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Texas Jack-in-the-Box open carry demo (courtesy dailykos.com)

The NRA-ILA issued the following statement re: “smart guns” and the open carry of long guns.

“Here at NRA, we are big fans of responsible behavior … legal mandates, not so much. We think the Founders of this country were right to trust its people with the freedom to make their own choices. We also think they were wise to build checks into our constitutional system so that one view could not easily dominate the others and so that officials could be held accountable for their decisions . . .

“As gun owners, whether or not our decisions are dictated by the law, we are still accountable for them. And we owe it to each other to act as checks on bad behavior before the legal system steps in and does it for us. If we exercise poor judgment, our decisions will have consequences. These consequences could be simple and transitory, such as watching a trophy buck bound away into the woods after a missed shot from an improperly sighted rifle. They could also be lasting and consequential, such as turning an undecided voter into an antigun voter because of causing that person fear or offense. In ways small and large, we are all in this together, and we all have a role to play in preserving our cherished freedoms for ourselves and future generations.

“Let’s take just a couple of examples. In each case, just because something can be done doesn’t mean it should be done. In each case, gun owners would do well to consider the effect their behavior has on others, whether fellow gun owners or not.

“One issue that has been in the news recently is so-called “smart” guns. The theory here is to create a gun that can only be fired by an authorized user, typically through the use of a transmitter/receiver system or through a biometric interface. In principle, the idea would seem to have merit, at least in some circumstances. Certainly, the NRA doesn’t oppose anything that would make firearms more appealing or accessible to a larger segment of the American public. Not everybody has guns for the same reason, and we believe people are perfectly capable of determining for themselves what best suits their needs.

“In doing so, however, they should first arm themselves with the facts. As we and others have reported previously (here, here, and here, for example) “smart” gun technology has darker implications as well.

“Moreover, the issue of “smart” guns is clouded by an ill-conceived New Jersey law passed in 2002. As stated in its legislative declaration, this law requires “that, within a specified period of time after the date on which … personalized handguns are deemed to be available for retail sales purposes, no other type of handgun shall be sold or offered for sale by any registered or licensed firearms dealer in this State.”

“The New Jersey law further directs the state attorney general to file reports with the governor and the legislature on the availability of personalized handguns for retail sales purposes and to update such reports every six months “until such time as the Attorney General shall deem that personalized handguns are available for retail sales purposes and so report to the Governor and the Legislature.” Worse, the triggering finding must be deemed to have been reached, “if at least one manufacturer has delivered at least one production model of a personalized handgun to a registered or licensed wholesale or retail dealer in New Jersey or any other state.”

“In other words, once such a handgun is being produced in multiple copies for retail sale, and once even a single such unit is delivered to a licensed distributor or retailer anywhere in the country, the clock starts ticking. Eventually, New Jersey gun dealers would be forbidden from selling any handgun (apart from a narrowly-defined class of “antiques”) that is not also a “personalized handgun.” Needless to say, this would vastly reduce the stock of handguns available to New Jersey residents. One manufacturer, in fact, could completely corner the retail market for handguns in New Jersey merely by producing one “personalized” model for sale. New Jersey residents could conceivably be limited to one model of new handgun and one model alone.

“In fact, the Brady Campaign for Gun Violence, among other plaintiffs, filed a lawsuit recently seeking to force the state attorney general to find the law has already been triggered. According to the plaintiffs, only one report (in 2003) has been filed under the law in the nearly 12 years since it passed, and they are now seeking to force the attorney general to comply with his reporting duties.

“The timing of the suit, however, is far from coincidental. An article announcing the lawsuit also notes that a German company, Armatix, is manufacturing its version of a personalized firearm and has shipped that gun to at least two dealers in the United States, one in California and one in Maryland. Both dealers, however, later decided not to sell the gun, citing pressure from persons who were angry over the ramifications such sales might have under the New Jersey law.

