Texas population: 27 Million. (2014 Census Estimate)
Texas CHL holders: 825,957 (TX DPS – 2014 Reports)
We have more “LIKES” on our Cold Dead Hands Facebook page than Texas has CHL holders. So, this soon-to-be new law will give 1 in ever 32 people the ability to open carry a modern handgun. ONE IN THIRTY TWO. With those kinds of odds, is it any wonder that concealed carry is not much of a crime deterrent? Now, add to that the fact that most people in Texas that do have their CHL are obviously used to carrying concealed, have their concealed carry holsters already and are pretty set in their routine. Therefore the vast majority of those CHL holders WILL NOT take advantage of their newly legislated privilege. Those that will exercise their newfound “freedom” will most likely do so sporadically at best and predominantly in rural areas that are more gun friendly to begin with, so the overwhelming majority of Texans will still never see someone open carry a modern handgun in Texas.
For all the hype, outside of continued protests for ACTUAL gun rights in Texas, there will be little if any notice of this new law within the general public. Only those CHL holders, described in the Senate Hearings as the “most law abiding sub-demographic” in Texas, will even be “ALLOWED” to open carry. I testified at that hearing and the overwhelming consensus of the testimony was in favor of amending the bill to allow UN-licensed open carry of handguns to match the unlicensed open carry of long guns already in place in Texas.
Judging by my conversations in the multitude of gun groups that I am part of, a significant percentage of those CHL holders are not even interested in open carry. They often cite the “element of surprise” or “tactical advantage” of concealed carry. With that in mind, as well as the minimal exercise of open carry in other states that allow it, I would guess-timate that probably single-digit percentages of CHL holders will ever actually avail themselves of the privilege of open carrying. So, in reality once this law passes, you might have anywhere from 10-50,000 CHL holders who open carry on any given day and in case you haven’t noticed, Texas is a fairly large state which means those numbers are dismally small.
Those who WILL notice open carriers? Anti-gun zealots looking to paint it as Armageddon. Which has already begun by the way, see HERE. You might be wondering why a pro-gun advocate such as myself would be taking such a harsh position on this “expansion of gun rights” in Texas. The answer is quite simple, it is NOT an expansion of any rights, if anything it is a slight reduction of the rampant infringement of rights. It is smoke and mirrors put forth to placate the masses and preserve political “pro-gun” ratings for reelection. Politicians get to claim to be champions of your gun rights, maintain their A rating from the NRA/TSRA and not actually DO anything to reinstate the natural rights of Texans that have been oppressed for well over a century! Oh, and then there is THE MONEY. Here is some food for thought…
The state makes money off of the licensing fees and renewals. CHL instructors make money running the MANDATORY CHL classes and for the record there are only 3,125 certified instructors in Texas as of 2014. Who certifies these instructors? Primarily, the NRA. The NRA and TSRA promoted the licensed open carry bills, while giving the constitutional carry bills an “honorable mention” or what some would characterize as little more than lip service. CJ Grisham wrote an excellent article calling them out on it, Why Is The NRA Selling Away My Rights? [*In Texas] As I’m sure you have heard and probably not heeded, FOLLOW THE MONEY. In the end, one must ask why this DO-NOTHING “gun bill” is being praised and vilified so profusely, when it is much ado about nothing? Could the HYPE be a distraction from the money politics? Conflict is good for advocacy ON BOTH SIDES, with full constitutional gun freedom what would the NRA, TSRA and Bloomberg-backed anti-gun groups do to raise money? Yes, Cold Dead Hands is an advocacy group for 2nd Amendment gun rights, but we do not have to hype the conflict to keep the donations rolling in, we EARN and INVEST our own money into our advocacy. We may be a for-profit business advocacy, but the REAL MONEY is in NON-PROFIT! Something to think about. Keep Calm And CARRY, it’s your RIGHT and it is your RESPONSIBILITY!
Jon Britton aka DoubleTap is Chief Operating Officer of CDH, Inc., a regular contributing author and regularly involved in most aspects of their social media. “Writing was never a goal or even vaguely contemplated as a career choice, it just happened, an accidental discovery of a talent and a passion.” A passion that has taken him in many directions from explorations of the zombie subculture and zombie stories to political advocacy. Joining the U.S. Air Force right out of high school, Jon had the opportunity to experience many different parts of the world and different cultures. His post military career path, both white collar and blue collar, allowed him to work alongside both CEOs and average Joes. As a founding member Cold Dead Hands his study of human nature and writing ability found a purpose. His zombie roots provided a variety of issues from prepping to human behavior under crisis to firearms that he applies to his advocacy for gun rights. A ravenous appetite for the study of history combined with his current events political junkie addiction led to him writing an e-book Gun Sense: Past, Present and Future.