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Guy with Gun at Tampa Town Hall Meeting

Discussion in 'General Gun Discussions' started by Yoda, Aug 8, 2009.

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  1. Yoda

    Yoda Well-Known Member

    I was at Representative Castor's Tampa Town Hall meeting in Tampa last night, and I was one of the guys at the "battle of the door" that's been on TV. I'm even on some of the U-tube and TV video.

    Before they opened (then closed) the doors, I saw a guy wearing a vest, and it was as obvious as anything that he was carrying concealed. I made my way to him and quietly said, "You're carrying, aren't you?" He gave me an odd look and asked why I thought so, and I told him that he was wearing the same vest I wear when I'm carrying. He said something about liking the vest, then moved away and slipped inside the hall.

    He later took up a commanding position at the door. After the fight to keep the door open, some plainclothes police officers came out and kept everyone away from the door. The only thing they had to identify themselves as cops was a badge on the belt, and the badges didn't get exposed until that moment. I talked with them, and explained that until they displayed a badge and identified themselves as policemen, I would would see no reason to treat them with any sort of deference.

    As far as I know, the guy I ID'ed never displayed a badge, which makes me wonder if he was some private security guy, or just a union thug. It's also possible that he was, in fact, a cop.

    I later talked with a senior police officer outside the meeting hall, and we had a very friendly discussion on CCW. We agreed that the Town Hall venue didn't fall within any of Florida's prohibited categories for concealed carry, but he said that if the organizer had announced before the meeting that concealed firearms were prohibited, then anyone with a CCW would be obligated to leave. I suspect he'll recommend that future meetings like this include such announcements.

    One thing that bothered me was the large number of police officers (or secret service?) who were not in uniform and who could not be identified as sworn officers. What would be the impact if I got into a shoving match with someone who appeared to be a civilian, but then identified himself as a cop?

    At any rate, below is a photo of the guy with the concealed firearm. You can see his vest in this photo, but you can't see the bulge under the vest at the 4:00 o'clock position. In case he's a real cop, i've covered his face. I'm hidden behind the guy with the beard.

    BTW: EVERY cop that identified himself as a cop treated us regular folks with extreme courtesy, even though a small number of hotheads at the door turned their anger towards the cops and gave them a lot of verbal abuse. The Tampa police force did a very good job. There were two guys at the door who acted like real goons, but i never saw whether they were cops, and I suspect they weren't.

    guy with gun face covered.jpg

    - - - Yoda
  2. Eightball

    Eightball Well-Known Member

    That vest does flare out in an odd fashion on his right hip.....
  3. Dave P

    Dave P Well-Known Member

    "I saw a guy wearing a vest, and it was as obvious as anything that he was carrying concealed. I made my way to him and quietly said, "You're carrying, aren't you?""

    What the heck business of yours is it anyway? You should have left him the f alone. I hope you don't call yourself a 2nd Amend supporter - cause you sure don't act that way.
  4. 61chalk

    61chalk Well-Known Member

    I think if the guy was a cop, he would of had that Bulge under better control, better
    concealed. In any case, he wasn't breaking any laws as you later stated....did you also ask him if he had a swastika also....?....are you going to report him to Obama an the White House...?
  5. 3pairs12

    3pairs12 Well-Known Member

    How does asking somebody if they are carrying make him anyless pro 2A? Agreed it wasn't his business, or even the smart thing to do, but I don't think he is any less of a supporter for asking. Does your stance help to further our cause? I would think that it wouldn't anymore than asking some Joe "Hey are you carrying?I have that same vest when I carry."
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 8, 2009
  6. Rockwell1

    Rockwell1 member

    I would go straight to condition red if some random stranger asked me that, very stupid thing to do
  7. Yoda

    Yoda Well-Known Member

    What's the harm in asking?

    Guys, I'm surprised at the reaction over me telling the guy that I could tell he was carrying. My tone and approach was discrete, but it was meant to indicate to him that a like-minded individual was in the crowd, but, by the way, he was being a bit too obvious. After everything broke up, I talked outside with the senior police officer, and suggested to him that if the guy with the vest was one of his plainclothes officers, he might recommend that he try a less-distinct method of concealment.

