Debate over gun control heated up this weekend in the Miami Valley. Supporters and opponents each tried to make their points in public displays.
Saturday morning, Eric Grant was one of about a dozen people taking a walk in Beavercreek and then eating his lunch at Smoky’s Barbecue. He was carrying his sidearm.
“Just because we gather with firearms, doesn’t mean that havoc is going to ensue or that there will be violence” he said.
After a new assault weapons ban was introduced in the senate this past week, the group said it wanted to gather peacefully and exercise its second amendment right to carry firearms.
“It’s a right that I cherish and hold very dear,” said Travis Trop. “Make a presence known that we’re not, you know, these bad guys. I think a lot of people have the misconception that we are.”
Teri Dunlap said “Educate people that you know it’s possible to carry a gun and not, you know, be a bad guy that goes and causes … inflicts harm.”
“The vast preponderance of gun owners in the country … you never hear about because they never cross the line to do anything illegal” said Dennis Carter.
Outside of Bill Goodman’s Gun and Knife Show, people were protesting the sale of assault weapons. Those are the guns which the proposed bill would ban inside Hara Arena.
“We know that guns are being sold on the floor inside Hara Arena illegally” said Jerome McCorry. “No background checks no identification of any kind.”
McCorry said “AK-47s and M16s are not gonna be used for hunting, they’re not going to be used to protect anybody. These are the weapons that are coming back and being used in mass murders and mass killings.”
These events happened as thousands of people marched through Washington Saturday to promote gun safety. Some Newtown, Connecticut residents were among those participating in the march.