Drinking while carrying?


July 26, 2004, 10:05 PM
Question is…

I carry at home. I live in California temporarily so I do not have CCW. I also drink on occasion.

When the cap comes off the first beer the guns get locked up. I also put the car keys up. A lot of people play games with terms like “buzzing” but I only have two categories, no drinks, or drinking. I’m not comfortable handling guns if I’ve had anything to drink. That doesn’t mean that my family and I are out of danger once I’ve decided to have a few drinks, so what do I do if I’ve been drinking and something happens? Should I go to my guns and hope that my training and experience are enough to overcome alcohol? Can I really know my target if I’m under the influence, just a little? Should I even think about it?

What do you do?


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July 26, 2004, 10:10 PM
I do not drink and carry at all.

If Im at home, the carry gun goes into the safe but the home defense guns stay right were they are. That way should something go down at least the wife can defend the homestead.;)

Matter in fact, since I have been back from Korea (June 03), I have only had 4 beers. Guess the remote tour took a lot out of my drinking habits.

I feel that if your gonna commit to take steps to defend yourself and your family then thats more important than a drink of alcoholic beverage.

July 26, 2004, 10:15 PM
One of my criteria for a serious inner group of friends is if I trust them enough to be around them while drinking (and armed).

(do not read meanings into this that are not stated explicitly above)

Vern Humphrey
July 26, 2004, 10:29 PM
I carry because I might have to use -- and using while intoxicated is a losing proposition -- both legally and interms of diminished ability to carry out precision tasks with speed.

R.H. Lee
July 26, 2004, 11:02 PM
The answer is simple. Deadly force does not mix with mind altering mood affecting chemicals of any kind, unless your goal is to become a statistic.

Vern Humphrey
July 26, 2004, 11:04 PM
Amen to that!

July 26, 2004, 11:29 PM
Don't drink beer and handle firearms? BRILLIANT!


July 26, 2004, 11:33 PM
I agree, I just feel like I’m putting my family second when I have even a few beers. Like I said before, when I have the first drink the guns get locked up and the car keys get put up. I have a policy that my wife be familiar with every gun in the house, something I got from my dad. My son is 3, but when I decide he’s ready he’ll be able to use every gun in the house too. I don’t drink to the point of inebriation, but like I said, I don’t’ split hairs. If I’ve had one then all my practice and investment in arms goes into the locker. My question is that in the event of a very clear attack on my family, should I open the locker and use my “best” judgment under the circumstances? Should I play victim? Does drinking amount to surrendering our arms?


Dallas Jack
July 26, 2004, 11:35 PM
No need to carry a gun while drinking. After a few drinks you will be bullet proof. ;)

I am a recovering alcoholic (haven't a drink since Nov 2, 2003) Spent the last 20 years empting glass after glass of Jack Daniels. I did not carry a gun during this time. My guns stayed in the safe. Since I've been sober I've started shooting again and got my carry permit. "I only had a few" is as lame an excuse to use around guns as it is around driving.

Guns or alcohol, pick one and put the other away.

July 26, 2004, 11:56 PM
I just don't drink.

I was invited to go shooting with a fellow and his friends once and I was just about to say yes when the guy got out the photos of another trip of theirs.

In just about every photo someone was handling a beer can. Or there were cans sitting on the tailgate etc.

I said I didn't have the time. Should have told him straight up, but I had to work with him...

July 27, 2004, 12:00 AM
Guns and alcohol don't mix.

However, if on one of those occasions that I've had a beer or Bloody Mary, someone attacked my family, I don't think I'd hesitate to use as much force as necessary to stop the attack.

It's hard to advise on this subject. I basically gave up drinking when I got my CPL. I think I've had 4 beers in the last 2 years.

If you ever do have to shoot someone, your chances in court are going to be a lot better if your blood alcohol is 0.00.

July 27, 2004, 12:11 AM
When I have a drink out, the gun gets locked up in the back of the truck, beforehand, as the law dictates. If I have a drink at home, nothing changes with the position of the defensive firearms.

July 27, 2004, 03:15 AM
If I'm having a couple of beers, not getting hammered, but just a couple, I keep my carry gun available. When I have a few beers I don't lock up my steak knives, chain saw or other potentially dangerous items, so why should I lock up the gun?

If I'm going to the range I will NOT consume any alcohol before the shoot.

I look at it this way. I wouldn't drink and drive, but I wouldn't hesitate to use my car after a few cold ones if a family member needed to be rushed to the hospital. If I have a couple of drinks and someone invades my home and threatens my family, I'm going to be sure I have the means to end that threat.

