Texas will soon join the other 45 US states that allow open carry and anti-gun groups are not happy about it.
At least one anti-gun group is attempting to make life miserable for all gun owners who choose to openly and legally carry their firearms by calling 911 and making false claims.
The Coalition to Stop Gun Violence (CSGV) is using social media to urge people to call 911 any time they see someone openly carrying a firearm.
According to Outdoorlife.com,
CSGV is actively promoting “SWATting,” the act of tricking an emergency service into dispatching responders based on a false report. In a Sept. 2 screenshot of a CSGV Facebook post published by Amy Miller on legalinsurrection.com, the group urges readers to take action in this manner:
“If you see someone carrying a firearm in public — openly or concealed — and have ANY doubts about their intent, call 911 immediately and ask police to come to the scene.”
The problem is, open carry is legal and a common daily practice by millions of law-abiding and responsible gun owners. Open carry is only prohibited in five states — California, Florida, Illinois, New York, and South Carolina.
The Ohio-based Buckeye Firearms Association and Virginia-based Gun Owners of America were among the first groups to warn fellow gun owners of the CSGV’s ‘SWATting’ campaign, reported Perry Chiaramonte on FoxNews.com on Sept. 1.
“This practice is exactly what they (CSGV) are doing,” GOA spokesman Erich Pratt told Chiaramonte. “They are inciting their radical base to turn their own neighbors in. Anti-gun advocates are clearly frustrated. They want guns banned. But they have been thwarted in the past, so they are looking for alternative means.”
But this practice is not only annoying and illegal, it also can create lethal situations between police and law abiding citizens over misunderstandings due to the misinformation.
Still the gun group is wanting to use any means of falsified information in order to get open carry overturned in Texas. Here are just a few examples cited by Charles Cook in a National Review article
Cooke cites these examples:
—Reacting to a photograph of a man standing at a checkout with a handgun holstered upon his hip, a “mom-who-demands-action” Joyce Ward asks, “Why weren’t the police called immediately?” And “why,” Ward continues, “wasn’t he shot by the police for having a weapon?”
—Fellow poster Lisa McLogan Shaheen has a similar inquiry, wondering, “Why hasn’t someone called 911 so the cops can gun him down?”
—“Every time I see someone with a gun in a store I will call 911,” Jennifer Decker vows, “they’ll get tired of that right quick!!!”
—“Just call the police every time you see someone with one,” Ann Marie counsels, “the police will get sick of it eventually or have a run in with one of these clowns and then things will change.”
But a question and answer page on a Houston government website makes it clear that those who follow the anti-gun group’s advice could end up on the wrong side of the law and even face jail time.
Question: If I see a person open carrying a handgun, should I call the police?
Answer: Yes you can call the police, but before you call, observe how the person is acting. If they are acting suspicious, or enter a building such as a school, then please give us a call. But, if they are simply at a gas station filling up their car, then they are probably a law abiding citizen who is legally open carrying.
Question: Some organizations that are in opposition to open carry, have said that if they see someone openly carrying a handgun, they will call 911 and say that person is being aggressive and threatening people with the weapon. How will the police handle situations like this.
Answer: The police will act with caution when approaching the person, they will collect the facts, and when it is found that this person was doing nothing wrong, the investigation will be turned towards the person who made the false 911 call.