Well, that was fast…
In the wake of as many as 75 Virginia localities declaring themselves Second Amendment sanctuaries, Attorney General Mark Herring has stated:
“So, when Virginia passes these gun safety laws that they will be followed, they will be enforced.”
Now, I personally think it’s awfully overconfident of him to say when and not if, but from statements made by our elected officials, they seem to believe that passage is inevitable. I said in a previous post that I wasn’t sure how he was going to enforce this, but apparently they have a few ideas.
At least a few Democratic legislators have floated the idea of cutting off funding to cities and counties that refuse to violate the Constitution. Keep in mind, this is the same party that lost their collective mind when the President attempted to block Department of Justice funding to sanctuary cities that refused to cooperate with immigration officials, but if there’s one thing I’ve learned about politicians, it’s that none of them have a sense of irony. From a legal standpoint, the lawsuit over that action is still pending, with decisions both for and against the President’s efforts.
I’ve heard the idea floated that the State Police could still enforce the law, and that is correct. The issue is that the VSP only has around 3,000 employees, including administrative and support staff. If you really think 3,000 LEOs can patrol 75 localities effectively, you’d be very wrong.
And my favorite gem from our elected officials, U.S. Representative Donald McEachin says that Governor Northam can call out the National Guard to enforce the law. Let me be very clear from this point on – I do not believe that we have yet reached the point where we need to physically fight for our rights. I believe that we can still fight at the ballot box during this next session.
But, and this is a very big BUT, this type of rhetoric is not helping the situation. The gun community for years has been worried that the government was going to actively begin seizing guns. They have also been told for years that it would never happen. But in the last few years, it has become more and more apparent that there is a growing element in the Democratic party that is more than happy to begin doing just that. Beto O’Rourke was the most obvious (and look where that got him), but many other new members of Congress have backed bans and buy-backs as well.
The original bill filled for the next legislative session involved seizure of firearms. Once the pushback got too strong for them, the legislators said they would grandfather current guns, but still ban new transfers (which is postponed seizure). Now Rep. McEachin says that the National Guard should be used to enforce the laws. What precisely does he intend them to do? I’m not trying to get into hyperbole here, but why even make that threat? You basically just handed any and all Second Amendment advocates the evidence they need that you aren’t interested in the Constitution, just in your agenda. And, demonstrating an incredible lack of a sense of irony, he’s proposing using guys with guns to make sure that you can’t own certain guns. He’s basically stating that the State should have a monopoly on the use of force. That has never in the history of the world turned out well.
And once again, how practical is this, really? The VA National Guard and Air Guard have a combined 8,400 members (including administration and support personnel). Combine those with the VSP and you have around 11,000 in your pocket. Virginia has 8.5 million people. Using past studies that show that in any resistance, roughly only a third of the population is against the State at any given time, that still leaves 2.8 million people scattered over 75 localities that those 11,000 individuals will have to corral (and that’s assuming all 11,000 will be willing to even try, which won’t happen).
Quite obviously, the Governor and Attorney General’s threats aren’t worth the electrons that they wasted publishing them, but they’re still going to push forward anyway. They’re dedicated, and if these laws get passed, things could get pretty dark. I truly hope they won’t, because it won’t end well for either side. The best way to prevent all of this is to make sure the laws don’t get passed in the first place. Get involved in your local organizations, and join the Virginia Citizens Defense League. They’re taking a lot of the lead on this, and they already have rallies scheduled for next legislative session.
There is a lot of pro-Second Amendment, pro-Constitution momentum out there. Keep it going!