Opinion Web Exclusive

Wendy Davis jumps the gun on open carry

In the world of politics where everybody bends the truth to sway the vote in their favor, it’s hard to distinguish whether someone is voicing their own opinions or the opinions of the popular masses.

For this reason, when a government official shows signs of moving against the grain, there is always drama to follow.

Democratic gubernatorial candidate Wendy Davis is the most recent politician to turn a few heads.

Heads are generally turned when officials have idiotic points of view, when politicians agree with viewpoints of the opposing party and when representatives actually seem to have a mind of their own.

Davis is accustomed to getting attention for her strong-willed opinions. Most people know Davis as the rooted politician who — during an 11-hour filibuster — attempted to delay the Texas Senate’s proposed abortion regulations.

During these hours, Davis showed that she could remain strong to her convictions; however, in light of recent events, this may have been the last time she stuck to her convictions.

In a clichéd nutshell, let us say that Democratic candidates are typically known to be pro-choice and anti-gun, while Republican candidates are stereotyped to be pro-life and pro-gun.

Recently, Davis has been gaining attention for her swaying stance on gun control. She went against the Democratic grain when she declared that she agreed with her opponent, Attorney Gen. Greg Abbott, on openly carrying a gun.

Open carry is the opposite of having a concealed handgun license. If this law were to be passed, individuals would be allowed not only to carry a handgun, but to proudly display it on their persons in public.

Statistics by votesmart.org show that on May 9, 2011, Davis voted against a bill allowing concealed handguns on campuses. However, on April 30, 2013, she did vote to allow authorized firearms in vehicles on college campuses.

In addition, not only is her backtracking on previous convictions jarring, but it is unsettling — and ridiculous — to see the drama unfold.

Because Davis chose to support a stance from the opposing party, constituents are accusing Davis of doing what most politicians are guilty of — pandering to citizens to gain favorable votes.

With this decision, Davis has entered unfriendly terms with both major parties. Members of the Democratic Party disagree with her over-zealous decision, and members of the Republican Party believe this attitude makes her more unreliable and untrustworthy as a government official.

An article by inquisitr.com documented Davis’ carefully constructed words concerning open carry.

Careful to remain partially neutral, as to not rock the vote, Davis said that “the state government should be sensitive to private property owners (including governmental, education, religious, health care, and other institutional facilities) to determine whether to allow open carry on their own properties.”

From these words, Davis has managed to place her vote in favor of open carry while simultaneously stating that the right to open carry would be decided by individual property holders.

Davis’ to-and-fro attitude about guns is not the main issue with this controversy. The main issue is the actual issue of open carry laws. Now, we have not just one candidate vying for the chance to allow all of Texas to visibly carry their guns on their hips; we have two.

If a politician is going to flop on their stances, they should stick to something that is a little safer for the public.

Furthermore, whether or not one agrees with the particular opinion expressed by certain members of government, one feels the brief swell of respect for the politician who advocates for something they believe in.

When Davis advocated for women’s rights to choose whether to have abortions, I was able to respect her for diligently speaking for something she so obviously believed in. Still, there is no respect for an individual who half-heartedly supports a cause to gain votes.

Supporters of open carry often point out that most states allow some form of open carry — even if restrictive.

According to opencarry.org, Texas is one of five states that allows no form of open carry.

I am not pro-open carry, but I am a proponent of CHLs. The key word within CHL is the “concealed” option. It would be better suited for the public’s safety if there were gun carriers, but not visible gun carriers.

Aside from assuming that there would be extensive background and mental checks in order to openly carry a handgun, having a handgun proudly displayed would make these gun holders susceptible to robbery. If people were able to waltz around with a gun openly presented their hip, it would leave more room for error than good.

We already have enough senseless gun violence without one worrying about a gun being swiped from a holster or someone losing their cool during a confrontation.

Senior staff columnist Kelly Schafler is a print journalism major and may be reached at [email protected]


  • “the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed.”
    That wording in the 2nd Amendment is clear, so the right to open carry shouldn’t even be an issue.

