Blend In: Embracing the Gray Man Mentality | USCCA

You’ve seen him in public. I’m talking about the guy in khaki cargo pants and a T-shirt splashed with some guns-and-death-related witticism about stacking bodies. Or the dude with an “operator beard” and gun-company shirt open carrying his Glock while grocery shopping. And don’t forget the one wearing the “shoot-me-first” photographer vest. Odds are that you have encountered one of these individuals. This clothing and swagger screams, “Look at me! I have a gun!”


This is a companion discussion topic for the original entry at https://www.usconcealedcarry.com/blog/blend-in-embracing-the-gray-man-mentality/
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I agree 100% with Kat’s broader point here. I’ve been a gun owner for just over a year and am anxiously awaiting my Texas LTC (currently on coronavirus hold). Being a newbie gives me a different perspective from those lucky souls who grew up with a gun rack on their Big Wheel. Dressing like you’re ready to deploy at any moment (unless you actually are deploying) is silly and makes you and those around you a target.

I do have to quibble with some of the details, though. There’s such a wide vary of styles worn in any community of appreciable size that you can wear your own personal style (assuming your style is not “tactical guy” or “hardcore gun guy”) to sufficiently blend in. As Kat said, you can try to blend in too much and thus, ironically, make yourself stand out. Dramatically changing your usual style to “gray out” will only make you stand out even more to anyone whose seen you before or if it clashes with your personality.

My newbie perspective tells me that people who are not part of the gun culture will look at Aloha shirt guy and think “concealed carry” like they would with tactical guy. I am about to be a concealed carry citizen and even my first thought is “beach bum.”

People will know by looking at you if your style and your personality are mismatched. Just wear what you would wear if you never owned a gun (with adjustments for concealability) and I think you’ll blend in just fine.

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I also wholeheartedly agree with Kat’s point that flaunting your firearm by “wearing an AR-15 through Walmart“ or shoving gun ownership in people’s faces amounts to being part of the problem. Brandishing the second amendment like a loaded weapon will not influence people or change the minds of those who don’t understand guns but who might be open to reason on the subject. More likely, it will confirm every fear and uninformed opinion they’ve ever had. That harms all of us.

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I think a lot of people who practice their first amendment rights are loud, obnoxious morons, but I have to recognize and defend their right. I suppose the 2nd is no different, in this regard.

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One of “Murphy’s Laws of Combat” says “Try to look unimportant because the bad guys may be low on ammo!”

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Trying too hard will definitely make you stand out.

One thing to remember is a lot of people who don’t carry are walking around in condition white and not seeing what’s going on around them. They may not even see a threat walking right up to them, so our clothing choice may not even phase the majority of people.

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Funny thing. My sister-in-law just sent a picture of a guy in a spider man mask and thought it was funny. First thing I noticed was a USCCA cap and Hawaiian shirt. any guesses on whether he was carrying?

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