Open Carry Concerns

This is a discussion on Open Carry Concerns within the Open Carry Issues & Discussions forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; Here is how I see it Open carry is not for everyone. If you're unwilling to make your point to other people as to why ...

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  1. #31
    Distinguished Member Array SubNine's Avatar
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    Here is how I see it

    Open carry is not for everyone. If you're unwilling to make your point to other people as to why you're carrying out in the open, then don't open carry. If you fear you might be a first target for a crazy guy, don't open carry. If you're concerned about scaring other people, don't open carry.

    I've never heard of any incident involving a citizen that is open carrying getting shot first during a robbery.

    I support both CC and OC equally, and encourage other law abiding citizens to exercise the right to carry, given their state allows it, and seek training if your state law requires it. I personally CC more due to the long winters and short summers here in Alaska, but during the summer I like to open carry a little more.

    I don't tell other people that they should carry openly or concealed, or carry at all for that matter. It is a personal choice, and a great personal responsibility. I choose to carry the way I do for my own reasons.
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  3. #32
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    Lightbulb

    Thanks for the bump JD. I was thinking about a different tact to get answers to my question. JD or any mod if you think I should do this on a new thread please let me know. If so I'll delete this post and do that. I have tried to answer my own question by doing searches to no avail. So if those participating in this thread could do their own searches for

    1) Civilians who have been shot because they were open carrying

    2) Civilians who have had their gun taken away while they were open carrying

    3) Civilians who have been targeted because they were open carrying

    Than post your result with links to stories or verifiable stats of civilians open carrying being victims of violent crime. Or if you could not find anything than post that so we know how many people have tried. One search method I tried was to look up stories of any gun owner being shot than checking the story to see if the victim was open carrying. No luck.

    Rob72: I did as you suggested and did a search of Pinizzotto, Miller and Davis, (Pinizzotto with double Z) did get some excellent articles and research but nothing relevant to Civilian Open Carry or even LEO Open Carry. Though I do think that attacks on LEO are much different than attacks on civilians. I think that attacks on LEO are at least worthy of a look to see if we can find a correlation to Civilian Open Carry. So far I have found none. Meaning I have found no information that says that an Officer had his gun taken or shot first, that is not directly connected to the Officer performing his duties. Usually making an arrest. We are not LEO and we do not make arrests.
    My whole goal here is to find some verifiable facts not opinions or feelings. I would like to see us gather some verifiable facts that people can use to base their opinion on. I often hear there is an abundance evidence open carry causes people to be victims of violent crime either by being shot first, having their gun taken and used against them or targeted to have their gun stolen. I think for this discussion it would be appropriate to post links to any verifiable evidence of attempts to do any of the above. Anything that indicate that open carry caused someone to be a victim of a crime. Please if you do a search and find nothing be honest let us know that too.
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  4. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by LongRider View Post
    Thanks for the bump JD. I was thinking about a different tact to get answers to my question. JD or any mod if you think I should do this on a new thread please let me know. If so I'll delete this post and do that. I have tried to answer my own question by doing searches to no avail. So if those participating in this thread could do their own searches for

    1) Civilians who have been shot because they were open carrying

    2) Civilians who have had their gun taken away while they were open carrying

    3) Civilians who have been targeted because they were open carrying

    Than post your result with links to stories or verifiable stats of civilians open carrying being victims of violent crime. Or if you could not find anything than post that so we know how many people have tried. One search method I tried was to look up stories of any gun owner being shot than checking the story to see if the victim was open carrying. No luck.

    Rob72: I did as you suggested and did a search of Pinizzotto, Miller and Davis, (Pinizzotto with double Z) did get some excellent articles and research but nothing relevant to Civilian Open Carry or even LEO Open Carry. Though I do think that attacks on LEO are much different than attacks on civilians. I think that attacks on LEO are at least worthy of a look to see if we can find a correlation to Civilian Open Carry. So far I have found none. Meaning I have found no information that says that an Officer had his gun taken or shot first, that is not directly connected to the Officer performing his duties. Usually making an arrest. We are not LEO and we do not make arrests.
    My whole goal here is to find some verifiable facts not opinions or feelings. I would like to see us gather some verifiable facts that people can use to base their opinion on. I often hear there is an abundance evidence open carry causes people to be victims of violent crime either by being shot first, having their gun taken and used against them or targeted to have their gun stolen. I think for this discussion it would be appropriate to post links to any verifiable evidence of attempts to do any of the above. Anything that indicate that open carry caused someone to be a victim of a crime. Please if you do a search and find nothing be honest let us know that too.


    man, i've been looking for months for any case where a non-LEO citizen was targeted because they were armed....i couldn't find a single one. that whole argument is a myth, mostly perpetuated by the anti-OC crowd. it seems to me most LEOs use this argument to discourage OC.

