Updated: Jul 10, 2021
Here at Oxys Practical Defense we are pro Constitutional Carry, but many people have some wild misunderstandings about what this legislation actually means.
While some people seem to think that Constitutional Carry sends us back to the Wild West where you could just carry your six-shooter up to the bar, that's not actually the case. Here are a few considerations that have to do with how it applies to responsible firearms owners.
What is Constitutional Carry?
Before 2017, even if you purchased the firearm legally, you were not lawfully able to carry it until you were issued a Concealed Weapons Permit. This causes numerous problems so let’s think through a scenario.
What if there is an imminent threat? We see this frequently for both male and females, but this is particularly applicable for females who are concerned about an aggressor. For women who are concerned about an actual or perceived threat, it used to be unlawful for them to carry their firearm while they waited anywhere from 1-3 months to receive their Concealed Weapons Permit.
If you are a law abiding citizen, why shouldn't you be able to carry it? In the United States, we have our 2nd Amendment rights which clearly states, "the right of the people to keep and bear Arms shall not be infringed".
Missouri is now a permitless carry state. Simply put, this means anyone who can legally purchase a firearm can carry it concealed and often open carry as well. However, just because you can carry it without a permit does not mean that you have any legal protection or any of the proper training.
Here are a few reasons why you should consider obtaining your Concealed Weapons Permit:
Concealed Carry Legal Protection
To clarify, having a Concealed Carry Weapons ("CCW") permit does not provide you with any special privileges. However, it may downgrade the penalties for minor infractions.
For example, it is a Class B Misdemeanor to carry a firearm without a permit on these premises:
In a Police, sheriff, or highway patrol office or station.
Within 25 feet of a polling place on election day.
Any Federal or State Offices.
Any restaurant or bar that serves alcohol and derives less than 51% of its gross annual income from the sale of food.
Any airport location beyond a TSA checkpoint.
Any Bus or Train (Class D Misdemeanor).
Any portion of a building used as a child care facility.
Any gated area of an amusement park.
Within 1,000 feet of a school.
Any private property where the owner has posted an "Off-limits" sign that conforms to the State standards.
However, with a permit these criminal acts become non-criminal acts under Missouri law. Instead of being arrested, you will be asked to leave. Only after refusing to leave and the Police are called can you be issued a citation and fined $100 for your first offence (still not a criminal violation). Additional violations will be met with escalating penalties.
Whether you have a permit or not, Oxys strongly recommends that you strictly follow all of the ordinances above.
Taking A CCW Class Helps You Broaden Your Understanding
There are many considerations when deciding to carry a firearm. How does a firearm work? What is deadly force? When can I legally defend myself? What will happen if I use my firearm?
These are just a few of the things we discuss in our Oxys Concealed Carry Classes. It is pertinent for everyone to understand their firearm and the implications of the decision to carry it.
Is This Going To Look Good Before A Jury?
Sure, you can carry a firearm. But suppose you had to use your firearm defensively and you end up in court.
It’s likely a jury will not consist of your fellow firearms enthusiasts. More likely, they will be uniformed persons who know little to nothing about a firearm or why you would carry it. Are you looking for trouble by just carrying a firearm?
As such, being able to show that you took the time out of your week to take an 8-hour class and apply for a permit at your local sheriff's office may bode well for you. We also recommend maintaining training logs so you can prove that you are willing to invest your time and money into becoming proficient with your firearm.
Constitutional Carry has its uses and is excellent legislation. However, you may be placing yourself in greater legal peril without a permit.
As such, we'd be glad to see you at one of our upcoming CCW Classes.
Thank you so much for reading!
MO Certified Concealed Carry Instructor