Gun ownership shouldn't mean the end of enjoying a few beers.

I'm just being honest. I wonder if everyone else is.;)

July 27, 2004, 04:11 AM
What fivepaknh said.

July 27, 2004, 07:18 AM
Well Done, Dallas Jack!:) I have been sober since 1 Aug 2000. When I drank, I often shot trap or informal pistol shooting after a few beers. Just like some of the things I did driving back then, I look back on it now and realize how foolish I was, and also how lucky. I find it interesting that shortly before I went sober, I had virtually lost interest in my firearms and hunting.:eek: Since I quit, I have a renewed interest in shooting, and even have started a collection!(Mosin Nagant rifles.http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v196/mosinfan/BewareMosincollecting.png ;) ) I have even found a part-time job as a gunsmith, something I never would have persued while drinking. (It's a second job. Would have cut into my drinking time, yaknow!)
Alcohol and firearms only mix well in Federal Bureaus, I think!;)

July 27, 2004, 07:24 AM
I generally don't drink. If I DO drink, I don't carry a firearm.

July 27, 2004, 08:37 AM
Dallas Jack and entropy...Salute!!

Keep up the good work!

I quit the boozing on Feb. 4th 1992 after 20 years of hard drinking.
When I got down into a bottle of tequila guns were the last thing on my mind and, if someone had broke into my house and killed me I would have welcomed them with open arms.

I retained enough sense back then to pack up the few guns I had and store them at my folks house, not for any safety reason but because I probably would have ended up selling them for more booze.

Today, I have those guns and many more back in my safe.

If you don't have a problem with alcohol you shouldn't have to worry about your guns if you decide to kick back and have a few. If you have to question your judgement then the safe thing to do would be to put the guns away.

July 27, 2004, 09:11 AM
Texas CHL law prohibits carrying a concealed weapon "while intoxicated" and it also prohibits carry in places that do 51% or more of their business in the sale of alcohol for on-premesis consumption.

The CHL law doesn't explicitly set forth a legal limit for blood alcohol as does motor vehicle law, nor does it have an "implied consent" provision, mandating submission to a blood alcohol test. Some opine that the 0.08 limit of motor vehicle law could reasonably be assumed to apply, while others claim that a single drink would be "intoxicating." I don't know if there's any existing case law on this.

Notwithstanding the law, getting drunk - or even tipsy - while using or carrying a gun - whether carrying concealed, target shooting, or hunting - is, IMHO, a really, really, bad idea.

July 27, 2004, 09:24 AM
After the judges ruling a couple weeks ago, I carried my firearm to a freinds BBQ, and had a couple beers there. That is the first time I have ever drank while carrying, it'll probably be the last. I'm not a huge fan of drinking anyhow so it isn't a big deal for me, but I knew that it was the only time I would do something like that, it's out of my system now. :)

Of course I wouldn't carried if i'd planned on drinking anything more then a few beers, I'm just not interested in facing the consequences of shooting one of my family while drunk.

July 27, 2004, 09:24 AM
If you think it's perfectly okay to drink and shoot, imagine being in these people's position, caught on video, allowing an unattended three-year old to pick up an unattended gun. Fortunately they appeared to have followed at least ONE safety rule and the gun was unloaded.


This was an absolutely GREAT moment in shooting, brought to you and the rest of the country courtesy of NBC TV.

PS: The video clips I saw did not show any drinking but the person who took the video made a point of saying that the couple was drinking beer.

July 27, 2004, 02:18 PM
I hardly ever drink, but my rule of thumb is: if I'm going to have more than 2 drinks, the gun gets put in the safe.

I usually only have 1 drink anyway.

July 27, 2004, 02:34 PM
Real simple ...
I carry a gun whenever I go out. So I don't drink when I go out.
I carry a gun at home (or have one available nearby if it isn't on my body). So I don't drink at home.

I never found drinking to be all that enjoyable anyhow. Sleeping is a much better way for me to lose touch with my surroundings. And I feel much better afterwards.

July 27, 2004, 04:13 PM
Here in Misery, if you're carrying a loaded firearm and intoxicated (and there is no level of intoxicated specified), it's a felony. If you're carrying an unloaded firearm, it's a misdemeanor...


If you are gonna go out and get _moderately_ stupid, and feel like you need to carry, stick the mag in the other pocket - that way if someone drives his four-wheeler through the front window of Bubba's Country Bunker and commences to cappin' the patrons, you can shoot back. If you get tagged with it, it's a misdemeanor.

