U.S. Law Shield News Update: Constitutional Carry

Texas & U.S. Law Shield Independent Program Attorney Michele Byington and host Sam Malone discuss the state of Constitutional Carry—what it means, where it is legal, and how it affects crime rates—in the United States. Find out everything you wanted to know about Constitutional Carry here:


Check out these other great articles from U.S. Law Shield:

You may have seen some headlines about a court upholding a ban on “assault rifles,” including the AR-15. Members are concerned that this ruling has made AR’s and similar semi-auto firearms illegal “assault weapons” everywhere in the country. Is this the truth of the matter, or a case of media misinformation?

Texas Law Shield Independent Program Attorney Gordon Cooper says that words alone are not enough to justify the use of force or deadly force in an escalating situation. But couple them with threatening action, and it’s a whole ‘nother ballgame. Click to watch the video:

When a Colorado member was confronted by two angry men in a grocery store parking lot, he tried to defuse the situation by showing his firearm. Watch Member Ambassador Sherry Hale explain why our Member got arrested — and learn the simple step you can take to avoid a similar fate.


Does your state have Constitutional Carry? Do you want it? Let us know in the comments!

17 Comments On This Article

  1. I noticed you did not list Virginia on your map of constitutional carry states. I live in Virginia and while you do have to have a license to carry concealed, you do not need a license to open carry.

  2. In the unconstitutional State of New Jersey where fleecing, the state’s residents are the only concern of Democrats/And many republicans officials running the State. Open Carry and 2 Amendment rights are only a Dream.

    • The corrupt state of Maryland is worst, Martin O’Malley caused Beretta to leave the state and take hundreds of jobs with it, right now we have an AR-15 ban that headed for a court showdown sometime in the fall. Maryland currently has a RINO Gov. who might as well be a DEM. My wish is for the Fed to tell the states that their so called Gun Laws need to be constitutional, most aren’t. State Rights don’t give the states the right to pass unconstitutional laws. A wise man one said “better to be judged by 12 then carried by 6”.

    • I’m a retired NYPD officer and even when I was at the dept. we avoided NJ like the plague! The State police there are akin to the Hitler youth. They show no discretion or brotherhood with other officer’s. I’m sure there are plenty of NJ officer who are not like that, but it seems like the bad one’s are plentiful, and give a black eye to the state.

  3. Texas does not have constitutional carry as yet but I believe that there is now a bill in the state house for that purpose. I am definitely FOR this and I believe that with our present governor and attorney general plus a republican majority, that we may soon see this take effect in Texas. I am all for it. I believe that the 2nd amendment gives us this RIGHT anyway and that ANY law abiding citizen that can LEGALLY purchase a firearm already has the right to carry concealed or openly. Thank you for providing this foremost for WE THE PEOPLE to express ourselves.

  4. The State of Maryland has set the bar impossibly high for law abiding citizens to legally purchase and own a firearm. The state has a “hit list” of firearms that cannot be purchased, owned or traded without first going through a rigorous and expensive process. The list is known as “regulated firearms”. Funny, I didn’t see anything in the second amendment about a regulated firearm. And you can forget about a concealed carry permit. Of course the friendly neighborhood drug dealer doesn’t have to deal with any of this. You can’t even legally buy or possess a magazine that holds more than 10 rounds. Not even for a .22 cal. Of course bad guys do a lot of their mass shootings with 20 round semi-auto .22 rifles.The State of Maryland will never change it’s stance on limiting the second amendment. It will only get worse.

  5. Here in New Mexico, as far as I know, we’ve always had permit-less open carry. Sec. 6 of the NM Constitution clearly states that: “No law shall abridge the right of the citizen to keep and bear arms for security and defense, for lawful hunting and recreational use and for other lawful purposes, but nothing herein shall be held to permit the carrying of concealed weapons. No municipality or county shall regulate, in any way, an incident of the right to keep and bear arms.” However NM recently began issuing permits to the people for the carrying of concealed firearms. These permits are quite costly and time consuming to acquire, otherwise we‘re almost a “constitutional carry” state. But because NM now offers the public these permits, hasn’t that single action conceded that “carrying concealed arms” is a constitutionally lawful activity no matter what its Constitution says?

