Armed gun owners rallied in Kentucky entering the state’s capitol building in Frankfort on Friday.
The gathering was organized by the group We Are KY Gun Owners. They were spurred into action when Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam pushed for new gun control measures that led to threats of violence, culminating with Northam declaring a state of emergency earlier this month.
Astonishingly, according to the Louisville Courier-Journal, visitors to the capitol building are banned from entering with umbrellas or sticks that are used for protest signs because they can be “used as weapons,” but guns and rifles are permitted.
Joe Gerth of the Courier-Journal tweeted a video showing security officers instructing armed rally-goers to go around the metal detectors while entering the capitol building.
Weirdest thing about guns in the Kentucky Capitol: if you have one, you’re told to walk around the metal detector. Others must pass through and get wanded. pic.twitter.com/Oqxl9hvl0I
— Joe Gerth (@Joe_Gerth) January 31, 2020
Getty Images tweeted photos taken at the scene by Bryan Woolston that went viral on Friday.
— Getty Images News (@GettyImagesNews) January 31, 2020
In a video posted by the Journal, one of the fully armed attendees was astonished by the access his group was given to the capitol building.
“Walking into the state capitol completely blew my mind,” the gun-toting protester said. “Being able to walk in completely armed, with guns — I mean, I’m completely armed. And they trust us. I’m not a Kentucky resident. I’m from Virginia. A complete stranger. I walked in, [and security acted like], ‘Cool, come on in. Enjoy the capitol.’”
He continued, “It’s beautiful — the marble, the paintings, the statues. Everything about this capitol is absolutely beautiful — I’m speechless.”
And, luckily for this dude, who loved the building’s décor, he left his umbrella at home.