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At this time of year in Arizona, I open carry. I was in a McDonald’s, drinking coffee and using the Internet when I considered how ordinary this all was, and how much heat has been put on Open Carry Texas for merely working to obtain the same freedoms in Texas that we enjoy here in the Grand Canyon State. Freedoms that are part of the law in most states in the union, about 44 at last count. It was particularly surprising how much of the heat was coming from within the gun culture . . .

So I decided to stand with Texas.  I saw a gentleman who didn’t seem to be otherwise occupied and asked him to take my picture. He was happy to do so (result above). There were a group of three moms and four girls who watched the process. I mentioned that I was writing an article and one of the moms, Shanna Godinez, said:

I approve of open carry. Then we know who is carrying and who is not. 

Interestingly, this was the most common attitude among most of the population up until the 1930s. That was how concealed carry came to be restricted. The open carry of long guns didn’t elicit any negatives from the population up until at least the 1950’s, even in places like New York City.

I told Ms. Godinez of the campaign to show open carriers as irresponsible and she said:

Gun owners are more responsible than other people!

I should have taken a picture of her group. They were excited and happy, and one of the girls who appeared to be about 10 gave me a big, friendly smile as she went out the door.

I regretted not taking their picture, so I decided to ask Luis P. Sevilla, the gentleman who had taken my photo, if I could snap one of him. He had no problem with that, and we started to talk guns. He said that he had open carried himself many times with a local Charro group (Mexican cowboys) in numerous parades. We discussed the stupidity of California gun law.

Luis P. Sevilla

What struck me about the experience was the support that I received. Shanna volunteered that she supported open carry. Luis had open carried himself. None of us had ever met before.

True, Arizona is a pretty gun-friendly state, but so is Texas. The false narrative that Moms Demand Action is trying to push, is that the people in that McDonalds are ordinarily terrified of people like me. The overriding response to open carry, which I have observed in several states, and has been relayed to me by numerous other open carriers is…support. Support and indifference are the two most common reactions.

Negative opinions are a tiny minority of the responses, but the Bloomberg-funded media campaign is attempting to create the false narrative that the tiny minority is a much bigger than it really is.

©2014 by Dean Weingarten: Permission to share is granted when this notice is included.
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      the little gold goasties and a group in Oak Park would completely have grabbers and fall over. Its easier to deny that there are guns around them now (with the recent CCL law) and act as if their ministrations are having an impact, than to actually have to see a law abiding person standing in line at the McD’s to get a cheeseburger.

      • Oak Park moms would be huddled with their children inside their homes, occasionally peering out their windows to see if the scary open carriers had left. It would be like the end of days for them.

      • I’ve done a lot of business in Oak Park. I can assure you the upscale Frank Lloyd Wright worshipping anti leftwing mommies see more than their fair share of “scary black people”. Right next door is the westside of Chicago. and they don’t respect the border. Even went to church on North Ave. just inside Oak Park.

      • I grew up in one of the “North Shore” enclaves, all of which were, and still are, “Gun Free Zones.” You were allowed to possess rifles and shotguns in your home, so long as they were registered with the city, but handguns of any type were expressly verboten. My father had a POS .22 and two POS .38’s that belonged to my grandfather. My grandfather was a train master for the Illinois Central RR in Souther Illinois and I believe he carried on the job, but that is another story. Anyways, my father kept the revolvers for personal reasons only and they resided in the bottom of a dresser drawer untouched for decades. The pistols were in very poor shape and after he passed away I had a crazy idea to take them to the local cop shop for destruction. Big, big, really big mistake. The sergeant on duty behind the glass nearly shit himself when I told him why I was there and what I wanted to do. The fat boy refused to assist me and had the dispatcher call in two, yes, two, patrol officers to collect (confiscate) the dangerous and illegal revolvers. When they arrived they both approached me in spread defensive positions acting like they were ready to pull their own weapons on me and the proctological examination I went through took more than an hour. Yeah, that’s right, one to do the paperwork and a second to provide defensive backup in case one of the unloaded revolvers experienced some sort of self-actuated accidental discharge. They even confirmed my father’s and my mother’s recent deaths. This happened over well over ten years ago and, suffice to say, I would not be so foolish today. For this, any many, many, many other reason, I will never, ever, return to that liberal infested Shit Hole of a state. At least not the northern half. The downstate folks, with the exception of Springfield, are generally Right thinking people. You will never see open carry in Illinois until the southern portion of the state secedes from Cook, Dupage and Lake Counties.

