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Considerations Regarding the Concealed and Open Carry of Firearms

Discussion in 'Strategies, Tactics and Training' started by Kleanbore, Jun 20, 2014.

  1. grampajack

    grampajack AR Junkie

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    I get what RPZ is trying to say. All he's doing is pointing out that someone lying to the police is not an issue confined solely to open carry, and that carrying a firearm in general is always associated with the risk of someone misrepresenting your use of said firearm, or lack thereof, when making a statement to the police.

    So it would be more accurate to say that open carry increases your exposure, and therefore your risk of having this happen, rather than bringing a new risk to the table that is not already associated with carrying a gun in general. And as Creaky_Old_Cop pointed out, this is a relatively rare occurrence anyways.

    It's also worth noting that this risk is associated with concealed carry even if you don't draw the gun. For example, let's say someone knows you carry, and for whatever reason that person has a beef with you. Or a Brady Bunch social justice warrior sees your NRA shirt, decal, etc., or you simply look the type, and they phone in an anonymous tip. I for one can also usually tell if someone is carrying if they're wearing light clothing, so there's always that risk, as well, that even if you're carrying concealed someone will be able to detect your piece from your wardrobe, your gun printing, etc. While the average person might not recognize Sneaky Pete, fake pagers, and tacticool brands like 5.11, if you're using those means to conceal your gun it's not a far reach to say that you're a stone's throw away from open carry already.

    Again, I realize that open carry increases your exposure, but I don't think that's a valid argument against it. Unless you also want to include NRA decals and Sneaky Pete holsters. I for one will never have an NRA decal, or wear clothing with prominent gun branding. But that's a personal choice I make, one which some would call paranoid, and they have a right to their opinion.

    I would also submit that this issue is not limited to guns. There are lots of ways one can find themselves a target. Wearing fur, wearing things associated with political parties and candidates, having campaign signs in your yard, bumper stickers on your truck, etc. are all things that can make a person a target. I would argue that wearing a Trump T shirt has more risk than open carrying right now.
     
  2. RPZ

    RPZ Member

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    Unless I am mistaken the crux of Berger.Fan222's point was story embellishment intended to initiate police action and what would likely be an arrest. When no crime was actually committed.

    Yes, the discussion, as you say is open carry VERSUS concealed carry (emphasis mine).

    So, I am saying that story embellishment of this kind could trap a concealed carrier. It is not inherently unique to open carry.

    Drawing, initiating a handgun draw, without firing a shot is not in and of itself a crime in all states. Whether a draw is justified is another matter. In my example scenario, if the draw was justified, the outcome could be bad for the goodguy due to story embellishment of a badguy or badguys. Or an onlooker(s). Etc

    Berger.Fan222 proposed that open carry might be a liability for this reason. I am simply saying that story embellishment crosses open carry and concealed carry.
     
  3. Frank Ettin

    Frank Ettin Moderator

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    Of course you're mistaken.

    It pretty much is as described. A stranger must know you have a gun and then lie about your using it. Someone necessarily knows when you're carrying openly.

    When displayed to intimidate (which would be the reason if for defense) it is a crime of some sort in every State. Showing someone a gun in a manner reasonably perceived as intimidating or threatening is an assault (that's the Common Law term, it could be called by a different name under the criminal laws of a particular State).

    So stop this nonsense.
     
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  4. grampajack

    grampajack AR Junkie

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    First of all, a person doesn't have to be a stranger to make a false statement to the police regarding your alleged misuse of a firearm. It's more likely that a jilted ex, angry business associate, etc. is going to have the motivation, as well as the knowledge of your possession and activities involving firearms, to initiate such an action against you.

    It's also more likely that someone you know is going to have the credibility to make it stick. Some random stranger in public is going to have a more difficult time substantiating their claims, as it's likely there would be witnesses who would dispute their story. There's also the matter of motive. A police officer, prosecutor, jury, and judge are more likely to believe someone you are close to, and have a history with, than some random stranger who cannot substantiate any specific reason why you would have it out for them. Someone you are close to simply has more to work with in terms of fabricating the time, place, circumstances, and motive.

    You spent a lot of time talking about the need for data, and I see this as one area where you would be correct on that account. In essence, it's a very similar argument to the one that says open carry is unwise because it makes you a target for anyone in the commission of a crime. Hypothetically, both of these arguments have merit, but the degree of that merit remains to be seen.

    For example, how much more likely is someone to be the target of false accusations if they regularly practice open carry vs. concealed carry? Is there a statistically significant increased risk associated with open carry in this regard? If so, is the increased risk significant enough to dissuade a rational person from practicing open carry?

    Until we answer those questions, this argument will remain purely speculative. What is a fact, however, is that owning a gun period carries with it a certain amount of liability. Practicing carry of any kind increases that liability, vs. simply leaving the gun at home in a safe, and we automatically accept that taking on that increased liability is worth the tactical advantage which is gained by being armed. We could equally well argue that the increased liability associated with open carry is worth the tactical advantage of having a more capable weapon that would under certain circumstances be too large to practically conceal, and/or that the increased speed when drawing from an OWB holster is worth taking on a reasonable amount of additional liability associated with open carry.

