Thursday, December 20, 2007

If you open-carry your gun, is that brandishing?-edited-


After talking for awhile, I realized that, while I was not brandishing my gun in the legal sense, I was wearing it in the open to make a statement. The statement being, "stay the hell away from me." I usually combine this with my evil stare (or a blank face of contempt) and large size (6 foot, 250 pounds) to keep the crazies away from me. So yes, in his line of thinking I might as well have been advertising I was packing heat.

But I've noticed that when I do open-carry, roughly 75% of the people do not notice. And if they do notice, I don't see any reaction. It's not like I'm wearing a tactical thigh holster or carrying a huge Tommy gun, but I'd expect people to pay more attention. They don't. Most assume it's a cell phone (that would be one hell of a phone call).

In the end, I can see how uncomfortable it may make people. Yet when it comes to my discomfort over not having one or your discomfort for seeing me wear one, I win.

So, that was today's deep thought. Hope you enjoyed my inner thoughts.


cinda1212 said...

Well, personally, I don't really get your need to carry a gun. You said it's for keeping the crazies away. Is this really a problem for you? Are you some sort of crazy-magnet? :) Do you carry it at all times? When you're with your children? Honestly, that scares the crap out of me.

I don't want to argue your right to have it, certianly. I get that, and respect that. But a gun in general scares me - and I woudln't want it anywhere near me. And I feel that way about anyone wiht a gun, crazy, police, or otherwise - so nothing personal.

I guess I feel that anyone who's carrying it in its holster or case or wahtever - in plain sight - isn't brandishing. Doesn't fit the definition - But it also seems to me, that, in general, someone who carries a weapon like that is likely someone who knows how/when to use it, as opposed to a 'crazy' who might just have one lollygagging in his pocket. Ya know? As uncomforatble as the whole gun thing makes me ingneral, I guess I'd prefer to see it in your holster, that to not know who's carrying concealed. Maybe? I dunno. That's a tough one.

TK42ONE said...

Yeah, I was deliberately trying to avoid the whole "who should have a gun" discussion. We all have opinions on it and I respect yours just as you respect mine. We'll leave it there.

To answer a few questions, Yes, I feel crazies are a problem here. We've had countless robberies, muggings, shootings in the areas we frequent. So while I'm not much of a crazy magnet in the "I attract them" sense, I try to be a crazy magnet in the "I repel them" sense. And yes, I carry it everywhere I'm legally allowed to carry it with the big exception of in the house. There, I keep it locked away as I don't see much point in packing at home. Kind of heavy after a while. And yes, that means I carry when I'm out and about with the kids.

It is in a holster and in the open (most times) and that was what our discussion centered around. Should it be concealed or not. I can go either way, just depends on what I feel like. Do I want to "repel" the crazies or just be prepared for them.

Anonymous said...

The one problem I have with open carry, whether people actually notice or not, is the part about standing out. Having a concealed weapon in the open kind of defeats the purpose.

First off, if I happen to be in a store that coincidentally is being robbed, having a visible weapon makes you a target, and those around you, including children, become possible collateral damage. If someone is desperate enough to commit robbery then noticing your side arm could turn the situation for the worse, such as manslaughter. A criminal who does not think he/she is in control is more at risk to do something rash.

Second, is the whole crazies thing. There are two types of idiots: the ones who REALLY want that gun and are too screwed up to realize that stalking you, assaulting you, and whatever else you want to think of could be considered illegal by most normal people; and the other are the liberal fascists who think no one should be allowed to carry a gun.

Open carry brings attention by both types to you and, by proximity, your family. If you walk around with a handgun holstered in the open then it is possible some freak is going make an example of you one way or another. You either get assaulted or you get photographed in a grocery store with children nearby and used as propaganda.

It is far smarter, in my opinion, to have the weapon concealed and let the ignorant think what they want – rather than act – and should the need ever arise then at least you have the element of surprise. It’s smarter to not advertise that you could be a threat to our children (because that’s the stupid agenda they’ll use) than it is to be made an example and quite possibly become the ember the starts the new fire of lobbyists who petition to take away our 5th.

~Epheros Aldor - Apostle of Cale

TK42ONE said...

All reasonable points. And I can see all of them happening. I think to some degree when I open-carry, I'm forcing myself to be more alert to my surroundings. And, like my co-worker said, when I carry concealed, I can "relax."

But, after listening to every one's opinion on it, I think I will try to carry concealed more often, just to keep the uber-crazies away. I've had one guy shout "5-0! 5-0!" before, so we'll see if it prevents that from happening again.