Protesters at ‘Black Independence Day’ rally advocate for 2nd Amendment rights outside Capitol

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As part of a "Black Independence Day" rally, protesters outside the state Capitol pushed for Black Americans to exercise their Second Amendment rights Saturday in St. Paul.

Many of the protesters carried guns and said there’s a disparity in how Blacks and whites are treated when they wield their right to bear arms.

"When white people showed up with guns to the Capitol … because they didn’t want to deal with COVID, nobody showed up to police them," musician and activist Toussaint Morrison said at the rally. "But the second that Black people start showing up to the front line, they want to call the National Guard. They want to bring in their guns. And we know what white people carrying guns represents — it’s to protect their power."

Rally organizers with Northside Riders 4 Justice say Black people have been treated like second-class citizens for generations and this demonstration was designed to advocate for peace and support Black Americans’ freedom to protect their families and communities.