Americans of all walks of life gather in droves—peacefully—for second Amendment rights.
By John Friend
Despite the hysterical headlines emanating from some of the leading purveyors of fake news and fear mongering from local, state, and national political leaders, the pro-Second Amendment rally in Richmond, Va. on Jan. 20 at the state’s capitol grounds was an amazing success.
A rally originally organized by the Virginia Citizens Defense League (VCDL) morphed into a broader pro-Second Amendment event, drawing over 20,000 people from the state and around the country, according to many on-the-ground observers. The VCDL scheduled its annual Lobby Day on Jan. 20, which coincided with the federal Martin Luther King Jr. Day holiday, in an effort to protest recent anti-Second Amendment initiatives by the Democrat-led Virginia legislature and Democratic Gov. Ralph Northam. According to the VCDL, the 2020 Legislative Session in the state “represents the greatest threat to gun rights Virginians have faced in modern times.”
The VCDL’s annual Lobby Day encourages its supporters to show up at the state’s General Assembly building to lobby state lawmakers in an effort to advance pro-Second Amendment legislation and to voice their concerns with pending anti-Second Amendment legislation. In November of last year, Northam vowed to reintroduce a variety of gun control measures after Democrats took control of both the state House and Senate, drawing the ire of pro-gun groups like the National Rifle Association (NRA) and the VCDL.
“Getting rid of bump stocks, high volume magazines, red flag laws,” Northam explained to CNN in an interview last year, “these are commonsense pieces of legislation. I will introduce those again in January. And I’m convinced, with the majority now in the House and the Senate, they’ll become law and because of that, Virginia will be safer.”
Democratic leaders have also suggested passing legislation requiring stronger background checks on prospective gun owners and restrictions on various firearms and firearm modifications, such as noise suppressors and modified triggers.
The anti-gun initiatives and proposed legislation generated much controversy, with pro-Second Amendment groups in the state and around the country vowing to protest Northam and the state’s Democrat-controlled legislature. Leading up to the rally, various media outlets and the governor himself warned of potential violence, billing the rally as a “white supremacist” event.
Northam declared a state of emergency on Jan. 17, days before the rally, suggesting “that tens of thousands of advocates plan to converge on Capitol Square for events culminating on Jan. 20.” Northam’s executive order went on to ominously suggest that “a substantial number of these demonstrators are expected to come from outside the commonwealth, may be armed, and have as their purpose not peaceful assembly but violence, rioting, and insurrection,” which turned out to be entirely false. The governor banned guns from the state capitol grounds leading up to the rally as well.
Following an unsuccessful challenge to his executive order, Northam doubled down on his predictions, arguing that “the news has confirmed that this rally is attracting extreme individuals and groups—including national hate, neo-Nazi, and white supremacist groups—who are threatening violence and looking to advance a violent agenda.” News of federal law enforcement officials arresting suspected “white supremacists” dovetailed nicely with Northam’s fear mongering, as did mainstream news outlets, such as NBC, who described the pro-Second Amendment event as a “white nationalist rally.”
Despite the warnings and accusations, the rally turned out to be an extremely peaceful and orderly event that had nothing at all to do with so-called “white nationalist” groups. In fact, many leading pro-white and dissident commentators warned their supporters and readers to avoid the rally, with many fearing that either some sort of “false-flag” provocation would occur or violence would break out.
Several independent journalists and media outlets that covered the event and conducted interviews with attendees discovered that individuals of all races and backgrounds participated in the rally.
“I do not in any way, shape, or form support Governor Northam’s and the Democrats’ gun control,” a black American participant explained to Breitbart News during the rally. “What I also don’t support is the fact that every news piece you’ve seen on this, this weekend, they’ve always brought up the issue of race, as though it’s nothing but white rednecks and hillbillies out here who care for the Second Amendment when, actually, black Americans, Asian Americans, Hispanic Americans, Americans in general care about the Second Amendment.”
Julio Rosas, a former U.S. Marine and current journalist with “TownHall.com,” covered the rally, and explained his experience on the “Tucker Carlson Tonight” show, demolishing the mainstream media’s pre-scripted narrative about the rally.
“This event was advertised as this supposedly ‘white supremacist, Nazi’ rally,” Rosas noted. “And me, being of Mexican heritage, I had zero issues with anybody coming up to me.”
He contrasted his experience at the “entirely peaceful” rally in Richmond with his previous coverage of antifa protests, where he has been repeatedly physically threatened and verbally accosted.
“It was a night-and-day difference,” he explained. “In Portland, I was called a race traitor.” He also noted the number of minorities present for the rally and scoffed at the notion that the event was in any way connected to “white supremacist” groups or organizations.
Several Virginia sheriff’s deputies even attended the rally in a demonstration of support for the Second Amendment. One deputy was interviewed by a reporter with the “Washington Examiner,” and explicitly stated that many of the proposed bills being debated and considered in the Virginia legislature were unconstitutional and represented clear violations of the Second Amendment.
“If the bills go through as proposed, they will not be enforced,” the deputy explained. “They are unconstitutional. We swore to uphold the Constitution of the United States and the Constitution of Virginia, and that’s what we’ll do.”
Northam released a statement following the peaceful rally, expressing thanks that the event “passed without incident.”
“Thousands of people came to Richmond to make their voices heard,” Northam declared. “Today showed that when people disagree, they can do so peacefully. The issues before us evoke strong emotions, and progress is often difficult.”
If anything, the recent rally proves once again how dishonest the fake news media truly is.
John Friend is a freelance writer based in California.