Guns-Rights and -Safety Advocates Celebrate "Family-Friendly" Denver Guns Day

For gun owners worried that those pesky liberals are going to revoke the Second Amendment, local firearm fanatics have organized Denver Guns Day on Saturday, August 25, at the Bristlecone Shooting Center in Lakewood.

In addition to learning about firearms safety, participants will be able to speak with lawyers specializing in self-defense law and gun-industry experts about mental health, and listen in on a panel discussion about guns and marijuana. Gun fans of all ages are invited to join in on the talks.

The list of guests attending reads like a who's who of national and local gun-rights celebrities. Edgar Antillon, who heads Guns for Everyone and once hosted a "White Appreciation Day" at his barbecue restaurant in rural Colorado in 2015, will be there, in addition to Maj Toure, founder of Black Guns Matter.

Antillon calls the day a "celebration of the Second Amendment." Like many hardliners, he rejects any sort of legislation that limits gun ownership. "It simply doesn't work," he says. "I'd much rather dangerous freedom over peaceful slavery."

Antillon also thinks minorities who live in urban centers need more education about gun rights and safety, a platform he plans to push on Saturday.

"I'm Mexican; my parents are straight from Mexico. Spanish is my first language. I'm from the ’hood, west Denver," he says. "I had no firearms training in the Denver Public Schools. There is a lack of information and knowledge that the ’hood receives."

Informing more people of color about their rights is important to Antillon for another reason: He considers gun-control legislation to be racist. "If you look at all the laws, they affect the inner cities more than they do suburbia," he says.

Toure of Black Guns Matter argues another marginalized group are medical marijuana users in Colorado, who are prohibited from owning firearms; Denver Guns Day will defend their freedoms during Saturday's panel discussion.

"We have to highlight that contradiction that you have to pick a freedom," Toure says. "Those are not the ideas that America was founded upon."

Rob Pincus, an internationally renowned firearms trainer who is going to Denver Guns Day, doesn't understand why someone who smokes marijuana can't legally purchase a firearm, but someone who drinks or takes prescription medication can.

"Restricting somebody’s ability to own a firearm based on a medical marijuana card is the same as if we would have to turn in our guns any time we have a narcotic painkiller prescription or buy a six-pack of beer," he says.

Get your fill of gun rights and firearms safety: Sign up for the event here. Tickets are $10, and the event goes from 10:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Bristlecone Shooting Center, 12105 West Cedar Drive in Lakewood.
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Conor McCormick-Cavanagh is a staff writer at Westword, where he covers a range of beats, including local politics, immigration and homelessness. He previously worked as a journalist in Tunisia and loves to talk New York sports.