You know when it comes to groups I think us second amendment supporters can certainly take a title for one of the most fickle groups out there. We argue amongst ourselves at the drop of the hat. For instance there are long running battles in our group about what’s better the AR-15 or AK-47? what caliber is better for self defense the 9mm or the .45, and of course does open carrying help or hinder our movement?
Now don’t get me wrong I’m not complaining, I love arguments. Arguments are how things get decided and I’m proud to say I’m part of a movement that is willing to argue about topics in detail. The other side of the coin are those who use simple talking points and always agree with one another. Those people don’t get anything good accomplished because they never take other sides into consideration.
Well this weeks argument seems to be about open carrying. Rob Allen is all for it, Sebastian isn’t a fan, and Uncle is all for it but doesn’t believe it promotes the second amendment to others. Of course I’m nowhere near these three as far as the popularity of my blog (or lack thereof) but that’s never stopped me from chiming in when an good argument is afoot.
Let’s face it most peoples’ exposure to firearms is in a negative sense. For the average Joe the only time they are exposed to another individual carrying a gun outside of a range is when the gun is in their face during a mugging or robbery or when they are interacting with a police officer (and if you’re dealing with their gun it’s probably not a good thing either).
Due to this the default reaction of most people is negative when they see another person carrying a gun. If a majority of peoples’ exposure to other carrying firearms was positive I believe this default reaction would change. That’s also why I don’t believe open carrying alone is going to do anything, you need to do it well.
What I mean by that if you are open carrying as a method to change peoples’ minds be polite as possible, dress well, and besides the gun look as harmless as possible. If somebody approaches you and decided to confront you on your choice to carry a gun don’t get in their face. Explain in a calm and collected manner why you chose to carry a gun. Scream, “BECAUSE IT’S MY RIGHT!” isn’t going to accomplish anything. On the other hand explain how you carry a gun to protect yourself and your family will give the confronter nothing they want and hence they will most likely move on.
If you’re walking around carrying a gun openly make eye contact and politely nod to anybody you pass by. Say, “Hello” or “How are you doing?” Just be a nice person. If you want people to become accustom to firearms their exposure must be positive. That’s the key.