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Open carry advocate Bill Pollster before the Walk with Walker event in Sheboygan, WI (courtesy sheboyganpress,com)

“What was supposed to be a gentle promotional stroll along the Sheboygan lakefront Friday morning by the state’s first lady, became a bit more concerning to those attending when a local gun-rights advocate showed up with a semi-automatic rifle strapped to his back and a holstered pistol hanging from his waist,” reports. Reading that lead, clocking the pic above, you’d be forgiven for thinking that this is another story about an open carry advocate carrying a firearm in a place at a time calculated to cause concern amongst the gun muggles. The following sentences by reporter Jane Roberts do nothing to dispel that impression . . .

Bill Polster, of Sheboygan Falls, said his intention in bringing the AK-47, a Glock and a Ruger LCP pistol to Wisconsin First Lady Tonette Walker’s visit to Sheboygan onFriday was not to scare anyone, but rather to exercise his Second Amendment rights.

“People have the right to self defense and there are so many people that don’t realize that carrying a weapon is legal in Wisconsin,” Polster said.

Polster has become a recognizable fixture in the region, often showing up at farmers markets, parades and even movie theaters and other public events to make the point that it is legal in Wisconsin to openly carry a properly licensed firearm.

Huh. So Pollster hasn’t done anything dangerous or threatening (other than carrying a gun, per se) with his legally carried firearms. A fact that writer Roberts reluctantly recalls.

While some people find it troubling, it’s not illegal and police are not concerned.

“I’ve had 10 encounters with the police in the last year. The more I do it the less I get stopped, at least locally,” Polster said.

One media report said that Walker’s visit was delayed about 15 minutes by Polster’s presence, but Sgt. David Anderson with the Sheboygan Police Department said one officer was on hand for the first lady’s visit and that no extra security measures were taken.

Huh. So open carry around Wisconsin’s First Lady is A-Ok with everyone, right? ‘Cause nothing about this story would indicate otherwise. Except this . . .

Polster joined in the walk after stashing his weapons in the trunk of his car.

That factoid emerges in paragraph ten of Gun rights advocate joins state’s first lady on Sheboygan stroll and, if I’m not mistaken, removes any reason to run the story in the first place. Unless The Sheboygan Press views open carry as so profoundly dangerous that they consider the possibility of an open carry advocate openly carrying a firearm near the Eat Cheese or Die State’s first lady merits journalistic attention. That couldn’t be it, could it? ‘Cause that makes no sense.

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      • Looks like a Draco M92 pistol. The sling is attached to the rear of the receiver. If it has a stock (I don’t see one, personally)… Well, I’d be impressed if someone was open carrying an SBR’d Krinkov.

        At least the news story identifies it as a ‘modified civilian…semi-automatic weapon’. So he was open carrying three pistols. Seems like a retention nightmare, but at least none are at the low ready.

        From the article and responses, it seems he’s doing OC right.

        • My bad, should have been a / in between the two pistol types. I have an M92.

          So, that’s their new ‘all-American’ Kalash clone?

        • Yep, though still some reports come in of some stamped parts (dust cover, safety) having Romanian pattern serials on them.

  1. Looks like he’s wearing a skirt! That would probably draw the attention away from his armament.

        • No, but if you are Scottish you are exempt from the undergarment requirements… and yes, my ancestors are Scottish

        • Half Scottish blood, myself.

          Just watch “Braveheart”, you’ll consider yourself an honorary Scot.

          Those kilts provide outstanding “ventilation”… 😉

        • Well, I’m an actual Wallace and I feel no need to have my brass flying in the wind.

        • Well a Scotsman clad in kilt left a bar one evening fair
          And one could tell by how he walked that he’d drunk more than his share
          He fumbled round until he could no longer keep his feet
          Then he stumbled off into the grass to sleep beside the street …

    • It’s called a kilt…. because a lot of people got kilt when they tried to call it a skirt….

      • Clearly a Wisconsin thing. Although if the Texas open carry loons REALLY wanted to make a point they could all wear kilts up there around Dallas.

  2. I am not getting why he disarmed. Otherwise, he was doing good!

    Looks like nobody, including the Gov and the police, is the least bit worried.

    • Correction:

      Nobody with working neurons was worried.

      That leaves, for example, the press and those they can manipulate and influence with their histrionics.

    • He did not disarm. The reporter got it wrong. He only stashed the rifle in the trunk. He carried two pistols on the walk. The reporter states that he charmed the people there, and everyone was cool with it.

