Thousands of Prairie State gun owners braved very cold temperatures and wind-chills in Springfield to march seven blocks to the Illinois State Capitol building to promote gun rights and self-defense on Wednesday, March 5th.
It was the eighth annual IGOLD event, sponsored by the Illinois State Rifle Association, in conjunction with IllinoisCarry.com, Guns Save Life, the Sangamon County Rifle Association and the McHenry County Right to Carry Association. In a nation where gun control advocates cannot even turn out more than a dozen agitators to promote civilian disarmament, the IGOLD rally is a prime example of what genuine grassroots activism is all about.
Participants met at the Prairie Capital Convention Center (posted “No Guns” by the way), where speakers charged up the audience, and gave them instructions for successful participation.
Best estimates put the crowd this year at roughly 2,000, down sharply from last year. It was still two orders of magnitude better than our opposition’s best recent turnout for an event.
From the PCCC, participants staged just outside prior to the seven-block trek while shout chants under the direction of Sangamon County Rifle Association’s Tom Shafer about who we were (“Illinois Gun Owners Marching By…”) and what we wanted (a host of things Shafer rattled off for the audience to chant).
Once at the capitol, there were a couple of short speeches.
Given the wind chills, the crowd wasn’t in the mood for bloviating.
Once inside, we handed out position cards to House Speaker Michael Madigan, Senate President John Cullerton and to each participant’s respective senator and representative.
There was no denying those stacks of cards were real.