South Carolinians with valid pistol permits can now carry openly if they want.
The Open Carry with Training Act went live on Sunday, Aug. 15, 2021.
Along with legalizing open carry for permit holders, the legislation also removes the $50 fee required to get a license.
“The bill does away with the fee required to get a permit from SLED [South Carolina Law Enforcement Division] and minimizes the amount of ammo you need to use to qualify,” said state Rep. Bobby Cox, a former Army Ranger and backer of the new law during the Friday press conference at Palmetto State Armory.
Owning a firearm is the protected right of every American citizen and today we join 45 other states in expanding our Second Amendment rights by allowing those with concealed weapons permits to openly carry a firearm. pic.twitter.com/1e2pAQMMY7— Gov. Henry McMaster (@henrymcmaster) August 13, 2021
Cox addressed the concern of critics who believe it will lead to more bloodshed in the streets.
“This doesn’t turn them into the Wild Wild West,” Cox noted.
“South Carolina will get out of the group of Florida, New York, Illinois and California which don’t have any form of open carry of a handgun, and will put us with 45 other states which have some type of open carry of a handgun,” Cox explained. “This is a proven policy throughout the country. This is proven and this is safe.”
Another bonus of the law is that it gives South Carolina 2A sanctuary status.
“This bill is not a one-trick pony,” Speaker of the South Carolina House of Representatives Rep. Jay Lucas said.
“It means no federal law that requires seizure of firearms would be enforced by state law enforcement officials,” Lucas said.
While the Open Carry with Training Act expands guns rights, some existing parts of carry law remain unchanged, including (per WIS10 local news):
- The requirement to carry permit and notify law enforcement of CWP
- That CWP holders must be 21, complete training, and pass a background check before getting a CWP
- Restrictions on where CWP holders can carry, including a private company’s right to prohibit carrying
- That a weapon can be carried by CWP holders or lawfully stored while driving
To apply for a South Carolina click HERE.