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In our community of 2nd Amendment supporters a growing movement are those that advocate “open carry,” the carrying of the defensive firearm without concealment in jurisdictions where this is legal.

While the legal/constitutional issue with open carry is obviously and totally on our side, I would question the TACTICS of this practice.

Understand – our last name is CONCEALMENT, and none of our products are designed or meant to be worn for open carry. They can be, but the user MUST understand he is sacrificing a substantial tactical advantage and placing him/herself at much greater risk by this practice. Our gear is designed to retain the weapon through all common body actions, up to and including strenuous physical activities, but it is NOT designed to retain the weapon if a hand other than one’s own grasps the handgun to pull it out.

This is DELIBERATE! We operate with the KISS principle in our designs (keep it SIMPLE, stupid), and want nothing to interfere or add steps to the draw procedure. This is another reason why we don’t have excessive extra material built up on the body side of the holster. There are other effective ways of providing comfort with your carry without sacrificing the essential full firing grip needed while the piece is still holstered.

Again, our last name is CONCEALMENT. The first notion that the bad guy should have that you are armed is when the weapon is presented. The look associated with this is what we like to refer to as “a catastrophic failure of the victim selection process….”

Like the weapon you choose to carry, this all comes down to the motivations of the end-user. If you are carrying to demonstrate a political point, or just “because you can”, then by all means practice open carry. I agree that this is your right, and you should have that option.

If, however, you are carrying for the defense of yourself and your loved ones, then open carry is a tactically unsound choice. Those that argue that the sight of an open carried handgun is a deterrent are living on the river. There is an equal, if not greater chance, that your open carry will make you a primary target for a preemptive strike, negating your weapon system before you can bring it into play. Sacrificing my tactical advantage to make a point to those who mostly do not and will not understand the issue anyway is not a trade-off I am willing to make. If you are serious about self-defense and are open carrying, this is something you really need to consider.