Of course, if you're planning on getting REALLY stupid, don't go to bad neigbhorhoods, and call a taxi. And leave the boomstick at home.

July 27, 2004, 05:28 PM
I came to the conclusion years ago that ingesting any mind-altering substance at all was a waste.

After I came to that conclusion, I swore off, so the issue raised does not apply.

I urge anyone reading to consider the wasted time, money, and life involved in using mind-altering substances of any sort.

Sermon over.:D

July 27, 2004, 08:07 PM
I am a professional drinker-I know when to stop. I do drive and drink and I do shoot and drink.

I sip beer more than drinking it, sometimes 1 beer will last me one hour.

joe sixpack
July 27, 2004, 08:36 PM
^ (who is that poster above - Dean Martin in disguise?)

Drinking, driving and shooting? Hell, if it's good enough for John Wayne it's good enough for me...

(In the old West)

cheers, ab

July 27, 2004, 09:46 PM
The thing I’m really most interested in is if any of you think that you can “know your target and what’s behind it,” after even a few drinks? So I’m thinking about a home defense situation. If you’ve been drinking do you still have the option to use your guns? Will it be a lot harder to defend your actions to a jury?


July 27, 2004, 10:03 PM
I've had a few drinks while carrying--so has my wife!

That's a few drinks over the last 10 years! ;)

The extent of my drinking while carrying is sharing a margarita with the wife over dinner. We do that regularly--about once every two or three years. :)

I carry for a reason, and impairing myself, even slightly, is totally contrary to that reason.

Therefore it makes no sense for me to carry and drink any significant amount at the same time.

July 27, 2004, 10:12 PM
I could see both a prosecutor and an an opposition attorney in a civil trial make a big thing of it.

July 28, 2004, 01:46 AM
There is no law against carring while drinking in my state and I see no problem with it.

It is one thing to be drunk and carrying but a "legal" BAC is 100% acceptable in my book (as well as the law books of my state). When I used to drink more I accomplished many complex and involved tasks while certainly more impaired than .08. I also submit that driving a vehicle is much more dangerous while intoxicated than simply carring a weapon. Unless I was seriously impaired (3x legal limt) I would not heistate to carry. As far as shooting in self defense in such a state, yes it would be bad but not as bad as being dead and that is the only time you should use a weapon in self defense.

And for those who lock their guns in a safe when drinking, give me a break! Is your assumption that you will be getting too drunk to open the safe?

The real question is how YOU respond to alcohol. If you know you become irresponsible then certainly do not drink and carry. If, however, you are able to be responsible then there is no reason to restrict your conduct (unless state law requires otherwise).

July 28, 2004, 02:48 AM
I'm a booze hound.

There are many reasons for it - all of them i'm sure would round out any survey on "How many Rationalizations do YOU make to drink"

I've seen people get crap faced on one drink (one beer, one etc) I've seen other put down more than any one human should put down and remain cognizant enough to drive and do other things. People are different. I would hope the laws were made in order to find a more average range (.08.. 1.0 wherever) in order to protect the vast majority of people who's rights are being infringed when a drunk careens across a highway divider and plows into them head on. (when usually the victim dies - and the drunk since he's VERY elastic at the moment doesn't tense up and create more injuries and usually survives)

That being said - i've shot "while under the influence" - with only one other person who was way more than i was. (and i'd to this day and any after trust my life to that man....) There is a limit for any person.

THAT all being said - Texas law says i can't drink and carry. And to me thats fine. Ever since my first (and only) DWI i WON'T drink and drive again. If i go out - its a timed one beer an hour max - or just drink coke. (if i'm driving) If i've been drinking i won't get back into a car and drive. When is say shooting - i mean in the middle of nowhere where i live. Not around a bunch of other people that i don't know. If i was carrying under CHL rules - it would be coca-cola only and nothing else. Carry is different from my house tho....

All this doesn't get back to the point however, while i applaud you guys who quit drinking and am proud of you - just as i would be to those who no longer smoke or anything else that was taking over yer lives, the fact is that if i'm totally falling down drunk - i'm STILL going to attempt to defend myself. I may not win - i may get shot cause of my stupid booze-induced actions - but i'm gonna try. Its MY house. Not the crooks. I'm not by far usually tottally falling down drunk - so given opportunity he had better have planned to shoot me long before he looked at my house for possible crime.... i'll take jail over death anyday, all the while looking at the jury and saying "this was my house where i was enjoying a drink and doing completely lawful things, where someone who didn't belong there, who intended to rob me and for all i know planned to kill me in my sleep and you can look at ME and say *I* did something wrong?!?"


