Why Journalists should conceal carry
A recent rash of American journalists being held-up at gunpoint has prompted the question – what is the role of concealed carrying in the world of journalism? Long thought to be protected by constitutional First Amendment rights, a recent violent robbery of a crew of freelancers for Xinhua News Agency in Ferguson, MO, has brought the topic back into the limelight.
Just because they are behind (and in front) of the camera, would a concealed carry pistol have been advantageous in those situations or violated some sacred taboo?
Reporters Classified as Non-Combatants – Wishful Thinking?
Believe it or not, the idea of arming journalists isn't simply an American expression of First and Second Amendment rights but also a global discussion. With the British based London Evening Standard calling for its journalists to be armed as recently as 2009, has the reporter's role as a classical non-combatant been nullified by the times?
Historically, journalists have been considered civilian non-combatants when covering a war zone. But the days of Geneva conventionalized warfare seem to be largely a thing of the past. Now, in the United States, journalists have been increasingly pressed to make a choice: cover the story or become inadvertantly part of it.
Concealed Carry Holsters – Pros and Cons for Reporters
Inside the United States, a journalist is governed under the exact same laws as any other civilian. With the exception of being occasionally granted unique permissions through the use of a press pass, they are obliged to follow all the same rules and regulations governing the use and storage of firearms. Why would a concealed carry permit and inside-the-waistband holster represent any breach of protocol?
With the proper concealed carry permitting, reporters could enter the sorts of active scenes they already encounter with the knowledge that they have the means to defend themselves from attackers. Undoubtedly, this would draw some amount of social critique as journalism has always been viewed as the act of observing and reporting. The potential to become an actor versus an observer is certainly a pressure placed on many in this line of work.
Still, with the proper training in the use of a pistol and equipping it with a non-intrusive carry method such as an inside-the-waistband or even outside-the-waistband concealed carry holster may provide the sort of last resort defensive techniques that can prevent being killed in the line of duty.
An Inside the waistband holster can be conceaeld with any shirt tucked around it.
Take a look: tuckable iwb pistol holsters
Asymmetrical Battlefield – Concealed Carry a Solution?
Another recent suspicious killing of an American journalist, Michael Hastings, occurred not long after he published a ten thousand word article in Rolling Stone discussing then-POW Bowe Bergdahl. Not long afterwards, his car exploded in Los Angeles. His attackers have still not been identified.
While a concealed carry pistol likely wouldn't have done anything to stop that explosive device from going off, it still brings up the harrowing reality that this world is rapidly changing. The once protected class of reporting and journalism isn't just disappearing around the world – it's vanishing within the United States as well.
About The Author
James England is a former United States Marine Signals Intelligence Operator and defense contractor with over two tours spread over the Al Anbar province and two more operating across Helmand and Baghdis. He is presently a writer focused on Western foreign policy and maintains an avid interest in firearms. A graduate of the University of North Carolina at Wilmington, he presently resides in New Hampshire – the “Live Free or Die” state. He is finishing up his first novel, “American Hubris”, which is set to hit shelves in Fall of 2015.