Should I Carry Concealed When I am Drinking?
No. There is your answer. You will thank me later.
Alcohol and guns do not mix. There are more accidents and homicides involving alcohol every week in the U.S.
My stance on this is that any person with a permit to carry should absolutely NEVER drink while carrying. I know there are a lot of people that disagree, but I firmly believe that alcohol has a tendency to cause people to say things and do things they would not normally say or do, and this can create a dangerous situation.
Is It Legal to Carry Concealed Where Alcohol is Served?
First of all, I am NOT a lawyer nor do I play one on TV. Nothing in this article is Legal Advice. It is always your responsibility to know the laws concerning your activities.
I do believe that there should not be a law to prevent people with permits to enter a bar or restaurant where alcohol is served, as there is in some states. It is my opinion that if I have a permit to carry, I should be able to go wherever I want. My behavior, however is another story. I believe that if you are carrying a firearm, you should be on your best behavior at all times.
I would implore you to never drink alcohol when you are going to be carrying your firearm. Not only is it a bad idea, but even if you need to use your firearm in self defense and you were completely in the right, the fact that you had even one drink will come into question and it will muddy the facts and could land you in jail until it is sorted out.
Alcohol removes inhibitions in most people, increasing the likelihood of a conflict with another person, especially if the other person is also drinking alcohol. As we all know alcohol fueled conflicts very often escalate rapidly, and if there is a firearm present, a simple disagreement can become deadly.
Is It Legal in My State to Carry in a Bar?
Laws definitely vary by state on this. In my home state of Pennsylvania, there is no law stipulating that alcohol cannot be consumed by someone carrying a concealed firearm that has a permit to do so.
I have done some research and below I have listed the states that do NOT allow concealed carry in an establishment that serves alcohol. This is accurate as far as I can tell in June of 2020, but laws constantly change, so please check before you carry. This info was provided by Legal Heat
These States Do NOT Allow Concealed Carry in Establishments that Serve Alcohol
These States Do NOT Allow Concealed Carry in Bars
(but other establishments that sell or serve alcohol such as restaurants, supermarkets, etc. are OK)
- North Dakota
- South Dakota
- Washington D.C.
If you are interested in information on Concealed Carry and Legal coverage for Self Defense, see my article on USCCA Membership cost and benefits. USCCA provides exhaustive training resources and information as well as legal coverage should you ever get into trouble defending yourself with a gun or other deadly weapon.