Open Carry vs Concealed Carry - a comprehensive response to critics

Discussion in 'General Handgun Discussion' started by IdahoCarry, Oct 22, 2013.

  1. IdahoCarry

    IdahoCarry New Member

    Open Carry vs Concealed Carry

    I prefer to Open Carry because EVERY study shows that criminals will avoid armed persons. I also Open Carry because it often generates positive constructive discussions wherever I go, which advances our mission to promote our 2nd Amendment rights and naturalize the presence of guns in our communities.

    45 states allow Open Carry and every day, 10’s of thousands of Open Carriers are repelling bad guys across this nation and rarely if ever do you hear of those Open Carriers having to shoot anyone because criminals don’t attack citizens they know are armed.

    I do not Open Carry where it is illegal or where my situational awareness is impaired, like movie theaters or concerts where there is continual close contact with other participants, and where seating is tight such as amphitheaters, sporting events, race tracks.

    I would not Open Carry In high crime areas. A lion would not walk into a den of hyenas and I would never Open Carry in the high crime neighborhoods of Chicago, New Orleans, Detroit or Washington DC. I never want to challenge a criminal’s area of dominion; that task is for law enforcement officers.

    Yielding to wisdom and prudence dictates whether I Open or Conceal Carry.

    However, I am always uncomfortable Carrying Concealed because it presents to the criminal that I am unarmed, weak and vulnerable; attractive to the predator.

    There is no deterrent value to my carrying concealed. I am just another gazelle in the eyes of the hyenas. My probability of being a victim of a crime is totally unchanged when I have a gun hidden beneath my shirt.

    My Open Carrying gives the criminal the opportunity to make a well informed decision; an opportunity not provided by me when I Carry Concealed.

    Robbers, rapists or carjackers might be dumb and opportunistic, but they all have the instinct for self preservation. Outside of his den, a hyena will not attack a lion. To the bad guy, Open Carry portrays you as the lion with very sharp teeth that the hyena wants to steer clear of.

    I don’t want to be the victim who fought back and won. I don’t want to kill anyone. That is why I Open Carry. My goal is never to be a victim in the 1st place. I want to watch the 6 O’clock news and not be the topic of the news.

    When I leave my home whether I’m Open or Concealed carrying, some of my primary goals are:
    • To go about my tasks peaceably
    • To not be a victim of any crime
    • To avoid shooting anyone – ever – when possible

    In a Concealed Carry state, the bad guys always have to be wary, their situational awareness is more highly motivated than yours so the likelihood of you getting the drop on them is slim. They weigh the odds and proceed and watch for those who might be Concealed Carrying.

    Ask yourself this, if you are the target, when the bad guy’s attack you, will you have time to draw from your concealed position, maybe, but probably not.

    ALL OF THE STUDIES show that criminals avoid armed people – so – do you want to appear armed or appear unarmed as Concealed Carriers do?

    Remember, just like you, I don’t want to be a victim and I don’t want to shoot anyone, ever, if I don’t have to. And, not becoming a victim is exponentially more probable if I Open Carry by making it clear and obvious that I am armed.

    When the bad guy sees something that can quickly and painfully change or terminate his life, his sense of self preservation tells him to move on.

    It is a fact, Open Carriers create a circle of deterrence.

    If you are a jogger or bicyclists on the greenway, and you are seen carrying by a bad guy, you not only protected yourself and those around you, you probably protected that path from that bad guy ever attacking anyone there because he will associate that path as dangerous to him.

    Not only do we create a deterrent circle around ourselves, but around every person who is within that circle, within that restaurant or within that store. That circle of deterrence has a ripple effect on the bad guys too because they warn their buddies about those locations.

    It is important to realize that violent crime does not begin at the moment a bad guy confronts you with a weapon.

    Crime and violence take time to develop and there are five distinct stages: intent, interview, positioning, attack and reaction. The first three are most severely affected by those who Open Carry:
    1. Intent, which develops when the criminal observes easy prey.
    2. Interview , when he verifies the area is free of danger and creates plan.
    3. Positioning, when he sets up for the attack.

    If a bad guy sees an Open Carrier in any of the first three stages, in all probability, he will abort and find a weaker target unless it’s a drug crazed or mentally ill person.
    Concealed Carry presumes it is better to wait until the opponent has drawn his gun in the attack stage and then try to “fix” the situation. It is foolish to think that it is better to stop a crime in the fourth stage than to prevent it in the 1st, 2nd, or 3rd stage.

    Concealed Carry has no effect in the first 3 stages, but if an Open Carrier is seen by the bad guy in any of the first 3 stages, the crime is probably deterred.

    Some critics of Open Carry claim that an Open Carrier will be the first one to be shot when a robber walks into a 7-11. There is no evidence that this has ever occurred; this is a red herring.