July 28, 2004, 02:53 AM

I offer this to aid in making your choice.

Depending on how much you have to drink all or some of these things will occur to varying degrees.

.01~ divided attention, increased reaction time, decreased visual acuity.

.02/.03~ decreased eye movement control, steadiness, response to emergencies.

.04/.06~ decreased information processing, judgment, coordination.

.07/.08~ decreased ability to concentrate ( focus) attention.

I think that impacts just about every tool you will need to bring to bear. If need be.

It makes situational awareness and the use of the "Color Code" problematic at best.

Good luck in your choice.


July 28, 2004, 10:56 AM
Amish_Bill wrote:
One of my criteria for a serious inner group of friends is if I trust them enough to be around them while drinking (and armed).

(do not read meanings into this that are not stated explicitly above)

That works for me, too.

If a person drinks and doesn't have the sense NOT to do something foolish with any of their potentially dangerous equipment (firearm, auto, soldering iron, whatever), they are no buddy of mine.

I've seen too many poo-faced (defined as sucking down enough alcohol to stagger around and-if lucky-vomiting up all the booze they consumed) LEOs I knew were armed to get all riled up over a buddy I trust who has a beer while packing.

The fact that neither myself nor any of my buddies is a hard drinker probably helps. (I had a "Beer & Bratwurst" party one year...it took me two years to finish off all the unopened beer...after giving away half of it to other friends)

WRT .08 BAC, I am less & less convinced that this is a realistic standard. Pretty soon they'll say if you look sideways at a bottle of whisky, you'll be legally intoxicated.

--Geek Alert & "Cool Hand Luke" Moment--
In college I determined the amount of alcohol in your average slice of white bread (think: yeast eats carbs and poots alcohol & CO2) and did the math. I realized that I could eat enough Wonder Bread in a short enough time to be above .08 BAC. I then did eat that much & some more, just to be sure I got enough alcohol in my system. Unfortunately, I did not have access to blood test or breath analysis equpment. Anyway, no ill effects, no buzz, & no good reason NOT to operate heavy machinery.
--Geek Alert End--

Moral of the story: set reasonable standards or have your standards regarded with the contempt they deserve.

July 28, 2004, 11:25 AM
Was at a swank party a while back with an older friend who was a known (to the group) "gun nut". Anyway, an off duty cop was at the party and got blitzed and started talking out loud about his sidearm ands started showing his J frame off to people. The hostess of the party asked my friend to please ask the cop for his pistol for the duration of the party. The cop obliged and the party continued. At the end of the night as I was helping clean up, the hostess approached my friend and said he late husband had many guns and, as he was obviously knowledgeable, would he like them. He walked out with an 03 Springfield, over 500 rounds of 30-06, a 1911, and a S&W M19.

Nothing like that EVER happens to me! :fire:

I drink rarely these days and have never had the opportunity to while carrying (being behind the iron curtain). However, I don't think I would, if legal, deny a beer over a dinner. I don't like not being in control.

July 28, 2004, 11:50 AM
Drinking and carrying don't mix any more than drinking and driving do.

Not carrying is a risk that you, as a responsible gun owner and permit holder, should be WILLING to take if you decide to drink. If you are not willing to assume that risk, then don't drink.

I only drink occasionally; and then only at home and with a snack or meal. If I have to leave the house unexpectedly within the two or three hours it takes me to metabolize the drink, I will leave without my CCW. If I think, before I drink, that I might suddenly have to leave, then I won't drink at all. Period.

Pretty simple, huh? :cool:

July 28, 2004, 12:53 PM
I don't see a problem with having a beer while carrying, but I've never done it myself.

I usually have a couple beers several times a week. I even hang out at a local bar and have a few tall drafts on a pretty regular basis.

I don't go through strong personality changes when drinking. I don't do stupid things while drunk. I don't drive drunk. I don't handle guns while drunk. My brain doesn't shut down when I consume a little alcohol.

If someone does something stupid while drunk, they should be held accountable for their actions. If you exercise poor judgement when you've been drinking, then you should either not drink, or make sure you place yourself in a situation where you can't do anything stupid while drinking.

I wouldn't personally carry a gun while drunk, but I don't lock up the guns in my house when I open a beer.