      • It would be nice to be able to open carry a 44 magnum revolver for protection against animals while on a hike without facing arrest.

      • Why not? Join the other states, and show that the hoplophobia of the Demanding Moms isn’t representative of most people.

  1. Nice holster for OC.

    If you wanna get your gun snatched.

    Honestly, there’s not a lot in common when you’re talking about OC a rifle vs. OC a handgun.


    • I thought I see some kind of release tab (Serpa-esque) thingy or maybe I’m wrong. The fold in his shirt will make a draw kind of problematic though, but the hat is so dapper.

    • The photo shows open carry of a handgun in a holster. The problem I have with OCT is their idea of slinging an AR or AK and walking around in a suburban setting or shopping mall parking lot with the intent to make the natives restless. And draw attention to themselves to get their five minutes of fame.

      • I doubt they would have a problem with carrying a handgun either but since it is ILLEGAL in TX, they are carrying long guns…

        I take issue with how they carry them and how they conduct themselves, but the purpose is of course, to encourage passage of handgun open carry in TX.

      • Seriously? You know these people’s intentions and motivations? Many of them open carry just walking down the road or in a routine place, without seeking out the absolute most heavily trafficked area possible. Hardly seems like spooking people for its own sake is the intention. Likewise, there are a million other ways to secure your five minutes of fame, or even a day or two of Internet infamy, without risking arrest and confiscation of your firearms. Hardly seems that attention seeking is the motivation.

        Why can’t it be that these are for the most part people using the only legal means they have, to try to increase awareness and aid in the expansion of the law’s recognition of our firearms rights?

    • I just have to wonder how small the average lefty male’s package is, or how fierce the average lefty female’s parts-envy, that they invest so much time and thought making unfounded assumptions about someone else’s equipment just so they can feel better about themselves.

    • Anyone and everyone who uses that term should be called out as the bigot they are. It is not only a vulgar pejorative but it makes light of the not terribly distant past when being called gay or homo was common and acceptable.

    • “Americans Against the TEA Party”

      Anyone who is against the principles on which this country was founded isn’t an American in my book. Sorry, not on topic.

    • “Ammosexual” That’s a new word for me, Does that have anything to do with “self dating”

  2. I OC’d the other day just to see what reaction I got. The answer: none. No one seemed to give it a second thought. I am also in AZ.

    • Open carrying a handgun is much different than open carrying an AR15/AK47. If you want to make a point by open carrying a long gun, do so with a Hunting Rifle, WW2 Gun or Black Powder Rifle/Pistol and educate people why you are doing it. I think the biggest mistake OCT is making is that all the Mall Ninjas with their AR15s/AK47s are coming out because they want to carry them around in public and MDA is exploiting it. Frankly I would be about 1 second away from shooting a joker who walked in a business holding his AR15 at low ready with his hand on the pistol grip. Generally speaking it is much harder to demonize people carrying a black powder rifle in public as a potential mass shooter/etc. Carry a Concealed Handgun for Self-Defense while ocing a long gun if you feel the need.

      I think carrying any long gun extended periods of time is uncomfortable and impracticable. You cannot comfortably eat or do anything else with a rifle on your back. Which means you have to set down your gun in a public area (big big no-no). You don’t even see the most tactical operator cops doing that without some legitimate reason.

      • Which would be why OCT is campaigning for OC of handguns in TX. What is your problem with that?

        • I don’t have a problem with it. I have a problem with the mall ninjas who make the legitimate OCT demonstrators look bad.

      • I feel pretty much the same way. I sympathize with OCT’s cause, but they need to teach their people not to hold long guns at low ready in public. That’s like drawing a handgun. OC is good, I don’t even care what you OC, but handling your weapon in public for no reason makes people nervous.

        • That’s the point I’ve tried to make in other posts. “makes people nervous”, especially the store owner who is probably concerned about loosing customers. He may then put up a “NO GUNS” sign, which means I can’t CC in his business.
          Whats wrong with putting your long gun a soft case?
          P.S. to TTAG fans, And don’t ask me “What’s wrong with carrying my long gun WITHOUT a case” Nothing is wrong with it! It just makes good sense to put it in a case!