    I for one do not believe there is enough data available to answer this question definitively. I frequently read gun related news sources, and I cannot recall ever hearing about a specific instance in which a stranger fabricated a story involving someone openly carrying a firearm. I'm absolutely positive that it has and does happen, but it also seems Creaky Old Cop is accurate in his assertion that it's a rare occurrence.

    There's also a distinct problem with qualifying the data because this is one area where a person's behavior, independent of their choice to carry openly, is going to play a major factor in their risk of being the target of false accusations. The cases I do hear about involving false accusations usually involve unwise decisions on the part of the accused, such as getting into petty fights over parking spaces, having loud domestic squabbles with their spouses, doing, wearing, or saying offensive things, etc. There's simply no way to quantify the influence a person's behavior in any particular case had on their risk factor. So not only do we have a lack of data, but the data we do have is tainted by extraneous factors.
     
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  5. Kleanbore

    Kleanbore Moderator

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    It is not a crime anywhere to draw when so doing justified and to then not fire,

    The risk of "story embellishment" is but one issue. There is the also the issue of what other persons believe that they saw and heard, when their attention was drawn to the event, and so on.

    And the issue is exactly the same whether the person drew and did not fire or whether he or she did shoot.

    Again, this has nothing whatsoever to do with the issue of open carry.
     
    Last edited: Aug 24, 2017
  6. RPZ

    RPZ Member

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    On the first point, I have said as much as that. Someone else here says I'm full of crap.

    And now that I'm on the line with someone who is civil; in my state, it is only a crime if it is done "in a manner calculated to cause alarm". It is also a crime, in my state, to point a firearm at a person if deadly force is not justified. It is called, by statute, "deadly conduct".

    But as I stated, drawing a handgun is not in and of itself a crime in all states. If you re-read my posts it is pretty clear what I stated and what my points were.

    Secondly, story ebellishment was brought up by ANOTHER poster in regards to the topic, on which I commented to effect that it could, and probably has, applied to concealed carriers. I gave a hypothetical example, in which it could.

    If story embellishment has nothing to do with this discussion, why was this not the immediate response to the first poster, and subsequent responses before mine?

    I am seeing some vindictive behavior here. Not what I expect on the High Road.
     
    Last edited: Aug 24, 2017
  7. Frank Ettin

    Frank Ettin Moderator

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    You're also not very good with details.

    Kleanbore wrote (emphasis added):
    So he jumped ahead and assumed justification.

    I find it more useful for the purposes of understanding the law to emphasize that there's a two step process. There is first the act which is, prima facie, a crime. Then second there is the determination of justification which obviates criminal responsibility.

    Kleanbore and I essentially said the same thing -- just in different ways and with different emphases. He and I generally do agree.

    Cite the law.

    In any case, if you're drawing your gun in self defense, presentation of your gun will only be effective for that purpose if it's calculated to cause alarm. An assailant won't be dissuaded from attacking you unless he is alarmed by your having a gun, i. e., he fears getting shot if he continues.

    So again, that's hogwash. You're not taking the gun out so he can admire the stag grips. You're taking the gun out to cause someone who you think is attacking you to be afraid that you'll shoot him if he continues. That's assault.
     
  8. grampajack

    grampajack AR Junkie

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    Not necessarily. There are cases in which the carrier draws his firearm in response to a perceived threat, fully intending to shoot, but the threat ceases before he pulls the trigger, at which point he reholsters. He didn't fire a shot, and he didn't draw the gun simply to scare someone.

    One such case was where a man and his friends were being pursued by a group of inner city youths. They're retreating, and as they're trying to get away, the gang is trying to surround them. When one of the youths charges them, the man draws his pistol, causing the attackers to back up before he can aim and shoot. So he reholsters, and then the dance starts over again. This happens several times before the gang decides to leave them alone, but in the end everyone gets away unscathed.

    It may be that the threat was ended as a result of the fear of being shot, but that was not the intention of the carrier. He drew out of necessity, but he did not fire because the threat ceased to be immediate before he could get on target. So it is possible to draw out of complete necessity, and then reholster without firing a shot, without any menacing having occurred.

    If I understand him correctly, this is the kind of scenario RPZ is talking about, and he's trying to make the point that being the potential victim of false accusations is not limited to open carriers, but is always present whenever a gun is being carried. As near as I can understand, he's pointing out that such a scenario would likely result in two distinct versions of the event, with the attackers fabricating a story in which they were the victims of menacing, through no fault of their own.

    In the case I described above, there were plenty of witnesses, as the man was with several friends, one of whom captured the entire thing on their cell phone. However, I've read about very similar cases where it was only one victim, or perhaps a victim and his significant other, vs. 5-10 attackers, and no video or other eye witnesses. Naturally, the attackers will claim that they were simply asking for directions, at which point the victim pulled a gun on them without any provocation whatsoever.

    We can play what if all day long, but we're not going to get any answers. The fact remains that there is a certain amount of liability whenever a gun is present, and it stands to reason that said liability may increase while open carrying, but we cannot say to what degree this is true.

