Well, we are officially two weeks into the “constitutional carry” law coming into effect in Oklahoma, but approximately 0 days without incident. I don’t know what the purpose was for loosening our state’s gun laws. But by how things are going so far, I’m assuming it was to make it easier for law enforcement to identify and arrest reckless gun-nuts.
OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — A gun rights activist accused of illegally taking a rifle into an Oklahoma City restaurant is facing a felony charge.
Timothy A. Harper, 52, was arrested Tuesday after he violated a state law that bars possessing or carrying a rifle in any establishment where alcoholic beverages are consumed, authorities said.
Harper told another activist in an online interview on Monday that he took his rifle into Twin Peaks Nov. 2 in celebration of Oklahoma’s new ‘permitless carry’ gun law, which went into effect Nov. 1, The Oklahoman reported.
Police reported recovering surveillance video from the restaurant that shows Harper, of Choctaw, walking in “with an AR-style rifle slung to the front of his body.” Police noted that he was asked to leave the restaurant, but he initially refused.
Good God, this second amendment “auditor” doesn’t seem to know the laws he is actually “auditing.” Look, I know that the SDA concealed carry course I took for my own handgun license was basically a blow off Saturday where I got to eat French fries with my buddy while watching a PowerPoint presentation, followed by shooting 50 rounds into a silhouette just to make sure I knew which way the gun should be pointed. But at least our 2002-era PowerPoint had a slide that informed us where people can and cannot legally carry a firearm. And as it turns out, you cannot carry your firearm into a facility where the main purpose is alcohol sales. You also cannot bring your firearm into a privately owned-business that prohibits it. Maybe my blow off class wasn’t that much of a blow-off after all! So, how did it all turn out for Harper, anywho?
The affidavit indicates prosecutors have agreed to charge Harper. If convicted, he faces up to two years in prison and a $1,000 fine. He’s being held at the county jail. No bail has been set.
Harper often livestreams himself openly carrying a rifle or AR-15 pistol in public places and being confronted by police. He has said his goal is to educate the police on gun laws and make the public more comfortable with seeing legally armed citizens. His critics contend he just wants the attention and makes money by posting his videos on YouTube.
Earlier this year, he drew widespread criticism for openly carrying an AR-15 pistol in Edmond’s Hafer Park as children played nearby.
On Nov. 6, the Oklahoma Second Amendment Association sharply denounced Harper for his “continued antics” after a run-in with authorities outside the Israel United in Christ Church in Oklahoma City. The gun rights group said he has been permanently banned as a member.
In an October interview, Oklahoma City Police Chief Wade Gourley complained about “people that like to create drama and want to create a situation that they can put on YouTube.” He did not mention Harper by name.
Wow, you must be the nuttiest of the gun nuts if even a pro-gun rights organization is calling you out. Here’s the thing, I know that requiring a handgun license to carry a concealed firearm wasn’t the perfect way to keep “bad guys” from carry a weapon. But it at least deterred a few untrained, vigilante assholes from carrying their weapons in public out of fear of getting slapped with a felony. Now that constitutional carry is in effect, those vigilante assholes can start carrying without going through the hassle of a background check and overview of state law. What’s more is that the research suggests that introducing a gun into a situation not only increases aggression, but it can also turn a neutral situation hostile. I know these vigilantes think they are making the world safer by carrying their gun. But in Oklahoma’s case, I have a feeling that a higher gun presence is going to make it much more dangerous.
Hayley’s got a gun. Bong-bink. Follow her on twitter @squirrellygeek