      He did a good job. From the

      “At first people were a little concerned and then very quickly found out that he was very gentlemanly and civil,’ she said. “Some of the walkers started to ask him questions, and he answered very kindly. I don’t think people were concerned after that. I think it posed a dilemma at first, but everything worked out fine.”

    • Insensitive comments like that are insulting to all men. I think you’re a man-hater.

    • Plane lands safely! Family of 4 drives safely to grandmothers house! Concealed carriers deter crime without firing a shot!

  3. Well; from the picture; there is look of shear terror on the Gov’s face as she dives for cover under the car; the cop is drawing his weapon before he pumps the one bullet into Polster as he misses the other 15 shots and sprays the surrounding area as Polster, (the unstoppable killing machine) is blazing away at all the other defenseless people on their knees begging for their lives.

    At least in the fevered imaginings of the Anti-gunners.

  4. “At first people were a little concerned and then very quickly found out that he was very gentlemanly and civil,” local County Chamber Executive Director Betsy Alles told the Sheboygan Press of Polster. “Some of the walkers started to ask him questions, and he answered very kindly. I don’t think people were concerned after that. I think it posed a dilemma at first, but everything worked out fine.”

    Well I’ll be damned. It seems like this OC guy made more friends in a few minutes than most anti-OC clowns make in a lifetime.

    And BTW, until a few years ago when Wisc’s CC law was passed, OC was the only type of carry permitted in cheeseville.

  5. Of course that idiot is wearing a kilt. Every bitchfit that an OC’er is involved in just damages the rest of us.

    • Comprehension of the big picture fail.

      See Ralph’s post right above yours for details.

    • PNW,
      Not to worry, everybody is trying to figure out what he’s wearing under his skirt, opps, I mean kilt. No time to think about the guns.

    • The kilt was a GREAT idea! Who’s going to be intimidated by a guy in a pleated skirt? Now, bagpipes — those are scary.

    • Its really a non issue. Open carry has been legal in WI since… forever. It was never banned. Conceal carry was illegal until 2011.

  6. How many people saw him put his weapons in the trunk of his car? That’s a good way to have them stolen.

    • This is totally just me guessing, but I suspect the only think he put away was the Draco and maybe the Glock, and kept the LCP on his person, concealed.

    • Lead,
      I was thinking the same thing. If I did that, I would not let my car get out of sight.

  7. I lived there for a couple of years. It’s basically a conservative community with a thin veneer of lefties around and a significant number of people who want to mind your business. For example, if the county assessor wanted to update your assessment, you were required to let someone from their office into your home so they could measure the rooms and look around to make sure you didn’t do remodeling without a permit. If you refused you lost the right to appeal your assessment.
    The trash guys would
    go through your trash to make sure you weren’t tossing stuff that you were supposed to recycle. First time they’d leave a warning note. After that, they would refuse to pick up your trash.

  8. Can we please give the “OMG!!” headlines a rest for a while? Surely, you guys are more creative than that, aren’t you?

    • Personally, I prefer, “EVERYBODY PANIC !!!!!1!!!!!11!!!!1!1!1!!!!!ONE!!!!1!!!”

    • It’s a title for a repeating segment on a news blog. Changing it would be anything but clever. It would be like changing the title of the obituary section of your news paper to “cheese and biscuit review” People are going to wonder where the obits went.

      • I don’t think it’s a regular feature like IGOTD or “Defensive Gun Use of the Day”, I think it’s just a (in my opinion overused) headline convention the guys like to use. At least, it doesn’t show up in the “Categories” menu like all the other features do.

  9. With that skirt/ kilt I’m a little afraid to know how he was concealing that LCP. (assuming it was concealed.)

  10. Is it just me, or did anyone else read the headline of this story an keep looking all the way down the page for mention of this open carrier’s walker?

    • No, it was just you. I kept looking for the walker, and thinking somehow I missed something because there is no walker, because ambulation wasn’t what I was thinking.

      • I was thoroughly dissapointed. I thought the title indicated a frail senior citizen with a walking frame and a huge rifle, with the media having a fit.

  11. The story says “it is legal in Wisconsin to openly carry a properly licensed firearm” but that’s a bit misleading.

    Here in the land of beer and cheese, you don’t need a license to purchase or own a firearm. You can get a CCL, but that’s obviously not what this story is about.

    • Yeah, and there was never any requirement needed to open carry. Anyone can open carry all they want without any kind of paper work. Just as you state, only conceal carry requires a permit. News agencies never, ever, ever get it right.

  12. I’ve never in all these stories about OC, seen any mention about the guns being loaded or magazines loaded. I suppose every state has it’s own laws on that??