“The lesson with “smart” guns is that you can’t always evaluate the long-term consequences of a new “innovation” in firearm technology or regulation at a glance. Often, the issues are more complex than they first appear. That is why NRA is committed to providing timely, comprehensive, and authoritative analysis on the issues that affect your rights and your enjoyment of firearms, now and in the future. Before you embrace whatever schemes are being pushed by the self-described “gun safety advocates” who’ve never met a ban or restriction on guns or ammunition they didn’t like, acquaint yourself with the facts. Two excellent ways to do so are through the pages of our magazines and via our free, online Grassroots Alerts.

“The second example comes to us from the Lone Star State, which is second to none for its robust gun culture. We applaud Texans for that, but a small number have recently crossed the line from enthusiasm to downright foolishness.

“Now we love AR-15s and AKs as much as anybody, and we know that these sorts of semiautomatic carbines are among the most popular, fastest selling firearms in America today. Texas, independent-minded and liberty-loving place that it is, doesn’t ban the carrying of loaded long guns in public, nor does it require a permit for this activity. Yet some so-called firearm advocates seem determined to change this.

“Recently, demonstrators have been showing up in various public places, including coffee shops and fast food restaurants, openly toting a variety of tactical long guns. Unlicensed open carry of handguns is legal in about half the U.S. states, and it is relatively common and uncontroversial in some places.

“Yet while unlicensed open carry of long guns is also typically legal in most places, it is a rare sight to see someone sidle up next to you in line for lunch with a 7.62 rifle slung across his chest, much less a whole gaggle of folks descending on the same public venue with similar arms.

“Let’s not mince words, not only is it rare, it’s downright weird and certainly not a practical way to go normally about your business while being prepared to defend yourself. To those who are not acquainted with the dubious practice of using public displays of firearms as a means to draw attention to oneself or one’s cause, it can be downright scary. It makes folks who might normally be perfectly open-minded about firearms feel uncomfortable and question the motives of pro-gun advocates.

“As a result of these hijinx, two popular fast food outlets have recently requested patrons to keep guns off the premises (more information can be found here and here). In other words, the freedom and goodwill these businesses had previously extended to gun owners has been curtailed because of the actions of an attention-hungry few who thought only of themselves and not of those who might be affected by their behavior. To state the obvious, that’s counterproductive for the gun owning community.

“More to the point, it’s just not neighborly, which is out of character for the big-hearted residents of Texas. Using guns merely to draw attention to yourself in public not only defies common sense, it shows a lack of consideration and manners. That’s not the Texas way. And that’s certainly not the NRA way.

“In summary, NRA certainly does not support bans on personalized guns or on carrying firearms in public, including in restaurants. We think people are intelligent enough to resolve these issues in a reasonable way for themselves. But when people act without thinking, or without consideration for others – especially when it comes to firearms – they set the stage for further restrictions on our rights. Firearm owners face enough challenges these days; we don’t need to be victims of friendly fire.

[h/t KM]

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299 COMMENTS

    • Shame on you and everyone with this attitude. You either support gun rights or you don’t, I see most here have chosen the latter which is both surprising and sad.

      • The NRA says:
        “Yet while unlicensed open carry of long guns is also typically legal in most places, it is a rare sight to see someone sidle up next to you in line for lunch with a 7.62 rifle slung across his chest, much less a whole gaggle of folks descending on the same public venue with similar arms.”

        So if it was not a rare sight, they would have no problem with it? How does an act become less rare by not displaying it?

        Also, I would be more concerned if there was a lone gunman rather than a large group. A large group is obviously a group of demonstrators. And if the lone gunman is simply carriyng a rifle on his back and enjoying a burrito, what in the world is threatening about that?

        More than OCT need to use common sense.

        • I’m sorry, you know damn well what is being said. If you don’t, then perhaps you aren’t smart enough to own or carry a firearm responsibly. I’m not willing for many years of patient nudging of those that may or may not like the idea of public firearms to be destroyed by some total assheads. Yeah, yeah, I know, ‘shall not be infringed’ and all that. Use some fricking common sense with it also.

        • Yes I do know what is being said. “You have the right to bear arms but stop doing it because you are scaring the moderates”.

          “I’m not willing for many years of patient nudging of those that may or may not like the idea of public firearms to be destroyed by some total assheads.”

