‘I don’t want anyone knocking on my door to take guns away…’
(Ben Sellers, Liberty Headlines) Overrun by migration and recent transplants in a handful of high-density, urban pockets—including the vastly left-leaning federal bureaucracy housed in the exurbs of Northern Virginia—the Old Dominion’s Democrats this year succeeded, for the first time in 20 years, in gaining full control of its legislature.
With controversial Gov. Ralph Northam—whose ‘blackface’ scandal this year made him more beholden than ever to the far-left fringes of his base—still at the helm for the next two years, liberals have promised to feast on their newfound power by enacting radical legislation on par with areas like New York and California.
But the Virginia natives in many of the commonwealth’s still-deeply-red counties have promised to stand their ground—literally, if necessary.
More than 80 municipalities have begun establishing “Second-Amendment sanctuary” laws, according to Gun Rights Watch, promising civil disobedience if the state passes extreme gun-control measures as Northam has promised.
“This message was really a resolution to send our thoughts to our local representatives of the General Assembly as to what we would prefer not be done, and that was to make any restrictive laws that violate the Second Amendment,” Phil North, chairman of the Roanoke County Board of Supervisors, told US News and World Report.
“We heard people just say, ‘Please support it,” North added. “I don’t want anyone knocking on my door to take guns away.'”
The ensuing showdown could illustrate precisely why the Constitution’s framers put gun rights so high on their list of fundamental freedoms.
Northam said he plans to re-introduce several measures that failed last year under the GOP-led General Assembly, Lynchburg’s WSET reported.
Among the agenda items he proposes are strict background checks and bans on “assault” weapons accessories such as high-capacity magazines, bump stocks and silencers.
Other regulations would:
- permit only one handgun purchase per 30-day waiting period
- require that lost or stolen guns be reported within 24 hours
- enact red-flag policies that would let law-enforcement temporarily confiscate firearms
- expand a law that prohibits gun ownership for those under final protective (restraining) orders
- make it a felony to allow access to a loaded, unsecured firearm for anyone under 18
- free localities to enact laws stricter than the state, such as bans in public facilities
“I suspect most of the work to be done in January,” Northam said.
Despite Northam’s claims that he is willing to work with Republican legislators, Northam’s track record of supporting radical, boundary-pushing policies in areas like abortion belies his rhetoric of compromise.
His very presence in the governor’s mansion is a symbol of the Left’s brazen tenacity—and hypocrisy—after the nearly universal resignation calls following the emergence of his racist yearbook photo quickly dissipated in the interest of political expediency.
Other Democrats in the state have been less tolerant of the dissent, threatening to prosecute resisters and even to dispatch the National Guard.
“I would hope they either resign in good conscience, because they cannot uphold the law which they are sworn to uphold, or they’re prosecuted for failure to fulfill their oath,” Connolly said.
“The law is the law,” he continued. “If that becomes the law, you don’t have a choice, not if you’re a sworn officer of the law.”
Ironically, Connolly’s own district declared itself a different type of ‘sanctuary’ last year, voting to refuse to comply with federal immigration enforcement.
The movement against Draconian gun-control proposals—which also has taken root in at least 10 other states, according to Gun Rights Watch, mirrors the Left’s illegal immigration sanctuaries, at least in terms of the rhetoric involved.
Unlike illegal-immigration sanctuaries—which stand in open defiance of the federal laws on record, undermining the Constitution’s supremacy clause—the opponents of gun-control overreach may well have the Constitution on their side.
But Richard Schragger, a professor of law at the University of Virginia School of Law, countered that the immigration sanctuaries are permissible since they reflect decisions to refuse voluntary cooperation with a federal agency.
Without evidence, Schragger claimed those resolutions were largely ‘symbolic’—ignoring the fact that many sanctuary cities have openly encouraged illegals to violate federal law and have enticed them with public welfare and healthcare incentives—in some cases, even voting rights.
For some, the potential for tyranny among the authorities themselves may be all the more reason to keep Second Amendment rights intact. For others, it may be the need to protect one’s self in the face of an absent police force.
Increasingly, law enforcement officers have also begun violating their oaths to preserve public safety by allowing dangerous criminals in their custody to walk free in defiance of ICE detainers.
In neighboring North Carolina, the city of Charlotte saw its homicide rate this year rise above 100 victims for the first time in 26 years after sanctuary Sheriff Garry McFadden took office on a platform of refusing to cooperate with federal Immigration and Customs Enforcement.