The following was released today by the Illinois State Rifle Association (ISRA):

Anger over Attorney General Lisa Madigan’s recent decision to make public the names and other personal information belonging to law-abiding gun owners is expected to swell the ranks of protesters at a gun rights rally scheduled for Thursday, March 10th at the Illinois Capitol.

The initial intent of the 2011 edition of Illinois Gun Owners’ Lobby Day was to encourage the General Assembly to pass legislation allowing qualified citizens to carry defensive firearms. Illinois is one of only two states that prohibit citizens from protecting themselves and their families by carrying defensive firearms. The other state, Wisconsin, is expected to pass concealed carry legislation later this year.

Last week, Attorney General Madigan announced that she plans to release sensitive personal information belonging to the state’s 1.5 million firearm owners to newspapers, gun control groups, and just about anyone else who asks her for the information.

Madigan’s decision to depart from the 40-year tradition of keeping this information secure has caused a shift in the focus of the 2011 IGOLD event. This year, IGOLD has a dual purpose. First, to send the message to Attorney General Madigan that gun owners do not want their privacy invaded. Second, IGOLD will drive home the point that law-abiding citizens want the right to defend themselves and their families with the most effective means available – the defensive firearm.

“It’s bad enough that private citizens are not allowed to defend themselves when they walk our dangerous streets,” commented ISRA Executive Director Richard Pearson. “But now Attorney General Madigan willfully sets citizens up as targets for crime by releasing their personal information to anyone who asks for it.”

“I’ve gotten a lot of phone calls in the past week,” continued Pearson. “I’ve never seen people as angry as they are over Madigan’s decision to release gun-owner personal data. I expect a lot of that anger will be evident this Thursday. Madigan is supposed to be defending the good people of Illinois, not endangering them.”

The 2011 IGOLD event will kick off with a press conference at 9:30 AM in the Capitol Blue Room. At 11:00 a rally and legislative briefing will be held at the Prairie Capitol Convention Center followed by a march on the Capitol building. After the march concludes, attendees will enter the Capitol to view committee hearings and lobby their legislators to pass concealed carry legislation and legislation to protect their private information from release. Organizers expect in excess of 5,000 people to participate in the IGOLD event.

The ISRA is the state’s leading advocate of safe, lawful and responsible firearms ownership. For more than a century, the ISRA has represented the interests of millions of law-abiding Illinois firearm owners.

Source: Illinois State Rifle Association

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