OFFICER.COM – November 23, 2020 – Open carry and concealed carry are more prevalent than ever. It is inevitable that there will be an increase in encounters with armed citizens. How we handle them is a big consideration. First and foremost, I want to make this crystal clear -I am a pro 2nd amendment supporter.
Yes, I am a Benefactor Life member of the National Rifle Association www.nra.org) and member of the National Shooting Sports Foundation (www.nssf.org ). This is not a criticism on armed citizens but rather one where we must have clear thinking and all tactical advantages in understanding of the newly armed citizens.
Sales data from the firearms industry reveals that these past few months in quarantine has vastly increased gun sales to nearly all-time highs. The data suggests that we are seeing spikes in first-time gun ownership. These statements can be confirmed by your local gun shop where they have empty shelves, backorders and ammunition shortages.
The National Shooting Sports Foundation has produced new tips and educational pieces for these new shooters to address this phenomenon. With gun ownership comes the weight of being a responsible gun owner, their educational programs are worthy of consideration for your department.
Now, whether or not the firearm sales link to the quarantine issue, doomsday preppers, or even with safety concerns over the recent protests and riots, it does create valid and increased public safety concerns.
There is more to these recent phenomena than meets the eye. Whether you live in an open-carry state or a state with concealed carry permitting, there are several facts every law enforcement officer should understand.
Number one, not all people who practice open-carry or concealed carry are your problem. The matter of fact, they are more often than not law enforcement supporters. More than likely, they will have your back in a dire situation. Yes, there is a small percentage of them (just as a small percentage of any vocation or any group) that may not ‘get it’ or are a fanatical element.
Years ago, there were some of this fringe open-carry members who were seemed to seek out police confrontations. Hopefully, we are past these true believers now, but one must be weary of those seeking confrontations for whatever their reasons. [full article]