    We can also make up parallel scenarios which do not involve open carrying, but in which the results are the same. For example, let's say you accidentally cut someone off in heavy traffic. They've just been "triggered." They're angry and looking for revenge, and they're even pretty sure you did it intentionally just because they're black, gay, and transgendered. And when they see your NRA decal next to your confederate flag they're struck by a brilliant plan to enact revenge on you for your slight against them. So they get on the phone with 911 and report that a white, middle aged male has just pointed a gun at them after cutting them off.

    From your license plate and general description, the police are able to ascertain that the driver does indeed have a concealed carry permit. So the next thing you know you're having your face ground into the pavement being handcuffed at gunpoint, and you have absolutely zero idea why. Does the possibility of this scenario mean it's dumb to have an NRA decal on your vehicle? Well, from a certain perspective, yes it does. But is the risk great enough to warrant telling everyone they're stupid for having an NRA decal? In my opinion, it is not.
     
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  9. RPZ

    RPZ Member

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    I don't have access to a PC, and so can not transcribe whole sections of law tonight on a phone, and probably won't be able to until Mr Harvey is out of the Gulf. However, hold that thought til Monday or so, or just Google:

    Texas penal code firearm calculated to cause alarm

    and

    Texas penal code deadly conduct.

    In the case of displaying a firearm in a manner calculated to cause alarm there must be the intent to cause alarm and deadly force would NOT be justified. And it does not necessarily entail a draw. A concealed carrier could fall into this (via story embellishment) simply sweeping a cover garment exposing a handgun and preparing to draw.

    Many people might be inclined to do this, whether they actually draw or not, because they really do not want to shoot someone at all, but want to put themselves in the best position to shoot faster if at the last second they have to. A good example is against a knife wielder, of which there are cases on video available to watch where the defender has drawn, attempts to distance themselves etc. In some cases the bg is well within 20 feet, and the defender is simply maintaining readiness to shoot quickly.

    Proving intent in regards to causing alarm is a requirement. The mere visible appearance of a weapon is not a crime. Here.

    Anyone who is genuinely in fear of deadly peril might draw a handgun, without pointing it at a person, in preparation to the possible need to shoot. This is not a crime here in and of itself.

    On the other hand, if someone draws, displays a firearm, and brandishes it in a threatening manner, perhaps accompanied by verbal threats, waving it around or some other factor indicating intent, yes that is going to be a problem. This particular statute is there to specifically address that behaviour where deadly force would NOT be justified and a firearm is displayed to cause alarm, intimidation, fear, pick one.

    This statute applies equally too long guns, because the open carry of long guns here is legal. It is significant because there have been attempts to prosecute open long gun carriers under this "calculated to cause alarm" statute, based on the mere presence of a firearm by an open carrier.

    I have to be up a 6. Have a good night.
     
  10. grampajack

    grampajack AR Junkie

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    I forgot to mention this in previous posts, but there is also a common argument that concealed carry can be just as vulnerable in regards to being wrongfully accused of menacing, or perhaps even more so.

    The scenario is that you move in such a way that your gun either prints, or is otherwise inadvertently exposed, and this is construed by a bystander to be an intentional move on your part, for the sole purpose of intimidating them. Or more likely, they simply choose to go with that story because they don't like you, don't like guns, are simply arseholes to the extreme, and the list goes on...

    Here's the kicker. Since you were carrying concealed, the very fact that they knew you had a gun partially substantiates their story. So at least part of their story is almost certainly true, that you did indeed expose your gun to them, whether inadvertently or not. From that point forward, it's your story against theirs, but the FACTS of the case are that you did indeed expose your weapon to them and that they did indeed feel threatened. Not only is your lack of intention virtually impossible to prove, but it might not have any bearing on the case even if the jury believes you, as the fact remains that you did expose a concealed firearm, which is akin to actually drawing it in some states.

    This is further complicated by the fact that other eye witnesses probably didn't see a thing, and therefore can't comment as to whether it was an accident or not. It's such a subtle event that, even if they did see the entire thing, it's unlikely they could determine your intent.

    When open carrying, on the other hand, the fact that someone merely sees your gun cannot be evidence of menacing on your part, as everyone with eyes within a hundred yard radius can see that you have a gun. To be accused of menacing, they would have to have some actual evidence that you made some aggressive move, threatened them verbally, etc. This is a much more overt set of circumstances, ones in which witnesses would likely be able to testify in your favor (i.e. "No, officer, I did not see him pull out the gun. No, sir, I did not see him place his hand on it"). At the very least, they do not have any direct evidence against you; it's simply their word against yours.

    Thus, concealed carry only works to protect you from wrongful allegations if it always remains 100% concealed 100% of the time. If it prints or is otherwise inadvertently exposed, it then works against you in that regard.

    Like I said before, though, we can play what if all day long, which isn't very constructive in my opinion. It seems much more practical to accept that concealed open carry is now a fact of life, and that those who practice it are unlikely to change their minds. However, they might be persuaded to mitigate their activities, and other more responsible parties might be encouraged to get into the open carry movement to balance out some of the stupidity. We need current open carriers to put down the scary black assault rifles first and foremost, and then we need new blood in the game to show the public that open carry can be done in a presentable fashion, and that not all open carriers are running for neckbeard of the year.
     