        • “makes people nervous”, especially the store owner who is probably concerned about loosing [sic] customers.

          I think the owner is more worried about an ND and subsequent lawsuit and astronomical increase in insurance rate than he is about losing customers.

        • Done. Just as soon as people who use the term “low ready” go look it up, learn what it actually means, and see the difference between it and what most of the OCT pictures depict. Spoiler alert: it isn’t simply having a hand anywhere on a rifle.

    • When I lived in the Deer Valley neighborhood of Phoenix, I used to open carry frequently. And I’d see open carriers at least twice a week at Home Depot, Target (the irony), or In-N-Out (I miss them so). I even openly carried, and saw open carriers at the Deer Valley Costco, which had a no guns sign at the door.

      Since moving to the Seattle area, I haven’t seen open carriers in that sort of environment once, even though it is legal without any sort of permit. But then WA has one of the oldest shall-issue CPL laws, so maybe the culture shifted to concealed carry decades ago.

      • In the 9 years I’ve lived in the Seattle area, I’ve only seen one person open carrying.

    • WOW!You OC JUST TO SEE THE REACTION? You must be in Snotsdale, really I live in N. AZ And we always carry , just like grabbing your wallet or phone , If we’re heading south the 12 ga. Goes in the trunk just cuz. I’ve never even gotten a second look from anyone anywhere in the state just cause what I have on my hip, by the way I drive a truck for a living so I’m allover the state and last month went through a DOT check point told the cop I had a 38 in my backpack and all he asked was what it was(prob. making sure I wasn’t carrying a piece of crap) Going into most places nobody even looks twice ,or cares. Are you new to AZ or just young ? Why would you OC just to see people’s reactions? Sounds like a newbie or kid.Who would OC just to see people’s reactions.

  3. Ya know, I would think that the _rational_ take from the antis would be like that of Ms Godinez: given that the guns are out there, and in the antis’ mindset, just waiting to turn their possessors at the drop of a hat into mindless killing machines, at least if they are in the open you know who to look out for, who to avoid, who to run away from before the gun takes possession of the carrier’s soul and sparks a bullet-spraying frenzy. If you walk into a restaurant and see firearms, you would know to go away and find another, ahhhh, gun-free place. Which, of course, is more proof that rank-and-file gun-grabbers aren’t animated by rational thought, but by irrational fear.

    • I don’t think there are any “rank-and-file gun-grabbers”. They are either fanatic looney tunes or really close to uninterested. Why would a normal person spend time making up scary lies about a subject they have zero knowledge of? Answer; cuz they’re ’bout a half bubble off center.

      • I disagree. I think there are a number of gullible soccer-mom and metrosexual types that, for example, “like” MDA’s facebook page, etc. who really believe that an AR is a bullet-spraying “machine gun’ and that you really can obtain a firearm without any kind of face-to-face exchange via the Net and that an unlicensed OFWG can sit at a gun-show table and sell dozens of weapons at a time under present law. They are goo-goos who swallow at face value all the false crap that people like Bloomie and Shannon put out. They are not the leaders of the movement, who know better and are motivated by the desire to have a monopoly on control and political power.

        • I think you just described a “professional follower.” They flit from cause to cause as the mood strikes them. They collect causes to support like a Girl Scout collects badges; and the farther out, the better. I think it’s a “oneupsmanship” thing in some cases.

    • The flaw in your logic is that you’re seeking a rational solution to their stated goals. Their true goal is a total ban on all civilian firearms. And one intermediate goal to assist in that is to demonize the idea of owning or carrying a gun.

      • That is why I limited my “irrational fear” observation to “rank-and-file” grabbers. The top leadrership, the Bloomies and Feinsteins and such, know better; they are the ones motivated by the desire to have a monopoly on the ultimate source of political power.

  4. Reactions will depend on the prevailing attitudes of the community to some extent. Open carry is perfectly legal where I live too, but I have never seen (or at least, noticed) anyone actually doing it. I honestly don’t know how people would react.

    Actually, I did open carry once. I did up a quick cowboy outfit to walk around with my kids one Halloween. The gun in my holster was both genuine and loaded. If anyone noticed, they didn’t say a word.

