Page 1 of 3 123 LastLast
Results 1 to 25 of 55

Thread: Seattle Weekly Article on OpenCarry

  1. #1
    State Researcher Bill Starks's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    Nortonville, KY, USA
    Posts
    4,291

    Post imported post

    http://www.seattleweekly.com/2009-05...er-crew-ahead/

    Driving along I-5 in Fife, motorists are confronted with signage for fast-food restaurants and gas stations, which fight for space with advertisements for RV dealerships, car lots, and boat dealers. Nearby, a gigantic electronic billboard announces showtimes for '80s rock bands performing at the Emerald Queen Casino.

    Given all these distractions, one might miss the unobtrusive Adopt-a-Highway sign sponsored by Washington Open Carry.

    Every month, as many as a dozen or more volunteers perform litter control along a two-mile stretch between the Puyallup River Bridge and the 54th Avenue exit. Unlike your average Kiwanis, Boy Scout, or church group, they're armed not only with litter bags and poachers, but also Glocks, Smith & Wessons, and Sig Sauers. A large, diamond-shaped orange roadwork sign advises drivers: "Armed Volunteer Litter Crew Ahead."

    "I have seen folks stick their arms out the window and wave. Some will honk their horns, but I have seen some with their face to the glass pointing at the guys picking up trash," says litter-control organizer Bill Starks of Tacoma. "Usually with those folks, I wonder if they took the time to actually read the orange safety sign, the one that says 'Armed Litter Patrol Ahead' with a picture of the gun at the bottom."

    It is a peculiar vision: someone who is not a law enforcement officer or security guard walking around in public with a pistol. This is the Open Carry movement, comprising gun owners who, for a variety of reasons, aren't satisfied with concealing their weapons. The goal is to make the sight a more normal occurrence.

    Washington is one of the 43 states where it is legal to carry a handgun without having to conceal it. But just because it's technically OK to walk down the street with a Colt .45 strapped to your hip doesn't mean a panicked citizen won't punch 911 into their cell phone to report a person with a gun wandering around downtown Seattle. Nor has it prevented skeptical police officers from stopping, detaining, and often arresting people who are legally open-carrying.

    Gray Peterson, a self-described "progressive gay liberal," is probably the person most instrumental in first flying the Open Carry movement's flag in Washington. Moving to the state from Oregon in 2004, he began a one-person crusade to educate local law enforcement agencies. Using his own resources, Peterson has obtained legal advice, and began printing up "Washington Gun Rights" pamphlets to give to police chiefs, patrol officers, politicians, and the general public.

    "As a person who is a gay man, I have an aversion to being in the closet about anything," Peterson says. When in Seattle, he doesn't want to worry about getting assaulted just because he and his partner are holding hands. "There are attacking thugs going into Capitol Hill to bash gays, and police are only there to mop up after the fact."

    He says that by openly carrying, he is able to avert confrontation because criminals, seeing the handle of his semi-automatic jutting out of its holster, leave him alone. If he concealed the weapon—like most open-carriers, he has a concealed pistol license—Peterson feels he is more likely to get into a confrontation which will result in him having to draw his weapon.

    Over the past two years, Peterson says he's marched in Capitol Hill's Pride Parade with his handgun in plain view. At the first parade, he was followed all day by Seattle police officers. Since then he's been left alone, but having police question him elsewhere is nothing new.

    In 2007, Peterson was stopped aboard a Washington State Ferry. A crewman saw he was packing and called the State Patrol to deal with him. Peterson de-escalated the situation by complying with the trooper. Ultimately, Peterson was in the right: He says he was later told by the trooper that it is legal to open-carry on ferries.

    Despite this, local law enforcement will still stop gun owners who open-carry, particularly when panicked citizens call the cops when they see someone with a gun. "Obviously someone carrying an open handgun in an urban environment is a concern to us. It is very unusual for us to find someone carrying open," says Sgt. John Urquhart, spokesperson for the King County Sheriff's Office. "Any call we get about a person carrying a handgun openly, deputies will contact that person and, depending on circumstances, may or may not take the gun away for safety reasons."

