This Cop Get’s It

Open Carry in the State of Texas

When I am at work I carry a firearm openly. No one looks twice at me as I go about my daily business. I do have a small piece of tin that rides beside my weapon but it is not that noticeable. I wear business or business casual cloths that do not by themselves identify me as a police officer. Most people that I interact with seem not to notice that I am carrying a firearm. I carry a Sig P220 which is by no means a small weapon. I really don’t think there would mass hysteria if a substantial portion of the law abiding public were to carry firearms where everyone could see them.

From a police perspective I would rather know that someone was carrying a firearm, rather than have to guess.

We live in an increasingly violent society. Those who take responsibility for their own safety have started to apply for concealed carry permits in record numbers in our State. Our State legislature has de-criminalized certain aspects of the unlawful carry of firearms law. Wouldn’t it be a logical next step to let law abiding citizens, who can qualify for a CCW, carry their firearms openly?

I completely agree with this. When you consider how warm Texas is most of the year, carrying a weapon concealed can be a little uncomfortable. Currently, if you are caught carrying unconcealed (or your weapon is even detected) you can go to jail and lose your license. And, doing so can be ridicously easy. Yesterday, I decided to practice carrying while I was at home. I had on a t-shirt, my pistol on my side, and a short sleeve button-down over this. I was doing some errands inside and took off the overshirt. When I went to take the garbage out, my wife had to remind me to put on my over-shirt.

My Review of Getting a Texas Concealed Handgun License

My Review of Getting a Texas Concealed Handgun License

Earlier this month I started the process of getting a Texas Concealed Handgun License. I know, I know. Shame on me for not getting it sooner. The steps of the process, as I have followed it are:

  1. Send off to the Texas Department of Public Safety for the application packet, or fill it out online. This will cost you $140. The $140 is non-refundable. If you don’t qualify, you have lost the money.

  2. Arrange to take the required course. I have seen it offered for anywhere from $75 to $140. The more expensive places will take your passport photos, do your fingerprints, notarize the necessary documents, and provide the firearm and ammo for your test. I went the cheaper route of $75. This provided me with the course (taught in a conference room at the local Bass Pro Shops), a 30 minute drive to the range, notarization of the documents (I didn’t realize he offered this), and the fingerprinting. I purchased my passport photos for $10 and provided the ammo (50 rounds of factory ammo) and a firearm.The class is a long one. It started at 9AM and I was not finished til after 7PM.

  3. Send off all of my filled out documents and wait for the state to finish my background check and send me my license (6-10 weeks).

I recommend everyone eventually take this course for one big reason. It goes in depth of when you can and can not use deadly force. Also, why it is not always a good idea to use deadly force, even if it is legally justifiable.

On the instructor, and the course I took. The instructor’s name is Sergeant Ken McKeown of the Terrell Police Department. He interjected humor and examples from his real world experiences. A good example is why he emphasizes you must practice. You can not just get your license and then not practice shooting. If a civil case is brought against you, the attorneys can use your lack of practice as proof of negligence. This is on top of your needing to be able to operate your weapon and shoot well in a highly stressful situation.

If you want to take the class, you can contact the instructor at gun-class@hotmail.com
The next class for new licenses is being given August 30th.

General Update

1. I’ve fixed my laptop. I bought an 80GB hard drive at Fry’s for $50, installed it, and then re-installed the OS (Ubuntu Linux). It’s been up and running since Saturday morning with n o problems.

2. We went and saw Hellboy 2 yesterday afternoon. We really liked it. I think it is even better than the first movie.

3. I am getting prepped for taking my Concealed Handgun License class next Saturday. Next weekend is going to be hectic, The class starts at 9 AM and goes til at least 8 PM. This means I will have to get all of my normal weekend chores done on Sunday (laundry, grocery shopping, yard work).

I am thinking of trading in my Star BM for something new to carry concealed once my license arrives. I am considering a Smith&Wesson Compact M&P 9mm (or 45 if they are out by then).

4. I switched back to Claritin from Zyrtec. It seems to be working much better.

This Is Cool!

Newly Crowned Miss Tennessee is Packing

She’s a daddy’s girl.

But don’t think this year’s Miss Tennessee is a pushover.

Ellen Carrington, 21, who was crowned Miss Tennessee on Saturday night, has a concealed weapons permit.

“I have a Smith & Wesson .40-caliber,” Carrington told reporters on Sunday, “(with a) silver top and black body.”

