Amid the efforts of liberals to strip our gun rights away, many gun rights advocates are staging peaceful rallies across the country to make our voices heard. We are fighting the recent efforts to impose stricter gun-control laws that they fear undermine our 2nd Amendment rights.
Peaceful protesters numbering in the hundreds gathered outside statehouses from Maine to Wyoming to hear speakers warn that any restrictions on gun ownership or use could eventually lead to bans for law-abiding gun owners. Fox News reports.
“Gun owners have been portrayed in a negative way and it is our hope that this peaceable rally will show that we are safe, law-abiding individuals that happen to take our constitutional rights very seriously,” Dave Gulya, an organizer for the Maine event that attracted about 800 people, told the Bangor Daily News.
“It’s our turn as gun owners to come out and show our numbers,” Gulya said. “Any restriction completely goes against our rights.”
Between 600 and 800 people gathered from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. in the plaza between the State House and the Cross State Office Building, according to an estimated crowd count by Capitol Police.
YouTube video courtesy of stevethrasher
Billed as the “Americans for America” rally, many rally-goers held American flags and implored the country to “come together,” according to WABI. Under a gray cloudy sky, they carried signs that read, “Let teachers protect my life now!” and “Gun free zones kill!,” tweeted Maine Public Radio.
Protesters in Vermont took to the steps of the Statehouse in Montpelier, where days earlier they felt Gov. Phil Scott “betrayed” them when he signed three major gun control measures.
“Three days ago, on these steps, we were betrayed,” Joe Nagle told the Burlington Free Press. “We were promised no new gun laws.”
The paper reported that the National Rifle Association criticized Scott, a Republican, and called on gun owners to abandon the governor, who changed his stance in February after an alleged school shooting plot shook the state.
Saturday’s protests came less than three weeks after hundreds of thousands marched in Washington, New York and elsewhere to demand tougher gun laws after the Feb. 14 school shooting in Parkland, Fla., that killed 17. Organizers of those protests demanded a ban on assault weapons and high-capacity magazines, and called for universal background checks on potential gun owners. Fox News reported.
Pro-gun protesters also showed up in Boston; Indianapolis; Albany, N.Y.; Austin, Texas; Des Moines, Iowa; and other cities.
John Nagle had a message Saturday afternoon for his fellow pro-gun activists: Step up and run for office.
“We’ve got to stop being quiet,” the Colchester resident said to the crowd of camouflage- and orange-clad people who braved icy rain and sleet to rally on the steps of the Statehouse, where three days earlier Gov. Phil Scott signed three bills tightening Vermont’s gun laws.
Several other speakers said they would be challenging sitting legislators, even in Democratic strongholds like Chittenden County, or encouraged others to do so as the state’s gun activists turn their attention to long-term strategy.
We all have to fight for our rights. When we give them an inch, they take a mile.