2016 Brings Open Carry to Texas

Via the DMN:  Police brace for 911 calls as open carry starts Jan. 1 across Texas

Police across Texas are bracing for a spike in 911 calls when the state’s open carry law takes effect Jan. 1 and panicked citizens start seeing handguns on people’s hips.

“For a while we’ll be in a transition period, but it’s something everyone’s going to have to get used to,” said Lt. Pedro Barineau, a Garland police spokesman.

Police will have to contend with the law’s gray areas that experts say will have to be settled in court. The law is unclear, for example, on when officers can demand to see a gun owner’s license or whether they can arrest people who refuse to show the license.

[…]

“The law is drafted so simply, it’s really placed a huge burden on the shoulders of law enforcement in Texas to parse through these issues,” said Emily Taylor, an independent program attorney for Force Law Shield, a gun owners’ legal defense group. Taylor trains police on open carry.

It will make for interesting shopping trips, no doubt.

And it sounds like the legislature thought this through:

For officers, the trickier area of the law comes in if a gun owner refuses to show a license. The law provides no penalty for license holders who don’t show their licenses to police. Taylor said case law in Texas could prohibit police from arresting that person, since the action has no penalty.

More at the link.

 

FILED UNDER: Guns and Gun Control, Quick Takes
Steven L. Taylor
About Steven L. Taylor
Steven L. Taylor is a Professor of Political Science and a College of Arts and Sciences Dean. His main areas of expertise include parties, elections, and the institutional design of democracies. His most recent book is the co-authored A Different Democracy: American Government in a 31-Country Perspective. He earned his Ph.D. from the University of Texas and his BA from the University of California, Irvine. He has been blogging since 2003 (originally at the now defunct Poliblog). Follow Steven on Twitter

Comments

  1. Scott says:

    Since I can’t tell a bad guy from a good guy, I think I’m just going to have to call 911. Especially since I don’t carry and can’t shoot first.

  2. Rafer Janders says:

    It’s only gonna be open carry for white guys, though, right? African-Americans and Arab Muslims need not apply?

  3. Just 'nutha ig'rant cracker says:

    @Rafer Janders: Personally, I’d feel more comfortable if we left the redneck crackers out of any open carry permissions, but then again, I KNOW that I’m a racist.

  4. Gustopher says:

    @Scott: You should get a gun, to defend yourself when you feel threatened by other people with guns.

  5. Gustopher says:

    Also, this makes Texas the ideal testing ground for Handguns for the Homeless.

    Just because you have no fixed address, that doesn’t mean you don’t have 2nd Amendment rights. Most of the homeless have not had their rights curtailed by a legal decision declaring them to be a danger to themselves or others, after all. And who needs self-defense more than people living on the street?

    Arm the homeless, let them open carry, and see if it makes Texas a safer place. What could go wrong?

  6. Joe says:
  7. Joe says:

    @Rafer Janders: @Rafer Janders: @Scott: For 20 years you have had the right to apply the same as I have. May Be that you can’t pass the background check

  8. Jenos Idanian says:

    Since I can’t tell a bad guy from a good guy, I think I’m just going to have to call 911. Especially since I don’t carry and can’t shoot first.

    Oh, great idea. You don’t like others exercising your rights, so you’re going to deliberately set up a scenario that can get them killed. And while the cops are rushing to protect you from wetting yourself, they’re not responding to other, real emergencies.

    How about this new corollary law: anyone who calls the cops because someone is carrying a gun and NOT actually acting in any threatening manner gets charged with reckless endangerment. And if that law-abiding gun owner is hurt or killed by the cops, the caller gets charged with murder or attempted murder.

    That sound fair?

  9. PJ says:

    @Jenos Idanian:
    How about this new corollary law: anyone who calls the cops because someone is

    carrying a gun and NOT actually acting in any threatening manner gets charged with reckless endangerment. And if that law-abiding gun owner is hurt or killed by the cops, the caller gets charged with murder or attempted murder.

    Don’t forget, a minority carrying a gun, or a toy gun for that matter, is always acting in a threatning manner. Because he or she is in the possession of gun which by itself is enough to make them act in a threating manner.

  10. Jenos Idanian says:

    @PJ: Don’t project your racism on others. After all, the NRA is a civil rights group, and the KKK was the militant arm of the Democratic Party.

  11. Franklin says:

    @Jenos Idanian: Wow, really love to see people who feel the need to carry a gun to feel manly and demand the deportation of all Muslims and Mexicans try to call out other people for wetting themselves. Quite amusing.

  12. Jenos Idanian says:

    @Franklin: Oh, man. Two more stereotypes and you’d have won the free toaster. Better luck next time.

    But you do get bonus points for getting every one of them wrong, though.

    1) Don’t carry a gun. Don’t even own any.

    2) Never called for the deportation of all Muslims.

    3) Never called for the deportation of all Mexicans.

    But if you can think of a better descriptor of the people who are so terrified at the sight of a gun that they’re going to call for help from more people with guns, bring it on.