    - - - Yoda
  8. amd6547

    amd6547 Well-Known Member

    I would never approach someone like that...
  9. danbrew

    danbrew member

    Tampa? Vest? Heat? Gun belt? Please. He was carrying. As a matter of fact, there are four people in that picture that are carrying.
  10. RobNDenver

    RobNDenver Well-Known Member

    1) I would suggest that its none of your business whether another citizen is carrying concealed.
    2) You might get into a shoving match at a Town Hall meeting?
    3) "Until they showed me a badge I would not show them any deference."

    You may want to rethink your civic responsiblities and etiquette. This is the United States of America, not some third world banana republic. I may not like what someone else in America is saying, but I will always defend their right to say it.
  11. 61chalk

    61chalk Well-Known Member


    "As far as I know, the guy I ID'ed never displayed a badge, which makes
    me wonder if he was some private security guy, or just a union thug. Its also
    possiable that he was, in fact, a cop."

    How about a law abiding American also.....?
  12. Rockwell1

    Rockwell1 member

    Sorry, nope

    You don't walk up to random strangers and ask them if they're heeled. I wouldn't think "Oh here's a like minded individual who's here to let me know I'm printing" I'd think "Is this whackjob about to jump me?"

    Don't get in my bubble, don't try to whisper sweet gun nothings in my ear, if I don't know you , WELL, stay the hell out of my space
  13. DHJenkins

    DHJenkins Well-Known Member

    Can we get some background on this whole townhall meeting thing? What was it about and why was there a 'battle' at the door?
  14. kingpin008

    kingpin008 Well-Known Member

  15. Yo Mama

    Yo Mama Well-Known Member

    ^ Uh DHJenkins, healthcare. I don't figure you get the news often :D
  16. rbernie

    rbernie Well-Known Member

    Is there a point to this thread, other than to administer a virtual verbal beatdown over Yoda's approaching a stranger and telling them that he suspects they're carryin'? If so, I'd love to see it.

    If not, this thread will not last much longer.
  17. Tommygunn

    Tommygunn Well-Known Member

    Maybe, but I don't have any idea in the world how you can determine that ... ... ...
  18. Grump

    Grump Well-Known Member

    Well, since the courts in the 20th Century pretty much eliminated the doctrine of citizen privilege to resist illegal State (=police) actions with up to lethal force if needed, I believe that LE types who disrespect mouthy citizens are feeling pretty empowered to do what they routinely did to teenagers in my town when I was a kid years ago:

    Arrest people for resisting arrest.

    Charges were dropped, but one of my friends got tagged that way after two *other* people were involved in a minor fistfight, for just reaching down from the "up against the fence" position to retrieve either his keys or his wallet.

    AFIC, police lose most of their privileges to use force and order citizens around when they rely on de Facto concealed badges on their belts (who beside a Homophile looks down there???) and fail to ID themselves not just as police, but as [jurisdiction] police.

    I've watched three videos from some of those town hall meetings (two from the same one--one inside at about the 3rd row, and another from one who was pushed outside the room), and I can tell you that the huge men sent to handle the peaceful but loud protesters were quite hostile to having their actions recorded on video.

    Anyone with such a size superiority who is neither in uniform nor wearing a neck-lanyard badge, and who pushes a much smaller person, who hasn't lifted a finger against anyone, to the floor in a 2 on 1 situation against the little guy, should not be surprised if the victim opens fire.

    The political fallout would be depressingly predictable, but there should be better protection and respect for citizens who take part in what Hillary last year (or 2 years ago?) called the "highest form of patriotism". Remember that? She was talking about dissent in a democracy (never mind that a democratic republic puts limits on democracy for the protection of minorities against majority-imposed tyrrany).
  19. Rockwell1

    Rockwell1 member

    Yes, I suspect there might be. Is it a good or safe tactic to approach a stranger, especially in that heated of an environment and ask them if they’re armed? What possible benefit arises? What downside exists? How might the stranger react? How would you react?

    I see quite a few good questions arising from this thread
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 8, 2009
  20. rbernie

    rbernie Well-Known Member

    I absolutely concur. So let's debate that, instead of just adding yet another round of 'your da stoopid!' kind of comments.

    I would not have approached this individual, nor any other that I suspected of carryin'. I can see zero profit in doing so. If there was a perception of profit for such an encounter, I think that identifying youself as a fellow gunnie is probably the lest obtrusive and least threatening way to do so.

    But I cannot imagine what the profit might be for doing this.
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