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Thread: Why Open Carry is a bad Strategy

  1. #481
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    I can't currently OC in SC ([email protected] laws) but as towards the outward show of force thingy... I'm not a small guy (5'10" - 230lbs) and I am told I generally look pissed off and just not somebody looking for polite conversation. This is one way, along with observing everyone/thing I can around me, that I hope to deter a BG from effing with me and mine. So, even though it may not be obvious I'm carrying... I don't want to look like a non-threat. I want any potential BG to think that if he wants to harm me he's going to have to earn the goods, I don't want to appear an easy target. I want people to stay away from me... I want to look like "that guy".
    Quote Originally Posted by Deanimator View Post
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  3. #482
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    Quote Originally Posted by gunnerbob View Post
    I can't currently OC in SC ([email protected] laws) but as towards the outward show of force thingy... I'm not a small guy (5'10" - 230lbs) and I am told I generally look pissed off and just not somebody looking for polite conversation. This is one way, along with observing everyone/thing I can around me, that I hope to deter a BG from effing with me and mine. So, even though it may not be obvious I'm carrying... I don't want to look like a non-threat. I want any potential BG to think that if he wants to harm me he's going to have to earn the goods, I don't want to appear an easy target. I want people to stay away from me... I want to look like "that guy".
    In the places where the law doesn't restrict open carry.... open carry sends the bad guy a very forceful message, a clear and unmistakeable message much louder than just looking like a guy with a cranky attitude, that you ARE "that guy" with the unmistakeable ability to shoot the bad guy if he attacks.

    Open carry has the message that the bad guy is going to have to "earn the goods" by overpowering a guy who obviously has a gun.... and that you are not an easy target because of that outward show of force right there in plain sight on your belt. And for nearly all bad guys it is much easier to just wait until the open carrier leaves and attack someone who doesn't have a gun showing... maybe some guy who looks all pissed off and cranky yet appears to be unarmed.

    Now I've posted the following many times and I hope Luke doesn't mind that I repost it yet again...

    About that "element of surprise" thing..........

    CC and OC have the very same "element of surprise" because the "element of surprise" is really nothing more than the bad guy being "surprised" to discover his intended victim ..... has a gun.

    With CC the bad guy is "surprised" to see his intended victim has a gun to defend himself with after the bad guy has already chosen his victim and the attack is already in progress and at that point seeing the gun can make the bad guy decide to stop the attack.

    With OC the bad guy is "surprised" to see his intended victim has a gun to defend himself with during the bad guy's choosing a victim process and at that point seeing the gun can make the bad guy decide not to attack at all.

    But either way... it was the bad guy being "surprised" to see a gun that was the actual "element of surprise".

    Quite frankly... I'd prefer the bad guy be "surprised" to see my openly carried gun and decide not to attack me so I can go home and watch the 6 o'clock news coverage .... from the comfort of my easy chair..... about the CC'er who had to pull his gun and "surprise" the bad guy who attacked him.

    Does OC's "element of surprise" really work? Well.... there have been thousands of folks open carrying in many States (Like Arizona) for decades! and yet accounts of folks OC'ing being attacked are rare. And you know with the anti gun media any incident involving an open carrier being attacked would be covered over and over and over yet such has not been the case in the past nor is it now.

    And, in my not so humble opinion, because CC's use of the "element of surprise" is only effective after the attack has begun but OC's use of the "element of surprise" can prevent an attack from happening............. OC's use of the "element of surprise" is far superior to CC's because....

    I'd much rather watch the 6 o'clock news than to BE the news.
    Gun control isn't about the gun at all.... for those who want gun control it is all about their own fragile egos, their own lack of self esteem, their own inner fears, and most importantly... their own desire to dominate others.

  4. #483
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    Quote Originally Posted by gundaddypv View Post
    As for your argument, why don't they drive plain cars and dress in plain clothes? Because the intimidation-factor of cops and the mere presence of a cop prevents crimes.
    I will correct the miswording of your statement. It should have read
    "Because the intimidation-factor of GUNS and the mere presence of a GUN (in the hands of a good guy) prevents crimes"
    -
    The squirreliest looking 4'10" 98lb 18yo cop that still has acne still has an intimidation factor based on his gun.
    Chief

  5. #484
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    Quote Originally Posted by gundaddypv View Post
    Cops and armed guards don't carry their main firearm concealed (many carry a backup gun and it is concealed) because they are already a target just because of what they do for a living. People hate them and target them just because of their badge or because of the cash. Therefore, the weapon they carry serves as a deterrent.

