Though open carrying of firearms in public is not restricted by the Federal law, there are specific rules when this is done on properties owned or operated by the federal government.

There are only five states where the open carrying of handguns in public places is prohibited. These are California, Florida, Illinois New York, and South Carolina; this is to prevent gun violence.

The past years, gun-toting individuals openly carrying firearms in public places, such as political rallies, public parks, restaurants and coffee shops have become a common sight in many U.S. states. Many of those who openly carry firearms, who argue that they are only “exercising their rights,” identify themselves as part of the growing “open carry movement.”

The open carrying of firearms, however, does not only intimidate the public, but also makes very likely accidental or intentional use which can result to injury or death.

Besides using the argument of “exercising their rights,” many say that open carrying is needed for self-defense. No research, however, supports this argument. On the contrary, even if used in self-defense, having a gun does not reduce a person’s chance of getting injured during a crime, but it increases the possibility of him/her injuring an innocent bystander.

One study even suggests that carrying a firearm may actually increase a person’s risk of firearm injury. Thus, instead of improving safety, open carrying unnecessarily increases the possibility of everyday interpersonal conflicts turning into deadly shootouts. This is because anyone will have ready access to firearms. Open carry laws also correlate with higher rates of suicide. States with open carry laws, in fact, have 36% more suicides and 71% more firearm suicides per capita. Additionally, when stopping an individual who is openly carrying a firearm in these states, law enforcement officers may be prohibited from demanding identification.

In the state of Texas, particularly, the Law Offices of Mark T. Lassiter says, “As of January 1, 2016, licensed gun owners in the state of Texas may openly carry a handgun in public and in many Texas open carry gun laws private settings. This open carry laws stipulates that handguns must be carried in a belt or shoulder holster at all times, unless there is a legally justifiable reason to use the weapon. The moment you remove your firearm from your holster you should expect to be under police scrutiny. In the event that you are charged with a gun-related criminal offense like aggravated assault with a deadly weapon or deadly conduct, you need to reach out to an attorney immediately. Even if you believe that you have not broken the law, it will be in your best interest to work with a lawyer throughout the coming legal process.”

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