    Wendy Davis is a fake (read the real WD story in the Dallas Morning News). She later said she supports municipalities rights to ban open carry within their borders. I wonder if she feels the same way if cites banned other constitutional rights like free speech, or equal protection of women and minorities within their borders.

    Oh, and I almost choked on my breakfast when I read that the author actually believes someone open carrying is somehow more susceptible to being robbed!!! I’ll be laughing all day on that one.

  • “We already have enough senseless gun violence without one worrying about
    a gun being swiped from a holster or someone losing their cool during a

    Weapons are not as easily taken from holders as you are leading on, and just because a weapon is on your hip it, not tucked away somewhere, will it make it more likely of you to pull it out in anger.

      • Wayne, I think you forgot what century we are in. Unless, you need to hunt Buffalo down at the local creek, you don’t need a gun. Although, something tells me you may be something like that ornery old guy in Florida who shot another patron at the movie theater cuz he was texting! That example, plus Columbine plus Newtowne killings plus Colorado shootings etc. etc are all why there needs to be a ban on guns. No other civilized country in the world has the same amount of senseless shootings that we do in the country. Shameful.

        • How would you know if he needs a gun? You need a reality check. So its 2014, and all the rapists and murders decided to stay home and knit quilt work instead of committing crimes? The police have NO OBLIGATION to protect YOU.

          Owning a gun is a legitimate way to protect yourself,regardless of whatever some authoritarians say.

          didi cantwrite said:”No other civilized country in the world has the same amount of senseless shootings that we do in the country. ”

          What is a civilized country? Where only those in the government can have guns? North Korea doesn’t have as many “senseless shootings” either,but hopefully you didn’t have North Korea in mind. Most of the “civilized countries” that government gun monopolists speak of, have demographics that are less prone to violence in the first place.Switzerland and Finland are civilized countries with high gun ownership. They do not have our level of violence due to the demographics of their countries. Places in the United States with similar demographics to those in European countries produce similar crime rates.

        • Mao banned guns, can you tell me what happened? Stalin banned guns, can you describe the result? Pol Pot banned guns, what was the result?

        • There already was a ban on guns in Newtown, Columbine, Aurora, and every mass shooting location (except for one) since 1950. Great idea! (sarcasm) Coincidence?

          That blood is on the hands of politicians who passed laws creating “gun free zones” preventing law abiding citizens from defending themselves.

          If you don’t like firearms, fine, don’t own one, but before you prevent others from owning one (you must) address the points given in this corny, but valid video.


  • wendy davis is shifty. that’s not the kind of leader anyone wants to be associated with. not in government, not in private either

  • I guess in Texas people still live like its the Wild West and have to hunt for food and shoot their neighbors. The only people that should have guns are the police and the military. Stop giving guns out and we wont hear about a school shooting or a mall shooting every week across the U.S.

    • Why do the police and military need guns? They should be able to work it out without guns like the lowly civilians would under your fantasy.

    • Yeah, but in Chicago they banned handguns but the lovely democrats keep killing each other with them. That’s liberal and loving unlike backwards Texas.

      btw, I’m not a republican(hate them to)

  • There’s a bigger chance that a cop on a power-trip will shoot your dog or an innocent bystander than a gun would get stolen from an open-carry civilian. Lets get rid of guns from the hands of the government if we really want to stop gun violence. If they lead by example, maybe some of the gun-owning civilians will follow 🙂

  • “If a politician is going to flop on their stances, they should stick to something that is a little safer for the public.”

    Texas and four other states make it illegal to openly carry a firearm by law. Since there are 45 states with legal open carry, I challenge you to document any actual public saftey issues caused by open carry. Remember, document only those events that have actually happened in reality, not your paranoid delusions.

  • I do not see what the issue is. You can conceal carry and they have revised the laws about carry without a CHL in you auto (see HB1815 passed in 2007,) You can legally open carry a long gun anywhere but a handgun if you are on your own property. If or when an open carry law is passed, if you have a large caliber, just wear a long shirt or jacket if the gun is OWB.

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