When I stop at a bar for a drink and I'm carrying I unload the gun and lock it up before entering the bar. The law here prohibits carrying in a plase that serves alchohol for consumption on the premisis.

If I were carrying over at a friends house, and he offers me a beer, I don't feel the need to lock up my gun or refuse the drink. If I'm going to have a few beers, I'm likely to excuse myself to lock my gun up in my car.

I'm not really worried about myself doing something stupid with my gun while I have a slight buz, but I am worried about the legal consequences that have been put in place to handle the lowest common denominator. There are people who become complete idiots when consuming alcohol, and the laws are designed to address the danger that they might possibly present if they were drunk and armed.

Now if I were going to get drunk, not just have a few beers, but actually drunk, I'd definately not be carrying. At that point a gun would just be a heavy object that would be of no good use to me. It would be negligent for me to handle the gun in that state, so there's absolutely no point in carrying it around.

However, while my opinions are definately more lax than many people on this thread, my actions so far aren't.

I'm new to having a CCW permit, and to this point have never carried while I've had even a single beer. Being overcautious never hurts, especially where guns are concerned.

July 28, 2004, 02:15 PM
Realistically, if you know your limits, I see no danger in drinking in moderation while carrying.

In this world, though, you are taking on enormous legal liabilities if you drink (even a small non-impairing amount) and are then involved in a deadly force situation.

Also, in Texas, having any amount of alcohol in your blood while carrying voids your license to carry.

So, consequently, I'll be "not drinking" when carrying. Which isn't much of a change anyway, as I rarely drink at all.

July 28, 2004, 02:47 PM
I drink very little (both quantity and frquency) nowadays, but I see no problem in having one (1, uno solamente) drink while carrying. I have done it a couple of times while at a restaurant.

I will not carry if I intend to have more than one drink (of course I can't even remember the last time I had two drinks in a day since my kids were born.)

July 28, 2004, 02:52 PM
I don't carry or shoot when drinking alcoholic beverages nor do I allow it on my range at home, but I don't lock up the guns either.

July 28, 2004, 02:54 PM
It depends. To me, the mere act of drinking does not hold the same significance it does to others. I will often have an IPA or porter with lunch and the thought of disarming myself in such circumstances is completely absurd. OTOH, if I'm dropping shots of Magadanskya I don't keep the iron around. But it's still nearby in case I need it.

July 28, 2004, 10:29 PM
I also fall in the category of rarely drinking anymore, even less since I began carrying. Geez, a 6-pack will last me for months.
When I do drink it is usually limited to 1 beer or a glass of wine and my disposition doesn't change.

Funny, just cleaned out the storage building and pulled out some homebrew gear I had bought second hand awhile back when I had planned on brewing beer, Anyone want to buy some basics w/ about 100+ Grolsch bottles?:rolleyes:

THAT all being said - Texas law says i can't drink and carry.
Also, in Texas, having any amount of alcohol in your blood while carrying voids your license to carry.

Can someone please cite where the Texas CHL states that you cannot drink and carry?
I'm not condoning or condemning, just wanting to know specific law.
I understand the 51% rule here in TX, but I was under the impression that if you wanted to have I drink w/ dinner @ a restaurant you would be legal under the letter of the law.

July 28, 2004, 10:51 PM
Steve, I was taught the same thing in my CHL class but I can't find a specific law on it. In the FAQ's in the back of the CHL manual it does have the question
Q: Can I carry a handgun when I am drinking?
A: Under the concealed handgun law, it is illegal to carary a handgun if you are intoxicated.

My instructor said that the law considered having any alcohol in you system while carrying was considered intoxicated, but I can't find anything to clarify.

July 28, 2004, 11:24 PM
I agree with what I think Amish Bill said. I also agree with Sue Rovr, who said, in part, "The real question is how YOU respond to alcohol. If you know you become irresponsible then certainly do not drink and carry. If, however, you are able to be responsible then there is no reason to restrict your conduct (unless state law requires otherwise)."

In my opinion, a sane person knows enough about how he reacts to alcohol to make a sensible decision for himself on whether to carry when drinking or drink when carrying. Of course, there are legal ramifications, beyond state statutes, to drinking and shooting, which many have pointed out.

If a person can be trusted with a gun at all, he can be trusted to make rational decisions on what to do with the gun when he's drinking. What that actually means varies from one person to the next.