  5. #34
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    1) Civilians who have been shot because they were open carrying
    Never heard of a single instance of this happening. As has been stated previously, regular people tend to live their lives in condition white. I actually call it condition atomic white because they are so very unaware of what is going on around them.

    As Lima pointed out, most criminals focus in on their intended target to the exclusion of everything and everyone else.


    2) Civilians who have had their gun taken away while they were open carrying
    Other than the guy in Chantily VA, never heard of another instance of this.

    3) Civilians who have been targeted because they were open carrying
    Again, other than the guy in VA, not a single instance.

    I open carry quite often. I have learned weapon retention. I would not OC, even in the Level II holster I have without knowing how to counter a disarming attempt. I would never OC in a leather open top holster nor a cheap Fobus holster. I use a Blackhawk SERPA. Not the most expensive but definitely the most effective that I have found.

    I do not feel that OCing puts me at ANY disadvantage, so long as I am aware of my surroundings.
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  6. #35
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    Good stuff from Limatunes. My only reason for not open carrying more is Maturity on my Part! I am to paranoid about it even if it is Legal . I am not an anti I promise. I am a Preacher and it is a little different for me to avoid situations that may cause unwanted Attention. On the Other Hand I should put in more time in taking classes to educate myself on Guns And Gun Law.
    God speed Limatunes Hope your final days of Pregnancy go smooth for you and your family .
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  7. #36
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    I have been considering OC'ing more and more on my off time. When I m at the house, I still have my IWB but not tucked, and less and less worry about the neighbors seeing me.

    I am not so concerned with being targeted if I OC. I am guessing here, if a BG while on the clock performing his job has an agenda as Lima pointed out. If the agenda involves killing then the BG is going to do it. If that killing mans targeting specifics, then it is the uniform that is the flashing light, not the average Jane or John in street clothes. They are not going for a visual inspection of everyone in their zone for a weapon, even though they are waiting for the point of least amount of people to deal with.

    Now a BG that sees you once and notices your OC at place X, the BG will take note. If said BG wants the weapon then you will be most likely tracked for a pattern, not a target of opportunity unless you are exhibiting very obvious signs of carelessness. "Does the risk outweigh the gain" in their train of thought.

    LongRider, this is a very thought provoking thread, and like you, all I have heard is "rumor" on the matter. The best we could do is go to the local prison, request a visitation with some random felon, and ask their thoughts on the matter. We already know that their biggest fear while working in a Shall Issue state is that their intended target may be armed and they will get shot, with no workers comp or disability other than the ER visit and civil suit which may or may not pay out if they happen to survive.

    I would even venture to guess that the newbies or junkies looking for a quick score would think twice upon seeing an OC, unless they themselves are equally armed, in which case they are just going to shoot first without warning. Those types of incidents that happen to make the news are not going to read "Man with gun shot/stabbed then robbed"

    Now, here in Co, it is legal to OC except in certain cities. However I have been told by many a LEO that even though it is legal, if a bystander sees the OC and "feels" threatened then you are now breaking the law, even though the law is almost clear in layman's terms about what qualifies as "threatening" and it involves more than just carrying. I guess what I am getting at is that you are more likely to be relieved of your weapon by a LEO than a BG.

    Sorry to ramble, coffee still not kicking in.
    Sticks

    Grasseater // Grass~eat~er noun, often attributive \ˈgras-ē-tər\
    A person who is incapable of independent thought; a person who is herd animal-like in behavior; one who cannot distinguish between right and wrong; a foolish person.
    See also Sheep

  8. #37
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    There is a case where two police (yes, I know, not a direct correlation, but hear me out) in (I believe) Puerto Rico came into a convenience store to get some snacks/drinks. They didn't know it, but they had just interrupted an armed robbery. Both were ambushed and killed - not because they were making an arrest or otherwise interfering (neither knew anything was wrong until they were gunned down) but because they presented an obvious threat to the robbers.