    Urquhart cites RCW 9.41.270, which states: "It shall be unlawful for any person to carry, exhibit, display, or draw any firearm...in a manner, under circumstances, and at a time and place that either manifests an intent to intimidate another or that warrants alarm for the safety of other persons."

    Ultimately it comes down to an officer's judgment. During last month's antitax Tea Party Protest at Seattle's Westlake Park, at least two men were open-carrying in the crowd. There were well over two dozen Seattle cops on the scene, and they didn't look twice at the duo. In fact one of them, Jim Beal, a Vietnam War veteran from SeaTac, posed for pictures standing in front of the police and posted them at OpenCarry.org, the movement's official Web site.

    Not everyone is happy at the thought of folks walking around packing heat. "It is legal, so they are free to do that if that's what they want to do," concedes Kristen Comer, Executive Director of Washington CeaseFire. "The question to ask is whether or not their fellow community members want them engaging in that behavior. They [open-carriers] may feel safe knowing how to handle a handgun. [But] a lot of people in the community see them carrying a gun and don't."

    Dave Workman, an editor at Gun Week magazine and author of the book Washington State Gun Rights and Responsibilities, says that there are many folks within the gun-rights community who feel that open-carriers are a political liability.

    "The movement itself is a small segment of the gun-rights community. And some of them can be in your face about it," Workman says, adding that there needs to be an education effort to explain that open-carrying is a legal practice and that people shouldn't be alarmed. "If a person is walking down the street with a gun on his hip, going about his business, that's not a crime."

    Nationally, the Open Carry movement was organized by a pair of law-school students, John Pierce and Mike Stollenwerk, who live in Virginia. Using the slogan "A right unexercised is a right lost," the duo began organizing open-carriers in the Old Dominion State before expanding nationally. OpenCarry.org provides a forum for members to discuss pertinent legislation and legal cases, gun safety, and where you can and can't carry, as well as more esoteric topics such as gun, ammo, and holster preferences.

    "Open Carry has been growing since 2004," Stollenwerk explains. "People increasingly see it as a valuable right that augments their concealed rights."

    Stollenwerk says the movement has attracted people of different political stripes. Success has followed, as several states have solidified the concept of Open Carry as a right. The latest victory came last month, when Wisconsin's Attorney General reversed rules prohibiting the practice. And in 2006 the Ohio legislature passed a bill pre-empting open-carry bans in individual localities, overriding a gubernatorial veto in the process. In California, Open Carry is allowed only in rural areas, and the movement is trying to garner public support to legalize Open Carry in states like Oklahoma, one of six—with Texas, New York, Arkansas, Florida, and South Carolina—where the practice is banned.

    It's difficult to gauge just how many people open-carry. Stollenwerk says his Web site has 18,000 registered members. Last summer, 400 open-carriers attended a picnic in Kitsap County, the movement's largest gathering in the state.

    Locally, Washington Open Carry holds informal meetings at Dino's Greek and Italian Restaurant in Burien. The owner has a sign on the door reminding customers that lawful weapon carry is permitted inside. It's at these get-togethers that Open Carry enthusiasts discuss ways to get the word out about the movement, such as adopting a highway.

    The local group has been cleaning its stretch of I-5 since last August. Their idea was sparked by a campaign by open-carriers in New Hampshire who picked up trash while patrolling neighborhoods. Starks says that Open Carry groups in Kitsap County and Spokane are considering adopting highways too.

    Starks says the goal is to help normalize the movement and to show they are good neighbors. Their efforts might be paying off. When filling out the paperwork with WSDOT, office staff didn't bat an eye about volunteers being armed alongside the interstate. Rather, their only concern was that the Adopt-a-Highway sign couldn't have a dot in the OpenCarry.org url.

    news@seattleweekly.com




  2. #2
    Regular Member compmanio365's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Location
    Pierce County, Washington, USA
    Posts
    2,013

    Post imported post

    Decent article, no thanks to the KCSO and one Mr. Dave Workman.

