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In 2013 Arkansas passed a law legalizing open carry of handguns, but that law has been heavily and heatedly contested ever since. Opponents of the law have argued that allowing open carry of handguns will result in a huge increase of gun violence. Some were so extreme in their fight against the law that they predicted the streets would run red with blood from the abundance of victims.

Those bloody predictions have not materialized and gun violence has not become as rampant as gun control fanatics predicted.

In a historic move, Arkansas Governor Asa Hutchinson, sent a letter to state prosecutors and the state police, informing them that open carry of handguns is now the law and they need to advise their people accordingly.

(Arkansas Online) – Gov. Asa Hutchinson, in a letter sent to the Arkansas State Police and prosecutors, said this month that he believes that a much-debated 2013 state law allows for the open carry of handguns, though no officials have announced a change in policy in response to the governor’s message.

Col. Bill Bryant, the state police director who was appointed by the governor and to whom the letter was directed, issued a memo of guidance to commanders on Wednesday. It was the first time the director had directly given guidance on the matter of open carry, according to an agency spokesman.

But Bryant’s memo — which says that open carry is not probable cause for an arrest and which directs troopers to use “reasonable suspicion” when stopping a person suspected of criminal conduct — is not different from the training that cadets receive at the State Police Training Academy, said spokesman Bill Sadler…

It will be interesting to follow, but in other areas with open carry and concealed carry laws, violence and personal crime rates tend to be lower. There are also fewer mass shootings in locations where more people are liable to be armed. Just like a strong military is the best form of defense, an armed population is also the best form of defense against would-be criminals.

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