For the last three NRA Annual Meetings, open and concealed carry have been legal and practiced on the premises. In 2015 it was in Nashville. 2016 was Louisville, Kentucky. In the press room here in Atlanta, there were a few open carriers. From the printing that I noticed here and there, there were a significantly greater number of concealed carriers.
I was one of those. The press room was rather chilly for a Yuma, Arizona resident so I kept my jacket on. Out on the floor, there were few open carriers. Then it hit me. President Trump was scheduled to speak. The Secret Service frowns on anything they consider a weapon in the same room with the President. I noticed one gentleman with an empty holster, heading toward the venue for the President’s speech.
When I talked to people who had attempted to enter the forum for the speech, it’s questionable if even the empty holster was allowed. One man had to go to the Knife Rights knife check facility and check a penlight flashlight. So the explanation for the relatively small numbers of open carry on the first day was obvious.
I expect the numbers to increase Saturday and Sunday.
Open and concealed carry at NRA Meetings is a thing. I doubt the NRA will schedule a meeting in a state that doesn’t respect the Second Amendment enough to have a shall-issue concealed carry laws and reasonable reciprocity.
A national reciprocity law could, of course, change that, opening up the 10 to 13 states that severely infringe on Second Amendment rights.
People who live on the borders of Rhode Island, New York, New Jersey, Massachusetts, Maryland, California, Connecticut, and Delaware would certainly appreciate the change. Even Illinois, Oregon, and Washington state would become much friendlier to visitors.
I expect to see a lot more more open carry here this weekend.