Mainsail wrote: What? This is backwards. Criminals are risking their life for a few bucks unless they're Enron types, in which case it's more than a few bucks and their life isn't at as much risk... Your argument (in part) seems to be: a) Criminals assume there is little or no risk in attacking someone who is apparently unarmed b) Criminals assume there is great risk in attacking or even approaching someone who open carries c) All criminals weigh risk vs. benefit All three presuppositions appear to be very, very shaky. Re: a) At least some criminals realize there is risk in attacking and mugging to make a living or get a cheap thrill. There is no empirical proof that open carrying deters attackers in any way, shape, or form. Further, there is a good chance that in a dark area a criminal might not notice the sidearm until engagement occurs. b) Again, no proof. I have some anecdotal proof against this. I was "interviewed" face-to-face at least three times while open carrying in North Carolina. Criminals aren't necessarily stupid, binary-coded creatures. These guys seemed to realize, through my demeanor or even the fact that I carried a gun openly, that I was going to adhere to the rules of engagement. Last I checked, mild harassment and "interviewing" do not warrant lethal force. In this case, I am sure that my OC sidearm attracted attention when I would have blended in. I was more at risk because of the sidearm in this case. c) Criminals clearly do not weigh risk vs. benefit. This can be summed up in criminal psychology by the discovery that criminals are generally undeterred by punishment because they believe they will get away with the crime. There is a decision-making disconnect in the average person, let alone in criminals! Assumption c) is simply outdated by research in the general population, let alone in criminals. There is a book out now about irrationality in decision-making. Economists and sociologists and psychologists used to assume that people would always weigh risks and benefits before making a decision, but in terms of national policy as well as research this has been disproven. Why would a rational person be a common criminal anyway? The best arguments for open carry: -It's a right that needs maintaining. -It can be positive PR. -It is a reminder for some of us to be more vigilant (maybe). -Individual choice is a beautiful thing. The best (individual) arguments against open carry: -Unwanted attention. -Somewhat limited ability to blend in in certain risky areas if they are inavoidable. -Questionable deterrent value. -Additional information for an unstable and irrational criminal to use as he so chooses. -Constant attention from non-criminals, both good and bad, gets annoying (for me). If I had to guess, this is a "plus" for some open carriers. There are a lot of posts on opencarry.org about a "GREAT experience in the checkout line" when an older woman said "My grandfather used to have a gun like that." Frankly that kind of thing is pretty insignificant to me, but other people really seem to like positive comments about their guns. -Individual choice is a beautiful thing.