Thursday, April 28, 2011

Legislators propose taking “concealed” out of handgun law

Austin – A legislative committee voted to allow licensed handgun permit holders to carry their hoglegs strapped on in plain sight.

The House Committee on Homeland Security voted 5-3 in favor of removing the word “concealed” from the law.

Under the new “open carry” provision authored by Representative George Lavender, R-Texarkana, licensees would still be required to take instruction and pass the same test, background check, and pay the same fee.

The bill will be sent to the full House for consideration.

Just prior to the present session of the Legislature, the security forces at the Capitol created an "express lane" at the magnetometer screening stations which clear visitors, legislators and lobbyists to enter the building. If one has a concealed carry handgun license, he need only show it - as do such pistoleros as Governor Rick Perry - and they are allowed to bypass the tedium of waiting in line and being screened for a gun.

This prompted a rush among legislators, lobbyists and staffers to acquire the documentation needed to hit the express lane and get inside, hawg leg and all.

A gunman attacked at an entrance to the building recently and it is thought that licensed handgun owners could become effective "force multipliers" to back up DPS officers who stand by for security purposes in the event of any future attack.

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