Open carry is now the law in Texas. MSN reports that this means Walmart managers now have a new task, asking handgun toters if they have the permit required for open carry under Texas law. (What? Texas hasn’t heard of the 2nd Amendment? I thought the Constitution prohibited any manner of regulation of gun toting.)
Anyway, the subject brings up an amusing item I read this morning about a strategy developed by a university philosophy professor if you don’t feel comfortable at the sight of people with guns in public places such as restaurants. Perhaps you’re not comfortable with the gun lobby’s assurances that everyone carrying a gun is a good guy only seeking to protect himself or herself. Perhaps you think it best not to ask someone with such a pathological need to display weaponry to leave his shooting iron at home.
Addicting Info reports that University of North Dakota professor Jack Russell Weinstein has addressed the question of how to respond to open-carry activists in a post on the website Philosophy Questions Every Day.
My proposal is as follows: we should all leave. Immediately. Leave the food on the table in the restaurant. Leave the groceries in the cart, in the aisle. Stop talking or engaging in the exchange. Just leave, unceremoniously, and fast.
But here is the key part: don’t pay. Stopping to pay in the presence of a person with a gun means risking your and your loved ones’ lives; money shouldn’t trump this. It doesn’t matter if you ate the meal. It doesn’t matter if you’ve just received food from the deli counter that can’t be resold. It doesn’t matter if you just got a haircut. Leave. If the business loses money, so be it. They can make the activists pay.
… The gun-rights activists think that their intent is obvious and that everyone knows what they hope to do. They believe their minds are transparent. But this is because they are all extreme narcissists. It baffles them that we don’t all know exactly what they are thinking. It shocks them that we don’t know that Jim is a good guy, and that Sally would never murder anyone. But they are wrong. We don’t know them and we don’t know how they think. The only thing that makes us notice them at all is that they have guns and truthfully, that’s why they carry them in the first place. They want to be celebrities, heroes, and the centers of attention.
So, says Addicting Info, let them enjoy themselves and their guns. “Let them eat in the restaurant alone while the owners struggle to justify protecting them. It’s not up to the rest of us to play by their rules.”
UPDATE: Speaking of weapons, here’s a report from the Baxter Bulletin on remarks before the Baxter County Quorum Court on the first reading of an ordinance to take advantage of a new state law that will allow county employees and elected officials with permits to carry concealed weapons in the courthouse and other county buildings. Until now, that has been prohibited.
A local attorney and former prosecutor, Terry Poynter, said the ordinance was an “atrocity.”
“It eliminates the right of every citizen, who is not an elected official or employed by this county, the right to carry a weapon. You have nothing in here that would allow me to carry a weapon, at all. Anywhere. Now, I don’t want to. I don’t own one,” Poynter said, asking the county officials, including Pendergrass and Prosecuting Attorney David Ethredge, why they would consider the ordinance as it’s written and warning the county of potential lawsuits.
“It’s inherently wrong … it is constitutionally as wrong as the prayer you recited when we came in this room. You can’t do that, and you know you can’t do that,” he added, noting his Christian faith and his concern for other private citizens’ Second Amendment rights.
Faulkner County has extended weapons privileges to its employees.
AND FINALLY: Janet Huckabee did some campaigning for her husband, the fading presidential candidate, at a Sioux City gun range. She doesn’t admire the president much, either.