I am compelled to add my two cents to the conversation regarding the gun rights folks showing up at the Capital City Pride event with weapons and enough ammo to blow the entire town to kingdom come.
I grew up in a gun family. Guns put meat on the table and protected our property. Guns are a tool and their fundamental purpose is to kill.
Throughout history and into the present LGBTQ folks have and are still being harassed, tortured, jailed and murdered for their basic human condition. It takes more courage than I can imagine to “come out” in this hostile world. Pride events celebrate those who demonstrate that courage and let those who are still afraid know that they have support and are not alone.
A gun aficionado can say, “I think I’ll leave my guns home today.” An LGBTQ person does not have that option.
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Flashing automatic weapons at Capital Pride was an act of intimidation, whether the gun folks admit it or not. Apparently they claimed it was an act of free speech. To those of us who witnessed this display, it was akin to yelling fire in a crowded theater. This, as we all learned in grade school, is not covered in the Bill of Rights.