    Furthermore, in my studies of the U.S. Constitution and SCOTUS case law, I’ve located a precedent (Murdock v. Pennsylvania: 319 US 105) that makes it unconstitutional for any state to convert a right that is secured by the U.S. Constitution into a privilege and charge a fee (acquiring a license/permit and class time) in order to freely exercise that right. Furthermore, Shuttlesworth v Birmingham, AL: 373 US 262 clearly dictates that if a state does convert a constitutionally secured right into a privilege and then charge a fee or requires a license in order for us to exercise that right, that we may ignore said license and fee and engage in that right with impunity.

  6. There is an important piece of information here. A man who was being threatened by two men showed them his concealed handgun and was arrested for it. This is obviously a miscarriage of justice but why did it happen? What twisted legal logic made this possible? After all, he was licensed to carry a concealed firearm, wasn’t he?

    Here’s the problem, which is slowly but surely being addressed by increasingly conservative state legislatures and governors around the country.

    There are two very different and totally separate sets of laws at work in this situation. One set governs the carry of a concealed firearm. It does NOT authorize in any way the use of that firearm. Period.

    The second set of laws governs the use of deadly force of any kind, in any manner, including use of firearms. The instant your hand goes to your firearm in a threatening manner, even just showing your firearm in a threatening manner (brandishing), you have left the set of laws governing carry and entered the set of laws governing USE of firearms. It is illegal to “brandish” your firearm as a threat. Illegal use of a firearm is a felony crime. Commission of a felony crime is a legitimate basis for arrest.

    Here’s some good advice. If you ever have to use your firearm in any way to defend yourself, you are in potentially deep legal trouble, no matter how well justified your use may have been. Do not talk about your use of your firearm to anyone for any reason until you have talked to your lawyer. Don’t talk to the police, your friend, your siblings, your parents, your spouse … not anyone. Zip it. Your lawyer will thank you and it will minimize the misery that will suddenly engulf your life.

    Finalky, my advice is this. Don’t ever go to your firearm for any reason until there is a clear and present active threat to your life or physical well being or that of another person. WHEN it becomes clear that this threat exists, draw your firearm and neutralize the threat. Don’t draw your firearm and then verbally engage the perp to try to talk him into submission because this poses the legal question about whether deadly force was necessary to begin with. Do all the possible talking BEFORE drawing your pistol. Once you draw, don’t hesitate … shoot well and continuously until the threat is stopped. If the perp is not dead, do not walk over and shoot him again. Disarm him and call police, while maintaining constant vigilance because the perp may not be alone.

    When police arrive be careful to have your pistol holstered and your hands in plain sight. Cooperate. Police don’t know who is the threat until they are able to control the scene, which includes disarming you. Do exactly as instructed.

    As soon as you call police, call your lawyer. Hopefully, he can arrive before police. If not, keep your lip zipped.

    • If you have never been to NJ you would not understand the thinking of the police there. I have had many interactions with NJ police as a NYPD officer, none were any good.

    • Dave from San Antonio

      Good points there Gunner. The individual who showed his handgun was probably dinged on “brandishing” a firearm. Kind of a ‘catch 22’. Damned if you do and possibly worse if you don’t. You are dead right. Never open up to the “authorities” without talking to your lawyer first. Many well meaning and law-abiding citizens have been prosecuted…sometimes successfully…for nothing more than being honest with police. Oh, one last thing…NEVER…Never…never…say you shot to kill…even if you were in fear for your life. Say…I shot to stop the attacked and nothing else…and don’t ever change that. If you can…be the first one to call 911 after an incident…it makes you look a little better.

    • Thank you for your servcie Gunny. The information that you presented is very factual and to the point. Do all the talking prior to moving toward your weapon. Use the weapon after all avenues have failed and the situation has escalated to the need of a weapon (of any kind) because there will be an attorney who will do his best to protect the perp or his survivors.

  7. I find it interesting that (in Texas) you can’t get a carry license if your behind on child support. Would any rational person see that as anything other sexual discrimination.