Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Open carry of hanguns: should it be licensed or unlicensed?

As noted below, it looks like open carry of handguns will be approved in Texas. Should a license of some type (e.g. usual concealed carry license) be required.  Most states allow some form of open carry of a handgun.  Some require a license. However, even where no license is required, some type of people are excluded (e.g. minors).  Oklahoma recently allowed licensed open carry. See this chart from Wikipedia.  Arguably criminals are more likely to carry concealed.  But once it becomes commonplace will criminals (who couldn't get a concealed permit or one of any kind if it were required) start open carry?  If you're a drug dealer, gang member, criminal with lots of enemies or cash, wouldn't you want competitors and those who might try to rip you off to know you are armed?  I don't know exactly where I stand on this.  Any thoughts.?


  1. There are reasonable exceptions to the bearing of arms whether open or concealed carry. A basic background check by firearms dealers and/or law enforcement should be enough to identify and keep guns out of the hands of potential threats like violent criminals and/or the mentally incompetent. A license is not needed when rationale concealed and open carry laws are in place.

  2. Vermont has never had much in the way of restrictions on firearms. No licensing. Open or concealed carry? Hey, whatever you want.

    Compare their crime rate with others'.

    I fail to get excited about gloomer/doomer prognostications for either open or concealed carry. The history is that they are wrong.

    And you can also do some real-world looking at the reality, in Wyoming, Arizona, Alaska and other "Who cares?" states.


  3. Art,
    I fully concur with your sentiment. But even before the 2A was added in 1791, The Pennsylvania Minority proposed "That the people have a right to bear arms for the defence [sic] of themselves ... and no law shall be passed for disarming the people or any of them, unless for crimes committed, or real danger of public injury from individuals ...." This drives my support for rational concealed and open carry laws.