A year after enactment of an open-carry firearms law, Tulsans remain evenly divided over its desirability and effectiveness.
The latest Oklahoma Poll, conducted Nov. 1-5, asked 401 Tulsa residents if they “feel safe knowing that people not connected to law enforcement can openly carry loaded guns in public.”
Forty-seven percent said yes.
Forty-seven percent said no.
“The more guns you have, the more likely somebody is going to get shot and killed,” Ruthie Ball said.
Some people, though, think things have already gone beyond that.
“In Tulsa, the crime rate is incredible,” David Embry said. “I just can’t believe the things that are going on in this town.”
Few issues follow party and ideological lines more clearly than opinions on the open-carry law.
By a 2-to-1 margin, Democrats said they do not feel more safe because of the open-carry law.
By an almost identical margin, Republicans said they do.
“I’m 59 years old,” Embry said. “I’m getting to that point that some of these thugs might think I’m an easy target.
“Less than a mile from me … four guys kicked in a door, shot a 60 year-old-man in the face. If somebody’s got an answer, I’d like to hear it.”
Embry, who lives on the city’s far east side, said he rarely sees a police car in his neighborhood and that when he does it fails to improve his confidence in local law enforcement.
“I don’t know. Maybe they’re trying and I just can’t see it,” he said.
Embry said he’s thought about moving out of the city.
“The murder rate is so high. Burglaries. Home invasions scare me to death. And the thing is, I don’t think anybody is listening,” he said.
About the Oklahoma Poll
The poll of 401 likely voters was conducted November 1-5 by SoonerPoll.com, using a random digit-dialing technique that included cellphone and landline telephone numbers. Results were weighted by gender, age and party. The poll was sponsored by the Tulsa World. The margin of error is plus or minus 4.9 percentage points.
This poll conforms to the Standards of Disclosure of the National Council on Public Polls. A complete description of the methodology can be found here.