July 28, 2004, 11:55 PM
I'll have a max of 1 at a restaruant while carrying and if at home the max I ever drink is 2 ...maybe 3 over the course of an entire evening. (the 3's are very rare) I'm not gonna take guns off my hip or lock them up over that. If something bad happens after I've had two at home, I'd rather be alive than meet St. Peter as a very well disciplined gun owner. Actually, I'm still well disciplined becuase I don't drink in excess wether I'm carrying or not.

I never have a drop of alcohol when I plan on shooting though...and certainly not during!;)

July 28, 2004, 11:58 PM
If I read the original post correctly you are talking about being at home and drinking in moderation.
I see no need to lock up you home defense weapon under those circumstances. Having a couple drinks at home should not mean you have to become a victim to anyone who may break in to do you or your family harm.

Edit : FYI my state regulates blood alcohol to .04 while carrying with a permit in public.

July 29, 2004, 12:37 AM
Alcohol and gunpowder do not mix well together.

A drink or two with a meal probably isn't going to make much of a difference in your decision making abilities. However if you are involved in a SD shooting, the mere fact you had alcohol on board may make things a little more difficult for you either in the investigation or the court room.

July 29, 2004, 01:07 AM
So the alternative is to be unarmed and die when a threat presents itself or to never drink alcohol again? Congratulations to those who had issues with booze and quit, but some of us enjoy social drinking from time to time and keep it under control. I don’t get staggering drunk so I carry all the time. New Hampshire as far as I know don’t regulate carry while drinking. As you’ve all heard before, better judged by 12 than carried by 6.

I’ve been to the Outback Steakhouse many times and have seen a lot of people drinking. They never lock up all the steak knives and I’ve yet to see anyone go berserk with one after drinking. So why lock up the guns?

July 29, 2004, 01:19 AM
So long as there isn't a law against it i'm sure yer ok - altho i'd sure hate to be the one who had to defend you after ya had a couple....

Point is that alchohol does slow your reactions and makes your judgement off. Its been proven that poeple who drink are perfectly capable (most of the time) of negotiating thier way home ... provided "NOTHING OUT OF THE ORDINARY HAPPENS". Ie - same streets - no one cutting you off - no new construction that wasnt' there the night before... no cops w/ someone pulled over mesmerizing you w/ thier red/blue lights... etc etc. WHY? beacuse your judgement is changed, yer not running of full auto matic cruise control any more...

Now add that to a CARRY situation. And situations follow NO known doctrine that you are used to carrying out. Nothing "usuall" is presented. (other than maybe the USE of your gun - but certainly not the situation) The booze is now in control.

I won't put my guns up in my house, thats MY castle. - but completely agree w/ Texas laws stance on if yer carrying CHL in public - and packing - no drinking for joo!


July 29, 2004, 04:25 AM
I don't touch alcohol if I'm carrying.

July 29, 2004, 04:46 AM
As a police officer, in California, yes, I drink and carry my gun. I carry a handgun, usually two, on my person whenever out in public. I also have an AR15 in the back of my car, whenever out in public. Call me paranoid, however, paranoia has saved my butt on several occasions...

July 29, 2004, 08:37 AM
Don't smoke while pumping gas, don't drink while packing..

DARWIN's Rules, not mine..

July 29, 2004, 09:34 AM
Can someone please cite where the Texas CHL states that you cannot drink and carry?

Not certain - my instructor said that the statute prohibits 'carrying while intoxicated' but didn't set a limit for what 'intoxication while carrying' was.

SO better to be safe than sorry...

July 29, 2004, 09:41 AM
I seem to remember reading someplace that 0.02 is the legal limit while carrying in Michigan. Can anyone verify that. If true, then even the state allows a "couple of beers" while carrying. I wonder if other states have laws or guidelines on this subject.

July 29, 2004, 01:31 PM
Quote: " I wonder if other states have laws or guidelines on this subject."

I think all states do - In MN as I stated earlier the level is .04 , and I can carry in a drinking establishment as long as I don't exceed that limit.

Each state decides the rules, In AZ for example you are not allowed to carry in a business that serves alcohol - period .

I generaly never drink myself - I'm not concerned however if a person who does drink responsibly happens to be carrying . The key word is "responsibly". That to me means one or two drinks .

And as far as locking up your means of protection at home when you are only going to have a drink or two --- I realy see that as un-necessary . Even if your going to drink more than you should, as long as you are home and stay there - You can take the gun off and put it in drawer where access to it would still be there in an emergency.

July 30, 2004, 12:39 AM
Don't smoke while pumping gas, don't drink while packing..

I really don’t think the two situations equate at all. Smoking and pumping gas is closer to actually shooting while drunk.

