Texas going open carry?
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DMoney
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Texas going open carry?

by DMoney » 15 Apr 2015, 11:17

So if you live in Texas, you've probably heard the rumors about the bills going around to allow open carry of handguns in Texas. I want to know everyone's thoughts on this, especially if you live in an open carry state. As a current CHL (concealed handgun license) holder, I'm not sure how I feel. I see both pros and cons to open carry, and I haven't quite made a decision whether I want that to happen or not. I think I want it to happen, I think it would help prevent some crimes, I definitely would appreciate not having to try so hard to keep my gun concealed all the time. So if anyone has experience or thoughts on this, please share! :gun:
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Vanyl
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Re: Texas going open carry?

by Vanyl » 15 Apr 2015, 12:09

Gun rules are different here, obviously, but it's actually illegal to conceal your weapon here unless it is being stored without supervision. It must remain uncovered at all times otherwise. Hunters often get in trouble crossing the border since it's the opposite down there and most don't think to cover their rifles, etc.
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Re: Texas going open carry?

by DMoney » 15 Apr 2015, 12:35

And what about handguns? Do they open carry handguns, conceal carry, or no carrying allowed?
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Re: Texas going open carry?

by Vanyl » 15 Apr 2015, 12:51

I'm still going through my hand gun training but if memory serves from the long gun examinations, you're not permitted to carry a hand gun period outside of very specific situations. We do not have right to bear arms here. If you point a gun at someone, even in self defense, regardless of if you discharge it, you are the one who is arrested and your license revoked on the spot. Your attacker may or may not be arrested, depending on the situation. We're only permitted to aim guns in firing ranges and for hunting purposes with proper licensing. While I know you can own a hand gun, I'm pretty sure you may only carry it for the purpose of transportation to appropriate ranges. We're not even allowed pepper spray so...

A story we learned in long gun class was about a store owner. He owned a variety store in a rural high way area. Every so often the same group of people would rob the store owner. The place was so rural that the police never arrived on time to catch the perpetrators. The owner bought a long gun (more easily obtained than a hand gun here) for self protection. He bought it through legal means and had the necessary paperwork for it. The group returned and the store owner brandished the gun to deter them. They ran back to their truck and he shot the front of the truck in an attempt to slow them down for the police to catch them. The truck broke down in the parking lot. The police arrived and arrested the store owner for illegally aiming a fire arm as well as illegally discharging a fire arm outside of the confines of a firing range or for hunting purposes.
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Re: Texas going open carry?

by DMoney » 15 Apr 2015, 13:03

Dang...owner must have been a Texan. lol. That seems weird to me that you can own a handgun...but only for use at a gun range. So if someone's attacking your family, and possibly even killing them in front of you, and you legally own a gun, you still can't point it at them?
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Re: Texas going open carry?

by Vanyl » 15 Apr 2015, 13:37

Correct. I think likely a jury would not hold it against someone, but legally you would be also found to have violated the law. They hammer that message home in detail in our gun training. An example would be this: http://news.nationalpost.com/full-comme ... with-a-gun. The man defended himself using his firearm and after 2.5 years was finally acquitted.

The law here basically states:
87. (1) Every person commits an offence who, without lawful excuse, points a firearm at another person, whether the firearm is loaded or unloaded.
Punishment
(2) Every person who commits an offence under subsection (1)
(a) is guilty of an indictable offence and liable to imprisonment for a term not exceeding five years; or
(b) is guilty of an offence punishable on summary conviction.

So in theory one would be charged, and have the burden of proving lawful excuse. This poster explained it better than I do:
Oh boy, here we go. Long story short, yes and no, but more-so no (unfortunately). Just know that if you ever find yourself in that situation (God forbid) that you need to use a gun to defend yourself, there is a 99.99% chance that you will be charged with something; murder, unsafe storage, unsafe handling and/or whatever else the crown can think of.