          How many years has your plan failed again?

          And this one is the real zinger:

          “perhaps you aren’t smart enough to own or carry a firearm responsibly”

          Fascist much?

        • It really is amazing how many closet fascists are here on TTAG. Just goes to show that you can like guns and not like freedom. I’m sure plenty of Soviets loves guns almost as much as they loves using them against their neighbors.

      • I find your comment ludicrous. That’s like saying, “either you support common sense or you don’t”. It’s not that black and white and only applies when a unique individual applies their interpretation of what they are doing as “supporting gun rights”. As an avid supporter of second amendment rights, who carries and also owns several long guns, I completely agree with the post about it from the NRA.

        • Hannibal,
          Burning a flag may have been protected under A1 (I dissagree) but you have played a switcharoo there. See, OCT is not telling you to march with them. You are saying they should not. The black and white wording says you can not legaly prevent them from open carry. It does not say that you must. So to answer your irrelevent question, no…no we should not all go out and burn flags.

      • “You either support gun rights or you don’t”

        Based on your hard line, exclusionary and poorly thought out definition then, I think you’ll find yourself on the far emptier side of this debate, and that means you’ll lose. I guess to you supporting gun rights means making demands until someone takes them away.

        Forgive me if I stick to the side that’s actually fighting for gun rights.

      • Well, I know that because of these asshats it is a felony to carry a concealed weapon in Chipoltes in Illinois now.

        At what point is it right for them to defend their 2A rights at the expense of mine?

        Thanks for nothing TX OC

        • Is Chipotle posting it in Illinois? Or are they just using the same “we’d prefer you left them at home” language that they’re using elsewhere?

        • So you’re not blaming Chipotles, but rather the people who did nothing illegal.

          Back in 1776, you would’ve said, “Because of those stupid revolutionaries, the British are killing people,” right?

        • Look exercising common sense would be asking a PRIVATE business for permisson to do a demostration on their property beforehand that demostrates responiblity and consideration for the money making business that doesnt wish to get into a political debate just because you have the right to do something doesnt mean you should do it thats why it is a right because you can choose how you exercise it and respecting the business by requesting permission to hold a demonstration on their property which is private property is a step in the right direction. Im far from moderate by the way.

      • There’s a difference between supporting 2A rights & going full retard. You never go full retard.

      • Thank, Lars. They are truly enemies of the Second Amendment. Either is means “shall not be infringed”, or it doesn’t.

        The name of this blog should be changed to “The Truth About Our Guns, Not Yours” (TTAGNY).

        • There’s no amendment in the Constitution that gives people the right to act irresponsibly. One can absolutely and totally support the Second Amendment, be against all of the current and pending regulations yet still act with respect and care for other people’s opinions, even when those opinions are ignorant. Some of these people in Texas are acting like morons, and that is only going to make people ignore their message.

          • Who died and made you the arbiter of “responsibility”? You don’t like what they did. I get that you’re skittish around Americans with guns. They’re skittish around cowards.

            Nowhere does the Second Amendment say, “… but don’t carry your long guns around folks with tender sensibilities ; they’ll rat you out to the constabulary!”

        • Respect for ignorant opinions is what messed this country up so badly to begin with. An ignorant opinion turns into an ignorant vote turns into ignorant legislation turns into fascism.

        • @ Dev
          The Constitution doesn’t give anybody any rights. Those rights are inalienable. The Constitution restricts the power of the government to infringe on our rights.

          “Some of these people in Texas are acting like morons, and that is only going to make people ignore their message.”
          Seems like it has brought more attention to the issue that has been ignored for too long.

  1. Publicity is not always good publicity. Some of these incidents are cases in point. You have open carry ni your state, big T. We have open carry in our state where we have the best food in the world, and you guys know it, but we don’t make a big deal of it. Rifle and shotguns on racks in our trucks for all to see, a few with handguns on their waists in a holster. Not much more than that, except the occasional frantic request to handle a rouge alligator in a backyard pool or nearby ditch. Let’s all be civil, since we have the right, let’s not act as if we aren’t responsible.

