This is the first take on my thesis for my forthcoming book on the general history and topic of open carry. past to present.
This law denounces not as harm
With the so-called victory for open carry and the Second Amendment in Young v. Hawaii, many are no doubt curious why open carry is called the constitutionally approved method of carrying a gun, while concealed carry often requires a permit. Though society seems more comfortable with concealed carry, courts at least claim that their preference under the law is open carry. The huge discrepancy has to do with the history of violence in the South and in the Old West.
Though commonplace and the preferred method of carrying a handgun, concealed carry suffered from a negative reputation as a “pernicious practice” and “evil habit.” This demonization was due to concealed weapons’ associations with passionate violence and sudden homicides. A culture that tolerated and often encouraged easy violence blamed not the hearts of men for crime, but the effects of an inanimate object in the pocket for influencing men to kill. This violence and supposed deception justified many legal decisions against concealed carry, but supporting open carry.
Concealed carry has generally always been common, as much as, if not more than, open carry. Open carry was often not as widespread as imagined because of negative attitudes towards carrying guns. In many places until the shall-issue wave of concealed carry laws in the 1980s and 1990s, carrying a gun was seen as a suspicious, if not outright criminal, practice. Concealed carry’s historical tarnished reputation so demonized carrying a gun, it discouraged many from carrying openly, even though it was legal.
Read more at the Nevada Carry blog.