Gun owners and would-be members of the Washington Arms Collectors lined up around the Puyallup Fairgrounds Saturday as Gun Appreciation Day unfolded, showing their support for the Second Amendment and firearms ownership.
It was one of the largest turnouts in memory for the organization, spurred in part by President Barack Obama’s push for additional firearms restrictions. As this column was written, the crowd was still pouring through the gates, looking for deals on ammunition, firearms, magazines and other shooting accessories.
It is indicative of turnouts at gun shows all over the map this weekend, and other activities scheduled in conjunction with Gun Appreciation Day.
WAC members were turning out heavily to renew their memberships, but they have been reinforced by a wave of citizens who now believe it is time to become involved in protecting their firearms civil rights.
At the same time people were flooding into the fairgrounds, other gun owners were on the way to Olympia where a noon rally in conjunction with Gun Appreciation Day and the “Guns Across America” is scheduled.
There may be a push among self-anointed “progressives” to further their extremist agenda, but the turnout at Puyallup and Olympia, and last weekend at a WAC gun show in Monroe, is the start of a “push back” by gun owners who have decided they will not give any more ground.
Those gun owners may be best represented by folks like Jim Mattson from Federal Way, who came to Puyallup to join WAC. A member of the National Rifle Association, he was here partly due to Gun Appreciation Day and partly because he had been planning to join.
Likewise, Olympia resident John Wincewizc drove to Puyallup to join the collectors group, and be part of the Gun Appreciation Day activities. They stood in the long line for the better part of an hour just to get through the gate.
Among many of these gun owners is a newfound activism, ignited by the gun prohibition rhetoric over the past month, and stoked by the president’s remarks earlier in the week. Some people also revealed that they were alarmed by what occurred in New York with the passage of a law this column wrote about Friday.
They do not intend to let that happen here.