Open Carrying in Urban/Downtown Areas

This is a discussion on Open Carrying in Urban/Downtown Areas within the Open Carry Issues & Discussions forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; So, after searching for a while, I haven't been able to find an actual thread on this subject. I was wondering: 1. How many of ...

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Thread: Open Carrying in Urban/Downtown Areas

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    Member Array tactilame's Avatar
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    Open Carrying in Urban/Downtown Areas

    So, after searching for a while, I haven't been able to find an actual thread on this subject. I was wondering:

    1. How many of you OC in urban/downtown areas (where legal, of course)?

    2. Regardless if you do or don't, what are your thoughts on OC'ing downtown?

    The reason I ask is because I live in an open carry state (Ohio), and in the last state I lived in (Washington) was too, yet I don't think I've ever seen anyone OC'ing in downtown Cincinnati, Columbus, Dayton, Seattle, or Spokane, etc.

    I recently just moved relatively close to the city in my area, and it is a significantly populated urban area. I've OC'ed a couple times to and from my car, and I've gotten one or two weird looks, but no police yet and no one actually saying anything. I doubt I'll ever OC more than that (I prefer CC anyway), but I was just curious as to what everybody's thoughts were when OC'ing in an urban/downtown/city area.
    "Shoot low boys, they're riding Shetland ponies." -Lewis Grizzard

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    New Member Array bakunin's Avatar
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    Only time my gun is shown in public is if I'm saving mine or someone's life. Thankfully that hasn't had to happen. I don't like attention enough already, wouldn't personally be a fan of doing that. Personally.

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    Member Array tactilame's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bakunin View Post
    Only time my gun is shown in public is if I'm saving mine or someone's life. Thankfully that hasn't had to happen. I don't like attention enough already, wouldn't personally be a fan of doing that. Personally.
    I'm pretty much the same way. I don't really do it for attention, but in this neighborhood I feel safer with my firearm on my person, and often when unloading groceries (no off street parking) or other items up to my apartment, I toss my wallet (and therefore my CCW permit and DL) in the drawer because I feel more comfortable being out on the street without any cash/credit cards/etc. The transition from concealed to open carry is natural because, being winter time, it just involves me taking off my jacket. I suppose I could keep my permit/DL in my pocket and leave my wallet inside, but I just prefer this system I guess.

    And as I'm not OC'ing to make a statement or draw attention, if I were to interact with the cops I'd gladly inform them that my ID/permit are right upstairs. If they were uneducated about the legality of OC in Ohio, I'd gladly let them know about it while complying with their requests. :)
    "Shoot low boys, they're riding Shetland ponies." -Lewis Grizzard

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    The freedom to OC is great, I wish we had that possibility in FL.
    That said, I would still keep it a secret until it's need. An exception may be a situation where a group is 'eyeballing' you...getting gas at night, etc.
    Then I might expose what might make them considering a weaker victim choice.OMOYMV
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    1- About the closest I can get is crowded stores. I generally don't get to what I consider downtown too often. Not like walking the streets from store to store or anything.

    2- Crowds will keep you on your toes. You need to be more aware of what's going on around you. Who's around you. Generally speaking, most neer do wells will keep their distance from an obviously armed person. But you just never know when someone would try something stupid, so you've got to keep your head on a swivel. And a good retention holster is a plus too. The "gun grab" is an exceedingly rare occurrence, but it's something to keep in mind.
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    Distinguished Member Array TerriLi's Avatar
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    I know that there is a regular OC get together in downtown Atlanta. I OC in the middle of town infront of the police station and on mainstreet, but I live in a small town. But I'm in Ga, so its pretty normal.

    Eh to each his own. It's more comfy, faster, and legal. Just don't be a jerk.
    I know not what this "overkill" means.

