Open Carry

New legislative push for open carry gun law in Texas stirs emotions

by Richard Yeakley, News,  |  published on December 1, 2012

A sophomore Texarkana state representative caused a stir this week when he announced he would once again push for an open carry gun law when the legislative session convenes in January.

Rep. George Lavender hopes to spearhead legislation that would allow residents who have been approved for concealed-weapon carrying to carry holstered pistols in the open.

He was behind similar legislation that was not passed in the 2011 legislative session.

Texas is one of six states that forbids open carry in all forms.

“I definitely support open carry. The concealed handgun law to me is ridiculous… I am still carrying a gun on me, even if you don’t know. I honestly think open carry would be better because potential criminals could see right off … Just the mere sight of a gun on a guy’s belt is a deterrent,” said Bob Godell, owner of The Gun Doctor in Longview.

Godell said firearms have been an important part of his life — so much that when he retired, he purchased the shop.

He said he has little tolerance for people who were more afraid if a gun was visible than concealed.

“It seems silly to me. Someone who has a weapon concealed is the same person with the same gun as someone who is open carrying. I see no purpose in hiding the fact that you are carrying the gun,” Godell said. “I would say, ‘Get over it.’ ”

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