    • Until November 1, 2011, when Wisc’s concealed carry law became effective, OC was the only way for cheeseheads to carry a loaded gun. After passage, CC was permitted and fully-loaded OC continued to be legal.

      30 states now allow loaded OC with no permit, and six (incongruously, TX and FL are among them) prohibit OC even with a permit. The balance permit loaded OC with a permit. Some of those “OC OK with permit” states are sneaky and OCers will get a ticket for something else.

    • Here in Florida, from

      Florida is not a traditional open carry state.
      Open Carry is lawful while engaged in, or going directly to and from, lawful Target Shooting, Hunting, Fishing, and Camping expeditions. FL Statutes 790.25(3)(h), (j), and (k)

  13. If Open Carry Texas behaved this way MDA would have had propaganda images to trade on. He did good.

    • The vast majority of the time they do. While Bill Polster does this a fair amount, the open carriers in Texas have been doing it for hundreds of open carry walks, maybe over a thousand.

      • Except they give MDA photo opportunities by going to private businesses in tacticool gear. I don’t know how many ways and times it has to be said having approval in an of itself for such actions matters less than what your opponents do with the photographs. Pollster was merely exercising both his First and Second Amendment rights in public space and apparently Mrs. Walker was cool with it. I also think going in a kilt made all look less threatening. I don’t have any problem with OCT when they demonstrate in public space.

  14. I sent an email to the reporter and her managing editor, questioning the logic of running such a non-story (and frankly, nonsense) article. Hopefully one or both will respond.

    • Not pointless, the man open carried while walking with a notable public figure and politely answering the questions raised by his demonstration. If you are referring to him disarming he did not. He deposited one pistol in his car and retained the others for the duration.

  15. The headline of this story didn’t mean what I thought it would but oh well. I was expecting a person walking with a WALKER carrying a gun strapped to his/her leg or something. LOL
    I am wheelchair bound and I carry where I can.
    Oh well, back to what I was doing.

  16. If there is one takeaway from the author of this post it is the term, “Gun Muggle” which I this is awesome and plan on using it as often as possible!

  17. I don’t see this as any kind of hyperventilating hit piece on the Sheboygan Press’ part. If anything, it’s exactly the kind of routine, yawn-inducing coverage of open carrying that many of us would like to see.

  18. Maybe I need some educating. I agree that in theory, we should be allowed to carry whatever we want wherever we want, but I feel that advocates like this guy that open carry long arms while shopping etc are taking things a bit too far personally. Ordinary citizens who are concealed carrying might think the person carrying long arms into a restaurant etc is preparing to commit mass murder. Most people would think that to be honest. While it does draw attention to 2nd amendment rights, it doesn’t draw the right kind of attention and likely creates more enemies than anything really. I’m not a fan of these kinds of tactics at all. It’s ‘soft terrorism’ IMHO. He could have made his point with a normal pistol strapped in it’s holster on his side and not with a long arm (regardless of the technicality regarding the configuration of the buttstock) strapped to his back. I love AK’s and I think they are fantastic guns for ordinary folks to own, but I will never consider the AK ‘pistol’ to be a real pistol. Mr Kalashnikov did not design the AK to be a pistol and I sincerely doubt he ever referred to it as a pistol in his all too brief lifetime. Removing the buttstock from such a weapon and calling it a pistol is about the same as removing the trunk from an elephant and calling it a mouse.

    This sort of activism with long guns is basically the equivalent of gay rights activists having public sex at a daycare facility just to draw attention to their cause. It’s over the top and counter-productive.

  19. It is not wise to do what this guy did. For all anyone knew, he might have been going to try and murder the woman.

    • If that was “the case”, he would be more successful if he carried concealed. Don’t confuse intention with results.

      • I think what Kyle was saying is when you see someone walking around with an AK hanging off their backs, it’s hard to know what their motives or plans are, and that tends to make people uncomfortable. Making people uncomfortable around guns and gun people isn’t a winning strategy for us. Open carry of sidearms is perfectly normal for most people, and a great entry point if that’s your strategy for gun normalization. Open carry of long guns (we’ll call this one a LG because AK pistols are indistinguishable from AK carbines for most people) even by cops is unnerving to most people.

  20. I think in this case the skirt is more dangerous than the guns. Though it does give a whole new perspective on the concept of “open carry…”

  21. Maybe we could get several of Polsters soul mates to go to DC and take a walk with the POTUS. Just a friendly little get together, maybe a beer, and some target practice on the Mall-Hey Barry, let me show you this neat Apple on the Head trick I saw on the internet. Hold this up to your mouth.

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