Gun-Rights Advocates Plan Open-Carry March

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A dozen supporters of gun rights plan to walk on Aug. 24 in Fort Smith, openly carrying handguns in holsters, an organizer said.

“All we’re trying to do is show support for the Second Amendment,” said Steve Jones, chairman of the gun-rights organization Arkansas Carry.

The “celebration walk” is set to begin at 9 a.m. in Ben Geren Park. Twelve people have been invited to participate, Jones said, since a larger number would have required a permit.

Jones said the participants will begin in the park with their handguns concealed, but then will openly carry the firearms once the group reaches the street. He said the participants will walk about a mile, then turn around and return to the park. The group has received approval from law enforcement authorities to conduct the event, Jones said.

Jones said the walk also is designed to show support for the belief among gun-rights advocates that a state law passed this year, Act 746, allows for handguns to be carried openly. The law takes effect Friday (Aug. 16).

Attorney General Dustin McDaniel issued an opinion last month stating the act does not allow Arkansans to carry handguns openly.

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