'Open Carry' may be on the way in Texas - MyFoxAustin.com | KTBC Fox 7 | News, Weather, Sports

'Open Carry' may be on the way in Texas

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If Texas lawmakers pass an "open carry" law, it will have been a long time coming.

As pro-gun as most of Texas is, it's actually one of only six states that don't allow you to carry a handgun out in the open.

Texarkana representative George Lavender filed House Bill number 700 on Thursday. If passed, it will bring an end to having to conceal your handgun here in Texas as long as you have a Level 2 holster and a license to carry.

"I don't really know why we would be among the last to do this. You know, Oklahoma just passed it and implemented it. None of the states have had any issues or any problems with it and I don't anticipate us having any either. So I think it will be a good bill, a good law," Lavender said.

Michael Cargill, owner of Central Texas Gun Works in Austin fully supports open carry and thinks it should have been passed in Texas a long time ago.

"The only thing that's gonna stop a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun. And by seeing that firearm, that person is less likely to do anything. That's why, in here in our shop, I allow my employees to open carry. Because people see that we're carrying our firearms, they're less likely to try to come in here and rob us or anything like that," Cargill said.

Representative Lavender also tells us many law enforcement wouldn't support the bill unless they added the Level 2 holster requirement. This time they did, so he's hoping for their support.

Charley Wilkison with Combined Law Enforcement Associations of Texas (CLEAT) says they're waiting to see if the bill gets momentum first.

"That's going to change the way officers perceive danger, it's going to change the way they react. They're gonna need a lot of additional training dollars at the local level," Wilkison said.

And there are some, like school teacher Meg Davis that just don't like the idea at all.

"I think guns are important for different things but I don't really want to see them because I think that a lot of people have to use good judgment and I'm not sure that everybody has it," Davis said.

Representative Lavender says the bill was first introduced last session in a slightly different form.

He says they got it out of committee but never could get it onto the floor.

But he thinks this time, they've got a pretty good chance...and if it gets to the floor, he thinks they'll have the votes to pass it.

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