Open Carry / Protest Carry

In Texas, one is not allowed to Open Carry a handgun, but you can a Long Arm.  This has lead to many incidences of guys packing their rifles into places one does not normally see someone packing a rifle.
They do this out of Protest and to try to help promote the Second Amendment.   The problem with this is that it raises many alarms and often cops get involved and it ends up on YouTube, and eventually the location in question puts up notices that no guns are allowed there at all.

I have a better idea.

The ATF doesn’t classify Muzzle Loaders as Firearms.    Now, maybe this will work or it wont, but let me through this out there…

flintock pistol

A fine classic Flintlock.   Ornate.  Engraved.  Beautiful.  Quite powerful.  And technically not a firearm.  Ask  Blackbeard if he thinks they were firearms.  Heck, ask Abe Lincoln.  They worked.  They built empires.  But according to our ATF, it’s not a Firearm.   Now, don’t take what I’m about to suggest and try to run this through some Airport Security.



Now, you would have to check with your local legal authorities, but packing one or two of these might fall within the legal loophole and you might be able to legally carry one or two where you would not otherwise be legal to carry a handgun.   Open or Concealed.


Something like this would communicate not just an astute sense of style and alacrity, but would also tender the message that it’s okay to have a gun on you – all the while not legally having a gun on you.   And I’m not talking about Replicas.  I’m talking about real working flintlocks.  The real McCoys.  With a pouch of powder and shot to go with them.

il_570xN.183434416 il_570xN.183435574

I think these pistols look sharp.   You could get a holster like these shown above… (Snatched from a fast and dirty Google Image Search) or you could get something of a belt hook on the gun:


So you could just hang it directly on the belt.  Just don’t go all Calico Jack on us:


Unless you’re this guy.


He can do that… Not you.   I’m not talking about going all ARRGH or anything.  Just take that Flintlock and carry that thing open.   For one, they are cool pistols.  Fun to shoot, and are works of absolute art.  And hopefully it doesn’t cause liberals to shiat their britches at the sight of it.  They still might – but since these are not actually firearms according to the ATF – they can’t do anything about it.
Just a thought.



21 thoughts on “Open Carry / Protest Carry”

  1. Technically, working cap-and-ball revolvers aren’t guns in that they can be ordered by mail. I’d rather have a 6-shot front-stuffer than a single-shot. BUT, IIRC when carried loaded these are all considered firearms, so I don’t think this will work.

  2. It not necessarily have to be a flintlock “pirate special”…why not one of the many fine cap ‘n ball revolvers? They are also not classified as firearms, heck you can order them direct from Bass Pro/Cabela’s/etc. A huge .44 Walker would be enough to get the attention of anyone and would be an excellent man stopper if called into action. They were still extremely powerful handguns in the early 20th century even compared smokeless cartridge pistol & revolver rounds of the same period.

  3. Matt is right, the .44 Walker Colt was the most powerful handgun extant until the intro of the .357,magnum in the 30’s. I like the idea, George, but here’s the question – carry loaded or not? How torqued do you think a cop’s gonna get, trying to secure a muzzle loader, or a cap-n-ball during an interview?
    Esp. When the average cop has to call his patrol Sgt. To unload a cartridge revolver?

  4. Well a quick jaunt over to Wikipedia reads that the open carry of Black Powder handguns is technically legal on the surface unless doing so is done in a manner ‘calculated to cause alarm’. Here’s a link from Open Carry Texas that speaks of an incident involving this. To be far though those guys were carrying pre-1899 cap and ball replica revolvers.

    All that being said…. I’d just not encourage anyone to dick around with the law. Be it for the LULZ or for legitimate political protest.

  5. From what I’ve read of the open carry protests there seemed to be a lot more “I can’t carry a pistol? Well, I’ll show you. I can legally carry something much scarier looking!” than real activism. Carrying black powder weapons or lever actions or hunting rifles lowers the tone and yet can make for a good media event. Of course you have to know how to set up a media event in the first place.

  6. To what aim are these open carry yahoos trying to get? How is that working out so far? Texas, outside of Austin, is pretty good about guns as things stand, why are you trying to frighten the sheep? I swear, we are our own worst enemy about this.

    1. +1 on that. This kind of crap lost open carry in CA which had it to protect hunters on the way to hunt. Open carry “actavists” I have met are impossible to reason with as they have their “cause” and damn all the rest. They don’t care what the results of their actions are they have their “rights” and if you don’t think and act 100% as they do you are the enemy. Encountered them outside a well known coffee shop with assault rifles IN SEATTLE. Guess how that worked out.

        1. The fact that it takes examples like CA, NY, and NJ to come up with something worse than Texas rather makes my point…

          At a certain point, there’s not really anything left to lose. So CA lost legal /permission/ to open-carry unloaded guns? What’s the loss, there?

          Whether you approve of them or not, gay rights groups have demonstrated that the way to get freedom is to demand it. For decades, they tried to be quiet and hide so that they wouldn’t upset folks, and got nowhere. Then they started standing up and publicly demanding their rights. There was push-back in some cases, but over time, they’ve won what they wanted.

          Gun rights supporters need to stop worrying about occasional lost battles, and look at winning the war, instead.

  7. I have had my CCW for probably 20 years and over 3 states(Texas, Oklahoma and Missouri). I don’t have a desire to open carry. It freaks non gun people. Heck it would sort of freak me out a little! My first thought would be that the person was a little too aggressive about their guns and gun rights. The only place it would be helpful to me would be if I had an accidental flash on a windy day.

  8. There was a small movement a few years ago in MA I believe that was openly wearing an empty holster to bring awareness of open carrying w/o actually carrying a firearm…BUT even some of those people were harassed by some cops asking where their pistol was!!!

    I’m really amazed how conditioned our society is concerning open carrying. It’s widely accepted for law enforcement/security or other people who “play the part” to openly carry a firearm, but if Joe Public dares to open carry then people come unglued. 100 years ago it was very common for the citizenry to open carry and most didn’t think twice, unless it was in the large metropolitan areas and IMO that’s where all of this fear mongering started. It’s not my place to condemn people who responsibly & safely open carry as in America we should have the personal choice to do so without someone infringing on their right to do so.

  9. I sort of like the open carry of empty holster sort of thing. It sends the message without the threat. I want to protect my 2A rights. I know the best way to protect that right is to exercise it. And I do in many other ways. But common sense says that confrontation with law enforcement over something that most of them agree with us on, just heightens the tension, makes their job harder and seems counterproductive.

  10. How about the best of both worlds? Ccw on your strong side.
    Open carry an empty holster weak side

    Real protection on my right
    “safe” political statement on left

  11. What is and is not, legally, a firearm will vary dramatically from state to state. Also what qualifies as any particular class of firearm.

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