Thursday, September 08, 2016
Open Carry at the Gas Station with Colorado Visitor
I often open carry, especially in the summer when the temperatures make concealed carry a bit more cumbersome. I was open carrying at this Yuma, Arizona gas station when a man approached me.
He asked if Arizona were an open carry state. I said that it was, and went on to explain that most states were. He said he was from Colorado, where open carry was forbidden in some cities.
Yes, I said, the Colorado Supreme Court had made a weird decision that Denver could ignore state law. He said the city of Aurora also prohibited open carry in Colorado.
I told him that not only was Arizona an open carry state, but that we had Constitutional carry, and he did not need a permit to carry concealed, if he was over 21.
As he appeared to be about 45, he had a good chuckle over that. I explained that 10 states now had Constitutional carry, and that it was very likely that Missouri would be added in the near future.
I explained that I wrote professionally on firearms and firearms legislation, and gave him a copy of my card. He said he would visit the site.
This is an often underrated advantage of open carry. It is a way to meet interesting people, mostly friendly, and potential allies.
The gentleman mentioned that he had seen several people openly carrying in Arizona, and had wondered about it.
Now he knows more, and knows where to get more information.
About 95% of the contacts that I make while openly carrying are friendly and curious, as this gentleman was.
Second Amendment supporters vastly outnumber gun haters. But the gun haters have the backing of the elites, most of the media, and significant money. To overcome them, Second Amendment supporters have to build organization from the ground up.
Almost all state Second Amendment organizations are grass roots. A good case can be made that the NRA, which is elitist in its organization, is not controlled by the grass roots. But its power comes from its grass roots support and its nearly 5 million members. Its funding is almost entirely from the membership.
When it strays off message, the membership revolts, and it starts losing members and revenue. The NRA leadership has learned to please its members. It is big enough that competing organizations such as the Gun Owners of America, have informational resources inside of it. The NRA cannot work with hidden agendas any more. Society has become too transparent.
There is a vast sea of Second Amendment supporters that are not actively involved in the fight to restore and preserve Second Amendment rights. There are probably tens of millions of them.
If they can be mobilized and educated (they are moving in that direction) they become an unstoppable political force.
Hillary Clinton needs to keep pushing for more federal restrictions on gun ownership. It will help cement the support of her gun hater base, and inform the rest of the country about her attitudes toward the Second Amendment.
A Constitutional republic depends on informed voters.
©2016 by Dean Weingarten: Permission to share is granted when this notice and link are included.