    Last edited: Aug 25, 2017
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  11. Frank Ettin

    Frank Ettin Moderator

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    And from the fact that the assailant ceased his actions we can infer that he did so because he was afraid of getting shot. And so drawing the gun is indeed an assault.

    The usual definition of assault, based on the Common Law is:

    In the laws of some States this crime might be given another name. For example, in Alabama it's called "menacing." But by whatever name it is called, it is a crime in every State.
     
  12. Frank Ettin

    Frank Ettin Moderator

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    If you can't cite the law, you can't rely on it. It's your claim, so you have the burden of supporting it.

    Yes, and if that causes someone to fear getting shot by you it would also be an assault (or whatever that crime is called in the jurisdiction).

    If the person you believe is your assailant actually intends to do you immediate harm, the mere presence of a your gun, if he doesn't see it and, as a result of not seeing it doesn't fear getting shot by you, he's not going to break off his attack.

    Again, cite the law. You consistently make mistakes about the law, and based just on all the errors of yours I've had to correct recently I'm certainly not going to trust your interpretation.

    But again, if someone you you feel threatened by actually intends to hurt, drawing your gun isn't going make him stop unless he sees your gun and is afraid of getting shot.

    Unless in justified self defense.

    Show us the statute. I'm not going to believe what you tell me about the statute. You've demonstrated that you can't be relied upon. We need to ba able to read the statute for ourselves.

    Show us the statute. I'm not going to believe what you tell me about the statute. You've demonstrated that you can't be relied upon. We need to ba able to read the statute for ourselves.
     
  13. Old Dog

    Old Dog Member

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    That's an assault? So you're saying that even if a person believes himself to be either being threatened with unlawful force by another (not to mention mortal jeopardy), and displays/draws a handgun, that's an assault? In California, perhaps, wouldn't be surprising ... Pity the Golden State doesn't have provisions such as our laws:

    RCW 9.41.270
    Weapons apparently capable of producing bodily harm—Unlawful carrying or handling—Penalty—Exceptions.

    (1) It shall be unlawful for any person to carry, exhibit, display, or draw any firearm, dagger, sword, knife or other cutting or stabbing instrument, club, or any other weapon apparently capable of producing bodily harm, in a manner, under circumstances, and at a time and place that either manifests an intent to intimidate another or that warrants alarm for the safety of other persons.
    (2) Any person violating the provisions of subsection (1) above shall be guilty of a gross misdemeanor. If any person is convicted of a violation of subsection (1) of this section, the person shall lose his or her concealed pistol license, if any. The court shall send notice of the revocation to the department of licensing, and the city, town, or county which issued the license.
    (3) Subsection (1) of this section shall not apply to or affect the following:
    (a) Any act committed by a person while in his or her place of abode or fixed place of business;
    (b) Any person who by virtue of his or her office or public employment is vested by law with a duty to preserve public safety, maintain public order, or to make arrests for offenses, while in the performance of such duty;
    (c) Any person acting for the purpose of protecting himself or herself against the use of presently threatened unlawful force by another, or for the purpose of protecting another against the use of such unlawful force by a third person;
    (d) Any person making or assisting in making a lawful arrest for the commission of a felony; or
    (e) Any person engaged in military activities sponsored by the federal or state governments.
     
  14. grampajack

    grampajack AR Junkie

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    That may be, but drawing down on someone is only a crime if the threat did not justify deadly force in the first place. The crime in the aforementioned case would have been shooting the attacker, despite the threat of bodily harm having ceased during the time it took to draw the firearm.

    The powers that be in that case decided that there was a threat of bodily harm, no doubt because of the video, and no charges were filed. However, were it not for the video, the carrier could have found himself in a much different position, with his attackers fabricating a story in which they were the victims of an unwarranted assault, in which case charges would have likely been filed.

    The point is that there is always the risk of being falsely accused of a crime anytime you have a gun. The question that must be answered is whether that risk increases while carrying openly, as is so often claimed. And if so, to what extent? Until that day, we're just going to be going back forth.

    Furthermore, this question is NOT going to be answered. Ever.

    First of all, there's a lack of data. Second of all, the data is tainted by extraneous factors. Even if we assume that all parties falsely accused had in no way contributed to their circumstances, such a study just isn't realistic. First we would have to identify all the cases in which a person lawfully carrying a firearm was wrongfully accused of a crime. Then we would have to separate the cases involving open carry from those involving concealed carry. Then we would have to know how many people carry concealed vs. openly. Only then could we assign a statistical risk of being falsely accused to each group.
     
  15. Frank Ettin

    Frank Ettin Moderator

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    Like many folks, you're not really paying attention, You need to learn to read more carefully.

