Thousands of Second Amendment supporters held a pro-gun rally in Richmond, Virginia, on Monday at the state capitol. While there were some concerns about tensions and threats of violence, the rally was carried out peacefully.
Democratic Governor Ralph Northam declared a state of emergency days prior to the rally in the effort to beef up security. Many local citizens feared a repeat of the tragic events at Charlottesville, believing the gathering had all the ingredients for a powder keg. In the weeks leading up to the gathering, neo-Nazi and fascist groups shared plans online to co-opt the rally to advance their own violent agenda.
Anthony Berrios, who lives near the Capitol, believes the premise behind the rally is misguided.
“It’s a myth that the government is trying to take their guns away. I just wish people would really take an objective look at what’s best for society versus what’s good for themselves.” —Anthony Berrios, Richmond, Virginia Resident.
Days prior to the event, various media outlets portrayed the pro-gun rally, which drew an estimated 22,000 Second Amendment supporters, as a gathering of white nationalists and racists. Steve Cortes, the national spokesman for the America First Action SuperPAC slammed the media’s coverage of the rally, believing the mainstream media was promoting a deceptive narrative instead of reporting the straight news of what was a peaceful gathering.
“When you look at corporate media in this country, they have overwhelmingly forsaken journalism in favor of narrative promotion.” —Steve Cortes, Spokesman, First Action SuperPAC.