Activism, Uncensored: Impact of Gun Control Laws Visible in Virginia Protests
With the evolution of gun control policy in the state of Virginia, the character of gun protests have changed, as Ford Fischer shows
In a creative and provocative piece of video journalism from TK partners News2Share, Ford Fischer compares three years of “Lobby Day” protests by pro-gun activists in Virginia, who push for gun rights every Martin Luther King Day. You can see in this piece how the numbers have dwindled dramatically, coinciding with policy-driven changes in the law enforcement approach.
This is an interesting piece showing how, over time, public policy can impact demonstrator behavior. Former governor Ralph Northam watered down so-called “pre-emption” laws that made it difficult for localities to pass stricter gun control policies than the state. After the changes, the city of Richmond was able to impose much tougher rules with regard to carrying weapons, to the point where a major state gun rights umbrella group called the VCDL (Virginia Citizens Defense League) canceled “Lobby Day” protests this year.
It looks like until gun activists can reverse Northam’s laws, “We Will Not Comply” has become, for now, “We Will Not Bother.”
As always, Ford interviews a range of interesting figures (the pronouns-brandishing gun activist whose body seems not to be visible in any place is an interesting interview), captures a lot of on-the-ground dynamics, and offers an idiosyncratic window into the activist scene in a state too often caricatured from afar.