    Regardless of where you live, open carry of a handgun will probably make far fewer waves than open carry of a long gun. If the goal is to normalize open carry, packing holstered pistols may be a better bet.

    • Except when it’s illegal (packing a holstered handgun, that is). And before anybody says it–in Texas, loaded or unloaded makes no difference in the legality of carrying.

        • That’s a thought. I know lots of folks who have guns, both long and hand, but only a couple with black-powder. That would really cut into the number of demonstrators.

        • Nice thought, Jus Bill, but if you open carry a black powder pistol in Texas, expect to be arrested for it. DPS and other departments have charged people with some other BS (can’t recall which one they used), even though it is not considered a “firearm” by the Feds. You might be let off later by the DA or grand jury, but that is pain and expense I’d rather not have to deal with it.

        • The two instances I’ve seen were arrests for something like “brandishing” and “display.” And once they got to the station and discovered the pistol was an antique, the charges were dropped.

          And then there’s always something like this to make a point:

          And nobody is forcing you to carry one anyway.

    • Why don’t you openly carry a handgun while at an OCT rally in Texas and let us know how it is like.

      • (@ Robert too) If OC of a handgun is illegal where you live, that’s different, of course. Good point.

  5. You must be confused. The problem with OCT isn’t the “OC” part of it at all. It’s the utter lack of trigger discipline and walking around like they are ready to open fire on the whole store at a moment’s notice. If you read the comments section of the typical “OCT doing what OCT does best” article, it seems the general gist is “Open carry, fine. But keep your grubby paws off the damn thing.”

    • Could not have said it better, and I’m a technical writer!

      Here’s the thing… if you OC, great, good for you. I have no problem with it. Strap it on your back, join others in a demonstration, be peaceful and respectful, and all is good.

      However, when it is NOT the norm to enter a place of business, uninvited, to make a point of “hey look at me,” then the issues begin. Put your finger anywhere near the damned trigger and you run the risk of meeting the muzzle end of my .40 Kahr.

      I stepped up to the .40 because I didn’t believe the .380 I carried would have done much in the Colorado theater shooting. What was he carrying? MSR in the form of an AK. If you walk into a place where I am, gun on the front of you, hand on grip, finger near trigger, you’re not a demonstrator, you’re a THREAT, and one that will be dealt with.

      I want to see OC pass in Texas, but I also don’t want morons with bad judgement hindering the cause, and putting businesses in positions they shouldn’t have to be in, between OCers and MDA. Keep it where it belongs, at rallys and demonstrations that show we firearms owners are not the idiots they want to portray us as.

      Do it right, or don’t do it at all.

    • I’m not doubting your sincerity–let’s start with that. However, just how do you KNOW that such things are happening, or, if they ARE happening, if in fact they are the rule and not the exception?

      Photographs can be posed, or taken from an angle that does not accurately depict what really takes place. If there are no photographs, people DO lie, or, ahem, ‘misstate’ if the ‘misstatement’ is to their advantage. Shocked, you would be SHOCKED to discover that our enemies will resort to Black Propaganda to enhance their story.

      In an earlier thread, long before the most recent one about OCT and propaganda, one ‘anti’ who posted in it insisted that a photograph from the Dallas Chipotle’s OCT demonstration showed one of the participants with his finger on the trigger. She was adamant about it–and it was a bald-faced lie. The actual photograph is in both postings here, and on the InterWebs: The man in it has his finger STRAIGHT, no mistake about it. Yet, the Antis perpetrate the lie with no regret.

      What if everything that we have come to believe about OCT and their bad behaviour has been a lie, perpetrated by MDA and MAIG and Everytown for Gun Confiscation?

      Just saying.

    • Got a link to a picture of an OCT member at a rally/event with a finger ON the trigger?

      None of the four rules say “no hands on the gun.” Kinda for a reason.

      Your objection to them is personal, but no direct violation of “gun safety” or a specific statute.

      • None of the four rules say don’t carry your gun in your hand when going to the grocery store OC (so long as you keep the finger off the trigger and don’t muzzle anyone). Does that mean it’s OK to do so?

        • “Okay” is a matter of opinion, not a moral absolute.