  3. #3
    Regular Member just_a_car's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Auburn, Washington, USA
    Posts
    2,558

    Post imported post

    Damn Dave... way to blow a .45 cal hole in OCDO's foot! Thanks for the support.

    Much kudos to M1Gunr, DEROS, and Manu (and all others that participated) for putting forth a good face for Open Carry.
    B.S. Chemistry UofWA '09
    KF7GEA

  4. #4
    Regular Member
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    , California, USA
    Posts
    560

    Post imported post

    Pretty good article, all in all.

    Anybody in that area have a fat black marker that can go...um...modify the "Opencarryorg" sign? lol

    Edit: Gave it a Digg, but put it in the "Odd Stuff" catagory, instead of the usual political news/opinion catagories. Who knows, maybe it'll catch some different eyes there.


  5. #5
    State Researcher
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    Olympia, WA, ,
    Posts
    3,201

    Post imported post

    Thanks for the support Dave...

  6. #6
    Regular Member Washintonian_For_Liberty's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Location
    Mercer Island, Washington, USA
    Posts
    922

    Post imported post

    "It is legal, so they are free to do that if that's what they want to do," concedes Kristen Comer, Executive Director of Washington CeaseFire. "The question to ask is whether or not their fellow community members want them engaging in that behavior. They [open-carriers] may feel safe knowing how to handle a handgun. [But] a lot of people in the community see them carrying a gun and don't."
    We certainly know how this woman thinks. Like many Statists, they ask "what does 50% +1 in our community think? Whatever they want, they should get. From theStatist point of view, only if your neighbors agree should you be able to do anything.

    Whether it is an edict from Leftist or Religious Statists, they all believe that with 50% +1they should be able totake away your rights, after all, the needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few.
    Associate with men of good quality if you esteem your own reputation; for it is better to be alone than in bad company. ~ George Washington

  7. #7
    Regular Member knight_308's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Location
    Renton, ,
    Posts
    173

    Post imported post

    I don't think Dave was particularly out of line there. There are people who consider OC a liability and we are a relatively small segment of the gun community. He didn't say that he agreed that the OC movement was a liability (although the WAC thread seemed to indicate that he might).

    Thanks to everyone who represented OCDO well in the article.

  8. #8
    Regular Member sudden valley gunner's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Whatcom County
    Posts
    17,338

    Post imported post

    I was more concerned with Sherriff of King Couny's remarks. He might be setting his department up for a lawsuit. He does not have the right to disarm law abiding citizens.

    Dave was doing is usual theres two side of the story thing, and I don't feel it was bad especially since he mentioned we need to educate people that what are doing isn't wrong.
    I am not anti Cop I am just pro Citizen.

    U.S. v. Minker, 350 US 179, at page 187
    "Because of what appears to be a lawful command on the surface, many citizens, because
    of their respect for what only appears to be a law, are cunningly coerced into waiving their
    rights, due to ignorance." (Paraphrased)

  9. #9
    Regular Member Washintonian_For_Liberty's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Location
    Mercer Island, Washington, USA
    Posts
    922

    Post imported post

    I wonder if there is a group called "Reload"... that'd be funny... get a quote from them like;

    "It is legal,and we encourage themto do that if that's what they want to do,"says Johnson Biggun, Executive Director of Washington ReLoad. "The question to ask is whether or not their fellow community members should all be engaging in that behavior. They [open-carriers] feel safe knowing how to handle a handgun.As woulda lot of people in the community if they just learned how to handle a gun safely and responsibly."

    Associate with men of good quality if you esteem your own reputation; for it is better to be alone than in bad company. ~ George Washington

  10. #10
    Regular Member sempercarry's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Location
    America
    Posts
    378

    Post imported post

    sudden valley gunner wrote:
    I was more concerned with Sherriff of King Couny's remarks. He might be setting his department up for a lawsuit. He does not have the right to disarm law abiding citizens.

