Conversation around black gun ownership changes after protests and escort

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Lansing, Mich. (WLNS) — A group of five men escorted a Michigan representative out of the Michigan State Capitol building Wednesday afternoon, changing the conversation around gun ownership for black people.

Michael Lynn III, 20, who is standing in the middle of the photograph, said to 6 News that the ultimate goal that day was to show their right to own guns by protecting the representative Sara Anthony while being armed.  “We thought this was the best way to make sure she was safe,” he said.

The escort follows Capitol protests demanding the Gov. rescind her stay-at-home order and re-open the state economy so businesses can get back up and running. One of those protests outside of the House of Representatives included people armed with guns.

“It’s not that weird to see white men with guns, right? We can say that. In our climate that we’re in right now, it’s kind of, I guess, taboo, if you see a black person with a gun,” Lynn said.

“So I guess it was in turn to challenge that idea, to normalize that idea. That we are just Americans,” Lynn said. “Just like any other white gun owner, we are just Americans. We have the Second Amendment right just like they do,” he said.

This week, Michigan lawmakers convened to discuss whether guns should be allowed inside of the Capitol following last Thursday’s protest.

Republican and Vice-Chair of the Michigan State Capitol Commission, John Truscott told 6 News Reporter Brittany Flowers that the commission is exploring the idea of a gun ban inside the building after several lawmakers said they felt threatened by last Thursday’s protesters.

“We’ve been dealing with what is the law, what is our jurisdiction. Is there any possibility of limiting people bringing loaded weapons in the building?” Truscott said.

Truscott said he supports the second amendment and even has a CPL, but doesn’t believe there is “no reason for any individual to bring a loaded rifle into the Capitol building.”

Lynn said people have been receiving the photograph of him and the other escorts well.

“The outreach is literally beautiful, that’s the best way to put it,” Lynn said. “‘Cause it was about changing the narrative… a lot of people said that they felt like they couldn’t do what the white people were doing because they are black and that’s not true.”

In the Facebook post, Michael Lynn III captions the photo: ‘Them: But If WE Go Up There W/ Guns They’ll Shoot Us Us: Let’s See 🤷🏽‍♂️”

So, let’s see.

Truscott said he’s doubtful that the legislature will enact a gun ban, but said after recent events and concerns from lawmakers, there will be a likely discussion on whether other safety measures should be put into place.

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