Wyoming is one of those states that, unlike Colorado, hasn’t forgotten its roots. It remembers what it’s like to need a gun just to survive and it doesn’t try to get in the way of people having them or the concealed carry of firearms, as a general rule.
But in even the most pro-gun state, you’re going to find the media in many places tends to be a lot more progressive than the state as a whole. They’ll issue calls for gun control when literally no one else in the state wants it.
So when I saw a publication in Wyoming was issuing a warning about concealed carry, I was concerned.
Only, it turns out to be solid advice.
Those who almost never leave home without a gun might think twice about leaving the state with one, some Wyoming concealed carriers said.
“If I go to Washington State, I leave my gun at home,” Bob Berry of Cody said. “What’s the point of going to jail?”
Berry, along with Vince Vanata of Cody and former Fremont County Sheriff Skip Hornecker of Lander, told Cowboy State Daily that gun regulations can get convoluted once one crosses a border out of Wyoming.
“When you go from state to state, you really put yourself in precarious position (without full knowledge of other jurisdiction’s regulations),” said Vanata, a retired Marine and law enforcement officer.
“You’ve got to do your homework,” he said. “I’d have to do my homework. If I, as a retired sheriff, were to consider carrying concealed in another state, I would have to do my research. So, an ordinary citizen certainly should.”
The article goes on to illustrate some of the ways this can be a challenge, such as with Colorado. As the author notes, Wyoming and Colorado have reciprocity, but with Colorado’s patchwork of local laws, someone from Wyoming who isn’t careful could end up breaking the law there without meaning to.
All of this is completely accurate and, to be quite honest, great to see.
While many publications may oppose concealed carry, it would still be very responsible of them to note the challenges of reciprocity and how people should not assume that the gun laws in another state mirror those they’re used to.
The truth is that most people reading this are probably already aware of this fact. Gun folks are familiar with reciprocity and the fact that you still have to follow the laws there, including any relevant local regulations.
But most concealed carry license holders aren’t gun people. They don’t frequent gun forums or gun groups on the internet. They get their permits and carry a gun. If we’re lucky, they get some training here or there, but many recognize the need to carry but don’t have any interest in learning the intricacies of concealed carry beyond the minimum.
So they’re not going to get this from the sources many people get it from.
If newspapers and local news stations started providing this kind of information, then they’d learn about these quirks and things they should be aware of before carrying in another state.
Instead, far too many such outlets are interested in pushing for restrictions rather than helping people exercise their rights in a responsible manner.