After a six-pack I usually have a buzz, but I’m far from being drunk. The impression I get from some of you is that after two or three beers you’re 3 sheets to the wind and ready to fire rounds into the air. I understand that after one beer everyone’s faculties get a little dull, even if not noticeable Though, if that’s the case, then no more cough or allergy medicine, coffee, soft drinks with caffeine, and a number of other substances while carrying.

July 30, 2004, 01:07 AM
ExtremeDooty: 0.02 is the limit for CCW in MI as of 2001 and it became the limit for open carry (or posession of a pistol) in July 2003.

Pretty sure it's no longer legal to shoot your gun on your own land after a single beer if it's a pistol. Feel free to load up that 30.06 though and let'er rip since only handguns kill people. Hunters would blow a freaking gasket in this state if you told 'em that can't take their '06 out after 2 beers but nobody noticed when posession of a handgun after a single beer became illegal. Heck I didn't notice either.

July 30, 2004, 01:53 AM
I can remember camping out while deer hunting in Kentucky. Under today's rules all of us could have been put in jail on any given night. On one of those nights, we heard a pack of coyotes running through the woods and suddenly they were coming right at us. Everyone sobered up quickly, grabbed our rifles and aimed into the darkness like in one of the scenes from "Predator." The pack must have detected us and veered off probably 50' from our camp.

I guess the point I'm trying to make is that fear and adrenaline sobered us up in a real hurry. And even though we all had beer and other refreshments and high powered rifles, none of acted irresponsibly and we were ready to defend ourselves at a moment's notice.

But I guess it is different when carrying a handgun daily amongst the "normal people."

July 30, 2004, 06:20 AM
Texas Drinking and Carrying w/ CHL - - - -

As far as i remember in my CHL class - i don't remember it being defined - as in so vauge that it WILL get you in trouble because it will be used against your actions by the defense of the criminal, and the prosecution against you if the police decide it wasn't a good shot....

AKA - not worth it, not even a numbers game to play - just a "he/she was drinking" .... period.... heh.

Just like DWI laws in texas follow two rules - the Looks like he/she is drunk rule and the actual numbers rule - you can get nailed for either - specially w/ the vid cams in the cars. So if yer one of those lucky cheap drunks - don't drive thinkin yer ok cause there is no way yer over the limit - they can choose to get cha if they want cha. (altho it is really hard if the video tape shows ya to be an upstanding no sluring citizen who's had a few beers... they guy/gal who has that allergic reaction to the stuff that can get drunk on 1/2 a beer.... they could be put away even tho they can't have anywhere near the legal limit....)

The things you learn in the 5 or 6 classes they made me go to. =)


Kurt S.
July 30, 2004, 11:59 AM
Well, being of Italian descent I like to have a glass or 2 of wine when I go out to a nice restaurant, and being a naturalized Texan and adopted son of the South I enjoy a beer on hot day. Been known to take a sip of sour mash every now and then, too.

I do not believe that having a few alcoholic beverages with a meal removes my right to defend myself or my family. What I do believe is that if God forbid I should have to use my CCW in defense I am going to be in a world of trouble from the gitgo. Having a barely measurable blood alcohol level is going to be the least of my worries.

I will modify my behavior and to a certain extent my lifestyle as part of the responsibility of CCW, but I refuse to deprive myself of perfectly lawful enjoyment of life.

Here's kind of a neat link:


This calculates theoretical blood alcohol levels for a given body weight, number of drinks, and type of beverage consumed.

October 31, 2004, 02:08 AM
Drinking and carrying seems like a bad idea to me. I think if in any case where you had to shoot someone and it got to court, the prosecution will have a field day with you.

But what if you're drinking and you're faced with a threat that you can't defend youself?

Worst case, you're dead.

Since both cases are a lose-lose situation. It would be better not to drink at all or take your chances.

Ala Dan
November 1, 2004, 03:43 AM
In Alabama drinking while carrying renders your CCW license
null and void. Something to think about before you have a
sip of your favorite alcoholic beverage, with your firearm in

Best Wishes,
Ala Dan, N.R.A. Life Member

November 1, 2004, 05:14 PM
Typicaly, if I'm out - I'm drivin, so that takes care of that. But if I am with friends and we are out for a bite, I will have a beer..with food... Like mnrivrat said, here in Mn the legal limit is .04 if'n your travl'n heavy...I think that thats around a beer an hour ...which got me to wonderin about the carrying a firearm while intoxicated charges that could occur if someone sat outside some of the bars downtown and dropped breathalizers on the "off duty's" that came sauntering out......:eek:

Vern Humphrey
November 1, 2004, 05:24 PM
I do not believe that having a few alcoholic beverages with a meal removes my right to defend myself or my family.

