After a final vote in May, Oklahoma may be the first state since Minnesota in 2005 to legalize open carry, but not everyone is happy about the controversial open carry bill.
Both versions of the bill would generally authorize the open carry of handguns, but not rifles. Many are expressing their concern that having guns openly displayed may cause concern. Jeannie McDaniel, a Democratic House member from Tulsa who voted against the bill stated, “When you see a weapon it raises your level of concern.”
“Just because some people are not in favor of the practice doesn’t mean we should forbid it,” said Oklahoma Republican Rep. Steve Martin, who co-authored the House bill. “If that were the case we would also ban face piercing.”
Russel Cook, assistant director of OK2A, a pro-gun organization pointed out that “Criminals do not carry openly. Law abiding citizens do.”
This new open carry bill comes after then-Gov. Brad Henry vetoed an open-carry bill, arguing that it could make it hard for police to distinguish criminals from law-abiding citizens.
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