    When a robber sees an Open Carrier, they change their plans. In most cases, he is not prepared to commit murder or jeopardize his life when all he wanted to do was to get some cash. Self preservation demands that he abort and find a less risky victim.

    Another common criticism of Open Carry is that the firearm itself will be the target of theft, prompting a criminal attack simply to get your gun away from you. With only one exception in 2010 when an OCer failed to heed prudence and OC’d in a high crime area, there is no evidence that an Open Carrier has ever been targeted just to rob him of his gun; another red herring.

    Very often someone critical of Open Carry will cite some example of a uniformed police officer whose gun was taken by a violent criminal and yes, that does happen, but more than likely it occurred either because the officer was targeted merely for being a police officer, not for his gun. Most often, when guns are taken from police officers, it occurs when they are struggling to restrain a criminal.

    As to how the general public responds to Open Carry, 99% of the responses I’ve received have been positive and the other 1% were not negative, just skeptically inquisitive. This is the common experience with every Open Carrier who treats Open Carry as a personal responsibility to win the hearts and minds of those who are indecisive about the issue or slightly leaning in the other direction.

    There are some who are just afraid of guns for a variety of personal reasons; however, fear is overcome by natural exposure in everyday situations. Fear diminishes when firearms are carried in a responsible and peaceable way by the average citizen and the fearful will recognize that their fear was based on emotion and not fact.

    Open Carry is a very effectual way of helping people overcome fear of guns if done wisely with prudence. Arizonans don’t look twice at Open Carriers in their state and they are a great example of people becoming accustomed to guns and accepting them as a natural part of their society.

    A common complaint is that Open Carry makes some people uncomfortable. Liberty trumps comfort and censuring freedom is the beginning of oppression, which leads to persecution.

    Abraham Lincoln said, “Our defense is in the preservation of the spirit which prizes liberty as a heritage of all men, in all lands, everywhere. Destroy this spirit and you have planted the seeds of despotism around your own doors.”

    The Open Carried gun is “Assault Prevention Insurance” and most people will eventually become comfortable with it when they realize that they are safer because of its practice.

    There are some people I’ve spoken with who claim to want to have the tactical advantage of surprise.

    Why would anyone want to try to fight their way out of a bad situation, jeopardizing themselves and anyone with them when the bad situation can be avoided entirely by Open Carrying?

    Let me tell you, if anyone is going to be surprised, it is you.

    The likelihood of you surprising a bad guy is very slim and the likelihood of the bad guy getting the drop on you is practically guaranteed.

    You seldom know that you are going to be a victim until you are face to face with someone pointing a gun at you.

    You will have no time to quick draw or do anything but comply with the bad guy’s demands.

    Surprise as a defensive tactic is often based on unrealistic or ill thought out scenarios.

    I’ve had 6 guns and a knife pulled on me when I was a process server and not in any of those incidents could I have defended myself.

    Most criminals don’t draw their weapon until you are too close to do anything other than comply.

    The simple truth is that while surprise is a superior tactical maneuver, it is exclusively an offensive action not a defensive one. Defensive surprise is no more than damage control, and a last ditch effort to fight your way back out of a dangerous situation.

    If you shoot anyone - ever - you lose! Why?
    • You too could be shot, maimed or killed.
    • You will almost always lose financially, paying for defense lawyers and/or civil suits. You don’t want to be another George Zimmerman who has paid hundreds of thousands of dollars defending himself.
    • Shooting someone or seeing them shot stays with you forever –
    you never forget blood, guts & death. My time in Vietnam and on the LAPD has shown me that you remember every single dead or bloody body.

    Surprising an attacker with a gun invites a gun fight. Quite frankly... I'd prefer the bad guy be "surprised" to see my openly carried gun and decide not to attack.

    We want everyone to feel safe and comforted by our presence when we Open Carry, so dress nice, smile at everyone, be courteous and if questioned about your gun, be prepared with responses that are friendly and educational, i.e., “My family loves me and they want me to come home safely to them every night.”

    Tailor your responses to your situation and personality but always remember that your goal is to win the hearts and minds of the persons you are talking to and anyone listening on the periphery. Never be angry or confrontational. Every Open Carrier should an ambassador for the 2nd Amendment!

    The truth is that each day thousands of citizens in this nation Open Carry. They represent hundreds of thousands of man hours of peaceable, friendly, patriotic Open Carrying conducted continually in all but five states.

    Open Carry is a right, and it is lawfully exercised everyday by responsible gun owners. Remember this; “A right not practiced will be lost.”

    Although I Open Carry as a deterrent and self defense, equally, if not a more important reason for me is to naturalize the presence of guns in our community and promote our rights under the 2nd Amendment.

