I haven’t posted at all (I think) on open carry. Some gun bloggers favor it while others claim it harms the gun rights cause. I can see both sides of the issue.
There are voters who’ll wet their panties, men too, if they see a gun on someone who’s not wearing a badge. More importantly, opinion leaders will rant about it convincing fence-sitters that gun owners are a bunch of loons. This column in today's Washington Post is an example.
I’m not sure that’s such a big problem. We’ll never win panty-wetters to the gun rights side. The fence-sitters will fall on both sides of the issue, particularly when even the White House says that there’s no problem with open carry where it's lawful (read some of the many comments at that link for examples of hysteria).
I’m sure that announcement was a shock to many anti-gun rights people. On the other hand, it can backfire on us. White House spokesman Robert Gibbs said, (quoted in the link above) “There are laws that govern firearms that are done state or locally. Those laws don't change when the president comes to your state or locality."
Anti-gunnies, like Obama, have used language like that to support draconian gun laws in Chicago, New York City, and else where. This is one country, under one Constitution. The Second Amendment should apply no matter where you live.
Some gunbloggers and others say that open carry normalizes the sight of guns on people who don’t carry a badge. I think normalizing guns is a good thing.
So, in general, I’m stuck in the middle. I think open carry causes some harm to our cause, but its good outweighs that harm. Having said that, I’m not sure I‘d practice open carry particularly in crowds. I certainly wouldn’t carry a gun in a holster that’s not a top of the line retention holster. This post by Rivrdog explains why.
This article spells out what you need in a retention holster that will make open carry safer for you.
Guns, particularly carried in public, are a big responsibility and we must take that responsibility seriously. Now, I'll stop preaching and apologize for the sermon.