    Would it have been the same result if two OCers walked in? That is certainly open to speculation, but my opinion is that it is much more likely that OCers would have been ambushed/killed than CCers, if only for the simple fact that many people assume anyone OCing is a cop. The robbers didn't kill the visually unarmed store clerks, lending more credence to the idea that they were targeting the (armed) threat, not just witnesses or random customers. Just one case, and not entirely applicable, but there it is.

    And for Lima: I know you are an aspiring writer (and a damned good one at that), so please take this as it is intended: constructive criticism to make you better at your craft. In your post, you said "you are a force best not reckoned with." The correct saying is "a force to be reckoned with;" you may have been confusing this with "a force better not messed (or similiar) with." Massive nit-picking, I know, but when you submit for publishing (and you should), I want them to have as little as possible to hit you with!
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  9. #38
    Distinguished Member Array Anubis's Avatar
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    (sound of throat-clearing)

    Quote Originally Posted by OPFOR View Post
    In your post, you said "you are a force best not reckoned with." The correct saying is "a force to be reckoned with;"!
    OPFOR, since you opened the hair-splitting, both versions end with a preposition and are equally ungrammatical. Something like "a force with which to be reckoned" sounds funky but is mo' bettah grammar.

    Returning to the thread subject, I agree with those who think being attacked because one is OCing is unlikely. The valid negative OC concerns are scaring the sheep, being the subject of a MWAG call, attracting attention of LEOs who don't like nonLEO OC. Positive OC concerns, since the OCer is making a political statement, include the opportunity to educate those ignorant of their second-amendment right.

    I don't OC in my hometown because I know the police department here have an unofficial policy of hassling every OCer who dares raise his ugly head. Local LEOs know it's legal and don't make arrests on bogus charges like disturbing the peace, but they dole out a ration of verbal scorn and abuse at every encounter.

  10. #39
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    Quote Originally Posted by limatunes View Post
    I have a theory, and while it's just Lima Theory therefore subject to much error, it is still a theory in need of being proven or disproven.

    My theory is that, like B52's fraternity beating up the biggest guy in a bar fight, or your bank robbers going in and taking out the security guards first, etc, it has more to do with "crowd control" than anything else.

    Part of pulling off a successful coup, whether it be to get respect, fear or money is to convince the crowd that you are a force best not reckoned with. How do you do this? Well, you go after the person/persons that people may look to for protection and/or guidance. With that person/persons gone you have instant fear and therefore crowd control.

    Now, that doesn't necessarily mean the guy with the gun is going to automatically "get it" mostly because he's not expected to be there.

    For instance, I'm planning a bank robbery (hypothetically, of course) and I know there is security (armed or not, it doesn't matter). The first order of business is to take them out and gain the fear and control of the crowd. Second order of business is to get the money and get out of there.

    People in high stress situations (yes, even criminals) experience tunnel vision. They have an objective, they go for that objective and they sometimes don't even see things they aren't worried about.

    Okay, so, I'm robbing a bank. My first objective is the security. I run in screaming for everyone to get down on the ground while I run for the guys with the white shirts and pretty belts. I knock them out and look around.. No one is standing. They are scared crapless and on the ground. Good. I have crowd control. Onto objective #2, the money. I run to the manger and/or tellers and start my withdrawal.

    I'm not looking for weapons on the civilians in the bank because that would take too much precious time. Time I don't have to waste, and as I'm experiencing tunnel vision (very likely) there could very well be a guy open carrying right to my left who just happens to be on the floor cowering like everyone else and as long as he doesn't do anything to alert my attention (like get up) I might as well not even know he exists.

    Now, let's step that down a little further to a simple convenience store robbery.

    If you have watched any of those videos on YouTube, or anywhere else for that matter, and you watched the bad guys closely you can almost SEE their tunnel vision.

    They come running in, go right to the counter, do their business and get out of there as quickly as possible.

    Often, there are other customers standing around, in a daze, that it doesn't even seem the bad guy even SEES and it very well could be that they never do see them. The customers are just standing still, scared, not knowing what to do and hoping they don't get hurt and it's over before their brain even kicks in that there was something going on.

    One of them could be EASILY open carrying a firearm and the bad guy could be none the wiser and therefore there is literally no threat to the open carrier.

    Now, let's take it even a step further and talk about random killing like in a mall shooting scenario. These shootings are random and the shooter (from what I've read and seen) doesn't give a crap whether the person is young, old, black, white, security or civilian, armed or walking their dog. His objective is simple, kill as many as possible, and it doesn't make you any more of a target to be open carrying because EVERYONE is already an equal target and, again, he may not even see that you are armed. All he sees is a person, a target, someone to take out. You are just as good as the next victim and therefore you get an equal share in his lunacy, just like everyone else.

    I have open carried quite a few times and it always amazes me how many people DON'T see that I'm armed. They can be standing in line right behind me and have absolutely no clue. Why should someone running into a store to rob it have any more awareness and ability to spot my firearm than the guy behind me in line? Just because they are committing a crime, does that make them superman and a weapons expert? Does that give them a sudden ability to home in on firearm? I don't think so.

    Now, if I'm open carrying I'm not going to be an idiot, stand up, raise my hand and say, "Ahh, Mr. Burglar. I have a gun." I'm probably going to try to conceal the fact that I am armed, even if it's just turning my gun side away from the action to lower the chance that I am seen and targeted because, though unlikely, is certainly is a possibility and that possibility should not be ignored by people who do decide to open carry.

    And even if they don't kill me they can certainly demand my disarmament and try to take my beautiful gun that I don't want to give up. So, in the interest of self preservation, I'm certainly not going to make my status as a carrier any more well known.

    Now, to address the, "You've got a gun, why don't you do something?" problem.....

    Again, unlikely. First, that would take the civilians around you actually seeing you have a gun, and as I've said, I've open carried before and the vast majority don't even see it.

    If they do and that question is voiced, one, was it spoken loud enough for the bad guy to hear it? Two, are they going to press the issue and make themselves a target by drawing unnecessary attention their way? And three, can you knock them out and shut them up? (I'm really kidding on that last point! )

    Seriously though, the question might come up but a simple, "SHHHHH!" might be all that's needed to get them to put their heads back down and shut up. They don't want to draw any more attention to themselves than you want to draw attention to yourself. If they panic and start screaming, well, then that's a whole other ball game to play and you have fun with that.

    So, in my theory's conclusion, I'm going to say that whether you are a bad guy or a good guy you are still human... right?

    I've been around guns all my life, carrying guns for years and working with guns for the last two years. I help people find holsters to conceal, I help people find guns, I write articles on concealing guns and body types and best ways to conceal. I LOOK for guns when I'm out in public and guess what.. I'VE EVEN MISSED A FEW.

    I'll be sitting next to a guy for ten minutes, he'll get up to leave and JD will say, "That was a nice Sig he was carrying."

    I'll feel like a complete idiot because I completely missed it. I could tell you his approximate hight, weight, skin and hair color and a brief description of his clothes, but somehow I missed the open carried gun, either because of the angle or my eyes just skipped over it.

    I'm not perfect and neither are you and neither are cops and neither are FBI agents and neither are TSA guys or anyone else for that matter, and that means the bad guys too.

    Chances are DARNED HIGH that they are going to skip, not just your gun, but your ENTIRE PERSON as long as you aren't their objective or in the way of that objective.

    But that's all Lima theory.
    The absolute best post I've seen on the subject; very articulate, very well thought and clearly expressed.
    I am impressed !!!
    Oh, I was going to forget: I completely agree with what it says.

    Back to the subject, I don't view life as black or white, true or false; I see events with a degree of probability, rarely 0% or 100%; call it a shade of gray. There is a high probability that I am going to be alive in 5 minutes; however it is not 100% ...
    If I take my car or my Harley to go somewhere, the chances that I will arrive are different.
    Same thing with the OC situation; it might increase the chances that if, by accident, I happen to be in the wrong place at the wrong time (which is already a very low probability) I will be picked up as a choice target.
    Considering what Lima wrote, the overall probability is so low IMNSHO, that I choose not to consider it.
    Riding a motorcycle almost everyday in South Florida has a much higher probability of getting hurt; I do it anyways !!!