    Dave was doing is usual theres two side of the story thing, and I don't feel it was bad especially since he mentioned we need to educate people that what are doing isn't wrong.
    Yeah, no ****. Up to the officers discretion my ass. Its a black and white issue. are they breaking the law or not. If they aren't and you take their gun....thats called theft of a firearm.

  11. #11
    Regular Member
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    , ,
    Posts
    1,863

    Post imported post

    sempercarry wrote:
    sudden valley gunner wrote:
    I was more concerned with Sherriff of King Couny's remarks. He might be setting his department up for a lawsuit. He does not have the right to disarm law abiding citizens.

    Dave was doing is usual theres two side of the story thing, and I don't feel it was bad especially since he mentioned we need to educate people that what are doing isn't wrong.
    Yeah, no @#$%. Up to the officers discretion my ass. Its a black and white issue. are they breaking the law or not. If they aren't and you take their gun....thats called theft of a firearm.
    Well, actually, no it's not.
    Courts have already held that officers can take a firearm during a contact in the interest of officer safety and public safety.
    I don't necessarily like that or agree with it, same as you, but that's the way the courts have come down and we're stuck with it.

  12. #12
    Campaign Veteran
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    SeaTac, Washington, USA
    Posts
    434

    Post imported post

    It was a good article but somehow I think only a portion of Dave's interview was quoted.

  13. #13
    Regular Member
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    , ,
    Posts
    1,863

    Post imported post

    compmanio365 wrote:
    Decent article, no thanks to the KCSO and one Mr. Dave Workman.
    Tell me where I was in error.
    He contacted me one reporter to another. That's how the conversation went. Everything I said in there is accurate, and you know it, especially the part about walking down a street with a gun on your hip being not a crime.

    Show me where it says I have to mislead another reporter just to make you feel good about something.

    knight_308 and sudden valley gunner both get it, and understand perfectly what I said. Where's your disconnect?


    (The bit about WAC has to do with an issue that probably is not going away. They have adopted rules to comply with the terms of a lease, and to prevent negligent discharges, as they have already suffered two that I know of by people who are just as gun savvy as anyone here...and they screwed up. Don't care for the rule, don't join WAC. See how simple that is?)

    ==============

    "just_a_car"
    I didn't blow a hole in anybody's foot, certainly not OCDO's. I gave the guy a couple of factual statements.

    Nothing I said in there was factually incorrect.

    Open Carry is a small segment of the gun rights community
    The practice alarms and shocks some people, including some gun owners.
    It's not illegal to walk down a street with a gun on your hip, when you're minding your own business.
    We do need to educate the public about it (as I have been doing for quite some time, in various stories in Gun Week and on the Examiner.com site)


    Why should you expect me to be dishonest with Seattle Weekly readers? It certainly seems that this is what you are suggesting, and I never expected that sort of thing from you.

  14. #14
    Regular Member
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    , ,
    Posts
    1,863

    Post imported post

    irfner wrote:
    It was a good article but somehow I think only a portion of Dave's interview was quoted.
    Well, yes, you got that right. I think we chatted for 15-20 minutes, I recall explaining a bit about Casad and Spencer, and how the two cases differed, and some other stuff having to do with the proposed Nickels gun ban, and why that idea is all wet.

    I'm comfortable with the quotes he used.

    I think the piece was fairly balanced, and I don't have a problem with anything Urquhart said, either, as he was being candid and, far as I can tell, accurate.

    I've spent a lot of time in police cars over the years, observing how they respond to various calls, and nothing Urquhart said in there raises any alarms.

    He's a far cry from that Milwaukee Wisconsin police chief.