    • It’s totally amazing how so many in the 2nd Amendment movement don’t or won’t understand and come to grips with your first sentence.

      • This is a civil rights demonstration. If the laws of every State, city and Federal Government followed the Constitution, none of this nonsense would be happening.

        • Yep! Someone needs to teach them to sing “We Shall Overcome”. I remember many segregationists saying the races weren’t meant to mix, or else God would have made us all the same color. I remember BLACK people who said that.

          Constitution be damned! The durned n*ggers are going to ruin our rights for all of us, if they don’t shut the hell up about “rights”. They’ve gone “full retard” with all their civil rights marches! The Union will be destroyed, and with it, all our precious rights!

          How ODD that so many people here cannot see these same attitudes with respect to the Right to Keep and BEAR Arms!

          You should be hanging your heads in shame. Those of your who aren’t straight-up “Midnight Riders” or plants, that is….

        • Yea because a gaggle of fat white dudes armed with rifles to go out to eat is exactly the same thing as blacks demanding the right to use the same restroom as white people.

          For Pete’s sake, people like you are why we will lose.

  2. Based on the NRA membership rate, there is only about a 5% chance these guys will even see that message.

        • Open CARRY demonstration. Not “Let’s pose with our cool new toys next to the ketchup packets!” That rifle should have never left his shoulder & it stops being an open carry demonstration the minute it does. I take my handgun out of the holster in a restaurant & it doesn’t matter if the direction I’m holding it is safe or not, I’m getting the cops called on me. Or if there’s another OCer there, a gun pointed at me. These dumbass Chipotle Ninjas (I love that term!) need to cool it with their antics before things go south fast.

        • Brandishing a concealed carry pistol is considered brandishing when your shirt is lifted. Its pointed in a safe direction. Its still brandishing by law.

    • And that thar desegregation, it went too dadburned fast, right? Damned pushy Negroes!

  3. Amen! I can’t wait to be able to choose either Open or Conceal carry some day in Texas, but this display of long guns in stores is doing more harm than good. Growing up in Texas we shot all the time, but coming home, we unloaded our rifles before we came in the house. Just good manners. All we need is one ND and it will be all over for the Lone Star State. Just get out and vote this Nov for Greg and we will slide into victory without having to make a scene.

  4. Geez, I’m getting tired of stating this over and over, but here goes yet again.
    NRA: The whole reason for the open carry of rifles in Texas is because the open carry of handguns is illegal! And yes, the stupidity of that boggles the mind, but there it is.
    That is the whole reason for all the rifle carry in the first place, to protest the fact that they would rather carry handguns, but if only rifles are allowed, then that is what they will do.
    Being the NRA, one would think that you should make a point to be aware of that…
    “Texas, independent-minded and liberty-loving place that it is, doesn’t ban the carrying of loaded long guns in public, nor does it require a permit for this activity. Yet some so-called firearm advocates seem determined to change this.”
    But they DO ban the carrying of handguns! And the NRA write this totally unaware of that. Just how unbelievably ignorant can the NRA be?

    • Both candidates for governor are already on board with open carry… Taking your AR-15 to Chipotle only energizes people, who ordinarily do not have an opinion, to come out against OC. The pen and the phone is mightier than the carbine.. It’ll pass as long as people aren’t scared. OC’ing an “assault weapon” scares people…

      • Then let the State ban the practice. That way the right will have been officially infringed, rather than just socially infringed. This will put us all on the same page – we will all know for certain that the right actually does not exist.

        • Allowing open carry of long guns is granted by our state’s constitution and being the “red” state we are, I’m sure any legislation to restrict that right would fall on deaf ears.

        • “Then let the State ban the practice. That way the right will have been officially infringed, rather than just socially infringed.”

          And this, to you, is a ‘win’ for gun rights?

        • You do realize that the Bill of Rights to the federal Constitution has no bearing on what the States can or can’t do? There is no infringement of the 2nd Amendment by Texas banning open carry of firearms. How about instead of being a petulant child and demanding people listen to your cries for attention because “it’s my right!”, you actually make a valid argument based on practicality, self defense, or just plain old not being slovenly dressed, unshaven, irresponsible, confrontational assholes!