    Concealed Carrying does little to promote the 2nd Amendment when you are in public unless you start the conversation. OC almost always encourages pro-gun discussions.

    Other than Boston in the 1770’s there has never been a time in this nation’s history when we have been confronted with so many in the government who want to take our guns. They are continually positioning themselves to limit or destroy our inalienable rights and Open Carry is a visible wall of resistance to them.

    Open Carry sends a message to ant-gun elected officials and all of the anti-gun media and anti-gun groups that most Americans are patriotic pro-gun; pro-constitution and pro- 2nd Amendment – and our rights will not be infringed.

    Open Carry is a symbol of freedom;

    It is the American Flag.

    It is kryptonite to the bad guys.

    It is the first responder.

    It is the bold, beautiful face of the 2nd Amendment.

    Tony Snesko, Founder
    Idaho Carry, Open & Concealed
    Some of the points in this paper were contributed by Mainsail and fellow proponents of OC.
  2. mountainman13

    mountainman13 New Member

    I think you may have just opened a can of worms on your first post. Lol
    Welcome to ftf.

  3. manta

    manta Well-Known Member Supporter

    I hope you get the response you want on this forum you didn't get on other forum you posted it on. ;) I think they are still waiting for you to answer the questions they put to you on the other forum that you were going to get back to them with.
    Last edited: Oct 22, 2013
  4. SSGN_Doc

    SSGN_Doc Well-Known Member

    OK proceed to cite EVERY study and what criteria they used to arrive at their conclusion.

    You do make some good arguments but leading with anything that is an absolute is usually dangerous in a debate.

    And I'll be waiting for the references still.
  5. ctshooter

    ctshooter New Member

    If it is kryptonite to the bad guys then why would you not carry open in a high crime rate area??

    Seems like you want to portray the Barney Bad A$$ attitude when you are in your comfort zone, but timid and not wanting confrontation if in a sketchy area.
  6. SSGN_Doc

    SSGN_Doc Well-Known Member

  7. SSGN_Doc

    SSGN_Doc Well-Known Member

    That was the next premise to attack. For if number one was indeed true, then EVERY criminal should avoid a person with a visible weapon no matter what the environment.
  8. activereality

    activereality New Member

    No matter the carry style a person subscribes to, they will believe in it. And if people don't believe in something, most people will justify the act of condemning it. Personally, I do both as well. It's my belief and it also depends on my mood that day. Naysayers will always creep out and quote the anything and everything- even doctrine from outdated texts or manuals.

    The truth is( again my opinion) that there is no right or wrong answer. With the possible exception of carrying at all being my accepted "more correct" method of self defense.

    To all who subscribe to one way over the other, for whatever your reasons may be, good on you. There are too many who simply subsist and comply. The easy way is not the only way. Lol.

    I agree we are all different. I agree your method is different than mine. I carry for self defense. If you do not, please forward all of our shooting equipment to the below address :) hehe.

    Nice post and a good read man.
  9. SSGN_Doc

    SSGN_Doc Well-Known Member

    I don't doubt that there is some deternet effect to open carry. A ballistic missile submarine has a deterent effect while concealed. An aircraft carrier has a deterent effect in the open, if I may use naval parralels that are comfortable for me.

    If there were enough people who would concealed carry it would be a deterent. the problem is quantity and society. if criminals thought there was on ly a 1:10 chance of having an unarmed victim with no way of knowing until they struck....
  10. kfox75

    kfox75 Well-Known Member Supporter

    And to think. Some of the folks I know wonder why I CC instead of OCing. The above is a big reason not to OC IMO. However, that does not mean that I do not support the right to choose to OC. The individual should have the freedom to decide for themselves, and they must, no matter how they decide, live with the repercussions of that choice.A sheep dog is far harder for a wolf to spot than a rancher with a rifle.
  11. SSGN_Doc

    SSGN_Doc Well-Known Member

    Oh, and for the record, I support the right for open carry, and may choose to do so under some circumstances. Just pointing out some premises that may not fully support the overall argument.
  12. ctshooter

    ctshooter New Member

    I wasn't condemning the practice. I do not have an issue with open carry. I do however have an issue with the post seeming to have a dont mess with me i have a gun on my hip type attitude. I'm not saying that was the way it was meant, but merely my perception of it.
  13. activereality

    activereality New Member

    Ct. Want to keep this friendly. I was not making any attempt at an attack on someone. That is my opinion of his opinion. Sometimes people's ideology differs. Sometimes not.

    I agree it might come off a bit strong. I don't think he had that intent when he drafted that post though. However, as a constructive method of conversation. My rebuttal would be that it is funny how often there are those who believe In One Way and one way only. To the exclusion an attack of all else. I don't agree with this and don't subscribe to it.

