Overly restrictive gun laws are a big deal, and not just for individuals who might be skirting around the edge of the law. They’re also a problem for lawmakers, who for years have been struggling to maintain order in their counties while following the letter of the law.
This isn’t the first time that sheriffs are fighting back with some tough talk, but Second Amendment advocates appreciate them taking the heat and speaking up for our rights.
For a bunch of lawmen, sheriffs can be a little defiant when it comes to limiting the gun rights of Americans. In 2013 and again in 2016, sheriff departments protested then-President Barack Obama’s gun laws that they called illegal and unconstitutional. State and federal legislators continue to attempt to shove these gun laws through in an attempt to limit individuals from purchasing additional guns or requiring prohibitive testing or review before making a purchase. These same sheriffs refused to allow federal officials to enter their jurisdictions in an attempt to remove firearms from the hands of citizens.
When you think of civil disobedience, what might come to mind is a group of individuals staging a walk out or perhaps creating a small ruckus with signs at a rally. A group of a dozen Washington sheriffs could be some of the last people you would expect to be refusing to enforce the laws of the land. As the state enacts sweeping new restrictions on a particular type of assault rifle, it’s not surprising that the sheriffs are up in arms — figuratively, at least. The previous age for legally purchasing a semi-automatic rifle was 18, but the new legislation raises that age to 21 as well as requiring purchasers to pass extensive background checks. Other restrictions include a requirement that buyers maintain adequate gun storage and take a firearm safety course.
With the National Rifle Association (NRA) and other leading groups backing the sheriffs, there are several lawsuits already in play in an attempt to declare the laws unconstitutional. These rural sheriffs aren’t waiting for the courts, but have instead decided not to enforce the laws until everything has been decided in court. Expanded background checks take effect July 1, 2019, but there is little hope that they can be overthrown in court before that time. It remains to be seen whether the laws will indeed stand or if the dissenting sheriffs will be forced to take enforcement measures into their own hands.
There’s a new era of positive support for gun control with the recent mid-term election, as Republicans lost their majority in the House of Representatives. This has led to a range of new laws being discussed at the federal level, many that dramatically restrict Americans from purchasing or firing specific types of firearms. Only through continued diligence will we be able to protect our Second Amendment rights.
~ Ready to Fire News