    I'm a nobody. I don't wear a badge. I don't carry large amounts of money. I dress in boring attire. I drive an older car. I'm polite. I wait in line. I drive conservatively. Not too tall and not too short. No purple hair. Not loud. No political bumper stickers. No flashy jewelry. If I were behind you in line at the grocery store, you wouldn't remember me. All the while, I'm carrying 22 rounds of 9mm Federal HydraShok in a Glock 26 with an extra +2 magazine in my pocket. I likely wouldn't be a criminal's first choice, so if it takes me an extra 1.2 seconds to draw, that's fine with me, but nobody expects me to draw. Nobody is aware I'm armed. It's as if I were slightly invisible, and my gun didn't even exist.

    If I were a cop in a pressed, easily-recognizable uniform with a flashy badge, a duty belt loaded with gear and had the power and authority to deny a badguy of his freedom or his life, I would need to be able to draw very quickly. Cops expect to be hated because of their job. Cops expect to be targeted just because they stop badguys. Cops are remembered. Cops are intimidating. Cops have to carry open because that's the fastest way for them to retrieve their firearm.

    As for your argument, why don't they drive plain cars and dress in plain clothes? Because the intimidation-factor of cops and the mere presence of a cop prevents crimes. It is beneficial to see cops out in the open in their starched uniforms and black-and-white cars.

    I hope that cleared things up.
    For me, what cops do or why they do it has nothing to do with why I decided to start OC'ing. For three decades I had virtually the same ideas as you do, that concealing somehow gave me an element of surprise. Add to that that I just simply didn't want to draw attention to myself by anyone, cop or other citizens, and I thought I had it all figured out what was really the "best" way to carry.

    Then at the beginning of this year it became apparent that a new law was going to pass that would clarify the laws about OC such that cops couldn't use OC as the only "justification" for an involuntary contact with an otherwise law-abiding citizen. They were going to be precluded from charging the OC'er with disturbing the peace and/or demanding ID and other info just because of a MWAG call. So I started visiting this sub-forum just to see if there were rationales being bandied about that I hadn't previously considered. Turns out there were.

    First, I have never carried because I want to surprise anyone in any way. I neither desire a situation where I'd have to surprise someone trying to victimize me that I have a gun, nor would I feel that it was the "element of surprise" that got me out of that situation alive should I prevail. I carry for one reason only; to be prepared to defend my and/or my wife's lives in the rare instance where a gun has the potential to accomplish that goal. For 35 years since getting my first CWP (in Wa. State 1978) I have developed most of the same habits as you mention above - remain law-abiding, don't purposely draw attention to myself, drive like a granny, no political stickers on my vehicles etc. etc. Not much I can do about being 6' - 6" and around 250 lbs. (or more) for most of that time, and up until some severe back problems caused me to find more unobtrusive forms of transportation, I always had high-end customized Harleys, and so did my wife, so we definitely turned some heads and drew attention to ourselves in that regard, but I digress.....

    What I found in the OC sub-forum was the rationale for OC that appealed to me more than anything else: being a deterrent to potential victimizers. There are those who will swear that OC is just a reason for street-thugs to shoot the OC'er first, but none of those people, generally-speaking, can cite a single documented case of that actually happening. You can find story after story about a CC'er drawing his/her weapon from concealment to defend his/her life though. The very fact that so few (actually, none that I've ever seen) documented cases of OC'ers being victimized simply because they were OC'ing suggests to me that there is an undeniable deterrent effect to OC.

    In '05 I took my first armed security job and we OC'ed there at a huge apartment complex that, itself, was pretty much a ghetto, but which was also surrounded on three sides by the projects that were even worse ghettos. That was eight years before the law changed making OC fully sanctioned here, but I thought, meh, whatever, I still didn't want to draw attention to myself away from the job, so CC was still my preference.

    In '08 I started driving an armored truck and two years into that job, I became a messenger (the guy/girl that goes in and out of the stops). As a driver I had a 12 ga. and my S&W M&P40 full size in plain view at all times. As a messenger, I only had the .40 cal sidearm, but between it and the body armor that I (and most of the other guys) chose to wear, it was quite obvious that we were serious about protecting ourselves and each other. Oh, and yeah, we were committed to protecting other people's money, but just like that is a secondary consideration to protecting your own life as a CC'er, so it was with us on the armored trucks.

