Open Carry vs. Concealed Carry

The debate over whether to openly carry or conceal firearms has been a contentious issue for many years. Both methods have their proponents and detractors, and each has its own set of advantages and disadvantages.  At C2 we let the customer decide, then help you choose the proper equipment and training to support that decision.

 Open Carry Pros

Deterrence: The visibility of a firearm can act as a deterrent to potential criminals, as they may be less likely to commit a crime if they know someone is armed.

Accessibility: Open carry allows for quick and easy access to your firearm in case of an emergency, as there are no layers of clothing or holsters to navigate.

Legal Simplicity: In some jurisdictions, open carry may be easier to understand and navigate legally compared to concealed carry, which may have stricter regulations and permit requirements.

Open Carry Cons

Attention: Openly carrying a firearm can attract unwanted attention, potentially making you a target for criminals who want to disarm you or bystanders who feel uncomfortable or threatened. Often, children will see the exposed forearm and do their best to touch it.

Confrontation: Some people may feel intimidated or alarmed by the sight of a firearm, leading to unnecessary confrontations or misunderstandings. Those not comfortable may begin a confrontation that, due to you being armed, you are obligated to excuser yourself from or at minimum de-escalate the situation.

Security Risks: A visible firearm can be more susceptible to theft or unauthorized use if not properly secured. Any open-carry gun should have additional retention for safety and security reasons. A friction lock holster is not enough in this situation.

Concealed Carry Pros

Inconspicuousness: Concealed carry allows you to maintain a low profile, reducing the likelihood of becoming a target for criminals or causing unnecessary alarm among the public.

Flexibility: Concealed carry offers more options for carrying your firearm discreetly in various situations, including formal events or places where open carry is prohibited.

Privacy: Concealed carry allows you to maintain your privacy and avoid unwanted attention or conversations about your firearm.

Concealed Carry Cons

Accessibility: Concealed carry can make it more challenging to access your firearm quickly in an emergency, especially if you are wearing layers of clothing or using specialized holsters. The more concealed your firearm is, the longer it will take to access. It is that simple.

Legal Complexity: Concealed carry laws can be more complex and vary significantly from state to state, requiring a thorough understanding of local regulations and potential permit requirements. Even with a CCW, one may not carry in all locations. Know the laws.

Training Requirements: Proper training and practice are essential for safely carrying a concealed firearm, which may require additional time and resources. Defeating concealment, Access, Protection, and Retention skills are a must for all concealed carriers. These are skills above and beyond shooting.

Final Thoughts

The decision to open or conceal carry is a personal one that depends on your comfort level, lifestyle, and legal considerations. Both methods have their merits and drawbacks, and what works best for one person may not be suitable for another.

If you choose to carry a firearm, whether openly or concealed, it is crucial to prioritize safety, responsibility, and adherence to local laws and regulations. Proper training, regular practice, and a thoughtful approach to firearm ownership can help ensure that you are prepared to handle your firearm responsibly and effectively in any situation.

At a minimum, we suggest that you take our CCW1 and CCW2 classes to understand the legalities of carrying a firearm in Arizona.

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