  15. #15
    Regular Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Location
    Lakewood, Washington, USA
    Posts
    305

    Post imported post

    A nicely balanced article. It could have been skewedand/or skewered the wrong way and surprisingly it wasn't. I think that got the word out in a good way for readers to learn that open carry is legal. Maybe one less MWAG call because of it.



  16. #16
    Regular Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    Eagle River, Alaska, USA
    Posts
    584

    Post imported post

    I thought your quote was fine Dave I think people misread this bit
    The movement itself is a small segment of the gun-rights community. And some of them can be in your face about it,
    I believe they mistook you for implying that OCers can be in your face about it. I read it as though you were implying that the rest of the gun-rights community can be up in our face about it.

    Please tell me if I'm wrong.

  17. #17
    Regular Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    Everett, Washington, USA
    Posts
    3,339

    Post imported post

    I thought it was a decent article and Dave did, as usually, nothing but state the facts.
    "A fear of weapons is a sign of retarded sexual and emotional maturity."

    "though I walk through the valley in the shadow of death, I fear no evil, for I know that you are by my side" Glock 23:40

  18. #18
    Regular Member amlevin's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    North of Seattle, Washington, USA
    Posts
    5,953

    Post imported post

    Dave Workman wrote:

    Well, actually, no it's not.
    Courts have already held that officers can take a firearm during a contact in the interest of officer safety and public safety.
    I don't necessarily like that or agree with it, same as you, but that's the way the courts have come down and we're stuck with it.
    I would also assume that should the person whose firearm has been taken get's "mouthy" and tries to educate the officers on the law, the firearm will not be returned immediately. The owner will probably be told to come claim it at the PD when he cools off.


    "If I shoot all the ammo I am carrying I either won't need anymore or more won't help"

    "If you refuse to stand up for others now, who will stand up for you when your time comes?"

  19. #19
    Regular Member amlevin's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    North of Seattle, Washington, USA
    Posts
    5,953

    Post imported post

    their only concern was that the Adopt-a-Highway sign couldn't have a dot in the OpenCarry.org url.
    It used to be said that "the pen is mightier than the sword". Today it looks like a website (at least corrrectly portrayed) is more dangerous than an openly carried firearm.
    "If I shoot all the ammo I am carrying I either won't need anymore or more won't help"

    "If you refuse to stand up for others now, who will stand up for you when your time comes?"

  20. #20
    Regular Member
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    , ,
    Posts
    1,863

    Post imported post

    amlevin wrote:
    Dave Workman wrote:

    Well, actually, no it's not.
    Courts have already held that officers can take a firearm during a contact in the interest of officer safety and public safety.
    I don't necessarily like that or agree with it, same as you, but that's the way the courts have come down and we're stuck with it.
    I would also assume that should the person whose firearm has been taken get's "mouthy" and tries to educate the officers on the law, the firearm will not be returned immediately.* The owner will probably be told to come claim it at the PD when he cools off.

    *

    As I remind people in my book,

    "Starting an argument with a police officer when you are armed is monumentally stupid. Invariably, you are going to lose."

    Now, one person's "mouthy" is another's "attempt to educate."
    It's an attitude thing, and you do not want to flunk the attitude test.

    That said, some cops are purely anal about this, but that doesn't mean we need to be equally anal.

  21. #21
    Regular Member
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    , ,
    Posts
    1,863

    Post imported post

    FunkTrooper wrote:
    I thought your quote was fine Dave I think people misread this bit
    The movement itself is a small segment of the gun-rights community. And some of them can be in your face about it,
    I believe they mistook you for implying that OCers can be in your face about it. I read it as though you were implying that the rest of the gun-rights community can be up in our face about it.

    Please tell me if I'm wrong.
    Yeah, you are mistaken, "sort of."
    Some OC people can be "in your face" about this, regardless how they may portray an encounter in this forum. We should be honest enough to acknowledge that without getting wrapped around the axle.

    I've seen it a couple of times, and I've had a couple of people complain to me about it. That's not good, no matter how one views his own conduct, it's how THE OTHER people view your conduct that ultimately counts when it comes to getting one's point across, if a point is to be made.

