Armed Rallies by Tom Reynolds
You have probably seen stories that anticipate “Armed Rallies” at state capitols and in D.C. on January 20th. SCOPE is not aware of any reputable 2nd Amendment organization – including SCOPE – that is behind the calls for these rallies. However, a heightened awareness of them is being promoted by media outlets.
Who organized these rallies and what is to be gained?
The rally organizers, referenced by the FBI as behind this, are usually identified as “on line chatter”. Articles and the flyers that have been cited in news stories never seem to identify the author(s).
The only direct reference we have seen is that on November 24th, a group called “Boogaloo” called for protests and said people could “…come armed at their personal discretion”. (The Anti-Defamation League describes Boogaloo as “primarily anti-government, anti-authority and anti-police in nature.” Which sounds a lot like those who rioted all last summer.)
Another story identified “several followers of a militant anti-government movement”. It didn’t identify the group and it was not the movement itself that was identified but “several followers”.
The call for “Armed” rallies is unusual. Rally organizers, including 2A organizations, generally use terms such as “Peaceful” rallies and “Protests”. The option to come legally armed is always there, as it is for any rally by any organization, but generally left unspoken
There is also the tendency, especially amongst the left, to interpret “Armed” rally as “Violent” rally. Certainly, that is the reaction of the media, in this case, and also the reaction of the government. Including “Armed” certainly sets the stage for inferring that they will be violent.
Some media outlets like the Associated Press (AP) are writing articles unfairly blaming President Trump, in advance and without any facts, for violence that has not happened and may never happen.
A non-gun owner may jump on the word “Armed” to condemn gun owners and link it to a gun rights group such as the NRA, again with no factual proof.
We must also recognize the potential for our elected officials to introduce unwarranted legislation following the prediction of a nonexistent “emergency”.
Many people, including 2A defenders, have serious concerns about fraud in the November election and announced policies by the Biden administration may provide legitimate reasons to protest against encroachments on their civil and Constitutional liberties. We all reserve the right to peacefully protest, as protected by our 1st Amendment.
Again, SCOPE is not aware of any reputable 2A organization – including SCOPE – promoting armed rallies and certainly not violent ones. Each protest participant should know and trust the organizing entity. Individual attendance at any protest or rally is the decision of the individual but these look very suspicious and we would not recommend attendance. There will be many other opportunities to protests that do not come with the downside potential attached to this one.