    I pointed out how assault is defined at Common Law and noted that on its face showing a gun for the purposes of intimidation is an assault -- it puts someone in fear of harmful or offensive contact. i. e., getting shot. But I also noted that if the evidence shows that the actor was legally justified (i. e., acting in lawful self defense) that obviated criminal liability,

    One reason folks fail to understand the law properly and get themselves into legal difficulties is that they don't bother to analyze things properly and in sufficient depth. They jump to conclusion or they don't take every step along the way to the conclusion.

    But it can be important to understanding in depth the laws regarding the use of force to recognize that threatening or committing violence on another person is on its face a crime. But threatening or committing violence under circumstance which justify the threat or use of violence in self defense is then a basis for avoiding criminal liability. It's a two step process. Sometimes because the evidence of justification is clear and substantial, it looks like it's just one step. But other time justification is not as clear, and it will take a trial to get exonerated.

    Actually California law, as well as the law of every other State is similar to that. the statutes might be structured or worded differently, or the law might be organized in a different way; but all the laws of all States provide that justified self defense can excuse the threat or use of violence against another.

    So evidence that you committed the acts described in paragraph (1) of your statute will establish prima facie that you committed the crime. However, if the evidence is obvious that the circumstances described in paragraph (3)(c) obtain, you will avoid criminal liability. If the evidence that paragraph (3)(c) applies is not clear or obvious, you will be charged with and tried for the crime, and you will need to produce at your trial evidence supporting your claim that you acted in justified self defense.

    Several years ago a lawyer by the name of Lisa Steele wrote an excellent article for lawyers on defending a self defense case. The article was entitled "Defending a Self Defense Case" and published in the March, 2007, edition of the journal of the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, The Champion. It was republished in four parts, with permission, on the website, Truth About Guns. The article as republished can be read here: Part 1; Part 2; Part 3; and Part 4.

    As Ms. Steele explains the unique character of a self defense case in Part 1:

    For more discussion about self defense and how justification is used in defense of a criminal charge see this thread: Is It Required to Prove Self Defense?

    You're still not following this. See above.
     
  16. Kleanbore

    Kleanbore Moderator

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  17. Sam1911

    Sam1911 Moderator Emeritus

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    It is the law, in some states and not in others. That it is your Constitutional right to openly carry a firearm in public is not actually a settled matter of law. The powers emplaced by the Constitution to decide matters of Constitutional law have not decided that restrictions on when and where and whether you may openly carry a firearm in public do indeed form an unacceptable infringement on your rights as stated by the 2nd Amendment.

    We may all interpret the Constitution to mean exactly what we want, and believe, and desire, and are utterly convinced that we think it means, but we do not get to decide what it means and have that decision mean anything -- at all. At all, except that we may apply such political pressure as we are able, as citizens, to use to bring about our wishes. We can gin up support for our views, but telling ourselves and anyone who will listen that it IS so is a bit self-deceiving. Akin to saying that the weather IS sunny and warm because we really want it to be so. But neither our wishes nor our heartfelt beliefs are what (directly anyway) make reality.

    I would say that this line of argument is pretty problematic.

    1) Some members of the public do go armed there, but whether anyone with the wherewithal to actually determine such would say that's been an effective deterrent, or preventative measure against terrorism I'd really wonder. Hard to use your Uzi to stop a bomb. (Ahem, or a plane...) Hard to say that either a team of terrorists or an individual one looking to shoot up a city street, market, or synagogue is deterred by guns when they expect to die in the effort anyway and will easily produce the mass terror effect they want with even the magazine or two they manage to fire before they themselves may be gunned down.

    2) We haven't "arrived" in anything like the degree that Israel has/had. And to make the open carry of long guns so prevalent as to actually have a prayer of putting somebody with a carbine in the same place at the same time as one of our own exceedingly rare terrorist attacks happening -- to say nothing of that attack having to be of a nature capable of being stopped by rifle fire (i.e. not a bomb, not a plane, not some kind of sabotage or cyber attack, etc.) -- the number of people who actually carry long guns around would have to be increased many orders of magnitude above even that prevalent in rural areas during deer season. Just to have a realistic chance that someone might be present with a rifle when a terrorist attack (of just the right kind) happens you'd pretty much need a large percentage of every gun owner in the nation to carry a rifle with them every day, every where. And that just ain't gonna EVER happen. Concealed carry is legal in almost all states at this point and yet the very most positive statistics indicate that less than 6-7% of any state's population even gets their licenses to do so, and far fewer than that actually practice the habit every day. And that's for unobtrusive, holstered, un-encumbering little sidearms and pocket guns. (Statistically speaking) NOBODY is going to go wandering around their daily lives toting a rifle. It's just too big a pain in the butt, and it doesn't take too many weeks and months of carrying your AR around everywhere and never using it for anything but a door prop to convince folks to drop the habit.

    Again, to ignore the compounding fact that getting killed is NOT a deterrent to terrorists anyway.

