A meeting to organize a committee called: The Tazewell County Civil Defense Committee drew more than 100 Tazewell County citizens Thursday night.
The gathering attracted some in response to Governor Ralph Northam's call for common sense gun safety laws in his 'State of the Commonwealth Address.' Many attending Thursday's meeting feel it's an assault on their right to bear arms.
"We're good people that have the right to protect ourselves," Tazewell County Resident, John W. Frye said.
"Personal protection, family protection that's what it's all about," Tazewell County Resident, Rick Anderson added.
Gun rights advocates are encouraging thousands of protesters to travel to Virginia's capital on January 20th to prevent the passage of any gun-control measure in the Commonwealth.
"They're creating a opportunity for everyday citizens to go to Richmond. They are sending buses out to allow people to get to Richmond so they can speak to legislators about the issues that are important to them. It will probably be a rally by the time it's done if you support the Second Amendment issues," Committee Facilitator, Flux j. Neo revealed.
Rural Virginia counties are calling themselves "Second Amendment Sanctuaries", places where gun rights are the cornerstones of militias, like this group hopes to organize in Tazewell County. They point to the Constitution's call to defend the nation against tyranny.
"Our governor is acting like a tyrant by saying he's going to confiscate our guns. He's going to pass a law to take away our gun rights and that goes straight to my heart because I'm a patriot I love the Constitution and I believe what the Constitution says," Frye said.
"I don't agree with them taking our rights. Our forefathers fought and set forth this and it's nobody's place to take what's been given to us for years, and years, and years. They're never going to be able to get all of the guns off the streets, they are making law abiding citizens sit and duck," Anderson claimed.
During his speech, Governor Northam said, "This common sense legislation doesn't violate the 2nd Amendment. No one is going door to door to confiscate guns."
In Thursday's meeting a draft was presented to showcase the need for a militia in Tazewell County, but there are no plans to call the group a militia.
"Prevention, mitigation, preparation, response, emergency evacuation, and recovery. That's the purpose of the committee period," Neo said.