self-proclaimed Paul Revere circled the state Capitol grounds on a bicycle Saturday at noon, ushering people to the north side of the building to join in a national day of protest against a renewed push for gun-control regulations.
The rally, organized by Guns Across America, a gun rights organization, was one of 49 protests occurring across the nation. It coincided with Gun Appreciation Day, a response to a national gun debate incited by the tragedy in Newtown, Conn., where 20 children and six staff members of Sandy Hook Elementary were killed by a gunman.
Roughly a thousand people attended the rally, and after a failed attempt to start a chant of "USA," the crowd gathered together with shouts of "Texas!" and "Freedom!" A large sign reading "Come and Take It" featuring a semi-automatic weapon where a cannon normally would sit loomed over the crowd as protesters waited for the event to begin.
Richard Mack, a former Arizona sheriff and failed Texas congressional candidate, addressed the crowd, criticizing President Obama's recent gun-related executive orders, calling them unconstitutional and "a joke."
"If there was any good to gun control, it would be magic," Mack said. "If you want magic, then go to Disneyland or see David Copperfield in Las Vegas."
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