    While I agree (or rather would say that it helps only the other side), we have to tread a cautious path. There's a difference between endorsing a right and endorsing how, when, and where a specific person chooses to exercise it. I'm not yet sure how I feel, ultimately, about the two doods in the Chipotle picture. They've provided a lot of fuel for the fire to warm up the anti- side. However, there's also the idea of needing a "crazy" outlier fringe group present in the picture to make your own slightly less off-center position seem "moderate" and "reasonable." And there is this question of "desensitizing" society. As jarring, silly, scary, or whatever else the Chipotle boys are to the mass of society, they do now exist as a known entity. And one that wasn't violent, ended peaceably, and probably elicits little more than a slightly nervous roll of the eyes from "most" people. Maybe that's bad for us. Maybe, in the end, it's good for us. It is often quite useful to a movement to have certain people the movement doesn't actually approve of, do certain things that the movement doesn't officially endorse, but which nonetheless help achieve a certain goal.
     
  18. grampajack

    grampajack AR Junkie

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    On the contrary, I'm following just fine.
     
  19. Kleanbore

    Kleanbore Moderator

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    Do you have a legal basis for that assertion?

    At common law, a long, long way, way, back in time, a crime, once committed, could be excused if it took place under certain conditions of immediate necessity.

    In the earliest days, the criminal would be spared the death penalty, but he would forfeit all of his property to the sovereign. That consequence later went away.

    Today, most of the literature uses the word "justification" to define the conditions under which a crime may be excused, or as Frank has put it, under which a defendant can avoid criminal liability. Essentially, the defendant admits committing the act, but puts forth reasons (and supporting evidence) why he or she should not be held responsible.

    For most lay persons, the difference would likely be one of semantics, but in an important higher court hearing on a relevant legal matter, it should be a lot more than that.

    By the way, in most states, justification for displaying a weapon would indeed require that the use of deadly force be justified, but that is not universally true. In some, it is merely required that force be immediately necessary.
    Again, we have a sticky on that subject, and a link has been posited in this thread.
     
  20. grampajack

    grampajack AR Junkie

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    I'm not saying people should practice civil disobedience by carrying in areas where it's prohibited. What I am saying is that anyone who cares about the rule of law has a vested interest in supporting the right to carry, even if they do not personally agree with it, or otherwise legally changing the law via constitutional amendment, as opposed to rule by fiat and popular public opinion.

    Pretty much the same things can be said of concealed carry. Not enough people do it to make a difference. No one wants to carry a gun everywhere they go; they'll get tired of it because it's just too much trouble. A gun can't stop a bomb or a plane. Concealed carry isn't a deterrent to criminals.

    If you can validate the carry of pistols, then you ultimately validate the carry of rifles by extension. You can't arbitrarily separate the two. If you validate the carrying of firearms in general, then it stands to reason that it's ideal to carry the firearm that gives you the greatest tactical advantage (i.e. a G17 is greater than an LCP, and an AR15 is greater than a G17). All of us here are familiar with the tactical advantages gained by choosing a rifle over a pistol.

    Will enough people eventually practice the carrying of a rifle to make a difference? If legally allowed to do so, I would say yes, absolutely. People made the same argument against concealed carry back in the 90s, when relatively few people had permits. "It will never work," they shouted. "Not enough people will carry to make a difference." Well, it took time, but we're now to the point where it's a common occurrence that armed citizens save lives with legally carried handguns.

    Can the open carry of long guns stop all terrorists? Of course not, just as concealed carry can't stop all crime, and daily exercise can't stop all heart attacks. But there have been about a dozen terrorist attacks in recent history that could have been stopped by good guys with guns, had they only been present at the time.

    Again, that same argument is used against concealed carry, and it's true. Neither criminals nor terrorists are deterred by the threat of bodily harm, just as they are not deterred by the threat of prison. However, it's not about deterrence. It's about killing them as quickly as possible, ending their ability to take innocent lives.

    The question we should be asking is, Do we as a society have anything to lose by legalizing and adopting open carry as a social norm? If there's a potential gain and no loss, then it's an easy decision, and one that needs no further justification.

    On the other hand, there is some evidence to suggest that some terrorists are deterred by the threat of being shot. It's a known fact that terrorism, like any other crime, is likely to occur in a gun free zone. So it's reasonable to say that deterrence is a possible side effect in some cases. Perhaps the terrorists aren't afraid to die, but they might be deterred by the likelihood of failure. The moral of the story is that we have nothing to lose by hardening their targets.

    That's an interesting perspective. I like your pragmatism. I still think they're neckbeards, but I agree that they're within their rights. And they very well could form a dialectic in which a more conservative form of open carry could emerge as normal. Just being able to openly carry a full sized pistol without harassment would be a huge win. You make a very good argument here.
     
    Last edited: Aug 25, 2017
  21. grampajack

    grampajack AR Junkie

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    What you say is true, I grant you that, but at some point we're going to have to simplify things a bit or we'll spend the next few days arguing the history of common law and never return to the topic at hand. We just don't have the capacity to chase every rabbit and kick every dog in one thread.

    Strike "crime" and replace with "punishable offense."

    Drawing down on someone is not automatically a punishable offense if the use of force was justified under the laws of that state.
     
  22. Sam1911

    Sam1911 Moderator Emeritus

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    I didn't take your meaning to be that they should.

