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What Is Open Carry?

Whether you’re a seasoned firearms enthusiast or new to the world of gun ownership, understanding the concept of open carry is important. In this blog, we’ll delve into what open carry entails, explore the legal considerations surrounding it, and weigh the pros and cons. Whether you’re looking to exercise your Second Amendment rights or simply curious about the topic, this informative article will provide you with a comprehensive overview of open carry. So, let’s holster up and dive right in!

Please note that this article does not constitute legal advice, and we are not able to answer any legal questions. For more information about any legal considerations, consult a lawyer in your jurisdiction.

An Overview Of Open Carry

Open carry refers to the practice of openly carrying a firearm in public, where the weapon is visible to others. Open carry can take various forms, such as carrying a handgun in a holster on the hip or carrying a long gun slung across the shoulder. This is in contrast to concealed carry, which, as the name implies, involves having a firearm that is hidden until you need it.

Legal Considerations For Open Carry

Gun laws, including those that impact open carry, vary across different states and jurisdictions. It’s important to know which laws apply in your area.

States generally fall into four different categories:

  • Permitless – In many states, you don’t need a license or permit to carry a gun.
  • License Required – In some states, you need a license or permit to openly carry a firearm.
  • Open Carry Not Permitted – Some states completely prohibit carrying a gun openly or only allow it in specific circumstances (often while hunting).
  • Other – The laws in certain states don’t fit neatly into any of the above categories. This may apply to states where open carry is allowed on a state level but prohibited in certain cities or counties.

You can find a map of current open carry laws on the US Concealed Carry Association (USCCA) website.

Keep in mind that other circumstances beyond these laws can impact legality. For example, even in states where carrying a firearm openly is permitted, brandishing it in a threatening manner typically comes with legal consequences. Responsible gun owners need to research and fully understand the laws in their specific regions.

Pros And Cons Of Open Vs Concealed Carry

There is much debate among gun owners when it comes to open vs concealed carry. At the end of the day, this is a personal decision and is highly dependent on your unique circumstances. For example, the decision of whether to carry openly will be very different for someone in a rural area who is primarily concerned with defending against wildlife versus someone in a city with strict gun laws who is primarily concerned with self-defense. This decision can even vary on a day-to-day basis for the same individual.

As a general overview, here are some pros and cons of open carry to keep in mind:

  • Pro – Quick Access: The top reason people want to carry openly is that it’s easier to get to your firearm quickly if you need it.
  • Pro – Often More Comfortable: Open carry holsters may be more comfortable, especially in hot weather or with certain styles of clothing.
  • Pro – Can Be Used For Larger Weapons: Larger firearms are difficult to conceal, and open carry gives you more options in this regard.
  • Con – Can Draw Attention: Openly carrying a firearm can often draw attention. This can range from a few judgmental looks to, in the worst-case scenario, making yourself a target. This is the most obvious downside of open carry.
  • Con – May Spark Unwanted Conversations: If you’re interested in sparking conversations about gun rights, this may not be an issue for you. However, if you’re put off by the idea of having to explain your views to others, you should be aware that open carry can often bring up these types of debates.
  • Con – Potential Legal Issues: Again, legal considerations vary based on the jurisdiction. We can’t stress enough how important it is to understand your unique situation before you open carry (or conceal carry, for that matter).

Find Firearms At The Hub

However you choose to carry, The Hub is your source for high-quality firearms in Arizona. We have stores in Mesa, Tucson, and Pinetop, as well as an online store.

Visit us today to browse our selection of guns.
a man open carrying a firearm in a holster

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