Locked and loaded for open carry

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Updated: 3/02/2012 9:28 am Published: 3/01/2012 11:50 pm

Oklahoma lawmakers are locked and loaded and moving a proposal the furthest it has since former Governor Brad Henry was in office.

HB2522, the Open Carry proposal, would allow people with concealed carry permits to openly carry a weapon.

Henry vetoed a similar proposal two years ago.

“It's a scary thought,” said Tulsan Bobby McGee.

One mother doesn’t like the thought of someone carrying a weapon at a park with her kids around.

"There is too much room for error. We can't take a chance,” said Suzanne Blagg.

"We don't want a man out here with a gun where all the kids can see it. One more thing you have to explain to your child."

Nineteen states have constitutional carry which is open carry without restrictions except for federal regulations.

"I say be responsible and not just the Wild West,” said Tulsan John Wheeler.

Spokespeople for Open Carry.org and the Oklahoma Second Amendment say they don’t agree with concealed carry restriction.

In a statement: 

OpenCarry.org and OK2A join in urging the Oklahoma legislature to remove the licensure requirement from the open carry bill, or alternatively, at least lower the concealed carry license age to 18.

Forty-three states have some type of open carry law.

"We don't want people walking around with guns on your hip,” said Blagg.

While some Tulsans are hesitant, many say 'we have rights.' 

“It is getting more dangerous around Tulsa,” said Wheeler. "If the person is reasonable and sober I could see."

Representative Tommy Hardin and Representative Paul Roan, also a former Oklahoma Highway Patrol trooper, voted against HB2522 in the Public Safety committee.

Hardin says he supports open carry but says it’s a public safety issue and would like it to be required that some openly carry make it obvious they carrying a weapon and also display the open carry license.

Representative Roan says it is a return of the “lawless days of yesteryear” and poses a safety concern for police.

HB 2522 now goes to the House floor for a vote.

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The views expressed here do not necessarily represent those of KOKI FOX23 - Tulsa

becivil0478 - 5/27/2012 7:02 AM
0 Votes
Im so happy that this open carry law is finally being past! Why should those of us who wish to open carry be denied the right to do so just because you have a lot od people out there that are so against it. A lot of people that open carry is for attention and what not, but who are those people to say wether its right or wrong. Its our second right in the constitution to have the right to bear arms to protect ourselves. I get so upset when I read such negativity on this issue. Most people who wish to either conceal carry or open carry are not doing so to upset the public as has been said so many times before. It is utterly rediculous that so many people think like that. I mean yes, I do believe in freedom of speech but you should at least have a better reason for this particular issue other than you just dont like it and call it dangerous. Guns are not dangerous, the wrong people are and believe me when I tell you im sure that the dangerous people are not open carrying firearms! Just something to think about...

Major Hassle - 4/25/2012 11:04 PM
0 Votes
Dear Legislators.... I fully support an open carry law, but Plzzzzzz, use some common sense... Maintain the rigorous background checks as you do with conceal and carry... Do not lower the age to 18 as some advocate... If you allow open carry by anyone without licensure, that means the convicts will be carrying also... at least if you pass the bill with the same conceal carry requirements, I will at least have a little piece of mind knowing that the idiot that is packing firepower, has also gone through some kind of back ground check and the State has record of it... I would like to carry, but to do so legally, and letting you do a background check on me, I have no problem with it... Hey, I am knocking and the govt has had my fingerprints since I was 17 when I joined the Army... I can not count the number of security clearances that I have gone through, or background checks that have been executed on me to teach... So in essence, the govt already knows just who the hell I am... If you were to survey people, I think you will find that many will feel the same way as I do... only idiots will not approve of a licensure process.... by licensing a person to carry, you have not invoked a wall to their 2nd amendment rights... Even if you pass an open carry, I will carry in a concealed manner... I just do not want all of the attention that Smith or Ruger will bring me when I am walking in the mall... At least if their is another shoot out like there was in Muskogee, I'll be able to protect myself...