    I'm not sure I follow why that would be. The idea of the "rule of law" is the opposite of the concept of the "rule of man." Meaning simply that the law is what it is and applies to all citizens equally, rather than law being whatever an arbitrary ruler decides in a given situation. That doesn't seem to be directly connected at all with somehow expecting people to APPROVE of a specific law, or to support it's exercise. I am strongly for the rule of law. I do not approve of or support the National Firearms Act. I would like to see the NFA stricken from our laws entirely. But that doesn't conflict with my intense desire to live under the rule of law, not the rule of man.

    Many people didn't support or abide by Prohibition, but yet it was the law of the land. And now it isn't. Does that conflict with not caring about the rule of law?

    So why would someone who favors the rule of law have to support right to carry laws?

    What do you mean, rule by fiat? Or by popular public opinion? I don't follow this at all.

    And those are perfectly valid points, except that carrying a concealed weapon does have a demonstrable usage case in halting the activities of common street criminals who we citizens are (considerably more, though still rarely) likely to run into. So carrying a concealed handgun is a) far easier and less hassle than a rifle, and b) actually does occasionally get used for the purpose we carry in preparation for at some statistically significant rate (though that's hotly debated). Neither of those things could be said about rifles, at all. Not even close.

    Hold on there. There's several confused points in that.
    a) I DO support the right to carry any firearm you want. That's a right I wish to be able to have and to be available for my fellow law abiding citizens to exercise as they please.
    b) That doesn't mean I don't see the practical limitations for actually doing so.
    c) It does NOT stand to reason that it's ideal to carry the firearm that gives you the greatest tactical advantage. That's like saying it stands to reason that everyone would drive a Peterbilt tri-axle dump truck every day. It stands to reason that a few people, who are so inclined, will carry the a firearm that offers them some COMPROMISE of portability and utility. Hence the handgun. If you were in an active battle (not even in an active war zone, per se, but under direct enemy contact) it is ideal to carry a rifle around. It is not ideal to do so every day in the peacetime (let's not stoop to hyperbole, we here in the USA live in a very peaceful place and time, despite the news of the world), USA as you go about your daily life.
    c2) Ask a soldier who's been discharged from the service if he would carry his M-16 around his home town or city, to his office, the store, the dentist, church, the mall, soccer practice, etc., etc. if it was legal. They -- universally -- will laugh at you. Nobody who's actually lived with a rifle wants to do that.

    Really? I can't really fathom how in the world you would support that statement. What possible evidence could you have that more than a tiny handful of people would ever carry a rifle around with them daily -- even for a few weeks before they realized what every soldier knows: This sucks and I hate it and I never use it and I ain't gonna do it no' mo!

    This is missing all of the understanding of the "statistical logistics", if you will, of what it would take to actually put a rifle-toter on the scene of any of the tiny handful of the one specific kind of terrorist attack that could EVER be stopped with a rifle, which we actually face here in the US. There are about 323 million Americans. There were about 18 (generously counted) "terrorist" SHOOTING attacks on US soil in the last 7 years. Counting all sorts of remotely terrorist instigators, from white supremacists, to Muslims to whomever. So let's round up and say that's 2.5 per year. (It isn't that many, but let's run with it.) Let's say that, again being QUITE generous, there were 50 people present in the direct response area of each attack. That's 125 people who might have had a chance to fire a rifle at one of these terrorists, per year. How many of those 323,100,000 Americans have to have a rifle with them at all times, every day, every where, just to have them physically intersect that moment in that area in which they MIGHT have a shot at the terrorist actor? That's a bit less than 4 hundred thousandths of one percent of the population who even could have had a shot. This when the most conservative estimates indicate we have maybe 14.5 million concealed carry permits issued (again out of 323 million Americans, about 4.4%) and that only a fraction of those folks do carry any gun regularly. But we're going to have enough people toting RIFLES around everywhere they go? When they won't even stick a KelTec in their pocket? Good grief, it's mind boggling.

    I do not believe we have anything to lose. But, then again, of course I would say that! :)
     
    Last edited: Aug 25, 2017
  23. Kleanbore

    Kleanbore Moderator

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    I'm not sure we can reasonably conclude that. In Missouri, there are increasingly frequent news reports about concealed carriers defending themselves. Usually these sep to involve shootings, and I would tend to think that those that do not are likely to not show up in the news.

    Would criminals take this into account when deciding whether to attack someone?

    For lawful self defense? I don't think so.

    Unlimbering a long arm carried on a shoulder sling takes more time than drawing a properly concealed handgun, and getting it on target takes longer, and doing so will be far more likely to draw the attention of an attacker's accomplice.

    From what would you draw the conclusion that criminals are not so deterred? One who intends to commit suicide would not be, and that would include most terrorists, but the guys transporting contraband along a six-lane drug artery and who need money or a change of wheels would, I think, be deterred by the risk of being shot, and select vitiates who do not appear to be ale or prepared.

    For them, that is a matter of risk assessment. Interviews have shown that violent criminals who carry and use guns very rarely have holsters. Their reason? They can easily ditch the gun, but the presence a of holster is likely to help but them back behind bars.