          As the article above cites, it was ‘normal’ to OC rifles in parts of this country until the 1950’s. What we are witnessing is a temporal issue, not a defining moral one. Today it may not be “okay;” 5 years from not it may be.

          That said, I was specifically responding to this phrase:

          It’s the utter lack of trigger discipline

          If there is such, I would like to see it.

          Because there is a hell of a lot of FUD being spread about this WHOLE OCT issue. A lot of mistruths and misrepresentations being repeated.

      • You what now?

        And while you are TECHNICALLY correct that in this picture (, the person’s finger is off the trigger, how’s that gonna look from the other 270° of view that isn’t straight on? If that guy swings around with his hand on the gun like that, you wouldn’t consider reaching for your CCW? As other posters have already said, the perception of it all is hugely important. Posing for photos still means being working on the perception that OC is nothing weird. Walking around like a mall ninja does less than nothing to allay the lay person’s perceptions.

  6. Well, kudos to you for NOT being an OFWG, and perpetuating the stereotype. I have zero issue w/responsible OC. I would, however, like to see more carriers using a retention system of some kind, even if just an old-school thumb-break.

    • +1

      I’m ok with responsible open carry and would do so in summer if it ever became legal here (unlikely), but I could never do it with a non retaining holster like that. I’d want at least a thumb break, not trigger finger release on kydex or a button clip on leather.

      That just looks too risky.

      • “I’m ok with responsible open carry”

        EVERYONE says that. The problem is…each person apparently defines “responsibly” differently.

        That’s the thing about natural rights. They are not up to someone else to define the parameters of how they are applied.

        Rights are not supposed to need “approval” to be exercised.

    • The whole “pistol retention” issue is significant in a “gun free paradise” where nobody but the police and criminals have guns, but in a place where everyone can freely open carry it becomes much less significant. Why would I want to grab your gun when I can much more easily and securely grab my gun?

  7. Dean is on a roll today. We get it Dean; you dislike the people who disagree with how OCT carried out their protests. Doubly so noted. Meanwhile, MA gets f’d again with more gun control laws… And you know where ObamaCare came from…

  8. Maybe we need to see custom rifle and shotgun holster that will cover the trigger guard to increase the safety of openly carrying long guns.

    • Borg,
      it’s called a “gun case” But most all OCer’s seem to have never herd of it.??

      • Do you call a gun in a case “open” carried?

        Not sure where they falls in the legalities. Aren’t there places that “open carry” is illegal, but guns in cases is not? If so, carrying in a case kind of defeats the purpose of “open carry.”

  9. This horse is DEAD. I can tell you where each and every TTAG poster comes down on the OCT debate.

  10. Open carry at the low ready is a good way to get shot. Open carry anything you want any other way; but if your walking around looking like you want some, your gonna get some.

    • Why?

      Other mannerisms don’t apply? Holding a rifle in “low ready” satisfies “ability, opportunity and jeopardy?”

      I don’t think so. I’ve been in scenarios where a person was holding a gun and to have shot him would NOT have met any self defense standard in the country.

      ESPECIALLY if it’s a momentary pose for a picture and very clearly not a threatening act. These guys were NOT walking around with their rifles held like that, ‘stalking’ prey in the aisles.

      Totality of circumstances will come into play. But don’t take my word for it. Go to the firing range and shoot the next man you see that holds his rifle in “low ready” on the firing line. Think you will have a successful SD claim after your arrest?

      If not, then “low ready” by itself, in the absence of other factors, is not a SD justification. Q.E.D.

  11. Get a holster that’s not a piece of shit and can’t easily be torn off your belt if you’re going to open carry. Fobus holsters are not built to last. Safariland 7TS and ALS both come to mind, and are reasonably priced and offer retention without sacrificing speed.

    Open carry activists almost universally carry with equipment that is not ideal for the task, from leather dress belts that stretch to nylon Ambi holsters that don’t allow for a full grip when drawing and have a spare mag ineffectively placed at the front of the holster, to poorly designed and made injection molded holsters that can easily fail.

  12. Open carrying a pistol is less threatening than a AR or AK. For one thing, most people don’t even notice and if you dress right people just think your a LEO. I know people who have been comped at Dunkin” Donuts who opened carried and were dressed in a white shirt and a tie.

