Packing Heat...in the Open
POSTED: Monday, May 24, 2010 - 9:23pm
UPDATED: Thursday, May 19, 2011 - 10:11am
Texans now have the right to obtain a permit to carry a concealed handgun. They can even carry one in their car with or without a permit. But for one group, that’s still too restrictive.
In Texas, you haven’t been able to carry a pistol openly on your hip since the 1870’s.
And no matter what you've seen in countless movies, that's how it was for the better part of the post-civil-war era.
But in the last several years, state legislatures, including ours have decided that with proper licensing, concealed weapons are permissable.
"Texas is hot,” says John Pierce of opencarry.org. “And the amount of clothing needed to keep your gun concealed can be very uncomfortable."
But in 43 states, some form of open carrying of handguns is allowed. In 28 of them, you don't even need a permit of any sort.
"That is better than half the country,” Pierce says, “over half the states, you can carry a loaded gun in the open with now license or permit from the authorities."
The group, opencarry.org, wants to see Texas on that list. But for now, Representative Leo Berman says, that issue isn't even on the agenda of the NRA.
"We generally follow the lead of the NRA on these things,” Berman told us, “and I spoke with them and they don't have this issue on their agenda."
"All we're are talking about here is changing a concealed carry permit to a carry permit,” Pierce counters. “You would still have the same training requirements, the same rules, the only difference is…you can take off your jacket."
"If someone wrote a bill,” Berman concluded, “and it made it through committee and got to the floor of the House, I would vote for it."