2nd Amendment gun rights have been eroded, usually by liberal federal politicians. State and local politicians also routinely attack these citizen rights. Clark County politicians harmed citizen gun rights in 2005, and one of the perpetrators is now the County Council Chairman.
First a little background:
The founders of our nation arguably designed the most profound governing document ever created in history. The US Constitution is, at this point, the longest standing document of its type. Estimated longevity of other nation’s constitutions is about 17 years on average1, whereas the US Constitution has endured for 240 years. This longevity adds credibility to its precepts and principles, and should give lawmakers pause when they try to create regulations that contradict it.
The 2nd Amendment to the US Constitution confirms the natural right for US Citizens to bear arms for the clear purpose of defending their life, liberty and happiness in the face of tyranny and oppression from bullies at all levels. The original purpose of the 2nd Amendment was twofold; first the amendment was created to confirm the natural right for citizens to protect themselves from an oppressive government, should that government devolve into the dictatorial practices of the British monarchy. Second, it provided for a ‘fallback’ defense against external and internal oppression, as James Madison spoke of in the Federalist No. 46. “Tyranny and oppression can take many forms, but at its base, tyranny is the expression of power that the strong have over the weak to bully, coerce and cajole.” The 2nd Amendment was the Founders last-ditch response to all types of oppression, when rational, reasoned approaches to correcting injustices failed.
Natural disasters or a breakdown in civil society bring out the predators who pillage and steal for their own ends at the expense of the vulnerable. Having the ability to fight back is essential. A firearm is a known equalizer to balance the power scale and provide confidence and dignity to those who otherwise would be unable to protect themselves when law enforcement isn’t right around the corner. Mentioning that it’s our constitutional, inalienable right seems redundant in the face of common sense.
Now back to Clark County. In 2005 Mark Boldt (R) was on the Clark County Commission that, at the time, unanimously voted for the prohibition of anyone in the county borders to “carry or possess” any instrument capable of producing bodily harm, as long as it is carried or possessed with the “intent” to cause harm, during a state of emergency. The short-sighted nature of this ordinance was only overshadowed by the obvious and illegitimate infringement on our 2nd Amendment right to keep and bear arms. What do those at a disadvantage do in an emergency when they have no one to protect them but themselves? The 2005 County Commission apparently thought making a phone call or loudly blowing a whistle should be enough, when a band of looters comes to pillage your house and the police are nowhere in sight. Citizens pushed back, including Lynda Wilson (now a State Representative for the 17th District), seeing the ludicrous nature of this ordinance. They expended considerable effort to see it repealed, and succeeded in 2012. Some white hats out there are interested in maintaining the integrity of our rights and ensuring citizens can defend themselves.
The gun grabbers and short-sighted political opportunists are never in short supply. In this light, Jim Moeller (Democrat state representative from the 49th) has again proposed legislation in January of 2016 to limit our ability to protect ourselves. Couched in the guise of reasonable action to reduce gun violence, Moeller proposed an “assault rifle” ban and a limit on gun magazine capacity.
Fortunately, the bill never got a hearing. What politicians of Moeller’s ilk never understand is that CRIMINALS are NEVER limited by gun control laws – however, the law-abiding citizens are stopped dead in their tracks from being able to protect themselves from those who would do them harm.
What’s more, a study done by Chris Koper and Jeffrey Roth for the National Institute of Justice in 2004 showed that the assault weapons ban had no effect on reducing gun violence2. Imagine a world, if you will, where conscientious law-abiding citizens may protect themselves from assault by a gun wielding psychopath without guilt or worry – simply by exercising their 2nd Amendment right. Oh, wait, we don’t have to imagine it – it exists right where we live, if politicians fulfill their duty to protect our rights instead of infringe them.
This history of not respecting the constitutional rights of citizens needs to be kept in mind when we remember that one of the councilors who passed this outrageous ordinance is now the chairman of the Clark County council.
- The Lifespan of Written Constitutions; Thomas Ginsburg, Zachary Elkins, and James Melton – http://www.law.uchicago.edu/alumni/magazine/lifespan
- Updated Assessment of the Federal Assault Weapons Ban: Impacts on Gun Markets and Gun Violence, 1994-2003; Christopher Koper; https://www.ncjrs.gov/pdffiles1/nij/grants/204431.pdf