There is a lot of misinformation going around about gun laws, and Josh Felker, owner of LoneStar Handgun shooting range, wants to set the record straight.
Felker invited members of the news media to his shooting range in Converse Jan. 7 to talk about the state’s new “open carry” law and President Obama’s executive actions; participants also had an opportunity to do some shooting.
Since the law went into effect Jan. 1, Texans with licenses to carry guns can openly carry them. But they should still carry their gun in a waist or shoulder holster.
Felker said the new law protects those legally carrying a gun from violating the law if they accidentally allow their firearm to be seen, such as when they reach for something on a store shelf, revealing the gun at their side.
But now more businesses are posting the prescribed signs forbidding both concealed carry (30.06) and open carry (30.07) that didn’t previously ban open carry, according to Felker.
“Some people have the mindset that guns are bad, so they don’t want to see them,” he said. He said he respects the right of businesses, but “if they post both signs, that’s when I take my business elsewhere. They are not benefitting their customers.”
He said that businesses that try to ban guns from their premises are only banning “good guys” with guns from their premises, leaving them to “bad guys” with guns who will disregard bans anyway.
Attorney Edwin Walker of Houston, a gun law specialist who joined Felker for the presentation, said business owners who post signs must follow rules regarding the text, the size of the letters, and where the sign is posted. However, they may also ask a gun carrier to leave or provide him or her with a written statement, such as on a card.
Walker added that government entities should not use the same signs the law prescribes for individuals or businesses.
Addressing the president’s plan to expand background checks, Felker said, “There is no gun show loophole. Criminals don’t go to gun shows to buy guns.”
Walker said a gun dealer must run a background check wherever he is.
“The only gun transaction that doesn’t require a background check is one between private parties face-to-face in the same state,” he said. “You can’t transfer your gun to a criminal, a minor, or an insane person. That’s already illegal.”