Bad Idea

I carry guns all the time, but I never carry openly, except at the range.  In fact, I’m kind of paranoid about letting anyone know I’m carrying, even acquaintances.  (All my friends know that I’m carrying, just as I know they are, and we seldom if ever even talk about it.)

I’m not interested in “making people comfortable about seeing guns in public” for the simple reason that some of those people will want to take my gun away from me.  Not going to happen.

Here’s someone who agrees with me, and has some good reasons behind his position.  I agree with all of them.

You may or may not agree with me, but argument is pointless because I’m not going to change my mind about it.


  1. I used to open carry all the time, because it was somewhat common in Virginia. I rarely open carry anymore, because we now live in an age where even cops are targeted by violent crime, and I don’t want to make myself a target.

    Here’s an interesting note and a good case study for how laws evolve and can be contradictory. In the 400 year history of the Commonwealth of Virginia, open carry has always been legal. Concealed carry was regulated and thus you could not carry concealed into a restaurant that served alcohol. Thus the ONLY way to legally carry in a restaurant was openly. A few years back they amended our concealed carry statutes to permit concealed carry in a restaurant as long as you do not consume alcohol.

    So as the laws are written today, you can concealed carry in a restaurant but are prohibited from drinking alcohol, but it is perfectly legal to openly carry in a restaurant AND consume alcohol (as long as you are under 0.08% BAC).

  2. It wasn’t til the last 5 years of his life that I was able to convince my dad not to open carry. For all of his final decade, he wouldn’t have been able to do fuck all had someone my age or younger decided to relieve him of the weapon.

    The jury ruled appropriately in the Kyle Rittenhouse drama, but I wonder how much of it was provoked by strutting out into that bullshit with his long gun.

  3. I’m on the fence. The link makes good points, but still. I don’t care about making any political statement, it’s just that I’ve been wanting to move from a 5-shot snub nose up to a real revolver and that entails way more difficulty in concealment. So open carry is an option, just not one I’ve decided on yet. The type of holster and carry position I envision would still be mostly concealed by an untucked shirt.

    And yes, I have a semi-automatic 9 mm. Who doesn’t? And about 5 different holsters for it. And it still doesn’t carry as good as the snub nose .38.

    1. Finding that mix of size, concealability, and accessibility, is one of life’s challenges. It’s also how you wind up with a dozen “carry guns” because you’re always chasing that next best thing.

      Lately, I mostly carry my Sig Sauer P365 SAS (9mm) in a leather pocket holster. It’s not as accurate or easy to access as my Sig Sauer P229 carried on my hip, but it’s light, accurate, and also virtually undetectable when I carry it which means I carry it more places and more often. And a good gun that you actually carry is better than an excellent gun that you leave at home.

    2. Ravenwood & Don,
      You’re right, the firearm with you is better than the one at home when you need it. The right size and capacity firearm and carry techniques varies to each person.

      The J frame is very handy, takes effort to shoot well and isn’t for everyone. because of the increased riots and protests etc, I moved from the J frame with reloads to a S&W Shield in 9mm. Although the capacity isn’t a great increase, the spare magazines make reloads faster. On days where practical, a 1911 rides on my belt.


  4. I generally refer to open carry as “Shoot Me First”, because if I was intent on killing a bunch of people I’d target the people with guns first. Of course, that’s logical me thinking it through, who knows what goes through the heads of mass shooters…I mean other than 147 grain hollow points…

    I often tell open carry advocates that I support their right to open carry, and I promise I’ll kill the guy that shot them.

    That said, I was at a minor political event this past weekend where some guy was open carrrying his .45 LC complete with cartridge belt. I was carrying too, a much smaller pistol in a much smaller caliber.

  5. “Did you know this was legal activity?”

    That pic has been circulating the Interwebz for a few years. My favorite response to it was “Lesbians have always been able to buy bread, dumbass.”

  6. Look up the cups and balls routine by penn and teller. They do the classic routine with clear cups and balls, that’s open carry. Concealed carry is the first part of the act where the perp doesn’t know where the balls are and the moves.


  7. I don’t open carry here unless I’m way out in the boonies. Most of the police officers here under the age of 35 either have little man syndrome or a room temperature IQ. No issue from all the older officers. Don’t want to deal with harassment from the authorities.

  8. I was in a gun store in Tuscon and overheard two cops talking…

    “I was called out to a “man with a gun” at Walmart the other day. I showed up and found a gentleman shopping in the produce section with an open carried pistol on his belt. I spoke to him, he was a nice guy and clearly not a problem so I went to contact the complainant. SURE ENOUGH it was a woman from California and I had to tell her…..”look lady, this is Arizona. People carry guns here!””

  9. Tim Kennedy said if you open carry you’re stupid. My CCW instructor said basically the same thing.

    Not for any moral reasons or to shut up the whiny Kalifornians, but because now the bad guys know who the first targets are.

  10. Very good article and I agree with the points made. I live in Florida and have a concealed carry permit, for when I feel I need it. I mostly “carry” in the car when I travel and feel safer on the road and in motel rooms with a pistol. The concealed carry permit is easy to obtain in Florida especially if you are a veteran. The local clerk of court’s office offers one stop shopping. Get your photo taken (for the permit itself), digital fingerprints, answer questions online for a background check, show your DD214 and two weeks later the permit shows up in the mail. If you are not a veteran you take a course, one evening, and offered by a lot of the gun shops and present the certificate that you get. Gotta love Florida for a lot of reasons.

  11. I’m fine with someone choosing not to open carry. I only get hostile when they try to tell other gun owners that’s it’s bad for “the movement” to open carry.

    The reality is that Constitutional Carry was going NOWHERE in Texas until the Open Carry crowd stirred up the Karens and got the lege moving. We owe CC in TX to the Open Carry apes.

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