In today’s episode of, “Are...Are White People OK?”—a group of 11 anti-lockdown demonstrators walked into a Subway sandwich shop in Raleigh, N.C., Saturday carrying an array of weapons, ranging from pistols to whole ass rocket launchers.
According to the News & Observer—the publication that captured and published images from the event that have since gone viral—the demonstration was organized by a group called Blue Igloo, and according to its Facebook page, its mission is simply to take advantage of an “opportunity for First and Second Amendment supporters to get together, meet people with commonalities and get some exercise while we’re all wasting away at home.” Because nothing says, “Won’t you be my neighbor,” like an AT4 rocket launcher strapped to your back.
As with many of the other anti-lockdown protests that have sprung up across the country, the Blue Igloo demonstrators have inexplicably found a link between the right to bear arms and the stay-at-home orders meant to slow the spread of COVID-19. Of course, when you find yourself walking into a sandwich shop looking like a Grand Theft Auto character, chances are logic and sense-making aren’t high up on your priority list.
In this case, the group wants it to be clear that the events on Saturday weren’t intended as a form of protest at all.
“The walk on Saturday wasn’t a protest, it was a gathering to support our God-given freedoms as Americans,” the group told NBC News via email. “We headed out for a walk to get some fresh air, sunshine, and some much-needed exercise.”
“We are a peaceful group, and wish to keep it that way at all costs,” the statement continued. “We aren’t looking for a fight. We in fact, want the opposite. We want to put on a smile, shake some hands, and be friendly. An armed society is a polite society.”
It makes sense that it wasn’t the group’s intention to stage a protest since the demonstration took place during the first phase of a three-phase plan to reopen North Carolina, which started with the opening of parks and a number of businesses on Friday evening, according to NBC.
But, while members of the group may claim to simply want to make friends with their giant penis enhancements slung over their shoulders, some observers of the demonstration made it clear that their presence only made them uncomfortable.
Video footage of the event shows one of the group’s members holding a giant pipe wrench and approaching a black couple and their two children after the couple asked repeatedly that the group stay away from them.
You can view footage of the demonstration below.