    I don't personally view OC as a mechanism for "making a point." It is supposed to be a mechanism for carrying a defensive sidearm and nothing more.

    As I've stated elsewhere, if someone wants to make a statement, carry a sign or write a letter to the editor.

  22. #22
    Regular Member amlevin's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    North of Seattle, Washington, USA
    Posts
    5,953

    Post imported post

    Dave Workman wrote:
    Now, one person's "mouthy" is another's "attempt to educate."
    It's an attitude thing, and you do not want to flunk the attitude test.
    I usually find that the difference between the two is a matter of Volume and Civility. If one uses a normal voice and is polite, there is less tendency for an Officer to feel he has to "take control of the situation". For some reason, the louder an argument gets, the less one is able to hear.
    "If I shoot all the ammo I am carrying I either won't need anymore or more won't help"

    "If you refuse to stand up for others now, who will stand up for you when your time comes?"

  23. #23
    Regular Member
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    , ,
    Posts
    1,863

    Post imported post

    amlevin wrote:
    Dave Workman wrote:
    Now, one person's "mouthy" is another's "attempt to educate."
    It's an attitude thing, and you do not want to flunk the attitude test.
    I usually find that the difference between the two is a matter of Volume and Civility.* If one uses a normal voice and is polite, there is less tendency for an Officer to feel he has to "take control of the situation".* For some reason, the louder an argument gets, the less one is able to hear.
    Amen!

  24. #24
    Regular Member FMCDH's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Location
    St. Louis, MO
    Posts
    2,043

    Post imported post

    I thought it was very well balanced and even touched on the entire idea of why the OC movement exists without implying that those of us who choose to OC are attempting to push anything on anyone.

    I personally think their is a balance to be struck between OC and CC and each person has to decide that for themselves. I personally make that decision based upon climate and crowd conditions.

    In my way of thinking, its idiotic to insist on CCing under a coat while enjoying a nice summer day in a park while you sit and have to sweat to death, just the same as I think its idiotic to insist on OCing from outside a winter coat in the freezing rain and snow where it might make the firearm inoperable anyway, but I don't think EITHER of these things should be illegal in any way.

    Washington is a great state for firearms owners and carriers, and its only getting better. I don't want that jeopardized by either the CC elitists or OC fanatics that don't understand there is a time and place for both prudence of action and expression of freedom.

    Dave, keep on keepin on!

    Everyone else "Carry On!"

  25. #25
    Regular Member
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    Tacoma, Washington, USA
    Posts
    539

    Post imported post

    "As a person who is a gay man, I have an aversion to being in the closet about anything," Peterson says. When in Seattle, he doesn't want to worry about getting assaulted just because he and his partner are holding hands. "There are attacking thugs going into Capitol Hill to bash gays, and police are only there to mop up after the fact."



    Hey Lonnie What the hell man??? everytime you open your mouth your agenda leaks out once again. I am not Anti-Gay by a long shot but none the less keep your agenda on capital hill as it has nothing todo with OC.

    As far as Dave Workman goes ya i have to say dude you @#$% the bed on this one. IF people are going to have an agenda then lets make it 1 agenda not 6 different ones.
    I remember reading awhile back about Pierce said that no one could speak about OCDO except him or i think it was mike.

    I jumped him about it as well because people have agenda's and people seem to think that they can just say whatever they want because they own a domain name. Well this is bad we ALL are going to get slammed for this article so instead of getting the facts out to the public we ended and when i say "we" i am talking about a couple of people in question so the article looks like we are a bunch of gay gun carrying in your face cowboys.

    As far as i am concerned this article is a complete disaster and we are 10 steps back from where we were before people had to open there mouths and let there personal agenda's fall out.

    I am curious what Bear45/70 would have to say about all of this???? Maybe we will be lucky and he will chime in.


    TBC

Page 1 of 3 123 LastLast

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •