Carrying Openly Without A License

Discussion in 'GA Laws and Politics' started by Malum Prohibitum, Aug 28, 2018.

  1. Malum Prohibitum

    Malum Prohibitum Moderator Staff Member

    Is it time?

    In most states, a license to carry is a license to carry concealed. In Georgia, as we all know, the state requires a license to carry openly as well. You can end up spending a year in a concrete box for carrying a pistol openly without a license. This criminal penalty does not apply, however, to a 12 year old who carries an AR15 openly. There is no Georgia law against that. The license required for carrying a pistol openly is for adults who can pass the background check.

    Is it now time, politically, to get rid of this anachronism from 1910 that was aimed at disarming black males here in a southern state?

    The thinking for the last decade of the fight for civil rights has been: Getting rid of the license for carrying openly will harm other efforts, such as decriminalizing carry in off limits locations. For the first 6 or 7 years, I agreed with that thinking. For several years now, I have not agreed, and I will tell you why.

    We pushed through campus carry, but concealed only, so this change to a perviously off limits location would not have been affected by the lack of a license requirement for carrying openly.

    K-12 carry is not happening with the current Republican leadership, period. As a result, I do not see this being affected.

    Is there anything in our efforts to further restore the right to bear arms that would be harmed by eliminating the license requirement to carrying openly?

    I think now is the time.

    Actually, I think it is past time. I am well aware that my viewpoint is in disagreement with every "gun rights" organization out there, either NRA (clueless), GCO (oh, no, not now!), or GGO ("constitutional carry" or bust! - mostly bust). I believe, however, that I am correct, and it is well past time to put the gears in motion and push Georgia to join the majority of states on this issue.

    Please share your thoughts.
    EJR914, hma153 and Nothern_Defector like this.
  2. GoDores

    GoDores Like a Boss

    Fine if you can get it, but it definitely should not be a priority over removing off-limits locations for GWCL holders.

    I disagree that it would be easier to get unlicensed OC through the Georgia government than additional off-limits locations. We've already removed a number of off-limits places (bars, unscreened government offices, kinda-sorta churches) that I didn't think would ever be open for carry. I've never heard any positive feedback from GCO or most Georgia politicians about removing license requirements for any type of carry. But that is my opinion.

    Factually, according to this thread there are somewhere between 800k-1M GWCL holders. Not all of them carry every day, or go to places currently off-limits, but that's still a huge pool of people who could benefit from removing off-limits locations. How many people in Georgia are legally eligible to own a firearm, can't or won't obtain a GWCL, but would OC if a license weren't required? My guess is it's a much, much smaller number than the number of GWCL holders. Current GWCL holders who exclusively OC and don't care about the other benefits of a GWCL, like reciprocity and NCIS exemption, will save a few bucks every five years, but again I think that's a tiny percentage of the total.

    The next target should be adding GWCL holders to the 16-11-130 exemption list, and requiring locations that screen for weapons to provide onsite storage for GWCL holders. If we get unlicensed OC along with that, great! If we get unlicensed OC instead of that, I'll be disappointed that GCO has lost its focus on doing the most good for the greatest number of citizens who choose to be armed.
    TimBob and Phil1979 like this.

  3. gunsmoker

    gunsmoker Lawyer and Gun Activist

    I don't think it's time, but I agree it's probably closer to that time now than it ever will be in the future. Demographics indicate that Georgia is becoming a state with a far greater my noriteie population and those minorities tend to vote Democrat and the democratic platform is completely against civilians carrying firearms out on the streets (Democratic politicians may have different ideas about other aspects of gun control, but on packing loaded guns on your person out on the streets, they are in universal opposition to it. )

    Considering how so many suburban Atlanta counties like Gwinnett and Cobb have switched alliances and supported Hillary Clinton in the last election, the writing is on the wall.

    If you want to get this done, you should strike while the iron is hot, because the iron is going to be cooling off soon.
    Last edited: Aug 28, 2018
    Bill-Columbus likes this.
  4. gunsmoker

    gunsmoker Lawyer and Gun Activist


    PS: As to the substance of your proposal, I oppose it.

    I think a license should be required to carry a handgun out in public (openly or concealed) unless the person is engaged in lawful hunting , target shooting or other sport-shooting related activities (and I'd add gun shows and shopping at gun stores to the lists of places where no license is needed.)

    WHY DO I Like the GWL Requirement?

    Because every time a person commits a murder, an armed robbery, or other serious crime with a firearm I like to be able to say
    "but that wasn't one of us licensed gun carriers; that was just some thug, some lowlife loser, who is not licensed and was illegally carrying that gun anyway."