    Of course, since it is illegal in Florida, the only times I OC is in Virginia, where it is illegal to CC in a restaurant .
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  11. #40
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    Quote Originally Posted by Anubis View Post
    OPFOR, since you opened the hair-splitting, both versions end with a preposition and are equally ungrammatical. Something like "a force with which to be reckoned" sounds funky but is mo' bettah grammar...
    I didn't comment on the grammar, I was just pointing out which is the correct addage.

    Also, I must disagree (to a small extent) with the meat of your post. Being (more of) a target may be way down on the list of issues with OC, but it is not, in my opinion, off the list entirely.
    Last edited by JD; November 23rd, 2008 at 11:39 AM. Reason: Fixed quote tags
    A man fires a rifle for many years, and he goes to war. And afterward he turns the rifle in at the armory, and he believes he's finished with the rifle. But no matter what else he might do with his hands - love a woman, build a house, change his son's diaper - his hands remember the rifle.

  12. #41
    Restricted Member Array SelfDefense's Avatar
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    It is dangerous to think that because no examples of someone targeted by open carrying have been documented (or at least discovered) that it is proof of being a consideration that can be disrergaded.

    It is an extraordinary low probability that anyone will be attacked or targeted in any manner by a criminal. Still, we do everything in our power to prepare ourselves for that eventuality. Obviously, there is a greater probability of being attacked because one is open carrying than being attacked because one is open carrying when not doing so. The counter argument is that open carrying may deter criminals, but lo and behold, there is no documented evidence of that either.

    Open carry creates many negatives as far as public opinion and the ability to defend one's self. Being a target is simply another issue that should not be ignored and considered thoughtfully in a decision to open carry. To think one is safe from that possibility is simply to be in a state of denial.

  13. #42
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    Open carry creates many negatives as far as public opinion and the ability to defend one's self.
    thats a pretty blanket statement there...

    I would guess that it is entirely dependent on where one lives.

    I'd be willing to bet that "public opinion" of open carry in some remote town of Montana would be different than somewhere like Boston, Massachusetts.
    I would rather stand against the cannons of the wicked than against the prayers of the righteous.


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  14. #43
    Restricted Member Array SelfDefense's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by HotGuns View Post
    thats a pretty blanket statement there...

    I would guess that it is entirely dependent on where one lives.

    I'd be willing to bet that "public opinion" of open carry in some remote town of Montana would be different than somewhere like Boston, Massachusetts.
    I didn't mean to imply that public opinion was decidely negative against open carry, only that there is a negative component that should be considered.

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    I didn't mean to imply that public opinion was decidely negative against open carry, only that there is a negative component that should be considered.
    of course.

    There are negatives to carring a a gun whether it be open carry or concealed that must be adressed before committing to either method.
    I would rather stand against the cannons of the wicked than against the prayers of the righteous.


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  16. #45
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    Quote Originally Posted by SelfDefense View Post
    It is dangerous to think that because no examples of someone targeted by open carrying have been documented (or at least discovered) that it is proof of being a consideration that can be disregarded.
    I don't think anyone said it doesn't happen, just that we had not heard of any instances of it.


    Obviously, there is a greater probability of being attacked because one is open carrying than being attacked because one is open carrying when not doing so.
    I don't think I agree with that statement at all. And I would not say it is obvious at all either. That may be your opinion, but if certainly isn't a fact.


    The counter argument is that open carrying may deter criminals, but lo and behold, there is no documented evidence of that either.
    There's no evidence that it doesn't. And, the more folks OC, the more the sheeple will become accustomed to seeing it, just as they have here in Southwest Tennessee. Many people OC and I never have heard of anyone freaking out about it and calling the police.


    Open carry creates many negatives as far as public opinion and the ability to defend one's self.
    Again, that is your opinion, not fact. I myself, see no negatives as to public opinion in my area. In fact, I have heard nothing but positive comments when i am out and about OC'ing. And in the several newspaper articles I have read that refer to OC, again, nothing but positive comments by the general public.


    Being a target is simply another issue that should not be ignored and considered thoughtfully in a decision to open carry. To think one is safe from that possibility is simply to be in a state of denial.
    On the other hand, if you carry concealed and think that makes you safer in regard to being targeted you are fooling yourself as well. Any gang member or hard core criminal can spot someone who is carrying concealed a majority of the time. No matter how good you think you are at concealing your gun, you will most likely be spotted by someone who really knows what to look for. To think that you are safe from being targeted simply because you are concealing that gun is living in denial as well.
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