Edit: wording

Edit2: It ultimately boils down to you. In a situation where a gun is actually necessary, AKA the other guy has a weapon of his own, you will need to weigh your options. Do you risk getting injured/killed or your family getting injured/killed to avoid jail, or do you protect them and yourself and face potentially life altering consequences? Believe it or not, firearms are used for self defense more often than one would think in Canada, and we barely ever hear about them because usually the case gets dropped if it's a clear-cut case of self defense. Even ones that make the news (Ian Thompson) have almost always been dropped in the end.
[...]
In Canada, the self defense legislation is a grey area. There is no clear cut definition of when/how/where you can defend yourself. Although, in 2012 Harper made it clear-er, but it's still a smurfette. Honestly, if you plan on using a weapon for self defense, you better hope to God that the other guy has one too. Canada uses a "reasonable force" theory to judge each case individually. Keep that in mind if you are ever in that situation, and think to yourself "would a jury find my actions reasonable?"
(source: http://www.reddit.com/r/canadaguns/comm ... arily_for/)
The deeper darker me ever grows,
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Re: Texas going open carry?

by DMoney » 15 Apr 2015, 13:46

Welp...that's good to know if I ever visit Canada! I hope to never have to use my gun for self defense or protection of anyone, even here you'll most likely run into lots of legal problems and need legal help to make sure you can prove you're innocent and used your gun legally.
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Neo
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Re: Texas going open carry?

by Neo » 15 Apr 2015, 21:56

Well, as another Texan - formerly conservative, now verifiably independent, and married to a liberal - I feel that CHL is probably the best compromise for allowing the public possession of a gun, while avoiding the consequences of our [apparently] fragile and prudish society.

Consider, if you will, the majority of news stories and the images they feature of people exercising their Open Carry rights. The people in those images are often white, male, and (generally speaking) lower/working class people. That imagery leaves out everyone else. With a type of law this broad, and their concern for their rights - they become the rights of everyone...even people you don't want to legally be showing guns - like gang members. Sure they already have them, but if they're visible it gives suspicion for a police officer to approach them and deal with them.

While I have considered purchasing a gun for protecting the house and family, it would not be something I feel I would need to carry around. And while I have several friends who are CHL gun owners that do actually carry - I am never aware of whether they are carrying or not...and I don't have to be. There are rules in place, and they have been trained and certified to follow those rules, and I can trust them. I carry a minimum of 3 knives, of different sizes and styles on me all the time, but I don't feel the need to pull them out to show everyone, even though I have the right to open carry a knife. I don't feel like this would be the case for guns...it would be more like the Wild West, but with modern tech surrounding them.

At least in the current conditions, you know that if a gun becomes visible, some smurf-poo is about to go down. It's a pretty good warning system.

I have other views, and more detailed views that contradict some of what I said based on the type of gun, the method of acquisition, etc. But in general, concealed carry is my preferred level of public carry.
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Re: Texas going open carry?

by DMoney » 16 Apr 2015, 09:17

I agree with a lot of what you said, which is why I'm somewhat torn about how I feel about it. I'd love to hear from other open carry states about how often they see people openly carrying, and how people react to that. I agree that it might be a little scarier to see everyone carrying...but maybe that'll make a criminal think twice before trying to do something? At the same time, it would make others openly carrying their first targets.
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Re: Texas going open carry?

by Neo » 16 Apr 2015, 10:34

Yeah, if you take it back to the knife scenario...someone walking through Wal-Mart carrying a Bowie knife like the images of Open Carriers and their M4s would probably make you want to walk another isle to avoid them. There's just no place for it all in civilized society. It should be for last-resort protection, not for a display of force...that's what cops are for.
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Re: Texas going open carry?

by Vanyl » 16 Apr 2015, 12:50

How much training is required before you're legally allowed possess a firearm in Texas?
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Re: Texas going open carry?

by Neo » 16 Apr 2015, 13:05

I want to say "none"...because you can buy them at Wal-Mart.

Possession in public is a different scenario. But for protecting your home, you can have it, aim it, and use it on anyone that puts a foot into the threshold of your door...without consequence.
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Re: Texas going open carry?

by Vanyl » 16 Apr 2015, 14:32

So you don't have to do any sort of education before applying for a license to own it? I'm assuming you need a license....
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Leaving behind my scorched and naked heart.

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Re: Texas going open carry?

by Neo » 16 Apr 2015, 14:37

Vanyl wrote:So you don't have to do any sort of education before applying for a license to own it? I'm assuming you need a license....
I defer to someone who actually owns a gun. I think there's a waiting period, and there are licenses involved - I am just not familiar with the process. I just haven't heard of any kind of class required to possess a gun.
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Re: Texas going open carry?

by DMoney » 16 Apr 2015, 14:38

You can legally buy and own a gun with no license or training. The only reason you'd need a license is if you want to carry it publicly. To carry it they do require some background checks, finger printing, minimal training, and pass an easy shooting test.
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