    Now I realize that a lot more criminals carry their guns concealed rather than in the open, but I think that distinction will be lost in the media and they will lump all and criminals with all armed citizens together as persons who were legally carrying their guns up until the moment they committed that murder or robbery.
  5. gunsmoker

    gunsmoker Lawyer and Gun Activist

    Go Dores asks a good question about how many people stand to benefit from this change in the law.

    I would also like to ask what kind of people would take advantage of this change in the law? What sort of person has never obtained a carry permit from this state or any other state with reciprocity privileges, and yet might like to strap on a gun and go walking around in public at least occasionally ?

    I'm thinking the answer is lazy people, stupid people , unmotivated people, scofflaws and people who are really not interested in personal self protection on a daily basis, but just want to show off their guns maybe to intimidate or impress their friends !
  6. RedDawnTheMusical

    RedDawnTheMusical Well-Known Member

    Yup. I'd rather see restrictions lifted for licensed carriers first, then look to step, which to me would be constitutional carry. Gunsmoker raises legitimate issues in my mind though as to permitless carry.
  7. Nemo

    Nemo Man of Myth and Legend

    OC in Virginia is lawful and has been for since 1607. Questions on this-- google Jamestown Virginia.

    If you are not criminally in possession of a firearm, an area prohibited under state or federal law or in a no carry posted area OC is lawful.

    The no carry posted areas are at worst a trespassing charge after refusal to leave after being requested by proper persons in control of that area and generally cops.

    I strongly recommend you all push the hades out of that to get no permit OC lawful down there. If you recall I have advised a time or 2 on OC and interactions with uniform and civilians up here.

    And up here, "Concealed" is defined in the statute (§ 18.2-308 ) as hidden from common observation.


    and note for car carry§-18-2-308-has-changed/
    Last edited: Aug 30, 2018
  8. NTA

    NTA Well-Known Member

    It's way too late. Every angry/crazy man who does a multiple shooting pushes the possibility of more lenient carry way down.
  9. moe mensale

    moe mensale Well-Known Member

    I don't believe that cost is really a factor, especially for renewals. I primarily OC but there are times and places that require discretion. That number might be higher than you think. And, yes, getting onto the exemption list is primary.
  10. Wegahe

    Wegahe NRA Instructor

    I agree that getting the GWCL on 16-11-130 should be the primary push. Along side should also be the open carry without permit. There are lots of people who can't afford the permit to carry in the first place. They buy the least expensive firearms they can find and carry anyway. Even though they are not criminals when they purchase the firearm through an FFL they are actually making themselves criminals by illegally carry without the permit. It would be great to have a method for them to be able to carry for defense without having to dish out an extra $75 in order to legally carry a $250 firearm.
  11. Huckleberry

    Huckleberry Member

    I remember way back in the day when I bought my first handgun, and it was very common, but incorrect knowledge that one could open carry without a permit, but a permit was required for concealed carry. That wasn't really the case, and it wasn't so easy to find the laws without having this handy dandy internet, but I was unknowingly a criminal a bunch of times before I learned what the law really is.

    I have mixed feelings about being able to open carry without a permit. Sure, I wish no permit was required anywhere in this country, to carry open or concealed. But I do like the fact that certain people are not allowed to carry at all. Because certain people should never be armed in public. And I do think everyone has a right to defend themselves in their own home, no matter what.
  12. Wegahe

    Wegahe NRA Instructor

    Yes there are some people who should not be allowed to carry. I am not the one to make the choice as to who can or cannot defend themselves. I am on the side if you can legally own the firearm then you should be able to legally carry said firearm. While the above holds true this also holds true. There are people allowed to legally carry that should not be allowed to carry. there is a thread on here about such a case. Idiot gets his panties in a wad because someone parked in a handy cap space that he didn't even need. Starts a verbal confrontation ends up slammed to the ground then has the nerve to kill his retreating attacker. Those idiots are out there with a license to carry.

    My question is who gets to make the call? I know I'm not qualified to look at someone and say no you can't carry.
  13. smn

    smn Active Member

    What good is there to have a fundamental right but still require the approval of the state in order to exercise such right. A right is a right. What other fundamental rights requires a background check and fingerprints? The 2A is declared a fundamental right and we should seek to remove the state's yoke from it's proper and rightful exercise.
  14. StarJack

    StarJack Well Aged Member

    What a concept! :righton:
  15. DonT

    DonT Deplorable bitter clinger.

    I am going to disagree with MP, but only that I don't think that unlicensed OC is a top priority, over other issues. Even with a (hopefully) friendly governor in office for the next session, I still fear that there is only so much of the new governor's good will that we want to use up for each session. In my opinion, unlicensed OC is not going to be popular with Kemp. I also think that adding licensees to 130 is not going to fly. Kemp as a newly elected governor, is going to be trying to move to the center on many issues, and as a politician, he is going to be sensitive to charges that gun rights groups are calling the shots. Of course, I could be wrong, and it's obviously a good, long conversation for to have with the new governor.

    My druthers would be to, as minimum: clean up church carry (treat like private property), clean up the leased public property issue, define "screening" for gov't buildings, clean up public college campus carry (let staff carry in offices, get rid of all high school related items, at least), and possibly, get private colleges treated like private property. Get all THAT done...that's a good session's worth of work!
    Savannah Dan, Arty and Phil1979 like this.
  16. HCountyGuy

    HCountyGuy Well-Known Member

    I concur with the current consensus enacting such legislation would have little bearing on things and likely affect an insignificant number of folks. I surmise there’s plenty of folks out there who carry openly or concealed and couldn’t give a rat’s ass about having a GWCL.

    If we could get it, I don’t think I’d necessarily be opposed to it. If nothing else it’ll cause panic from the left, which is always entertaining.
    DonT likes this.
  17. Wegahe

    Wegahe NRA Instructor

    I'm in favor of open carry without license. For that matter I'm for carry without license period. Criminals are doing it now anyway so why can't the non criminals? I am also for the GWCL being added to the 130 exception list. While not exactly in favor of a second tier GWCL added to the 130 exception with a training requirement I wouldn't stand in the way of it.
    EJR914 and Phil1979 like this.
  18. Scout706

    Scout706 Well-Known Member

    I'm for anything that gets us closer to "shall not be infringed".
    EJR914 and MewsicLovr like this.
  19. Malum Prohibitum

    Malum Prohibitum Moderator Staff Member

    Well, it is not exactly the first time I have found myself in a very small minority of dissent.

    Thanks for all of the thoughtful replies.

    I believe Georgia should join the rest of the nation on this issue, and it gets us a step closer to unlicensed carry.

    I do not see the remaining places off limits either being important or obtainable in 2018. What I mean is, if it is important, then it is not obtainable right now (K-12). If it is obtainable (churches) then it is not important. As to that last one, churches, we would actually be worse off if they removed churches from the Code, since it is currently a $100 fine with no arrest for carrying against the wishes of a church who does not want carry there. This was a purposeful thumb in the eye of the opposition. Why change that? It's certainly not a priority over something substantive like unlicensed carry.

    While I support many of the suggestions above (requiring storage for off limits locations, getting rid of government buildings, courthouse carry) I do not see them as obtainable this session.

    And "what sort of person?" - asked with a nasty supercilious sneer implying that only the lowest form of gutter life would desire this, well, ME. I have been a minority of one holding to this as a priority since 2005. It is now 2018. I am starting to feel like I am going to be very old or dead before Georgia makes it into the 20th Century on this issue (licensing for concealed only), much less the 21st (no license trend beginning for concealed).

    License required - 15 states.
    No license required to carry openly - 30 states​
    See and click on maps.

    No license for concealed carry is the way it is in the majority of the country, and I do not see it slowing down good gun legislation in the states where this is already the law (again, the majority of them). In fact, it is mainly the states that impose the burden of licensing on carrying openly that exercise more government control (MA, CT, NJ, MD). If you do away with the "may issue" states, you will see Georgia is in the company of very, very few states.

    It makes no sense.
    Does it make any sense at all, any, for long arms openly carried to be unlicensed but for handguns openly carried to require a license? It makes none, unless you want to disarm black males for self defense but still permit them some hunting (so you don't have to pay sharecroppers) and pest control (benefits agricultural landowners). Let us not forget why Georgia is in the minority of states on this issue.

    See page 5, Atlanta Race Riot, Disarm the Negroes!
    People control, not gun control.

    So, yes, it is a priority for me, personally, and that is the sort of person to whom this applies: A former military, former police officer, attorney, middle aged and (semi)respectable man in a Brooks Brothers tie.

    Again, thanks for the input, even though it disagrees, but I hope I have addressed any questions posed above.
    hma153 and DonT like this.
  20. moe mensale

    moe mensale Well-Known Member

    Much better. :righton: