Making Concealed Carry Part Of Your Daily Life
You have made the decision that you want to concealed carry. Now you need to figure out how to make it part of your daily routine. After all, if you're going to carry you should do so as often as possible, rather than just on occasion.
It's relatively easy, but takes a little knowledge, a bit of planning, and some good gear. You will need a good gun belt and a concealed carry holster that is comfortable, concealable but also secure enough to wear. Let's get into the details. We'll go over the practicalities of concealed carry in everyday life, as well as potential obstacles and how to deal with them.
Concealed Carry And Work
You first need to ascertain whether your employer allows concealed carry on the premises. Start with the employee handbook. If there is a provision forbidding the carrying of weapons on the premises, but the language is vague, consult with human resources or other authority for further clarification.
If you are told that people with permits may carry, then you can begin carrying. If you are told otherwise, that means you cannot carry on the premises.
You'll have to decide what to do from there. Some people won't hazard their employment, but some people will carry anyway and chance it. You'll have to decide for yourself.
Additionally, some workplaces are also designated gun-free zones by federal, local or state ordinance, which precludes anyone other than law enforcement personnel from carrying concealed or otherwise.
For persons who cannot carry at work, either by regulation or by policy, one common solution is to keep their carry gun in their car, removing the gun and the holster before or while exiting their vehicle and concealing it from view.
You may be prohibited from keeping a gun in your car on company premises. Some states allow and some prohibit employers from doing so, so be sure to check your company policy as well as relevant state laws.
If you have to keep your carry gun inside your vehicle, consider some form of storage such as a portable safe or lockbox, a holster dock or other car holster rig.
If able to carry at work, you'll want to conceal as completely as possible. Therefore, make an appropriate choice of concealed carry gun and also clothing, so that you can appear professional but also conceal effectively. If you must tuck in your shirt, make sure the holster you select is tuckable.
When concealing, make sure to select clothing that is advantageous for concealment. Form-fitting suits and other clothing will surely print like crazy. A classic fit, neither too loose nor overly tight, can be still presentable but enabling of concealing a pistol.
You also want to choose a concealed carry method that's appropriate for you. Most people will be fine with the standard IWB holster. However, a mechanic or other person who finds themselves in different positions throughout the day - on your back, leaning over things, etc. - you might wish to consider something else.
Concealed Carry And School
If you work in a school, are a full-time student or you frequently pick up your kids, concealed carry can be a sensitive issue. Some people are very uncomfortable with the idea of people carrying a gun anywhere near such places.
If you're a teacher or other school employee, make sure you know whether school employees are allowed to conceal and carry on premises. Despite calls to "arm the teachers" recently, only a few states allow teachers and other school personnel to pack a CCW if they have their permit.
If a college student, the same idea more or less applies to work. Some schools specifically allow or prohibit persons with a license to carry to do so on campus. Most states allow each public university or community college to decide for itself, others countermand the schools' desired policy. Make sure to consult your state laws as well as school ordinances. Concealed carry on campus is legal in some places, but not in others.
If prohibited from carrying, you may have to weigh whether you wish to conceal anyway and risk it. If a student, you risk expulsion. If a teacher or employee, you risk your career and/or possible jail time.
If you pick up your children at school, some states allow a person to carry with a permit and pick up their children in the parking lot. Gun-free zones are actually a state invention; federal law only prohibits concealed carry without a license on school grounds as permit holders are exempt by the federal statute.
Concealed Carry And Exercise: The Gym, The Road, Etc.
If you have an active fitness regimen, working concealed carry into it can be difficult, though it need not be too much so.
For concealed carry at the gym, there are several solutions. Obviously, you need to keep concealed but need to be able to count on your gun staying secured. In the gym itself, you can put your gun in a locker, if available. You can also conceal it on the body.
Belly band holsters are one solution. Another is to conceal with an ankle holster. Yet another is to place your gun in a fanny pack that you keep on you.
That's right, we said it. A fanny pack. They are perfect for concealed carry. They are coming back, and when they do they are going to be huge. You heard it here first.
As to hitting the road on a bike or running, a good fanny pack is also a good solution, though you'll need one with a strong belt. Carrying a smaller pistol becomes advantageous in this instance.
Some people will wear fitness apparel that allows them to continue to wear their traditional concealed carry holster with a belt, but will apply as much passive retention as possible, though this may not be recommended unless you know this to be a reliable method.
For riding a bicycle, you may wish to rotate the pack to your strong side. This way, it can be accessed if need be, in case of an attacker or a loose dog. Dogs can certainly be a threat; while the number of people killed every year is small, the number of people seriously mauled is much bigger. In point of fact, the 5.75mm Velo-dog pistol and cartridge were developed in the late 1800s precisely for defending yourself against dogs while cycling.
For these applications, security and concealment are paramount. Make sure your carry method is well-proven before hitting the gym or the road.
Concealed Carry And Court
Should you have to make a court appearance, your concealed carry pistol must remain either in your vehicle or at home in all likelihood. Again, laws vary by state, but carrying is forbidden to all but law enforcement in courthouses of most states and certainly federal courthouses.
This is why a number of attorneys carry with a paddle holster or other easily-removable holster design. They remove the pistol and holster and conceal it in the vehicle before heading into the courthouse and replace it once they've exited the building.
If your job requires you to work in a courthouse or make the odd appearance, you would do well to invest in a similar design of concealed carry holster.
Concealed Carry And Church
Lamentable as it is that concealed carry would be necessary in or around a house of worship, concealed carry and church is much the same in practical terms as concealed carry in the workplace. First you'll have to consider whether you wish to carry there.
However, you also need to know if your church permits concealed carry on the premises and if state law prohibits concealed carry in churches, as a few states do. Consult your state laws and find out if your church prohibits concealed carry.
Just as with the office, you have to conceal while wearing dressier clothes. You want to select clothing that is professional in appearance but roomy enough for concealment. If you tuck in your shirt, you'll need an IWB holster that's tuckable or perhaps a shoulder holster that you can easily conceal under a jacket.
Make sure you're aware of any state laws or bylaws of the organization in question before you begin carrying at church.
Concealed Carry Fits Into Most Lifestyles Easily
Ultimately, it isn't too difficult to fit concealed carry into your daily life, but accommodation is certainly required. You need to wear clothing that suits concealed carry, though that usually isn't too hard a task.
You need to be aware of the laws of your city and state, as there are some places where you will be prohibited from possessing a firearm. As a result, you will have to either avoid those places or disarm. You also need some form of storage in your vehicle.
You will likely need alternate concealed carry methods in order to maintain concealment, as your primary method may not work in all instances.
You may also find yourself weighing certain decisions. Specifically, you may find yourself caught between wanting to carry but being prohibited by law or by a private organization's policy to do so in some places.
You should abide by the wishes and decrees of your employer and other organizations. However, some people are willing to risk it to keep carrying. You can find discussion about it all over the internet. You will have to make that decision yourself.