Target: Tom Kelly, Commission Chair of the Portland Development Commission, ownership group of Quicken Loans Arena
Goal: Uphold ban on weapons inside the Republican National Convention venue and boost security during the convention to protect attendees.
An online petition is asking that a firearm ban be dropped from the Republican National Convention venue during the event. The convention is scheduled this summer at Quicken Loans Arena in Cleveland, Ohio, which does not allow weapons or firearms on its premises. While the group behind the petition, Americans for Responsible Open Carry, cannot be verified as a legitimate, authentic organization, even the thought of this request is terrifying and dangerous.
This election cycle has been fiercely polarized and, at times, violent. Allowing guns within close range of this number of gathered people could be incredibly dangerous. Gun rights advocates often rely on the argument that “good guys with guns” would neutralize any danger, but research shows that gun ownership is in direct correlation with gun violence.
Leadership within Quicken Loans Arena is well within its rights to continue the ban on firearms in the venue even though Ohio is an open carry state. The risks associated with lifting the ban are too great, especially among audiences that have resorted to violence in the past. Elections are a time for Americans to come together to rally behind candidates and the causes they believe in–and we should all be able to do so safely and without fear of personal injury or death.
Please encourage Commission Chair Tom Kelly to continue the ban on weapons during the Republican National Convention and to boost security throughout the event.
Dear Commission Chair Kelly,
A recent petition is asking Quicken Loans Arena to allow guns during the Republican National Convention, and it must be ignored. While the authenticity of the petition cannot be verified, this call cannot be taken seriously for the sake of innocent attendees. This election season has seen many people resorting to violence and within close quarters, a high number of guns poses a threat to convention-goers.
It’s often argued that people can act positively with guns to neutralize an active shooter situation, but the high attendance rate could result in chaos with a tremendous loss of life. In a high-risk situation, it’s difficult to identify who is shooting to kill and who is shooting to defend others. Over 20,000 people have signed the petition, and the sheer number of guns that could conceivably enter the event is shocking and dangerous.
Security at Quicken Loans Arena must be strengthened during the convention to prevent tragedy. We live in a time where gun violence is sadly commonplace, and we must do everything in our power to protect our people who are simply participating in our election process.
Please ignore the calls to allow guns in Quicken Loans Arena and boost security around the Republican National Convention. Attendees’ safety is of the utmost importance and must be protected to the best of your ability.
[Your Name Here]
Photo credit: Erik Drost