  13. Very few people here object to open carry per se. What they object to is the fact that OCT keeps committing terrible PR blunders in what is a PR battle. People who are voluntarily protesting need to be aware of how they are representing themselves, their movement, and those of us who may be connected to that movement. Just from browsing their own website, it is clear that OCT has far too many members who make the movement look bad. From folks who look like particularly unkempt hobos to folks carrying scary black rifles with a mag inserted to folks holding their rifle at a low ready–about half of the pictures in their own photo gallery are disasters from a PR perspective. And since they are open-carrying to make a PR point, that’s pretty terrible.

  14. The freekin fudds are out.

    Listen here semi-antis:

    During the civil rights era, there were some African-Americans who thought all those rabble rousers like MLK were just hurting the cause by being so confrontational and demanding. Well guess who was wrong?

    Yeah, the people who had been so traumatized by decades of de jure and de facto rights-denial that they almost forgot they were RIGHTS and not privileges.

    Don’t be those people.

    • Difference is, they didn’t have rights until they were given them by law and the civil rights protests were for expansion of rights just like OCT is trying to do. Nothing wrong with that. People are trying to confuse law with ethics. There is nothing wrong with saying we don’t ethically like how OCT is doing their business. Every good group, gun owners especially, should have a solid set of ethics. The four rules of safety are part of that. Are they engraved in stone/are they the only ones? No. But they are what we think are ethically the most common sense way to handle weapons safely. When people compromise on ethics, that’s when things go south. Politicians doing unethical acts = public perception that all politicians are corrupt. So on and so forth.

    • Nope. Civil Rights happened because JFK had his head blown off. And LBJ wanted to push it through to get black votes. Ironic how much Republican support he got.

  15. Looking at that picture, I’m thinking that’s gotta be illegal anywhere on the planet. Open carrying like that? Socks (of any color) are for concealed carry only, i.e. never with shorts!

  16. Forget the discussion about open carry, the firearm community needs to have a frank and honest discussion about that hat.

    • Hey, I used to have a hat like that. Worked great for pickin’ blueberries. Got something a little more stylish now–and praise be, I don’t have to pick blueberries any more…

  17. i lived a year in Philidelphia Pa when i was 13 years old , i used to take a 16 guage single on the street car to go hunting out at end of line ,the people hardly looked at me and police riding to or from work even chatted with me about hunting,guns and stuff ,no one complained . the single was broken open however ,but i had shells in a belt on my waist. .what year ? well it
    was 1944 ,just try this now !!!!!wow!!!! in Philly??? no way.

    • Wow!
      I thought I was the oldest “scoundrel” around here, man, you got me beat by several years, My hats off to you sir.
      Actually my hats off because somebody with a gun stole it.

    • Good news: you were open carrying before I was born. 🙂
      Bad news: it wasn’t a whole lot before I was born. 🙁

  18. As a fellow Open Carrier in AZ I salute you! We need more of us here in AZ. Been thinking of trying to start a group for Open Carry AZ.

    • Just out of curiosity whats your opinion on my thought that it would be easier to steal your gun, rob you, take your life, if you were open carrying, rather than CC in the case of a side arm?
      My reasoning is that the perp knows you have a gun, knows where on your body you are carrying, and can set up an ambush.
      If you are carrying concealed, then of course the would be robber, killer, etc., doesn’t know you are armed, and you would not “stand out” so to speak.
      Just your thoughts please.

      • I’ve thought about that a bit and used to be more wary of the idea of open carry for the sake of making myself a target, but the fact of AZ being a constitutional carry state means anyone can be carrying, open or concealed. I’ve come to think that the relative safety concerns of OC vs. concealed have less to do with whether you’re open carrying and more to do with where you are carrying & whether your surroundings might enable an effective ambush. In other words, just because I’m open carrying doesn’t mean I’m the only one who is armed.

        Other places I might feel differently. Then again, maybe it’s just the heat making me dread the idea of CC. 😉

      • Gunr if you are really interested in answers to your question stop by and read some of the post in the why open carry forum.

        I studied this site and others for about 6mo before I started OCing.I had a lot of questions and I received a lot of good advise and answers there.

  19. Why not instead of O.C. with rifles, O.C. with empty pistol holsters and insert a bananaa? Or O.C. carry with airsoft guns painted bright colors? Still getting the point across but less intimidation?

