Will gun control activists who oppose open carry
agree to a concealed handgun law?
RACINE COUNTY — An important new gun-carry ruling has even gun rights advocates seeing imperfection in this state’s gun-carry laws.
Tuesday gun rights advocates and top law enforcement officials here were asked to weigh in on Wisconsin Attorney General J.B. Van Hollen’s Monday memo. It stated that openly wearing a holstered gun is not grounds for a disorderly conduct charge.
The case involved a West Allis man who was charged with disorderly conduct for openly carrying a gun on his property while planting a tree.
The result of Van Hollen’s opinion is that one cannot legally carry a concealed weapon in this state — but bearing one in plain sight is within the law.
That doesn’t mean all gun rights supporters are happy with the situation. “I don’t agree with the open carry,” said Jim Schunk, owner of Shooters Sports Center, 4900 6 Mile Road.
“I believe you should have to go through a class and get a certification to be able to carry,” said Schunk, a former police officer.
But Schunk said he thought Van Hollen’s ruling was sensible under current law. “I think it’s going to push our political system to take a second look at this,” he said. “We’ve got to regulate this somehow.”
State Rep. Scott Gunderson, R-Waterford, pointed out that state law forbids concealing a weapon — but says nothing about carrying one openly. “It’s not addressed, so it can’t be illegal,” he said.
He said concealed-carry law opponents may have induced the current state of affairs. Gunderson twice worked to pass a concealed-carry bill through the Legislature, but both times Gov. Jim Doyle vetoed it.
“It just seems to me if we would have passed concealed carry law, I have a hard time believing we would be at this point today,” Gunderson said. . . . . .
Labels: ConcealedCarry, OpenCarry