Yes, Virginia There WAS A Counter-Protest to the Phony “Gun Rights” Rally… And Here’s Why It’s Important

By Lucha Bright, member of the National Get Organized for an ACTUAL Revolution Tour



If you scanned the headlines, you were told the massive “gun rights” rally in Richmond, Virginia on Martin Luther King Day was a peaceful gathering of law-abiding people who disagree with the gun restrictions passed by the Democrats. You were told that marginal factions of white supremacists tried to infiltrate it and cause trouble, but that didn't happen. You were told to be relieved.


What was on display in Richmond was not a “gun rights” rally. It was a show of force by a growing white supremacist fascist base being primed for civil war by the Trump/Pence regime.

I know. I was there. And yes, there was a counter-protest right in the face of these fascists toting automatic weapons... quiet as it's been kept. I was part of it, along with some comrades.

Coming into downtown Richmond, a city that is 50% Black, there were no Black people in sight on Martin Luther King Day. Instead, the otherwise deserted streets were filled with armed white men in paramilitary gear. You felt that the lynch mob had arrived and terrorized people into their homes. I was with a group of Black, white, Asian and Latino men and women. As we walked through, the comment “smells like fried chicken” was repeatedly directed toward the Black people in our group.

“Waving their Trump flags… chanting ‘USA, USA,’ it was very similar to watching those black-and-white films of Nuremberg rallies of Nazis chanting ‘sieg heil’…,” said Luna Hernandez, a member of the National Revolution Tour who was part of the counter-protest. “Some of the fascists [were] talking about antifa, saying ‘I’d like to see them come right up in here and get their asses beat... imagine if they did with all these guns here, I have 27 acres and a bucket of acid,’ basically hearkening to, ‘I’m going to wipe these people out and laugh about it and bury them in my own backyard’ and also talking about immigrants and comparing their bullets to bug spray, ‘I’m going to kill all these roaches.’”

At the capitol building, the majority of these thugs stayed outside the temporary gun-free zone established in the state of emergency declaration by the governor, chanting “We will not comply!” and “Trump 2020.”

Up close, this was fairly terrifying. But once we began our protest, our fear was overtaken by defiance and joy: we were standing up together against this terror, we were acting in the interests of humanity and making a different future more possible… and it felt good!

We unfurled four banners: “Trump/Pence #OUTNOW!,” “NO White Supremacy,” “A Better World IS Possible,” “Revolution — Nothing Less!” and shouted each slogan together. Heads turned toward us and Carl Dix’s voice rang out with a message to the world, beginning by reaching through the whole history of this country: “There is a direct line from the Confederacy to the fascists of today,” quoting the revolutionary leader Bob Avakian. The fascists began chanting “USA” and “Trump 2020!” We did this protest first in the center of where the official rally was to be held in the gun-free zone, and then again outside of that area right in the midst of gun-toting fascists.

That we weren’t violently attacked is not a testament to a “peaceful rally.” I was in Charlottesville in 2017 and was bashed in the head and sent to the hospital by white supremacists shortly before Heather Heyer was murdered. This Richmond rally was filled with the same kind of forces. The difference is: now they have a broader base of support, and some of the more strategic groups called for their forces to be tactical and not have a riot. No, not every person there was in a white-supremacist militia, but all of them were comfortable swimming in a sewer of white supremacy and giving it active backing.

There should have been a huge outpouring against this. Instead, everyone besides us was mainly intimidated into acquiescence. Many organizations told people to stay home because it wasn’t safe. A legislator with the Democratic Socialists of America announced he was going into hiding that day. Other so-called progressive organizations who oppose the gun restrictions were willing to pretend this wasn’t a fascist rally and even try to unite with it.

The Trump/Pence regime and their followers talk regularly in terms of civil war. Trump speaks of having the support of the military, police and Bikers for Trump: “tough people” who “don’t play it tough — until they go to a certain point, and then it would be very bad.” He has suggested he will not leave office, even if voted out. He is currently on trial for trying to sabotage an election.