    Now, I gotta ask you - Why on Earth would the deterrent value of being visibly heavily armed while getting paid to protect other people's property and money be any more (or less) important than being visibly heavily armed to protect me and mine from common street-thugs? The question pretty much answers itself, doesn't it?

    So the new law went into effect here in August of this year. I've been OC'ing ever since. I still don't want to draw any attention to myself, and so far, so good on that score, no one's said a word to me about it, but the probability certainly is that sooner or later someone will give me a hard time, or a cop will demand ID because of it and I'll have to argue the finer points of the law with him/them much more than I am comfortable having to do. But the bottom line is, what's more important? Always maintaining my comfort zone, or deterring criminals who are known for choosing their victims on the basis of their perceptions of who makes the easiest targets? I'll take the deterrent value over your "element of surprise" from now on. If the cops hassle me too much, I'll spank 'em with a denial of civil rights lawsuit. If people who question my decision won't accept my willingness to explain the reasons why I made it, I'll tell 'em the conversation is over and ignore their b!tchin' and moanin' about how I go about making myself and my wife as safe as I/we can be.

    You should reevaluate that "element of surprise" thing. It is proven beyond any shadow of a doubt that the only time a criminal is surprised by a concealed carried weapon is after they have chosen their victim, which puts the CC'er behind the curve since he/she is presumably the intended victim. Would you rather your attacker was surprised by you having a gun before or after he evaluated you as a good or bad choice to be his victim? Think about it.

    Blues
    No one has ever heard me say that I "hate" cops, because I don't. This is why I will never trust one again though: You just never know...

  6. #485
    Blues, Bikenut, if enough people start thinking like we do, concealed carry will in the minority
    Bad Guys of the world beware the next time you think about jumping on a old guy, because its a fair bet he's to old to fight and probably to fat to run, but can put one in your eye at 50ft with his weak hand

  7. #486
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    Quote Originally Posted by BluesStringer View Post
    For me, what cops do or why they do it has nothing to do with why I decided to start OC'ing. For three decades I had virtually the same ideas as you do, that concealing somehow gave me an element of surprise. Add to that that I just simply didn't want to draw attention to myself by anyone, cop or other citizens, and I thought I had it all figured out what was really the "best" way to carry.

    Then at the beginning of this year it became apparent that a new law was going to pass that would clarify the laws about OC such that cops couldn't use OC as the only "justification" for an involuntary contact with an otherwise law-abiding citizen. They were going to be precluded from charging the OC'er with disturbing the peace and/or demanding ID and other info just because of a MWAG call. So I started visiting this sub-forum just to see if there were rationales being bandied about that I hadn't previously considered. Turns out there were.

    First, I have never carried because I want to surprise anyone in any way. I neither desire a situation where I'd have to surprise someone trying to victimize me that I have a gun, nor would I feel that it was the "element of surprise" that got me out of that situation alive should I prevail. I carry for one reason only; to be prepared to defend my and/or my wife's lives in the rare instance where a gun has the potential to accomplish that goal. For 35 years since getting my first CWP (in Wa. State 1978) I have developed most of the same habits as you mention above - remain law-abiding, don't purposely draw attention to myself, drive like a granny, no political stickers on my vehicles etc. etc. Not much I can do about being 6' - 6" and around 250 lbs. (or more) for most of that time, and up until some severe back problems caused me to find more unobtrusive forms of transportation, I always had high-end customized Harleys, and so did my wife, so we definitely turned some heads and drew attention to ourselves in that regard, but I digress.....

    What I found in the OC sub-forum was the rationale for OC that appealed to me more than anything else: being a deterrent to potential victimizers. There are those who will swear that OC is just a reason for street-thugs to shoot the OC'er first, but none of those people, generally-speaking, can cite a single documented case of that actually happening. You can find story after story about a CC'er drawing his/her weapon from concealment to defend his/her life though. The very fact that so few (actually, none that I've ever seen) documented cases of OC'ers being victimized simply because they were OC'ing suggests to me that there is an undeniable deterrent effect to OC.

    In '05 I took my first armed security job and we OC'ed there at a huge apartment complex that, itself, was pretty much a ghetto, but which was also surrounded on three sides by the projects that were even worse ghettos. That was eight years before the law changed making OC fully sanctioned here, but I thought, meh, whatever, I still didn't want to draw attention to myself away from the job, so CC was still my preference.