frenchtx - 4/18/2012 8:42 PM
0 Votes
Do these idiots not realize that the ones without a permit are the ones to be concerned about. Crimanals certainly don't register their weapons nor is the law going to change what they do with their weapon. It only gives law abiding citizens the opertunity to protect themselves. Thomas DF

Michael - 4/4/2012 8:29 AM
0 Votes
Jim Maisano the assistant police chief for the Norman PD says "with updated training he believes law enforcement agencies will be able to handle Open Carry. It's how the law worked when he started at the department 28 years ago, he said, and other than possibly making some citizens nervous it should not significantly impact police operations. Criminals won't be the type to carry their handguns openly anyhow"

Michael - 4/4/2012 8:29 AM
0 Votes
Jim Maisano, deputy chief for the Norman Police Department, said with updated training he believes law enforcement agencies will be able to handle Open Carry. It's how the law worked when he started at the department 28 years ago, he said, and other than possibly making some citizens nervous it should not significantly impact police operations. Criminals won't be the type to carry their handguns openly anyhow, he said.

msglaigaie - 3/10/2012 9:27 AM
0 Votes
Good on you OK. I am an Open Carrier in Washington State. You will be surprised how many people will support you and the Constitution when you start OCing. Some in the LEO community will harrass you regardless of the law, but perservere

mom of many - 3/7/2012 9:55 PM
1 Vote
I am relieved that Open Carry is finally making it through this time. I truly doubt that we will actually "see" many visible handguns across the state as those of us who carry for protection do not want undue attention. As a middle aged woman with a conceal and carry permit, it will be a relief to not have to fear that the outline of my gun will be visible through my clothing or that if my blouse is subject to our Oklahoma winds that the butt of the gun might be seen above my waistline. These mishaps put me at risk of breaking the law. It has been unfortunate that those of us who go to the time and expense of extensive training and preparation can be treated as criminals if our registered tools of protection can be made out under our clothes. I reside in a crime ridden area of Tulsa where the criminals clearly have little regard to our laws. It has been proven that in those states where "open carry" is permitted that the crime rates drop. It will be a welcome change to have the thugs thing twice before they mess with grandma.

Longbow - 3/6/2012 8:04 AM
0 Votes
@KacieSP - You said you will not check back on this thread any longer but I do hope that you change your mind if only to read this. Thank You for your service and the sacrifices you made while serving our fine country. Without brave warriors such as yourself we might very well not even have the option of debating this subject. I am very happy that you made it home to enjoy the fruits of your labor. We can debate our differing points of view another time on another thread.

KacieSP - 3/6/2012 2:49 AM
1 Vote
Well I see the grammar police made it here also. lol Longbow you seem to make a lot of assumptions. As for the misuse of words, you will have to blame that on my auto-spell check. Yes, I should proof read it first before posting but, I do not so, you got me on that one. As for my experience in law enforcement; even though it is none of your business nor does it have anything to do with this article; I was a Master-at-Arms in the Navy for 12 years (Navy Police). Prior to that I served several years with the OCPD before switching from Naval Reserves to Active Duty for Desert Shield/Storm. After Desert Shield/Storm I remained on Active Duty till I was offered early retirement in 2000 as part of Bush’s cut backs. Since then I have run my own business part time. Now what experience do you have that makes you such an expert? As I have stated more then once, your rights are not absolute. If you feel that you can legally carry a firearm, especially open carry here in Oklahoma under your Constitutional rights, then go for it and see just how far you get with your Constitutional right to carry that firearm. And then see how far you get arguing your point in court. One should do research before trying to debate an issue. A simple phone call to an attorney that specializes in Constitutional Law will tell you the same. But, if you want to argue it here then you can argue it with your self. This article is old and this thread is basically dead now so, I do not plan to follow it anymore or waste my time arguing Constitutional Law with someone who does not know what they are talking about.

Ninster - 3/5/2012 3:13 PM
1 Vote
"We don't want a man out here with a gun where all the kids can see it. One more thing you have to explain to your child." This made me giggle. So, because you don't want to explain something to your kid, it should be wrong for everyone? Puhleeeze. I'll bet your head just about explodes when they ask where babies come from.
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