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    Member Array tactilame's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TerriLi View Post
    Eh to each his own. It's more comfy, faster, and legal. Just don't be a jerk.
    I won't be a jerk so long as no one tries to jerk my FNX-9 from its holster ;)
    "Shoot low boys, they're riding Shetland ponies." -Lewis Grizzard

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    I OC in downtown Richmond VA. Never had a problem. Only problem with Richmond is so much of the property has been bought by VCU. It is one of the few places carry (either CC or OC) are not allowed. Of course Richmond itself is a cesspool and I avoid going downtown, unless no choice.
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    Distinguished Member Array kapnketel's Avatar
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    I have never seen anyone in Cincinnati OC. Until the new law passed you could not CC in any restaurants that served alcohol so I limited my trips there, no dining. My guess is OC would result in a MWAG call to the police, they had shootings in Fountain Square last year and a LEO shot a kid there when he responded to such a call. I OC across the river all the time, would not want the hassle across the river.
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    Ex Member Array barstoolguru's Avatar
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    Here in Texas we don't have OC but you can on private property (ranches/hunting) so I can see a purpose for it in a given situation but not walking around downtown. IMO there is damage done even though it's your right; some people read about a shooting and then see you walking around with a gun are going to get nerves and become anti-gun voters. and yes it is YOUR right to do so but we as pro-gun people need to protect OUR rights any way we can

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    Member Array carracer's Avatar
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    I open carry throughout the Treasure Valley area including downtown Boise. Situation awareness is most important regardless of how or whether you carry or not.

    Don't fear open carry. Be polite, dress appropriately and respect others as we should all do anyway, you'll have no problems.
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    VIP Member Array wmhawth's Avatar
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    1. How many of you OC in urban/downtown areas (where legal, of course)?
    I do not. I live in a state where open carry is legal however I limit my own open carry to mostly wilderness areas.

    2. Regardless if you do or don't, what are your thoughts on OC'ing downtown?
    a. I do not wish to draw attention to myself.

    b. The usual arguments for OCing in public don't apply to me as I carry only for self defense and have no interest in making a statement, educating the public, or hoping an openly displayed gun will serve as a deterrant to crime.

    c. I believe there is a tactical advantage to surprise. If I'm required to produce my pistol in self defense I want it to be unexpected by the bad guy.
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    VIP Member Array Cupcake's Avatar
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    I work do not OC in the detroit area - suburbs or downtown. It IS legal and have OC'd, but I'm always feeling insecure about becoming the first guy targeted or being snuck up upon and disarmed. I live and work in crowded areas...It's not possible to simply keep my distance from strangers nor is it possible to size up every single person I come across. I also know that there are times when I get focused elsewhere and SA it out the window - I think that's true of everybody. My insecurities about being snuck up on and disarmed were highlighted as possible recently when I saw a guy OC'ing at my local grocery store. People everywhere, he's browsing product...I reached right past him to grab what I needed, and his firearm was as good as mine had I wanted it. I like the concept of the sheeple being desensitized to legal carry, etc, but I don't think the benefits of open carry come close to outweighing the negatives in crowded areas.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cupcake View Post
    I work do not OC in the detroit area - suburbs or downtown. It IS legal and have OC'd, but I'm always feeling insecure about becoming the first guy targeted or being snuck up upon and disarmed. I live and work in crowded areas...It's not possible to simply keep my distance from strangers nor is it possible to size up every single person I come across. I also know that there are times when I get focused elsewhere and SA it out the window - I think that's true of everybody. My insecurities about being snuck up on and disarmed were highlighted as possible recently when I saw a guy OC'ing at my local grocery store. People everywhere, he's browsing product...I reached right past him to grab what I needed, and his firearm was as good as mine had I wanted it. I like the concept of the sheeple being desensitized to legal carry, etc, but I don't think the benefits of open carry come close to outweighing the negatives in crowded areas.
    Yes, it's difficult in crowded areas. I also try to avoid that situation. It also makes your situation awareness difficult as to much to keep track of at one time. CC would probably be the better choice altho, even cc'ers would have to be aware of "pick pocket" type individuals.

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    Ex Member Array F350's Avatar
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    I use to OC in downtown Columbia MO frequently before my 2 years in Iraq and move to CO (so about 3 years ago). NEVER had a problem, not a real big city but it is home of University of Missouri, even OCed past the city police HQ and in my bank and no one ever said a word except asking gun questions ("Can I do that"? "How do I get a carry permit"? etc. Had one black guy ask the clerk in a stop-n-rob "What would happen to me if I wore my gun on my hip like that"? She answered "If you behave like a decent civilized citizen like him and you will be treated exactly the same way".) Did have a couple cops ask what I was carrying because it was a double stack 1911 and they recognized the frame but the mag was strange. One funny incident, I OCed in a drug store the day after a druggie tried to get some drugs with a knife, the pharmacist looked at my holstered gun and said "Why couldn't you have been here yesterday"?

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