        • @ Semper – Not at all. I was making the point that for all intents and purposes the right doesn’t exist if it can’t be practiced – in groups or otherwise. As it is, its just lip service to a right.

          Long guns may be over the top for some, but in Texas that is the only unpermitted exercise of RKBA that exists. So it is not just the most visible and controversial way to exercise RKBA, it is the only way to.

          Here is the kicker -I don’t think its that productive either, but I certainly will not admonish or try to discourage the exercise of the right. I will never be in that camp. Doing so treads too closely against what the Constitution is there to do – to protect an individual’s practice of liberty against a prevailing consensus to the contrary.

          That being said, I would love to see an organization separate from Open-Carry Texas whose stated goal is demonstrating for open-carry of pistols in Texas. And since I think empty holster marches are a bit lacking, I think a blue-gun carry would be more visible and perhaps less controversial for people. Its like sticking a yellow ribbon on your car except people will see it everywhere and may even approach you to ask, with the ick-factor being removed from the equation.

        • @ Duece – THE TEXAS CONSTITUTION

          ARTICLE 1. Sec. 1. FREEDOM AND SOVEREIGNTY OF STATE. Texas is a free and independent State, subject only to the Constitution of the United States, and the maintenance of our free institutions and the perpetuity of the Union depend upon the preservation of the right of local self-government, unimpaired to all the States.

      • If they keep this stuff up, it’s likely the new governor will get a bill outlawing long gun OC before he/she gets one legalizing pistol OC.

        These idiots keep creating new gun free zones, all the while trying to say that they’re helping gun rights.

      • This. Anyone remember the gay kiss-ins at Chick Fil-A? Who came out ahead there? When you shove your rights down other people’s throats, expect them to be swallowed.

        Um, so to speak.

        • Gosharoonies! Civil rights are so ICKY, aren’t they? They don’t take your tender, liberal sensibilities into account!

    • Don’t worry Ken, I’m sure the NRA is well aware of our state laws in addition to the rest being they’re the biggest gun lobby in the US.

      • Funny… the NRA is not aware, or more than likely they are complicit.
        They give A ratings to the people that have prevented the OC of hand guns in this state for years.
        multiple times has OC been brought to committee and 1-2 people can stop it right there and they do on purpose. these people are given A ratings by your beloved NRA. I ma an NRA lifetime member and i have written to them explain this and to remove those rankings, they have done nothing … not even replied.

        I am not saying I agree with the OCT tactics… but in this country sadly the squeaky wheel gets greased.
        some person above made a comment that the kiss-ins at chicfila backfired … no they didnt… the purpose was not to put chicfila out of business the purpose is to raise awareness of gays and push their agenda of gay marriage/equal rights… and guess what many states are legalizing gay marriage.

        I do think that gun lovers ought to take the time to go to their liberal gun hating friends and invite them to a gun range or hunting and be a positive example of what guns are and can be, these are people that are afraid of the unknown and their liberal leaders are telling them it is one way when it is not… but because they trust those leaders and have nothing else to base their POV on that is what they go with, they trust their lib leaders would not steer them wrong.

    • I’m afraid you’re trying to teach Quantum Mechanics to ducklings, but thanks for tryin’.

    • I suggested this yesterday and got some dense responses. Because a loaded rifle openly carried > an empty holster for protesting to gain the right to openly carry a handgun… people, come on!

    • Actually, what would be way more effective is if the people in Texas carried “blue guns” (plastic training handguns with no moving parts) visibly in holsters on their hips. Are “blue guns” available in a bright color like orange?

      • Actually that is a bad idea. A cop wouldn’t know whether it’s a “blue gun” or a real gun painted blue. They would have to treat it as real when called for a “man with a gun”. Leave the holster empty and you still may deal with hassle, but hassle that probably doesn’t include you staring down a LEO gun barrel.