In that light: What does it mean that on the eve of the impeachment trial, an armed mob can threaten Democratic legislators and surround the Virginia capitol building chanting “We Will Not Comply” and “Trump 2020”? What does it mean that in the face of that, the “left” collapses and the media normalizes all this?

In going to Richmond we took to heart a challenge from the revolutionary leader Bob Avakian last summer, “If you will not take to the streets now to demand that the Trump/Pence regime must go, what will you do if Trump is re-elected (perhaps through the electoral college, even if he again loses the popular vote)? And what will you do if Trump loses the election (even by the electoral college count) but then refuses to recognize the results and insists he is still President?!” (See: Individualism, BEB, and the Illusion of “Painless Progress”.)

Over three years we’ve seen murderous white supremacists declared “fine people,” immigrants locked in concentration camps, presidential rallies encouraging violence, threats of nuclear war and shredding of environmental protections, a full-out assault on truth and science, the right to abortion nearly gone.

Now, Trump is finally on trial for a small portion of his crimes, and if the tens of millions of us who reject this future — even in hundreds at first, and growing to thousands and then more — started pouring into the streets now, the outcome of the senate trial could be very different than where the current sham trial is now headed. If we are mobilized in this way, even an acquittal could fuel further protests that grow — akin to what we’ve seen all over the world in the last year. But this won’t happen if we sit back and wait. is calling for these protests, demanding Trump/Pence #OUTNOW!, and the National Revolution Tour is in Washington, DC this week contributing to this.

At the same time, the larger reality is this: if there is going to be a radically alternative future, we have to go all the way to the roots. There is an analysis of the rise of this fascist regime and how to dislodge it in the work Bob Avakian has done. More fundamentally, he has brought forward a scientific approach, the new communism, that digs all the way into the soil that gave rise to this fascism — the very functioning of the capitalist-imperialist system — and shows why and how the horrors humanity now faces are completely unnecessary and a better world really IS possible through an actual revolution.

It is because of this scientific understanding and leadership that we in the National Get Organized for an ACTUAL Revolution Tour were able to see the need and possibility of going into the heart of the fascist rally to counter-protest it. So instead of being weighed down or refusing to look at how bad this all is, instead of turning inward to focus on self or being consumed by fear, we were able to confront reality and act in a way that can forge something new.

In these dangerous and truly high stakes days, we all need to come out of our comfort zones. I urge you to lift your sights to a whole better way the world could be by digging into the work of Bob Avakian and following where it takes you. At the same time, I urge you to step into the streets in DC — or around the country — on January 29th to demand the removal of the Trump/Pence regime as this historic impeachment battle is still unfolding.

The future is unwritten. Trump's side is fighting with all they've got. Will all of us do the same?


Facing Down 22,000 Heavily Armed, Mostly MAGA Fanatics
The Revolution Tour Represents for a Radically Different Future

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Watch the January 21 Report Back from Richmond, Virginia by Carl Dix and others from National Revolution Tour!

Watch and spread this video everywhere now!

The following is taken from the talk
Hope For Humanity On A Scientific Basis
Breaking with Individualism, Parasitism and American Chauvinism
by Bob Avakian

Individualism, BEB and the Illusion of “Painless Progress”

With a Note Added by the Author, Fall 2019

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To know and change the world...
get into Bob Avakian (BA),
the leader of the revolution.

To know and change the world... get into Bob Avakian (BA), the leader of the revolution.

Reposted from

If Trump is acquitted in a sham trial, a fascist regime will barrel ahead with disastrous consequences for humanity.

Trump and Pence #OUTNOW!

Flood DC. Protest Wednesday, January 29.

» 11:00 am east side of U.S. Capitol: Rally demanding Trump/Pence #OUTNOW!

Meet on the SW corner of 1st Street North East and Constitution Ave

» 5:00 pm march/outreach to communities in DC.

Meet up at the Capitol, Delaware Ave NE and Northeast Dr

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