Currents News Staff
Virginia Governor Ralph Northam has declared a state of emergency ahead of a rally at the State Capitol.
Northam said law enforcement believes extremists, including people from outside Virginia, plan to flood Richmond protesting proposed gun control measures.
“We are seeing threats of violence, we are seeing threats of armed confrontation and assault on our capitol,” he said.
Monday’s Martin Luther King Jr. holiday also coincides with “Lobby Day,” a chance for Virginians to advocate for themselves.
Northam stressed the event is normally peaceful, but worries about a return to the violence in Charlottesville, Va. in 2017.
“Violence will not be tolerated,” said Col. Gary Settle, Virginia State Police Superintendent “And if that is your group and that is your intention on Monday, then you’re not welcome.”
Second amendment advocates insist they are there to simply exercise their rights peacefully
“I think it’s overkill at a certain level,” said Virginia gun carrier Michael Fouche. “I accept being prepared, but I believe this is beyond being prepared.”
“I just hope that people truly understand that Virginia gun owners are peaceful people,” said Tim Anderson, a Virginia Beach attorney. “We’ve peacefully demonstrated. This didn’t just start today.”
The proposals at the now-democratically controlled legislature include a ban on transporting and possessing an assault weapon and wider background checks.
The proposals prompted some localities to declare themselves “Second Amendment sanctuaries,” where officials say they won’t enforce certain laws if passed.