Skip to main content
Report this ad

Second amendment freedom riders


When I wrote my last column, I thought the controversy would be over the comparison to the civil rights activists, not who would get shot at first. When I wrote that the people with obvious weapons would be shot first I was thinking of the murders of the four police officers last November in Lakewood, Washington in a diner booth. One officer got a shot off before he died. The thrust of what I was trying to say was that people who open carry are the Freedom Riders of the second amendment rights movement. The Freedom Riders were brave blacks who rode buses across the south to challenge segregation. The Interstate Commerce Commission had already technically removed the "separate but equal" rules but interstate bus companies still segregated people. The law was on the freedom riders' side, but the practice in general in the south was to continue to segregate. The riders forced the country to face the laws and enforce them as they were written. It took brave men and women to finally get the equality the laws had given them.

Those who choose to open carry open themselves up to trouble of a similar nature. They sometimes have to explain themselves to other citizens or to local police who are disinclined to have the public stirred up by troublemakers, and that is how they are percieved. Some get arrested.  I am baffled by the belief of some that if I am quietly eating my meal in a restaurant while carrying a gun openly, I am actually standing on the tabletop shouting "I have a gun! Don't you feel threatened by my really big, deadly gun?"

Several commenters have mentioned that when they carry openly, they are not hassled. That is great! We want to work toward a day where a citizen with a gun is not a source of curiosity. The lines are drawn, and Starbucks and California Pizza Kitchen are examples of the sides folks choose. Starbucks simply says they obey local laws and leaves the issue there (to the dismay of the Brady Bunch) and the Pizza Kitchen jumped through their hoop by posting "No Guns Allowed" signs in their locations. Open carry is forcing the discussion into the public forum and the marketplace, causing businesses to choose sides even when they don't want to. I believe there are more of us who support the right to keep and bear arms (or simply don't care one way or the other) than there are anti-gun advocates. The weight of history and facts favor our side. Ride on!

More from Gun Rights Examiners 

Atlanta: Ed Stone  |  Austin: Howard Nemerov  |  Boston: Ron Bokleman  |  Charlotte: Paul Valone  | Cheyenne: Anthony Bouchard  |  Chicago: Don Gwinn  |  Cleveland: Daniel White  |  DC: Mike Stollenwerk  |  Denver: Dan Bidstrup | Detroit: Rob Reed |  Fort Smith: Steve D. Jones  |  Grand Rapids: Skip Coryel  |  Knoxville: Liston Matthews |   |  Los Angeles: John Longenecker | Minneapolis: John Pierce  |  National: David Codrea  | Parkersburg: Nicholas Arnold  | Phoenix: Douglas Little  | Pittsburgh: Dan Campbell  |  Seattle: Dave Workman  |  St. Louis: Kurt Hofmann  |  Tucson: Chris Woodard  |  Wisconsin: Gene German


  • Robert 5 years ago

    My previous comment on the subject was to warn those brave souls that they were making targets of themselves just like blacks riding buses up front in the south made themselves targets. If they know this and understand the position they have placed themselves in and accept it then they are brave people. I have many spirited conversations in california about guns and open carry. Many more people than we realize want the right to do so but don't feel they need to all the time. I am one of those and I resent the idea that in order to keep that right I am going to have to wear one every day to keep some, my personal opinion, political hack like Saldana at bay. I want the right to do so if I feel the need to but I do not want to do it every day like a uniform and I should not have to. In california I will not even be able to wear it in my yard unless I am behind a six foot fence because politicians are redefining my front yard as public property due to no high fence. It sucks in california

  • Steve 5 years ago

    Great article! The list of comparisons to the civil rights movement of the 50's and 60's is endless.

  • Kingfish 5 years ago


    You claim that you were thinking of the four officers shot in Seattle when you told us that Open Carriers would be shot first. That does not hold any water Dan. This guy did not go in there to rob the place and see the cops and "took them out first". He went in to kill cops. This has NOTHING to do with civilians carrying firearms openly.

    Also, I am not a freedom rider. I Open Carry because of comfort and ease of access. I will educate someone who whats to know about Open Carry but I am not out to make any kind of statement or draw confrontation.

    Thank you for the followup Dan but I think you can do better.

  • HerbM 5 years ago

    It was probably intended as a constructive, even supportive, idea, but there is NO EVIDENCE for the 'predicted' issues with open carry.

    In fact, the arguments and concerns against open carry are precisely the same arguments made against concealed carry, and even just owning arms, by the gun control propagandists.

    And they are precisely as unsupported and therefore false in the open carry case as well.

    People don't get killed because they exercise their rights; they don't shoot themselves; they don't 'lose' their firearms to criminals; yadda yadda yadda

  • 5thofNov 5 years ago

    Your explanation to yesterday’s article is very reason that "Examiner" writers are just opinion pieces, that nobody should waste their time reading. Clemmons was looking to shoot police officers, not civilians open carrying.

    What is your training background? Why are you stating opinion as fact? Again, you have a false argument. Bio “Dan Bidstrup's Denver roots go back two generations. He has enjoyed target shooting for decades.”

    These are your qualifications? You have family in Denver and you enjoy “target shooting”????

    Examiner is a dam joke!!

  • MachoDuck 5 years ago

    Hey, 5thofNov, why the readiness to throw another supporter of rights under the bus? You admit it's an opinion piece, so why are you holding the author to some higher standard? I think that you're looking for love in all the wrong places. Show us the source that's always correct in all details.

    Spelling? As the frigid beaver said to her lover, "Not by a dam site!"


  • MamaLiberty 5 years ago

    I don't have to be brave, or even risk being hassled carrying openly in Wyoming. Come visit some time. You'll probably stay here, just like I did.

    I'll never set foot in California again.

  • JR Bailey Casper Christianity Examiner 5 years ago

    Hey Mama Liberty,

    I'm trying to figure out how to get together as many people here in the Casper Area, and in other areas of Wyoming, to get Albertson's Food Store Chain to reverse their No Weapons Policy.

    If you don't already know it, Albertson's has a 100% No Weapons in Store policy: however, that policy EXCLUDES on duty and off duty police officers.

    I was shopping on evening at the Hilltop Albertson's and I was told a customer had complained that my Open Carry made them 'nervous' and was asked to not shop at the store while Open Carrying.

    I spoke with the manager (when he got back from a corporate meeting) and he contacted Home Office about the issue. The manager was not aware that Albertson's actually has a No Weapons (including ALL knives) policy for all of its stores.

    So......I'm going to be getting a hold of some people I know in town (I live 40 miles North of town) to see if we can get some sort of coalition together.....holler at me will you?


  • Diamondback 5 years ago

    I, too, outlawed any vacations that include any part of California for my family a few years back. It's a beautiful state but filled with collectivists/communists and downright fruit cakes. Further, they charge so many taxes and fees that every meal or visit to an attraction brings me within a few heart beats of the blood exploding out of my head. I will NOT return to California unless called upon to complete a specific mission essential to restoring the Republic, the Constitution and the people's liberty. It would be a "target rich environment" though!

  • Paul Bailey 1 year ago

    You are right, second amendment has given some special rights of individual.


Report this ad