The Gustavian Weekly

License to Scare | The Gustavian Weekly

By Megan Bertrand - Opinion Columnist | January 22, 2016 | Opinion

I went back home to Texas during winter break, and I found that a lot of things have changed. Many people rang in the New Year with alcohol and food. The people of Texas however, rang in their New Year with a new law, “License To Carry.” This law includes the open carry law. To simplify this in layman’s terms, thanks to House Bill 910, the people of Texas no longer need to hide their weapons, they can openly carry their firearms in a belt or shoulder holster. The citizens of Texas just need to get a “Concealed Handgun License,” no matter the firearm. Before this law passed, a person needed two types of licenses, one to carry, and the other a concealed permit. Now, only an LTC permit is required.

Texas became the 44th state in the union to pass the CHL law. The requirements to purchase a gun in Texas are still the same. Now, we no longer have to hide our guns. I believe there are pros and cons to this. For example, say you’re standing at a bank, and on the off-chance, a criminal comes in and robs the place. A benefit of the law is that you’re more likely able to protect not only yourself, but the others around you.

However, this can make you a bigger target. More people are armed at a given time, especially with the rising crime rates in Texas. Another con is that misuse and abuse are more than likely to occur.

Given the probability of a crowded area, a lot more misfire is likely to occur due to weapons being dropped out of holsters, or people forgetting to turn on the safety. Not everyone can handle their firearms with care. It wouldn’t be that hard to disarm someone at any given moment, and it just makes you a bigger target.

There is a lot of responsibility when it comes to carrying firearms. I believe that the safety of the public should be left to professional, responsible armed forces.

A lot of people would argue that seeing other people with weapons will make them breathe easier. I beg to differ. There is a lot of responsibility when it comes to carrying firearms. I believe that the safety of the public should be left to professional, responsible armed forces. There would be too many people wanting to show off their weapons, which can lead to all sorts of trouble in and of itself. It increases the chances of violent confrontations. Mainly, it makes the non-carrying citizens feel unsafe, myself included.

I believe this is a horrible idea, and I hope more than anything this fades into the background, and people won’t take advantage of this law. I believe in carrying concealed weapons, because this has worked well in the past, and it should not have changed.