How to deal with conceal carry restrictions in your day to day errands
Being a concealed carry permit holder is not always easy. We need to balance a lot of details to make sure we are compliant with local and federal laws while keeping ourselves and families as safe as possible.
One of the monkey wrenches we have to deal with on a daily basis is a posted business. Some states--like Wisconsin--can post a sign disallowing your right to carry a weapon in their building or on their grounds. The sign needs to be at least 5x7 inches and placed in an obvious location near all of the entrances to the part of the building or grounds where the restrictions apply. These signs can also be places on the entrances to the property so no weapons can be brought onto the property whatsoever.
How do you plan your day off running all your errands and finishing your honey-do list while concealed carrying?
Many times you know which businesses you’ll be visiting, because you've been there prior, making it easier to plan your route and know whether you can carry or not. A good example is the mall. Do you need to run to Sears to swap out the ½ inch socket you broke over the weekend? Well, many times malls are not gun friendly places.
The same goes for the post office, some gas stations, cell phone stores and a myriad of other businesses we frequent on our quest to keep up with our busy lives.
We’ve previously talked about some of the options like leaving your gun at home. Leaving your main source of security at home is the least desirable of all the choices for obvious reasons. For that reason we are going to talk about other options.
Leave your gun in the car
Taming your to-do list while carrying, you’re bound to come across a business where you will need to leave your gun in the car. Personally, I am more nervous about leaving a gun in the car than I am carrying it in a crowded store. The action of removing your gun from your concealed carry holster and placing it in the center console could catch someones eye however there always is the option of a vehicle holster mount.
With the way the media and some law enforcement agencies are teaching the public to speak up and call the police when they see a gun--even legally owned and carried--can cause you unforeseen problems. Coming back to your car, now surrounded by police cars, with officers wanting to ask you a million and one questions about your gun and why you left it in the car and whatever else they might come up with.
The same would go for an evil-doer seeing you leaving your gun in the vehicle. They see you place your gun in the console, lock the car can walk away. That’s an easy smash and grab. The prize is a new gun with no ties to them to use for some nefarious activity to be determined later. Now you are out 500 dollars, the cost of a window and the huge pain in the backside inevitable when dealing with the police for the report.
Bypass the business and choose one who allows you to retain your rights
My personal preference is to bypass the businesses where I can’t carry. The economy is in the crapper and more, now than ever, businesses are more conscious of what the customers want and eager to please because they want your money.
Boycotting a business for the specific reason of their no guns allowed sign might not put them in dire straights and cause them to close their doors, but it will have an impact.
Think about the math of it. You buy at least one take of gas most weeks, more than likely two. Say your tank needs about $45 dollars in fuel to fill up. That’s roughly $90 a week you spend or $390 a month or $4680 a year. For ease of the math, let’s call it $4500, even though that doesn’t include any of the other things you might buy like coffee or a pack of gum.
By boycotting the business, they are out that money and their competitor is getting it. Now, say you and 9 other regular customers are doing the same thing. That’s $45,000 the gas station lost this year because of the boycotting customers. Do you think they will miss $45,000? I think they would.
The key though is to let someone in an authority position know why you are boycotting their business. Some may not care one bit, while other business owners may take the time to hear you out and consider changing their policy. Voting with your dollars does have an effect, especially in smaller communities.
I used the gas station example because I and several people I know do not patronize a local gas station since they posted their no guns sign. I went to the gas station everyday on my way to work. I knew all of the morning people by name and hung out with them out of work too. When the owners posted the signs, I stopped going there and told them why.
The employees said there was a decline in their business because of the sign, but the owners decided to keep it. This was almost 4 years ago. I've been back to that gas station a few times, but only to use their restroom as I pass and check to see if it is still posted. It is. I choose to use the gas station down the street instead.
The purpose of a business is to be profitable. When a business losses customers, that means they lose money. The more customers a business losses the harder it is for them to stay in the black. Many small businesses are extremely flexible to their customers needs because they are extremely reliant on local support.
I would bet some business owners do not know the liability of keeping you safe falls directly on them when they remove your right to carry in their establishment. They are just trying to keep the bad guys out of their store. And as we know, the good guys follow the rules, the bad guys don’t so the no weapons sign will not do any good in that respect.
When it comes to your safety in your everyday life, you need to do what's right for you. If that means carrying your self defense weapon everywhere you go, there are easy ways to get around the need to go to a specific business or building. Pay bills or shop online, use a local competitor or deal with your issue over the phone or through email if possible. How about restaurants and bars? When alcohol enters the mix there are some things you should be aware of. Take a look here: Concealed Carry and Alcohol
What do you do when you come to a business not allowing you to carry your gun on the premises?
About The Author
Trevor Dobrygoski has been a freelance copywriter since 2009. He has written about many different topics over the years. His 9-5 is outfitting police and other public safety vehicles with all of the equipment the law enforcement and other first responders need to save lives. When not working and writing, he is coaching, refereeing and playing soccer.