    • I posted something similar in the last article on OC, except my idea was to use blue guns (they make long guns, too), or even stripped lowers since they’re technically still guns. I got mixed reactions to the idea.

      I do think it’s valid to consider that in a battleground situation like TX has right now it’s probably more effective to OC actual firearms than to use props since part of the goal is to demonstrate that firearms can be carried safely and peacefully. However, for the sake of educating the public, uninitiated and fence-sitters and to help people who are mildly fearful (not phobic) of firearms feel better about approaching “open carriers” I think the idea of blue guns or striped lowers make for an intriguing conversation starter.

    • Still get WHAT point across? That you don’t mind looking like an idiot in public?

      No one is going to associate seeing a banana in a holster with open carrying of a firearm.

      The blue gun idea at least involved something that actually looked like a gun and would be immediately associated with representing a firearm.

      Further, “intimidating” is not the point. We keep saying “it is not the gun, it is the mind behind it” that is a danger. Pandering to this “intimidating” reasoning is just letting the anti’s set the narrative and then trying to react to them.

      It’s playing defensive ball, pure and simple.

  20. Remind me. Did Arizona get Constitutional Carry by having a bunch of idiots showing up at Target carrying rifles?

    And, try to answer this honestly: Do you think Arizona would have gotten Constitutional Carry if the news was filled with idiots in AZ showing up at Target carrying rifles?

    Dean, you’re encouraging people to undo the very thing you claim to promote – which is the liberalization of carry laws. Take off the blinders.

    • We did use open carry to force the state to take down illegal signs banning guns at rest stops on the Interstate. Open carry of all guns has always been legal in Arizona. I think the Sacaton rest stop open carry picnic in 1998 had long arms there, but I could not attend. The state patrol was invited, and invited to arrest us and show the law. They backed down. After that action, we flooded the Governors office with phone calls generated by a radio show educating the public about it.

      The Governor called us to stop the calls, and the signs came down within a month.

      We got constitutional carry in Arizona through persistent political action and commitment to principles. I recall Ernie Hancock open carrying a Makarov I gave him in the State capitol about a decade ago to illustrate freedom to the legislators. He generally carried it unloaded, as I recall. They did not know that. It was all about making a statement and normalizing carry.

      Ernie is brilliant about political theater.

      Now, demonstrations at the capitol to support the right to keep and bear arms routinely have numerous people carrying AR15 style rifles. It has gotten so that nobody even blinks anymore.

      All this was done in the face of adamant opposition from the old media. The old media does not have the power many think they do. I believe they have been exposed for the partisan shills that they are, and most people know it now.

      Consistent political organizing and pushing for principles is more powerful on this issue than the old media and their propaganda. Rifts in the ranks of the gun culture are more of an obstacle than the old media.

  21. With that pith helmet, and those shorts, I think you would look more appropriate carrying a 470 double rifle rather than a side arm.

  22. The pics in the above article = A-Okay! OC done right! Minding your own business and getting on with getting on. Bravo!

    The OCT jackass parades = just that… a parade of jackasses with no tact or common sense, rubbing their agenda in everyone’s face, pissing everyone off in the process.

    I’m in AZ, for whatever relevance that has.

  23. People that see you open carrying aren’t terrified of you, they just wonder why you feel the need to draw attention to yourself for no good reason. You might just as well dye your hair pink and pierce your eyebrow.

    • So you think that he drew more attention to himself with the gun and not those socks and shorts?


    • Here in Arizona OC is pretty commonplace, since it’s pretty much always been legal. Most people don’t even notice. I’m gun people and half the time I don’t even notice other people open carrying.

  24. Since nobody mentioned it.

    Lolinski’s fashion comment:

    You aren’t a colonist from the 19th century, thusly what’s up with that hat and socks+shorts combo?

    • He’s making a “Fashion” statement! They told him he was going to be on an “Opra” re-run show tomorrow. Hey Dean! Don’t forget the double rifle!

  25. No disagreement Jus Bill. But LBJ had more persuasive power than Bobby Kennedy ever did. And I’m sure blackmail had something to do with it…

  26. I open carry from time to time, more often in the summer than in the winter, since winters in Utah generally require a coat (or at least a thick hoody) whenever you go outdoors. But in the summer, if I don’t have the kids with me, I often carry openly. I’ve rarely see anyone else open carrying, but I have yet to have anyone look at me with any obvious fear or unease, or a single negative comment. The only time anyone has remarked on my carrying a weapon openly was to ask me what I was carrying and how I liked it.