    I would never open-carry a long arm for defensive purposes. I choose to not open carry a handgun either, though one of my favorite revolvers would be a natural for that application. My reason is that I do not want to draw attention to myself, from the potential gun-grabber in line behind me, from the criminals who have already started their evil doing before I walk into an establishment, from the misguided soccer mom, or from those who have seen me with the gun and then see me walking without it from the car to some place where I cannot wear it.

    Open carry, once prohibited in most populous locations here, is now lawful state-wide. In the densely populated areas it is not done, and most knowledgeable gun people can readily articulate their reasons for not dong so.

    The first time I ever saw anyone carrying openly here, the carrier was a groundskeeper seated on a Ford tractor on a rural golf course. One can come up with numerous scenarios in which it would be much more convenient to carry openly than to conceal a firearm.

    But many find it inconvenient to carry at all. When my uncle worked as a cowboy in New Mexico eighty five years ago, no one carried handguns.

    I did not believe that he or the other folks in the pictures were "real cowboys".
     
  24. Sam1911

    Sam1911 Moderator Emeritus

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    Just for a very rough comparison of why carrying a defensive sidearm in case of possible violent attack is more rational than carrying a rifle everywhere because you might meet a terrorist while he's shooting people, as I said, we've seen less than two and a half terrorist shootings per year in the last decade across our whole nation.

    Depending on which statistics you follow, reported numbers of all violent crimes are somewhere around 350 instances per 100,000 people. That means that something around 1,130,500 times a year somebody does something criminally violent to a US citizen -- and it gets reported. (Obviously many never do get reported, especially attempted attacks that are thwarted or warned off.) In some decently sized percentage of those 1.1 million events an attempt at stopping the attack could be made if the victim was armed. So just keeping it rounded off for ease of conversation, there's way more than 500,000 violent attacks of the average everyday kind for every ONE terrorist shooting.

    (That would also mean that about 35 hundredths of one percent of Americans are likely to have a violent interaction in any given year. Anything from a punch or kick to murder, included. But that also belies the fact that this is not at all evenly distributed across all demographics in the US population. In some groups and in some places this is far higher, and in some it is far lower. And most of us can figure out whether we occupy a hot group or cold, as these things go.)

    By that light, carrying a sidearm which which you might reasonably ward off a mugger makes a lot more sense than lugging a slung rifle around in case you meet a terrorist.

    And as Kleanbore said, there are practical problems with the idea that a rifle is a very good daily carry self-defense tool. The idea makes sense on the face of it, but even a shallow scratch of the surface reveals lots of problems with the idea in practice.
     
  25. grampajack

    grampajack AR Junkie

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    What I'm saying is that if Congress is allowed to skirt the Second Amendment, then none of our rights are safe. So even if one does not personally believe in open carry, it behooves them to either support it, or to lobby for its alteration or repeal through the legal means prescribed by the Constitution.

    Prohibition was a legal amendment, legally created and then legally repealed. The only way to compare prohibition to open carry is if in some parallel universe the right to drink alcohol was granted by constitutional amendment, then lawmakers banned alcohol without first repealing the amendment expressly granting its possession and consumption as a fundamental right.

    Because it is specifically granted as a right by the highest law in the land.

    Rule by decree, as opposed to the prescribed manner for passing, changing, and repealing laws. Such as passing a law prohibiting open carry when there is already a higher law granting it as a fundamental right.

    That's simply because there's no precedent for it here in the US. In Israel, however, the carrying of long guns has been shown to be useful.

    The fact that we're even talking about this suggests otherwise. Even under the threat of prison, loss of rights, and social consequences; there are still enough people willing to carry rifles right now that it's become this point of major debate for the nation as a whole. No, not everyone is going to carry all of the time. But it's not unreasonable to expect that enough people might carry enough of the time to harden public targets.

    Your contention that carrying a rifle is so horrible is also one I can't agree with. Strapping a lightweight SBR to your back is no more uncomfortable than wearing a full size pistol. I would certainly much rather carry around a lightweight SBR than have a pistol stuffed down my pants, and yet that's what I do much of the time simply because that's what the law requires if I want to carry at all.

    And yet it's rational to put National Guard troops in airports? Is it not rational for the French to have armed soldiers patrolling the streets of Paris? If these things are rational, given the limited number of troops available, then imagine how much more rational it is to have armed civilians everywhere.

    Like I said, criminals and terrorists follow a similar pattern in that they choose soft targets when available, preferably in a gun free zone. There is a valid argument to be made in either direction, for both cases.

    But the fact is that an armed citizenry doesn't always deter criminals, just like terrorists are not always ambivalent to the prospect of getting shot. If the possibility of armed resistance was of no consequence to terrorists, then we wouldn't be seeing 99% of mass shootings happening in gun free zones, such as schools and in jurisdictions where concealed carry is extraordinarily rare.

    Conversely, criminals are not always deterred by the likelihood of an armed bystander. Your average criminal is a desperate character, who probably places very little value on his own life, at least compared to the need to get high.

    What I'm saying is that deterrence is not the primary reason we carry. It is a happy side effect.
     
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