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BLM Activists to Hold Gun Rights Rally in Davenport

Marianna Bacallao, WVIK News

Formed over a summer of Black Lives Matter protests, a Quad Cities civil rights organization is now advocating for another personal freedom—the right to bear arms. The group, We F.I.G.H.T. protested against a recent gun rally in Davenport, but this Saturday, it's holding one of its own. 

Eric Puryear says this Open Carry Rally is a peaceful alternative to one held last month by a Neo Nazi. And he says that other Black Lives Matter activists have the wrong idea about gun ownership. 

"The idea that I would want to have only the police armed just doesn't make any sense to me at all. If we look at the history of gun restriction in the US, gun laws started out as a means of preventing recently-freed slaves from being armed for self-defense... The KKK, the Neo Nazis, they're armed to the teeth. If one of those people were to try to attack me or break into my house, I certainly want the best self-defense tool available, which is a gun."

Puryear is also an NRA-certified gun instructor. He's offering a free class for Iowa certification leading up to the rally this weekend outside Davenport City Hall. 
For safety reasons, he asks that lawful gun owners attending the rally leave their chambers empty. 

Marianna Bacallao is WVIK Quad Cities NPR's 2020-2021 Fellowship Host/Reporter. She graduated Magna Cum Laude from Mercer University's Center for Collaborative Journalism and served as Editor-in-Chief for the student newspaper, The Cluster.
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