    With that said, I understand why OCT is carrying rifles, and I don’t have a problem with it. However, I do think that before their outings, they should make sure that all group members are on the same page and know to keep their rifle slung over their back, and not walk around or even pose for pictures at the low ready position. It may look cool, but there’s no reason for it. Carry out your demonstration peacefully and respectfully, and don’t give the media or the Demanding Moms any more ammunition.

    • “don’t give the media or the Demanding Moms any more ammunition.”

      Our side could do everything “right” and the media and Moms would still find their ammunition because they lie.

      If it’s not a month+ old picture from Chipotle where the manager and other customers were ok with what was going on, it will be something else.

      We need to stop letting them set the tone of the discussion.

        • It helps not to have a circular firing squad. Unless the OCT are breaking the law or being unethical, I lay the blame squarely on MAIDS (Mothers Against Individual Defense Sense).

  27. There’s a McDonald’s on African safari…?

    Man, that things are everywhere.

  28. It was particularly surprising how much of the heat was coming from within the gun culture . . .

    Cough cough Paul McCain.

  29. Some POTG display a remarkably high level of reading comprehension and lack of basic common sense.

    If I could use crayons and put in some pictures it might be better, but this will have to do:

    OC is good and should be legal everywhere.
    People doing stupid stunts to make people believe the above are chucklheaded morons.

    It’s about tactics people.

  30. Is that Higgins from Magnum P.I. ? Who else would go to lunch in a pith helmet?

    What was it I said in comment on the OCT article… that a lot of these activists are “eccentric” to put it politely? Here in Delaware those who open carry handguns are discrete about it because we live with the reality of actually having to defend ourselves from rampant crime.

    Maybe that’s why I can’t help but see this carry activism as a bad joke, because people who dress like that when they go out or tote a long gun to the strip mall are not really concerned about having to defend themselves. They are inviting as much attention as possible, I have to assume it feeds their egos because there is no other reason for carrying provocatively.

  31. Anyone who wears those socks and shorts must be mentally questionable….
    I am all for open carry, but this guy is just as offensive as the slobs in the Texas Qdoba a couple of months ago.

  32. Dressed nicely, if a bit eccentrically (I really need to get a pith helmet), you do not look threatening. I’m thinking that someone more slobbishly dressed, carrying a rifle like he is in Afghanistan, may turn some people away.

    • That style of dress was used on African safaris for a reason. It is HOT in Arizona in mid summer. I have received numerous compliments on the hat. Going out in the Arizona sun without a hat that shades you is asking for heat stroke, especially if you do not have hair on your head.

  33. The problem with the open carry crowd is that many of them are befuddled dipsh**s. Don’t they know it’s tres gauche to wear blue socks with a pith helmet? Geez, man, if you’re going to wear blue socks at least conceal them under some trousers. Oh yeah….while you’re at it, be a good neighbor and hide the gun there too.

  34. i live in Buckeye, Arizona. i open carry every time i go somewhere that i can legally carry a pistol. the other times its locked up safe some place safe. the only attention ive ever gotten for carrying my pistol openly was when someone asked what brand 1911 i was carrying. people out here in AZ seem more concerned about what brand/type youre carrying rather than if you carry or not.

  35. “I approve of open carry. Then we know who is carrying and who is not. ”

    No you don’t.

  36. the pith helmet and high socks, i’m not sure if i’m expecting him to take tea before hunting lions, or scold me for over watering my roses.

  37. As an Arizona resident, I also tend to open carry this time of year. My KingTuk still sees some use, but my SERPA OWB gets way more wear during the summer.

    As a California native, this is all still a bit of a culture shock to me and I’ve been here for over two years, but I absolutely love the freedoms afforded to me by Arizona law. Almost makes up for the brutal heat 😉

  38. I live in Az and just about everybody here owns guns and most carry on a daily basis. We have our usual gang banger shootings put for the most part we feel safe here.

    The criminals here KNOW if they pull out a gun that more than likely they’ll have 2 or more pointed at them instantly.

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