Texas lawmakers are debating whether or not to allow residents to openly carry handguns in the Lone Star state.
Under current law, Texans can carry rifles in public, which many open-carry advocates do. Open Carry Texas and Open Carry Tarrant County have made headlines by carrying their weapons in public and into businesses.
These pro-gun advocates insist that the open carry of weapons doesn't threaten anyone, except the so-called "bad guys."
"The easiest way to find out if it's a bad guy is which direction it's pointed," pro-gun activist Chris Hall told KHOU. "If it's pointed at you, they're a bad guy. If it's not pointed at you, don't worry about it."
"That person's never been a police officer and never been shot at," countered Houston Police Officer's Union President Ray Hunt. "That's what I would have to say to that person."
"Well I'm opposed to open carry," stated Houston Police Chief Charles McClelland.
"But as a police chief trying to keep two-and-a-half million people safe, I'm just opposed to inserting more guns into a situation that I feel like could cause more harm," added Chief McClelland.
According to FBI statistics, most gun victims in the U.S. are not shot by "bad guys," but rather by friends and family. A 2013 study found that the U.S. has the highest rate of gun ownership (among developed countries) and the highest rate of gun deaths, noted ABC News.
Ironically, Kory Watkins of Open Carry Tarrant County, is ineligible for a Texas gun license because he pleaded guilty to a Class A misdemeanor for a theft in 2000, noted the Fort Worth Star-Telegram.
Watkins believes in the “constitutional carry” of handguns, which would mean no gun license at all. Watkins has claimed that open carry is part of his God-given rights.
Sources: Fort Worth Star-Telegram, FBI, KHOU, ABC News
Image Credit: Houston Police Logo