    I guess an example would be, I don't prefer to wear bright pink shirts to work. Some do. I do t hate them or attack them for it. But I won't be joining in lol.
  14. ctshooter

    ctshooter New Member

    I did not take it as an attack. All is good. Was more just trying to clarify my responses to the posts in general.

    That is one thing I dislike about things like texting and such. So damn hard to tell how it is meant.
  15. activereality

    activereality New Member


    Yeah. No "tone" enabled script.
  16. IdahoCarry

    IdahoCarry New Member

    I did reference this

    The OCer was not targeted, it was a theft of opportunity because the OCer was not maintaining a situational awareness because his arms were extended reaching for a product and he allowed a teenager access to his gun. But his biggest mistake was chasing the kid knowing that the kid had his gun and that a bullet was chambered. Using this as a typical incident of guns being taken from OCers is a red herring. It's a reminder to OCers to always maintain situational awareness. Not chasing a guy who is carrying a loaded gun is a no-brainer.
  17. IdahoCarry

    IdahoCarry New Member

    Yes, check the other forum, I did respond.

    I did respond to the challenge on the other forum, and I see that you too post on other forums. We all do.

    I will respond similarly on this thread to a post of a similar question. Open Carry vs Concealed Carry is a topic that needs to be addressed on as many forums as possible because there are "trolls" from the left who invade conservative forums, pretending to be conservative and then work their magic on dividing forums from within by posting red herring topics.

    We must not put restrictions on the legal carrying of guns. Suggesting situational awareness issues and training issues and when and where not to Open Carry are the purpose of the post, but we must not apply the unwise actions of a few to be attributed to the entire Open Carry community in a way that the anti-gunners attributed the Sandy Hook shooting to guns in general. Tools of the left should be recognized for what they are and avoided entirely and civil discourse is what should take place among patriots of the 2nd Amendment.
  18. IdahoCarry

    IdahoCarry New Member

    Criminals avoid armed citizens

    In a survey of criminals(read that as FELONS IN PRISON), Professors James D. Wright and Peter Rossi of the Social and Demographic Research Institute at the University of Massachusetts conducted a study in 1982 and 1983 paid for by the U.S. Department of Justice. (Professor Rossi was a former President of the American Sociological Association.) The researchers interviewed 1,874 imprisoned felons in ten states.

    88% of the criminals surveyed by Wright and Rossi agreed with the statement that, “A criminal who wants a handgun is going to get one.”(read this to mean that these felons are not obeying the gun laws and the Legislature cannot figure this out)

    Wright and Rossi reported that:

    81% of interviewees agreed that a “smart criminal” will try to determine if a potential victim is armed.

    74% indicated that burglars avoided occupied dwellings, because of fear of being shot.

    57% said that most criminals feared armed citizens more than the police.

    40% of the felons said that they had been deterred from committing a particular crime, because they believed that the potential victim was armed.

    57% of the felons who had used guns themselves said that they had encountered potential victims who were armed.

    34% of the criminal respondents said that they had been scared off, shot at, wounded, or captured by an armed citizen.

    Based on this government-funded research by Wright and Rossi, it would appear to a reasonable and prudent man that armed citizens do have a deterrent effect on crime.

    Studies that found that armed citizens reduce violent crime
    Lott and Mustard, Journal of Legal Studies, 1997
    Bartley and Cohen, Economic Enquiry, 1998
    Lott, Journal of Legal Studies, 1998
    Bartley, Economic Letters, 1999
    Benson and Mast, Journal of Law and Economics, 2001
    Moody, Journal of Law and Economics, 2001
    Marvel, Journal of Law and Economics, 2001
    Lott and Whitley, Journal of Law and Economics, 2001
    Lott and Whitley, Journal of Law and Economics, 2003
    Helland and Tabarrok, Advances in Economic Analysis and Policy, 2004
    Wilson, National Academies Press, 2005
    Lott and Whitley, Economic Enquiry, 2007
    Moody and Marvel, Econ Watch, 2008
  19. IdahoCarry

    IdahoCarry New Member

    Seriously? Have you ever walked through the hood? I was a private investigator and process server in Washington DC and walked through groups of bad guys on their turf almost daily where I was warned my them, "You'd better be walking sideways here". You don't challenge the BG's place of dominion. They take it as an insult to their dominance. You might make it for a block or two, but those 10 and 11 year old punks looking or creds would kill you and then take your gun. All Open Carriers should use "Wisdom & Prudence" before deciding whether to OC or CC.

    There are very few places safe from criminal attacks, that is why we all carry. There were 17,523 crimes against persons in Idaho in 2012, but of those 17,523 Idaho victims, I doubt that any of them were OCers.
  20. IdahoCarry

    IdahoCarry New Member

    That is why I love being a "rancher with a rifle."
    It keeps the wolves away (unless they are mentally ill or drug crazed).