Monday, May 2, 2011

Seeing the (Open Carry) Light...

So, I had my very first experience with open carry in Pittsburgh. Starting Thursday night and going through Sunday, I walked around with a firearm strapped to my hip and covered by... air. For the first few hours I was paranoid, looking over my shoulder for the police to come tackle me. After a while, though, it wore off, and I started to enjoy it. I mean, really enjoy it. Like, to the point of being disappointed today when I had to lock the guns away for the trip home.

One of the things I noticed was that when I did decide to conceal (going into a restaurant where I wasn't certain what their policy was), I was a thousand times more at ease with carrying. I tossed a loose-fitting polo shirt on over my T-shirt and Flatjack holster, and didn't worry once about printing or exposing my holster accidentally. Knowing that open carry is perfectly legal made concealed carry much easier. Having experienced it, I can understand why folks are so passionate about keeping open carry legal or working towards making it legal.

My reservations about open carry arise from my current location - if, for some strange reason, an overzealous police officer were to overreact to a "man with a gun" call, it could prove disastrous for me should my town's police chief be notified (I have no idea what the procedure is). He may decide that I am "unsuitable" for a permit and revoke my MA LTC, resulting in a world of hurt for me. Were I a resident of free America, there would be no legal consequences for open carry as long as I obey the law - which I have every intention of doing...

Open carry - who knew it could be this simple?

That is all.

12 comments:

libertyman said...

Freedom is a remarkable entity, we appreciate it most when it is taken away. Your comments are apt, and to think that you may lose your freedom simply by what you say on this blog. As TJIC did.

ASM826 said...

Sometimes a position is lost and the only decision is which direction to retreat. Massachusetts has reached that point.

George said...

I got to open carry in Arizona a few weeks ago, and I experienced the exact same thing. A bit of initial uncomfortableness, followed by the simple pleasure of enjoying my freedom. I hated to have to cover up again.

Old NFO said...

New Hampshire Jay. Just sayin...

Eseell said...

Glad to hear it!

Benjamin said...

Iowa got open carry this last January*. I'd been carrying concealed for a few years prior and it is so much more comfortable now not having to worry about a puff of wind whipping my cover garment to the side.


*Before it was technically legal at the state level to OC but the various sheriffs had made it clear that if they had to deal with a man with a gun call your permit was gone and your ass was theirs.

BGM

Dragon said...

It *was* quite the feeling walking past a police officer, gun fully exposed in an eye-candy holster that made it stand out even more, and simply get a nod from said officer. A few even quirked a brow or smiled.

Who woulda thunk it?

Sean D Sorrentino said...

when you start off you think that you need to keep your gun in deep, deep cover to keep people from noticing. You are never comfortable. Then you start OCing, and still, no one notices. After you realize that no one even notices the full size pistol in a Serpa holster, you stop worrying about them noticing you with a gun under your shirt.

Plus it's cool to exercise your rights in the face of a lifetime's conditioning that open carry is wrong. You've been told that everyone will freak out, and you find that they don't even notice, much less care.

You guys think that the Open Carriers are carrying openly to protest against social approbation. It's actually the other way. OCers learned that the social approbation actually doesn't exist. They get militant because they refuse to bow to the elite pressure that tells them that "the public" will disapprove. They've seen the public, it doesn't disapprove, and the elitists are just lying.

REB said...

Sean, I could not have said it better.

Anonymous said...

C'mon over to VA: open carry here is great!

MrSatyre said...

Open carry for me is the best form of deterrent. With the exception of the unfortunate few out there who are deranged to begin with, the rest of the criminal element out there will always be reluctant to start trouble when he can clearly see that the people around him are armed and just as dangerous as he is. The difference being that we have a social and moral compass; he does not.

Anonymous said...

It's about time more folks learned this lesson. It's a shame that we have what appears to be well over half of the gunny folk out there that think OC scares the common people and does our cause no benefit. Those folks are living in a mental state of prison.

Just be sure that your number 1 thought is weapon retention, and it's all good.