You may want to keep your eyes turned toward Washington D.C. this Independence Day. As of this writing, at least three different groups of protesters and counter-protesters, armed and unarmed, plan to march and rally in our nation’s capital.
It all started when Adam Kokesh, a former Marine, libertarian activist and video podcast host, recently announced his plans for an “Open Carry March on Washington.” According to the group’s FaceBook event page, on July 4th:
“We will march with rifles loaded & slung across our backs to put the government on notice that we will not be intimidated & cower in submission to tyranny. We are marching to mark the high water mark of government & to turn the tide. This will be a non-violent event, unless the government chooses to make it violent. Should we meet physical resistance, we will peacefully turn back, having shown that free people are not welcome in Washington, & returning with the resolve that the politicians, bureaucrats, & enforcers of the federal government will not be welcome in the land of the free.”
Kokesh has organized several anti-war and civil-rights events in the past, including a veterans march on the White House which helped to raise awareness of skyrocketing suicide rates among veterans and active duty military personnel.
Open carry of firearms in Washington D.C. is currently illegal and will not be allowed according to Metropolitan Police Chief Cathy Lanier, “Passing into the District of Columbia with loaded firearms is a violation of the law and we’ll have to treat it as such.”
It didn’t take long for another group to pop up. The “Armed Toy Gun March on DC!” will be descending on the National Mall the day before the Open Carry March. The event’s organizer, Austin Petersen, had this to say:
“In order to best communicate the importance of 2nd Amendment rights to the citizens of the District of Columbia, Freedom Fighters around the globe will descend on Washington D.C. armed with toy guns on July 3rd, 2013, Activists are encouraged to bring fake pistols with orange tips, water guns, Nerf guns, anything peaceful to make a statement about our 2nd amendment rights. Due to the fact that it is currently illegal to carry a loaded firearm into the District of Columbia, we liberty lovers have decided to tweak the nose of big government and show Obama what a clown he is for trying to restrict our natural rights. Join us as we march on DC fully armed with toy guns!”
“We’ll have a blast defending our 2nd amendment rights and shooting each other full of fun and liberty! Bring your super soaker to the wet t-shirt contest! WOOT!”
Woot indeed! While the folks over at the Toy Gun March seem to be having a fun time with all this, yet another group, this one headed by peace activist Cindy Sheehan, doesn’t see any of this as a laughing matter. The group “1000 Women and Others to ‘Muster’ for Peace and Common Sense” plans to “Meet on the Memorial Bridge in Washington, DC on 4th of July to put ourselves between the rifle men and the police state” in order to “protect the innocent men, women, and children who will be caught in the crossfire of the moronically provocative action.”
It’s shaping up to be quite the revolutionary showdown. And I know it’s a lot to keep up with, so here’s a simple recapping of the holiday events:
A happy, peaceful march with toy guns will precede an angry, peaceful march with real guns who will be opposed by an angry, peaceful march with no guns in an attempt to stop a potential clash with the police with real guns (who they also oppose and who will also likely be angry over having to work on a holiday) who will attempt to arrest the angry, peaceful marchers with real guns if they succeed in getting past the angry, peaceful marchers with no guns while the happy, peaceful marchers with toy guns will already be at home getting drunk, barbecuing and reminiscing over photos of their wet T-shirt contest.
So pick your side, grab your rifles or water guns or signs or white T-shirts and buy a plane ticket! Should be a good time….
Let’s just hope that the only fireworks in D.C. this Independence Day are the paper variety made in Chinese sweatshops.
Author: Nick Allison is just a banged-up combat infantry veteran of the War in Iraq. He lives in Austin, TX with his wife, their children and two big, dumb, ugly mongrel dogs.
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Twitter: @ChaosSection.com or @NickAllison80