my candidness and my prior ignorance, but I had assumed that that sort of thing had been regulated away as a possibility long ago. I figured the idea of open carry had gone the way of the Old Western Gunfighter.

    "And that is exactly why, when I tripped upon some links that led me to this site and others where I had the chance to read about real live people exercising their rights to bear arms in an open and visible manner, I became very interested in the whole idea.Questions began to enter my mindafter realizing that it wasn't just a possibility, but was being done by a growing number of people around the country -- questions like,

    "WHY would someone want to:

    -risk being looked at like a deviant by friends, family, co-workers, acquaintances of any kind. (Beingcast as a "deviant" by people in these categories never helps to bring one's character into a favorable light in court when a prosecutor is trying to build a case, or when one is inthe middle of adivorce or child custody proceeding);

    - risk being set-upon, questioned, harrassed, even assaulted and arrested by a majority (as it seems to me) of misunderstood law enforcement officers;

    - risk the possibility of putting one's family finances in jeopardy if one happens to step out of line (evenina very infinitesimally small manner) while carrying a weapon openly and is prosecuted for this small error with the full force of the law -- simply because a liberal-minded prosecutor happens to get a hair up his wazzu about YOU, the new standard-bearer of the gun-toting, right wing militant population heperceives you represent.

    - risk all the attention, all the double takes, the possibility of some busy-body "calling you in" onhis cell phone, the store managers coming up to you to ask you to leave his store, the looks of disdain, the pointing children,and so on... (It seems to me many of you, me included, are not types to go around seeking attention. I'm sure I only need to mention the term "Grey Man" to this readership and the concept is fully understood if not fully embraced.)

    - and most importantly, riskthe possibility that a violent, disturbed, hell-bent person who now has the jump on you because heKNOWS you have a gun andKNOWS you have no clue he's even there, grabs your gun from behind and renders you a non-threat in one manner or another (The readership here likes to be prepared and that is why we carry, so should we be any less prepared for this eventuality?...)

    "So these are some of the bigger questions for which I've been seeking answers, and which I've been asking myself as I consider the idea of OC'ing. One thing I can say is that I have tried it and it was a thrill. I wore my FNP-40 in a holster on my belt on my right hip and my magazines in a carrier on my left and went out my front door, got into my car and drove to Sam's for some plinking. After target shooting there, with a whole team of ATF watching, I walked around the store and bought some Hydra Shock rounds and then left, got into my car and drove home -- all without so much as a raised eyebrow (though I did notice some furtive glances from the ATF guys while I walked around the store).

    "... and WHY did I decide to do that on that day a couple of weeks ago? Because I had the RIGHT to, and because I owned a firearm and could carry it openly, I decided to do it simply to EXERCISE that right. Is Alderwood Mall the next place where I will choose to take my rights out for a walk? Maybe. It's nice to know there's no signage and that others have OC'd there. Talk about a great place to desensitize a few thousand people toward the idea of legally and openly carrying a firearm!

    "But still, the questions remain, so I thought I'd post them up here to see if any of you have the same questions, and if any of you have come to any conclusions."





    Well... You have a large number of concerns, so I will try to address them individually...

    1. I really don't care if people consider me the "deviant". I like to do things that make people think. Openly carrying allows me an opportunity to challenge others to think. "Why are you carrying a gun?" "What do you want to do with that?" I am able to answer their questions, and challenge the "anti-gun" mentality. As far as court, the prosecutor is going to have a hard time building a case not because of my "deviant lifestyle", but because he will not be able to find a crime to charge me with.

    2. It is also an opportunity to inform, educate, and de-stigmatize the ownership and carrying of sidearms. Law Enforcement and the general community both.

    3. Some things are worth the risk, financial or otherwise. Secondly, the MORE PEOPLE who openly carry, the more COMMON it becomes, and the RISK will lessen. Plus, any unlawful arrest defense expenses will be more than compensated for in the soon-to-follow civil lawsuit. Consider it an investment.

    4. Contrary to what one may expect, it is RARE when you get any more attention than the occasional puzzled or inquisitive look. Most people are happy to mind their own business, and many seem to not even notice. The most important thing? When you begin to open carry, act as if you have done it every day for the past 30 years.
    If you are nervous and fidgety, then people will tend to focus on you. If you basically ignore everyone (or at least appear to) and present yourself as though the gun has been there since birth, then people will just glance, and most will justify it in their own minds: "Police", "Armed Guard", etc.

    5. First, most criminals are not bold, dashing, James-Bond types. They are scared and cowardly. Their boldness arises from the vast majority of people responding fearfully when they make threats, or intimidating actions. The concept of a truly "badass" criminal is mostly Hollywood make-believe, just like the idea of gunfights in the streets everyday in the Old West.
    Open Carry is a deterrent. Instead of robbing the soft fellow who will hand over the cash without a fight, the criminal has to now face the risk of the armed citizen. Most likely, the confrontation will be one that never happens. You may never know, exactly how close you came to being robbed, because your sidearm was plainly visible.


    As far as the pros to open carry? Easier access to your weapon. Educational oppurtunities. Making people aware of the concept that you have another choice other than police, criminal, or disarmed. It looks cool as hell. Helps prevent general arguments and rudeness; people tend to be more polite, although some are a bit uncertian at first. A big smile always helps to take the apprehension away.

    A most important for me? It is a CONSTANT reminder of not only the BENEFITS I enjoy of living in a free society, but of the RESPONSIBLITIES I have as a Citizen of that society. When you put that sidearm on, you can't help but KNOW that eyes are on you. Frankly, it makes me calmer, more collected, and more considerate.

  24. #24
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    The Constitution does not 'GIVE you or anyone' Rights. The Constitution recognizes the pre-existance of such Rights... declares that they exist and are to be protected/defended by the Government. The Right to self defense is a pre-existing Right.

    Arms are the recognized means to self defense. Cicero argued this point in the Roman Senate 2083 years ago (and won). The 2A does not specify 'firearms'... only 'Arms'.


    In the Heller case, Justice Scalia wrote:

    “Nowhere else in the Constitution does a ”right“ attributed to ”the people“ refer to anything other than an individual right. What is more, in all six other provisions of the Constitution that mention ”the people,“ the term unambiguously refers to all members of the political community, not an unspecified subset...

    (That would be the militia argument...)

    The Second Amendment extends prima facie, to all instruments that constitute bearable arms... The very text of the Second Amendment implicitly recognizes the pre-existence of the right and declares only that it shall not be infringed.








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    Thanks so much for taking the time to go through my questions point by point with such excellent reason, logic and perspective, Phoenixphire. It makes me truly grateful to have a resource such as this forum when I seek to learn more about the lawful and peaceable exercise of my "inherent right" to bear arms as affirmed by the 2nd Ammendment (a tip of my hat to you Sonora...)

    As a result of your reply to my questions, I will now carry with much more confidence and hopefully win over some converts in the process.

    - Von

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