    In '08 I started driving an armored truck and two years into that job, I became a messenger (the guy/girl that goes in and out of the stops). As a driver I had a 12 ga. and my S&W M&P40 full size in plain view at all times. As a messenger, I only had the .40 cal sidearm, but between it and the body armor that I (and most of the other guys) chose to wear, it was quite obvious that we were serious about protecting ourselves and each other. Oh, and yeah, we were committed to protecting other people's money, but just like that is a secondary consideration to protecting your own life as a CC'er, so it was with us on the armored trucks.

    Now, I gotta ask you - Why on Earth would the deterrent value of being visibly heavily armed while getting paid to protect other people's property and money be any more (or less) important than being visibly heavily armed to protect me and mine from common street-thugs? The question pretty much answers itself, doesn't it?

    So the new law went into effect here in August of this year. I've been OC'ing ever since. I still don't want to draw any attention to myself, and so far, so good on that score, no one's said a word to me about it, but the probability certainly is that sooner or later someone will give me a hard time, or a cop will demand ID because of it and I'll have to argue the finer points of the law with him/them much more than I am comfortable having to do. But the bottom line is, what's more important? Always maintaining my comfort zone, or deterring criminals who are known for choosing their victims on the basis of their perceptions of who makes the easiest targets? I'll take the deterrent value over your "element of surprise" from now on. If the cops hassle me too much, I'll spank 'em with a denial of civil rights lawsuit. If people who question my decision won't accept my willingness to explain the reasons why I made it, I'll tell 'em the conversation is over and ignore their b!tchin' and moanin' about how I go about making myself and my wife as safe as I/we can be.

    You should reevaluate that "element of surprise" thing. It is proven beyond any shadow of a doubt that the only time a criminal is surprised by a concealed carried weapon is after they have chosen their victim, which puts the CC'er behind the curve since he/she is presumably the intended victim. Would you rather your attacker was surprised by you having a gun before or after he evaluated you as a good or bad choice to be his victim? Think about it.

    Blues
    An extremely lucid and well thought out post. Great job and great points.

    Here in Virginia, there are no laws regarding open carry because open carry is the normal mode of carrying a sidearm (read that as standard or default mode). It has always been that way here. Consequently, it causes almost no problems with law enforcement and the general public. Very few businesses ban firearms on their premises as well. We can carry into banks, restaurants that serve alcohol (there are no bars in Virginia), police stations, libraries, and pretty much anywhere else... less a few exceptions.

    Thanks for your post. That was very well done.
    In the final seconds of your life, just before your killer is about to dispatch you to that great eternal darkness, what would you rather have in your hand? A cell phone or a gun?
    Si vis pacem, para bellum.

  8. I carry concealed because I don't want the attention, It is better to me to not be seen as a threat or target. This affords me the advantage I think you draw from the element of surprise.

  9. I am a huge fan of the conceal carry. I work with a Law Enforcement Agency in TX and many of the Deputies don't like the concept of open carry. It puts them on edge and immediately looks bad. I do open carry at home though. Castle Doctrine says I can protect my home and I do not have to conceal on my property. It is more of an aversion to "bad guys" than an alarm sign or beware of dog sign.

    This article are the laws recently passed last year in regards to CHL. Review of New Gun Laws from the 2013 Texas Legislative Session
    The inadvertent display is of the most interest in my opinion.

  10. Quote Originally Posted by usasgt View Post
    I work with a Law Enforcement Agency in TX and many of the Deputies don't like the concept of open carry. It puts them on edge and immediately looks bad.
    So what they are saying is that a visible gun scares them so they would rather not know if the person has a gun or not? The police are more concerned about the guns they can see than the guns that are hidden? Does that pass any common sense check whatsoever?

    Quote Originally Posted by usasgt View Post
    Castle Doctrine says I can protect my home and I do not have to conceal on my property. It is more of an aversion to "bad guys" than an alarm sign or beware of dog sign.
    If the gun is more of an aversion to "bad guys" than an alarm sign or beware of dog sign on your property, than why would it not also be an aversion to "bad guys" at the public parking lot of Wal Mart, the rest area on the highway or at the ATM?
    Anyone who says, "I support the 2nd amendment, BUT"... doesn't. Element of Surprise: a mythical element that many believe has the same affect upon criminals that Kryptonite has upon Superman.

  11. #490
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    Quote Originally Posted by pirahna6 View Post
    I carry concealed because I don't want the attention, It is better to me to not be seen as a threat or target. This affords me the advantage I think you draw from the element of surprise.
    Have you not read any of the previous posts? Headbang!!

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