No, what it does is REDUCE your ability to defend yourself or your family.

When you carry, you are saying, "I might have to use this gun." Why would you do anything to reduce your ability to use it effectively?

November 1, 2004, 06:14 PM
"Solo mi dos centavos"
I carry for one reason, because I honor the threat. That threat, in whatever guise, is real and constant. Why would anyone voluntarily create a problem with situational awareness, reduced reaction time, and good judgement by altering their perception of reality in any way?
If you carry a weapon you must be "in it" and "of it". Your commitment must be total. If anyone is going around "packing" under the delusion of any other truth, that individual is a liabilty and has some growing-up to do before they might ever be considered competent and proficient.

Vern Humphrey
November 1, 2004, 06:16 PM
I carry for one reason, because I honor the threat. That threat, in whatever guise, is real and constant. Why would anyone voluntarily create a problem with situational awareness, reduced reaction time, and good judgement by altering their perception of reality in any way?


If one disdains the threat so much that one is willing to impair their ability to deal with the threat, why carry at all?

November 1, 2004, 07:43 PM
Fatigue can impair your judgement just like alcohol.
If you're willing to carry after a long day, carrying after a drink or two shouldn't faze you too much (unless it's illegal, of course).

Personally, I don't carry yet, but one beer (or even two, depending) doesn't affect me noticeably. I wouldn't get hammered while carrying, but I wouldn't be worried about a drink with dinner.

18 hours sustained wakefulness produces performance impairment = .05% BAC

24 hours = .10% BAC (Dawson & Reid, 1997; Williamson & Feyer, 2000).

People with mild to moderate untreated sleep apnea performed worse than those with a 0.06% BAC (Powell, 1999)

On 4 hours sleep, 1 beer can have the impact of a six-pack (Roehrs et al., 1994)

© National Sleep Foundation

November 1, 2004, 07:56 PM
A glass of wine at dinner in a fine restaurant is not a problem.

Minnesota's new CCW law allows up to .04 (the interstate truck driver limit and 1/2 the usual .08 limit). No problems have been reported with persons under that amount.

November 1, 2004, 08:01 PM
Notch posted: which got me to wonderin about the carrying a firearm while intoxicated charges that could occur if someone sat outside some of the bars downtown and dropped breathalizers on the "off duty's" that came sauntering out......

The only folks who have ever "shot up" the Mall of America (two instances) were off-duty Minneapolis police officers. And let's not forget drunken, off-duty MPD Officer Matthew Olsen who "beat the crap" out of a passer-by in the Warehouse District last year.

Vern Humphrey
November 1, 2004, 08:21 PM
Minnesota's new CCW law allows up to .04 (the interstate truck driver limit and 1/2 the usual .08 limit). No problems have been reported with persons under that amount.

The problem is not one of the law, or of drunken behavior. The problem is one of reflexes and fine motor movement under stress.

Try shooting fast and accurately after a couple of beers.

November 2, 2004, 08:15 PM
i don't drink period. not because i don't trust myself but because it's just not me it's never been me and i choose not to. not to hold anything against those of you who do drink.

November 2, 2004, 09:22 PM
I would wonder why your guns are ever out of the safe? Do you think that you would ever need a gun inside your home?
Is it to be prepared to protect the family?

If so then don't do anything to compromise that need to protect the family, that you believe you have.

Conclusion: don't drink, as it does compromise your ability to defend your family. If you drink and have the guns available, then you compromise their safety because you are drinking.

Stop the beer drinking if you are serious about family protection.


November 2, 2004, 09:41 PM
I quit drinking 9/10/91 and cannot even imagine carrying if I'd of had a CCW back then. What a mess that would've been! :)

I think the laws prohibiting carry in bars are stupid - what CCW holders need to know is not only how they will be physically affected by alcohol but what will happen to them in court if they've been drinking. It doesn't matter if you're under the legal limit - you will get absolutely hammered simply because you were drinking.

Thankfully here in NV there are no such restrictions or I wouldn't be able to carry in casinos. I've never heard of a legally carrying person shooting someone in a bar so it must not be a big problem. :) Probably what the police worry about more is drunk drivers with weapons in the car, since any type of loaded weapon is legal here.

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