When the Black Lives Matter protests were occurring in St. Louis this past summer in June, a white St. Louis couple revealed their weapons while standing on their property. The couple expressed concern that they felt unsafe in their own home as protests occurred outside the door. They are currently facing charges for felony unlawful use of a weapon.

            The couple in question, Mark and Patricia McCloskey, are lawyers in their 60s and were recently featured at the Republican National Convention. The couple spoke of their fears of a democratic run administration, and echoed the sentiments expressed by Donald Trump that the United States would fall under disarray under the leadership of Joe Biden.

            In a statement during the Republican National Convention Patricia remarked that the democratic party hopes to “abolish the suburbs altogether by ending single family home zoning.” She continued to argue that this “would bring crime, lawlessness, and low-quality apartments into thriving suburban neighborhoods.” She closed her statement proclaiming that “your family will not be safe in the radical Democrat’s America.”

            Her husband, Mark shared the same stance as his wife. He contended that “we have a God given right to defend ourselves, and the right of self-defense is one of the most basic civil rights, one of the most basic human rights.”

            Their remarks surrounding their rights to bear arms are valid and reinforced by Missouri laws which stipulate that homeowners are permitted to use force, even lethal, to defend their homes. Nonetheless, they have received a substantial degree of scrutiny due to the fears protestors had over Patrica’s wielding of the gun. The police probable cause statement remarked that “protestors feared being injured due to Patricia McCloskey’s finger being on the trigger, coupled with her excited demeanor.”

            The McCloskey’s have disputed this, maintaining that they were nothing but peaceful. On Fox and Friends, Patricia recounted her story: “they broke down the gate. “They broke it open, then they broke what was left of it down to the ground, an iron fence, and came in and started screaming threats from the beginning. They had weapons, they had fire material.”

            It was clearly a very stressful experience for the McCloskey’s and many republicans have rushed to their defense. Liberal commentators have sided with the protestors and have maintained that the actions on behalf of the McCloskey’s were grossly over reactive. This incident serves as a microcosm for the tensions surrounding gun rights within the United States.