I’m sure we’ve all seen YouTube videos of people openly carrying AR-15s in states where open carry is legal. People see them and call the cops who approach them. These people typically get indignant, claim that they are not breaking the law, and refuse to answer questions and ask that they be allowed to go on their way.
Now, if anyone is familiar with my prior posting history, you will know that I support the private right to keep and bear arms and to carry arms in public. In these states it is legal and carrying pistols should, IMHO, definitely be legal.
But doesn’t carrying a rifle give an officer a reasonable articulable suspicion that crime is afoot? Not the carrying of the rifle, but the fact that such carry is so sufficiently unusual that it is reasonable to believe that the person is off to commit a crime?
I mean, there is no law that says I cannot carry an axe or a flamethrower walking down the city street. Likewise in Terry v. Ohio, there is no law against walking in front of a department store 20 times and having a conversation with two other people. But isn’t carrying an AR-15 or an axe or a flamethrower sufficiently suspicious that the police have the power to do a Terry stop and investigate? I think so.
Do I need to turn in my conservative card for having this opinion?