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One day, one city: two rallies about guns, two different messages

Lakeland was the center of a debate over gun control. Two passionate groups on either side held rallies.

LAKELAND, FL -- Friday, Lakeland was the center of a debate over gun control. Two passionate groups on either side held rallies.

It started with the “rally for our rights.” Second Amendment rights to be specific. This was spearheaded by State Rep.Ross Spano, who's running for Congress.

He believes the March For Our Lives tour is targeting their gun rights.

Spano says if Second Amendment advocates don't speak up, they will certainly lose them.

The people at this rally believe a law-abiding armed citizen is what helps minimize senseless acts of violence and crime.

“On something like the Second Amendment and the Bill of Rights, which preserves our fundamental freedoms, those are things we got to stand up for man,” Spano said.

“So, this one of those draw the line in the sand-type things.”

Another speaker at the event was University of Tampa student Josh Hackett.

“It's important to have your own weapon. It's important to be able to protect yourself when you need to. Not just being able to rely on the police, but being able to do something for yourself,” Hackett said.

Over at the Road For Change rally, they also braved the heat to spread their message of fighting for common sense reform with gun laws.

Their big plan was to register people to vote and motivate them to keep speaking up about gun control.

Delaney Tarr has been one of the leaders of this movement. She just graduated from Marjorie Stoneman Douglas High School and was there the day a gunman opened fire.

“Even if these people disagree with us, there is this huge middle ground in our country that we know we can reach. We know we can find some compromise, we can get laws passed. Ultimately, we all want the same thing, we all want our country to be safe and peaceful,” she said.

Tarr referenced things like background checks and better record keeping with the ATF.

Once again, the goal for both sides to make school and workplaces safer. But, by taking completely different approaches.

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