Women’s March organizers have announced that they will host a protest against the NRA.
The protest, which will be held in Virginia on July 14 and 15, is in response to a recent ad published by the NRA which insinuates that “law-abiding” citizens need to arm themselves against violent anti-Trump protesters. The ad, which featured conservative talk-show host Dana Loesch, was widely criticized, with many people calling out the NRA for publishing such a dangerous and outrageous video.
Included in the backlash was an open letter from Women’s March co-chair Tamika Mallory, written to the Executive Vice President of the NRA, Wayne LaPierre. In her letter, Mallory demanded that the NRA take down the dangerous ad and apologize to the American people.
On July 1 ― only three days after Mallory published her open letter to LaPierre ― the NRA responded with another equally disturbing ad. This time, the four-minute clip titled “We Don’t Apologize For Telling The Truth” features conservative talk-show host Grant Stinchfield defending the original ad from the “violent left” and specifically calling out Mallory.
“I’m talking to you Tamika Mallory. You wrote a letter to the NRA on behalf of the Women’s March claiming our ‘Clenched Fist of Truth’ ad was an attack on minority communities ” Stinchfield said in the video. “You call it dangerous and demand it to be taken down? I’m here to tell you not a chance.”
Watch the full NRA ad featuring Stinchfield below.
According to a Facebook event created by the Women’s March, the protest against the NRA will take place on Friday, July 14 and Saturday, July 15 in Fairfax, Virginia. The rally will begin on July 14 at 10:00 AM in front of the NRA headquarters in Fairfax. At noon, the 18-mile march from the NRA headquarters to the Department of Justice in DC will begin. The rally at the Department of Justice will begin at 10:00 AM on July 15.
Mallory explained to HuffPost why the NRA ad featuring Loesch was particularly problematic and dangerous.
“This particular NRA ad, in our judgement, is very dangerous,” Mallory said. “It is specifically calling for members of the NRA and other gun owners to take up arms to address protesters or to push back against protesters, particularly people of color and people who support as us protesters and as black and brown people.”
The event’s about section described why the Women’s March is hosting the protest.
“We know that we are not safe. But we will not be intimidated into silence,” the Facebook event reads. “Recent actions of the NRA demonstrate not only a disregard for the lives of black and brown people in America, but appear to be a direct endorsement of violence against women, our families and our communities for exercising our constitutional right to protest.”
According to the event, Women’s March and their partners will host a “mass demonstration” in the same peaceful way they hosted the Women’s March on Washington in January.
“It is very dangerous for an organization that is the leader of many gun owners to be telling their members anything but to be careful, to be safe, to de-escalate,” Mallory added. “To do all that they can to ensure that they are protecting lives versus taking lives or inciting any type of violence towards anyone ― not just protesters, not just black and brown people ― but people in general.”
Women’s March listed three goals that they hope to achieve from the protest, including that the NRA make a statement defending Philando Castile’s Second Amendment right to carry a gun. Castile was a black man who was shot and killed last year by a police officer in Minnesota during a routine traffic stop. He was a gun owner who had a licensed gun on him during the traffic stop.
Read the Women’s March demands below:
Please join the Women’s March and our partners in exercising our First Amendment rights by holding a mass mobilization for our safety, calling on the NRA to take the following actions:
1. Take down the recent irresponsible and dangerous advertisement videos from all social platforms immediately.
2. Issue an apology to the American people for the video that suggests armed violence against communities of color, progressives and anyone who does not agree with this Administration’s policies.
3. Make a statement to defend Philando Castile’s Second Amendment right to own a firearm and demand the Department of Justice indict the police officer who killed him for exercising his Second Amendment right and his privilege as a licensed concealed carry permit holder. This call is clearly in line with the mission and purpose of the NRA as an organization that purports to be the lobby and defender of the right to bear arms.
Head over to Facebook to read more about the event.
This article has been updated with quotes from Tamika Mallory and new information about the NRA protest.
This article has been updated to reflect that this event will take place on Friday, July 14, not on Sunday.