  5. I’ve seen enough. If Open Carry Texas isn’t a false-flag operation being funded and controlled by Bloomberg, it might as well be. Are all of the OCTers such bottom-feeders? Those guys look like they eat their young.

    • MODERATOR!!!:
      Just what is in this post that DOESN’T violate your no flames rule? Is there anything that is not insulting? ANY valid content whatever?

      • I’ve got no problem with it, and here’s why:

        I understand the feeling behind his “false flag” comment. After someone purposely shoots themselves in the foot this many times, you begin to wonder what their motivation is.

        The question is “are all OCT members bottom feeders?” implies the clause “or just the ones we’ve seen pictures of?” It’s a valid question. Is this a solid organization hijacked by a few idiots acting in its name, or is the whole organization a waste of time?

        Finally, the last statement, while a little crass, is unclear in its direction. Who is the author talking about? The guys in the photo above? In the other photos we’ve seen? The whole organization? Without a clear sense of intent, I’m not going to edit it.

        • He is referring to the guys in the photo or else he would not have said “or are all OCTers”. So does that help you in your decision to moderate the trash talk? Or would you have said the same thing so it is ok?

          • Nah, I wouldn’t have said the same thing, but I’m still kinda indifferent. This whole post is full of moderate-able stuff, and I just don’t have the patience to get all of it unless it’s blatant. So far, I’ve managed to keep my moderation to maybe one comment a week. It’s usually something that is unquestionably over the line the first time I read it. If I have to think about it to find something wrong with it, I let it slide. That’s my (admittedly very subjective) standard.

        • But you refuse to see that 911 was a false flag. Something disturbing is all over my keyboard.

      • Sorry, Ken, but Open Carry Texas has committed itself to creating public dramas as a way of communicating its political agenda. My comments referenced both the effectiveness of its avowed purpose and its choice of actors to represent its views. Shannon and the Mom’s understand this basic rule of dramaturgy quite well. OCT not so much.

      • Quit your whining Ken. Someone says something you don’t like and it’s ‘Moderator, moderator’…..

    • They are most certainly a false flag operation. Look at their record, look at how convenient they are for the national anti-gun media.

      -D

      • As much as I hate that term, I couldn’t agree more. I speculated on that in another post.

        • But 911 wasn’t a false flag. Right? Just some guys carrying ARs, demanding their rights, that curdled your blood. What a bunch of pantywaists.

  6. I don’t normally high five the NRA on anything.

    Sadly this time I must concede they have the point on this one.

  7. Quibble: “Let’s not mince words, not only is it rare, it’s downright weird and certainly not a practical way to go normally about your business while being prepared to defend yourself.”

    They needed to add “in this way” to the end of that sentence.

    • Grammatically, that would be redundant. The language you’re looking for is already there. If you remove “downright weird and certainly” from the sentence, you’re left with “it’s … not a practical way…” Furthermore, if you added “in this way” to the end, then the sentence would conclude with “…being prepared to defend yourself in this way,” modifying the wrong clause of the sentence.

      • Yelling racial epithets on the street corner is not the way to persuade people with respect to freedom of speech.

        LGOC generally puts people (even pro-gun people) at yellow alert even when they see cops doing it. It is associated with military drills or imminent threats. Businesses will behave in a way that maximizes revenue. When even the pro-gun people are saying don’t do it, time to change tactics.

        BP pistols and signs are the way to go here, not rifles.

  8. I think anyone silly-minded enough to carry an AR or AK into a restaurant just for the sake of doing so is not right-minded enough to be carrying a loaded firearm in public. In the pictures I’ve seen on TTAG, the carriers look like they’re doing it to amuse themselves, which to me means they’re using a firearm for a toy. I don’t want to be anywhere near that. Seeing such a display would make me nervous that the carrier posed a negligent discharge risk. Restaurants are not the place for using firearms for amusement.

    If you want to protest Texas’ ban on open-carry of handguns by carrying long guns, stage an organized carry rally with signs that explain what you’re doing. That will get the point across much better.

