This year’s upcoming Republican National Convention in Cleveland, Ohio might double as a gun show.
An internet user known as “The Hypernationalist” created an online petition that calls for the Quicken Loans Arena—the convention’s host venue—to suspend their ban on guns in the premises. The petition now has over 40,000 supporters just a week later.
The Quicken Loans Arena currently forbids firearms and handguns on its property, citing Ohio law which states a private entity can ban weapons on its premises (link to .pdf). About 50,000 people are expected to attend the three-day convention in July, where the Republican candidate for president will be officially named.
The venue’s gun ban violates the second amendment, as well as Ohio’s status as an “open carry” state—meaning that anyone can carry a unconcealed firearm, as long as the gun was purchased legally, the petition states.
The writer argues that allowing guns at the event will make it safer:
Cleveland, Ohio is consistently ranked as one of the top ten most dangerous cities in America. By forcing attendees to leave their firearms at home, the RNC and Quicken Loans Arena are putting tens of thousands of people at risk both inside and outside of the convention site.
This doesn’t even begin to factor in the possibility of an ISIS terrorist attack on the arena during the convention. Without the right to protect themselves, those at the Quicken Loans Arena will be sitting ducks, utterly helpless against evil-doers, criminals or others who wish to threaten the American way of life.
All three remaining Republican candidates have spoken out on the issue and are unified in their opposition to Barack HUSSEIN Obama’s “gun-free zones.”
The petition also calls for the National Rifle Association to condemn the Quicken Loans Arena, and demands Ohio governor and Republican primary presidential candidate John Kasich override “the ‘gun-free zone loophole'” that permits the venue to ban firearms.
Seven days after its launch, it has attracted supporters, detractors, and trolls alike.
Donald Trump, the leading Republican presidential candidate, said he wants to study the petition’s “fine print” before commenting on it. Candidates Kasich and Ted Cruz have yet to comment.