A Jackson native and senior at Union University, Carrington decided to get the permit because she was spending a lot of time traveling to and from Nashville at night. She said spending time at shooting ranges with her father, Pat, helped create an even deeper bond between the two.

I got this story from the Michael Bane Blog.

Thousands sign petition to make Texas an open-carry state

Thousands sign petition to make Texas an open-carry state

Summary: There is a movement to make it legal to openly carry a firearm in Texas. While it is legal to do so in many states (Virginia, Montana, and Arizona being a few), Texas is not one of them.

My Opinion: I personally support this. One concern that is brought up is how will police officers handle people openly carrying? The answer is the same way it is done in every state. If the person carrying is not doing anything wrong or suspicious, the officers ignore them. Every concern I saw in the article (and the attached discussion) was previously brought up when Texas passed concealed carry legislation. Nothing dreadful has happened due to passge of concealed carry. If it is passed, I would like to see it treated unlicensed. But, if licensing is required, I would like to see it be much cheaper than a CHL. Right now, it costs a minimum of $195 ($75(and up) for the class and $120 to the state) for the average Texan to get their CHL. If the state lowered their fee, this would help a great deal.

Massad Ayoob On Conceal Carry Options

Massad Ayoob on conceal carry options for Firearms

Another segment involved gun concealment options. With a light nylon windbreaker over my usual garb of cargo pants, shirt, and photographer’s vest, I proceeded in front of the camera to divest myself of two .45 automatics, two full size .357 Magnums, a couple of compact .22s and .32s, a trio of .380s, and so many snub-nose .38s that I lost count. When the camera stopped rolling, 25 pistols and revolvers had made it from concealment on my person to the table beside me. As they unhooked the body mike, I realized, “Dammit…I forgot a couple.” I had missed two short barrel Smith & Wessons, an all-steel .38 Chief Special and an AirLite .357. Well, there was no need for a second take – 25 makes the point about as well as 27 – but you know, I don’t think I’ll be as judgmental as I might have been the next time I read of some honest gun carrier getting arrested because he forgot he had a gun on when he went through a metal detector into a “gun-free zone.”

The post is actually on his forgetting some things for his segments on a television piece he was shooting. But, it’s still funny.

Another Reason To Get a CHL

Robbers Threaten Women With Bats on Lower Greenville

Summary: Dallas police are seeking suspects in two robberies along lower Greenville Avenue. The suspects are using a baseball bat and other improvising clubbing weapons. In one of the two attacks, they started with hitting the woman and then took her stuff. In both cases the women were travelling in groups.

Opinion: This is another reason I encourage women to get their CHL and not travel to any place that does not allow them to carry. The firearm acts as an equalizer against those who are stronger and/or armed.

An Interesting Article

The Texas Department of Public Safety is Swamped with Concealed Handgun License Requests

Summary: The DPS has seen a 39% increase in applications for CHLs. This is causing to take approximately 30 days more than their usual allotted time to issue the licenses. The extreme increase in applications is attributed to the possibility of an anti-gun Democrat in the White House and last year’s Virginia Tech shootings.

My Opinion: I very much agree with the Presidential race spurring this. You are not just seeing increases in CHL applications. There has been a huge surge in purchases of reloading equipment, magazines with a capacity of 10+, and what the media calls assault weapons. With congress already controlled by Democrats (including extremely anti-gun members in leadership positions), most people who value their right to keep and bear arms are dreading the results of the Novemeber election.

CHL Holder Fights off Attacker

Texas CHL Holder Fights Off Attacker

HOUSTON — A robbery victim turned the tables on his attacker in a grocery store parking lot, KPRC Local 2 reported.
Houston police said a gunman approached a man as he got out of his vehicle at the HEB store at Gulfgate on the South Loop East near the Gulf Freeway at about 10 p.m.
The gunman demanded money from the man, police said. The man decided to fight back.
“The complainant was able to draw his own weapon and shot and killed the suspect,” Sgt. Robert Odom said.
The gunman died at the scene. Detectives are working to determine if he had an accomplice.
“The suspect attempted to get into a car but fell out the door,” Odom said. “He didn’t get all the way in, so we don’t know if this guy was involved or if it was a situation where the suspect just tried to jump in his car.”
Investigators said several people witnessed the shooting.
The man was taken in for questioning, but no charges have been filed against him. Police said he had a valid permit to carry a concealed weapon.
Police said patrols in the area would be increased to keep shoppers safe.

Once again, one citizen with a gun has protected himself and society.