    • Seriously… Or point out that AZ and OK have open carry and the streets there are not running red with blood…

      These Oc’ers don’t realize that there is a difference between strategy and tactics… Oc’ing an AK to promote OC of handguns is like a man making out with his wife to protest a gay marriage ban…

    • I’m open carrying at work right now in AZ and everywhere I go. Sometimes I conceal carry. I don’t see the streets red with blood. Even more so I don’t have assholes call the cops on the sight of my gun either.

  9. I’d be a little more sympathetic to the NRA if the NRA was working for unlicensed open carry of handguns in Texas. Let’s not mince words, the NRA thinks carrying a gun is a privilege even as they call concealed carry permission slips ‘right to carry’ permits.

  10. Hmm, maybe I won’t cancel my NRA membership…they’re finally being practical.

  11. Regarding Open-Carry of longuns: If the practice is considered”…rare, it’s downright weird and certainly not a practical way to go normally about your business while being prepared to defend yourself.” Then how is abstaining from the practice ever going to change that? If the practice is socially unacceptable then that is a de facto ban on the practice.

    Large group open-carry demonstrations are the only SAFE way to go about normalizing, practicing, preserving, and informing about this right. That is to say, if you think a group of people with long-guns going to a Chipolte is a cause for alarm, then an single individual, doing the same for whatever reason, is that much more alarming, and EVEN MORE likely to draw negative dangerous attention.

    So then, if the attention from a large demonstration groups is discouraged and an individual demonstration is dangerous and ill-advised, then the RIGHT DOES NOT EXIST. It has been surrendered.

    • A bunch of whackjobs in Texas carrying ARs & AKs around is not going to normalize anything. Texas’s candidates for governor are on board with open carry of handguns. Atleast they are until some Mall Ninja Operator-wannabe in Open Carry Texas shoots himself in the foot… Figuratively & literaly. Whether they’re a legitimate organization or some anti-gunner shills, Open Carry Texas & groups like them are nothing but bad press & ammunition for Bloomberg & Watts. Were I a Texas resident, I would happily vote for a ban of the open carrying of long guns.

      • 1) Would it make any difference to you is a concealed carrier figuratively & literally shot themselves in the foot while at a demonstration advocating for open carry of handguns?

        2) I am certainly glad you are not a Texas resident, then. We don’t need any people who would vote away someone’s right because they don’t agree with its exercise

        • I’m glad I’m not a Texas resident either. Otherwise I’d have some high-drag, low-speed wannabe getting all operator as f*ck up in my lunch. And whether I’m carrying concealed or open, unlike OCT’s army of Chipotle Ninjas, I’m responsible enough to keep my damn hands off my weapon unless I’m either taking it off for the night or I have to actually use it. And therein lies the heart of it, not only does their dumbass bravado give all gun owners a bad name, they’re clearly not responsible enough to handle the weapons they love toting around.

        • @ Dave – Are we arguing the demonstration itself or the quality of the conduct of the demonstrators? I personally hate seeing people smiling in a self taken at Chipotle, with their hands on a tactified AR in low ready. Its cheesy and stupid, and it treads the gray area of the law regarding intent. Be that as it may, I still don’t see anything wrong with the practice of responsibly open-carrying a long gun itself.

          I think it would have been more constructive if the NRA had offered some guidelines for conduct during an open-carry demonstration, rather than outright dividing the constituency by choosing a side and admonishing the other.

        • BDub, I’d be all for the responsible open carrying of long guns, it can certainly have its purposes. Say I had been hunting on the edge of town & was walking back to my place, seems reasonable enough to be able to walk home with your rifle on your shoulder. Not necessarily the best example since we were always taught to unload our rifles after hunting, but best I could think of off the top of my head.

          Unfortunately, when it comes to the open carrying of long guns (Not something I believe we can do in my home state of PA), all we ever hear of is Open Carry Texas. OCT is, at their best, grossly irresponsible and at their worst, a bunch of dangerous thugs. Were some other well-instructed, responsible group of individuals to do their own rallies carrying long guns, I could support that. Open Carry Texas does immensely more harm than any small good they might ever try to do & they’re not going away any time soon. As it stands, I cannot support such irresponsible behavior, especially when their actions can negatively affect the 2nd Amendment rights of Americans everywhere.

