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Disturbing images of masked gun rights activists touting semi-automatic rifles and marching into the Kentucky capitol of Frankfort on Friday have been widely condemned online.

The group which is known as 'We Are KY Gun Owners' were staging a second amendment rally where they were trying to prove that they have the right to be a 'paramilitary operation' as Kentucky is an 'open-carry' state.

They were allowed to enter the capitol house, with footage emerging of them being allowed to walk around metal detectors unchecked.

Getty shared pictures of the group marching around the building and holding their semi-automatic rifles in the air as if they had achieved victory.

The images have caused widespread shock and outrage that something like this was allowed to happen given America's continued problem with gin ownership and the second amendment.

Former Democratic presidential contender, Beto O'Rourke did not hold back in his thoughts.

At least some people managed to find a smidgen of humour in these otherwise troubling images.

Speaking to the Louisville Courier Journal, Calen Studler, a spokesperson for the group and a candidate for the state senate said:

We can’t just whittle away one little piece here, one little piece there. Then the (U.S. Constitution) doesn’t mean what it says anymore.

Outside the building around one hundred people had gathered to hear speeches, one of which came from Dick Heller a former special police officer from Washington DC who in 2008 won a landmark supreme court case where he managed to overturn the districts gun ban and therefore allowed individuals to keep guns in their home for self-defense.

He told the crowds.

Be vigilant. Don’t let the comrade governor turn Kentucky into Baltimore, Detroit, Venezuela ... Chicago.

HT Huffington Post

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