HARRISBURG, Pa. — Supporters of gun rights filled the Capitol steps this morning in Harrisburg. Organized by Republican state representative Daryl Metcalfe, the 17th Annual "Right to Keep and Bear Arms Rally", featured pro-Second Amendment speakers from across the country and the Commonwealth.
Metcalfe said this rally on Monday morning was a reminder of the rights, he said, are enshrined in the U.S Constitution.
“We have a tradition and we have a heritage," said Metcalfe, "We need to ensure that we protect the right of law-abiding citizens to bear arms.”
Many people that attended the rally agreed. Kevin Anderson, a Chester County native said, "Our rights are rights. They're not an option or a privilege.”
Metcalfe is a sponsor of House Bill 357 which is legislation that prohibits any law that imposes gun control.
On the other side of the political aisle, gun control activists say they support Second Amendment rights, but also support protections including safe storage requirements, red flag laws, and universal background checks.
“The public at large supports life-saving gun safety policies," said Josh Fleitman, western Pennsylvania manager at CeaseFire PA, "They recognize what Chief Justice Antonin Scalia said in the Heller, the famous Heller decision by the Supreme Court, which is that even the Second Amendment like all Constitutional rights, is subject to reasonable regulation in the interest of public safety and public health.”
The Pennsylvania Democratic House Caucus agrees. They wrote in a statement to FOX43:
There are millions of Pennsylvanians who respect 2nd Amendment rights but also support common-sense gun safety measures which would save countless lives across the Commonwealth.
Governor Wolf’s office also released the following statement to FOX43:
The governor supports common-sense legislation to address gun violence without impacting law-abiding responsible gun owners.
House Bill 357 is currently in the House Judiciary Committee for the reviewing process.