          • They speak very kindly of you! What have they ever done to you? All they’ve done is speak up for their civil rights; and you denigrate them for it.

            If you’re good with the back of the bus, by all means sit back there. But don’t expect others to settle for second-class citizenship.

        • Way to contribute to the conversation Burke. Quiet now, the adults are having a discussion.
          By the way, the cool kids sit in the back of the bus.

          • I only sat there because the cute girl with the great personalities and a penchant for tight sweaters sat across from me, and it was a bumpy road. Ah, those were the days.

      • You are right. And if they continue muddying the water as they are, they’ll succeed in turning public opinion against open carry. When that happens open carry in Texas is dead.

    • We have stricter rules at my gun range than these nut-jobs exercise in Texas. Seriously, why do we teach hunters to carefully unload their weapons before getting into vehicles or going into houses, and why do we require firearms at ranges be kept cased until up on the firing line, if not for safety? A handgun in a holster is effectively “case” until drawn. A long gun in the open is not. And some people here are okay with such irresponsible and juvenile behavior?

    • You’re right, BDub. But this blog has been taken over by people who are uncomfortable with people exercising their civil rights. No sitting at the front of the bus for us. It’s uppity.

      Personally, I think TTAG is now a lost cause. It’s been overrun by those who think gun owners and open-carriers should relegate themselves to the back of the bus.

      Miserable collaborators!

  12. I have seen a couple of the protests and the majority of the public interaction was positive with lots of honking and thumbs up waves when they were walking the public sidewalks with banners and signs, but as soon as they were stepping into the stores and fast food places it went down hill from there. And for God’s sake dress nicer. The “Camo” Commander style is not helping the cause. Some of the ones I saw, I would do the Mark Cuban and cross the street even if they didn’t have a long gun shouldered.

    • Yep, I saw the same thing at SXSW this past year. Lot’s of people approached them and talked to them about what they were doing and took pictures with them. I didn’t see a single hater or hear not one murmur in the crowd about how scary they all looked and acted.

  13. This is why I quit the NRA and why I continue to refuse to associate with those quislings. If the NRA had its way, there would be no Heller decision.

    • Maybe you need to wake up and study legal history enough to know what went into giving us the Heller decisions. I’m a lawyer who’s followed gun rights since the days before “modern military rifles” even hit the radar. For most of the 1900s, but especially the 1950s onward, federal courts gradually dismantled what was left of the 2nd Amendment, claiming it was a “collective” right to be used on behalf of the people by the police and military. And most judges supported that unhistorical view. It took putting Reagan and Bush II in office, them appointing strict constructionists to the Supreme Court, legal scholars willing to put their careers on the line and agree with the NRA (I was nearly laughed out of law school when I wrote on 2nd Amendment history), and low court judges having the gonads to follow history and original meaning over “modern academic consensus”, for Heller ever to get to a court that would affirm the truth. Truth isn’t common in law. There’s a saying, “It’s not truth that wins cases, but perception.” And if people perceive that allowing gun rights means people will be wandering around with firearms in places where no one would expect to see a firearm, then perception is going in the wrong direction and the right will soon disappear. Most of us are taught gun responsibility — time for the rest of you to learn it and practice it too. Because if you show up at my mall toting an AR, you’re going to the police station under charges of brandishing and terroristic threats. Good luck getting your gun back.

      • The NRA is over a hundred years old. Never once did they bring the issue of the second amendment interpretation to court. And when Alan Gura did, they tried to derail it.

        The NRA lives for maintaining legislative lobbying pull, not for overturning the NFA and the GCA.

      • “And if people perceive that allowing gun rights means people will be wandering around with firearms in places where no one would expect to see a firearm, then perception is going in the wrong direction and the right will soon disappear.”

        That’s some circular logic right there.

        Imagine if you had said: And if people perceive that allowing free speech meant people will be wandering around saying things no one would expect to hear, then perception is going in the wrong direction and the right will soon disappear.