When you attend a gun show, you’re not just going to something some guy threw together after calling a few buddies over. A well-run gun show is a capitalistic enterprise put forth by professionals who focus on this kind of thing. It’s what they do.
During the lockdown, though, there wasn’t much for them to do. While gun stores were open in many places, gun shows fill a different niche. They weren’t exempted from lockdown orders, so many simply didn’t operate.
As a result, organizers undoubtedly felt some serious financial hardships.
Then the lockdown ended, and life could move forward. Now, unfortunately, some places are going for round two of the lockdown, and at least one gun show is feeling the pain.
A judge on Thursday rejected a legal challenge from one of the nation’s largest gun shows to newly imposed pandemic restrictions in Virginia that will force cancellation of an upcoming exposition.
The Nation’s Gun Show is held several times a year at the Dulles Expo Center in Chantilly, about 25 miles outside Washington. A three-day show expected to draw thousands had been scheduled to start Friday.
The show filed for an emergency injunction this week in Fairfax County Circuit Court after it was told that tightened restrictions imposed last week by Gov. Ralph Northam would limit the event to 250 people.
The lawsuit offered theories as to why the order exceeded the governor’s authority, but Judge Brett Kassabian rejected them all at a hearing Thursday morning.
While he said he was sympathetic to the fact that show organizers and vendors stand to lose millions of dollars, Kassabian said, “To allow thousands of people to roam unchecked in the throes of of the worst pandemic in 100 years is not in the public interest.”
The gun show can appeal the ruling.
However, it doesn’t appear that they have as of this writing.
Of course, while the judge is right that this is the worst pandemic in 100 years, it’s important to remember that the bar for that isn’t very high. Most other pandemics barely qualify, and while this one does, it’s not a particularly lethal virus for most Americans. Not a Sunday walk in the park, mind you, but still not an automatic death sentence, either.
The thing that gets me is that there were zero problems with thousands of people roaming unchecked when they were burning neighborhoods and calling anyone who disagreed with their jackbooted tactics racist in what was described as “mostly peaceful protests.”
When that happened, there was no word from those panic-driven souls about how that many people in such confined spaces roaming unchecked was just fine. They were practicing their First Amendment rights.
Yet, when it’s people who want to practice their Second Amendment rights, well, we can’t have that. No, we simply have to cause the organizers to lose millions because reasons.
For me, the galling point is the inconsistency. A riot is somehow sacred and can’t be criticized, as if the virus somehow makes a distinction as to the gathering in question, but a gun show is simply too great a risk.
Then again, it’s not like Northam cares about people’s rights, now is it?