Hey governor: Virginia’s rapidly-growing gun sanctuary movement has a question

by WorldTribune Staff, January 5, 2020

Supporters of the gun sanctuary movement in Virginia are challenging Gov. Ralph Northam’s plan to hire a gun control enforcement team which they say could lead to the confiscation of firearms.

Northam has called for a $4.8 million, 18-officer team to enforce his proposed “assault weapons” ban.

Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam. / C-SPAN

After Democrats took control of the state legislature and immediately called for more gun control, 91 percent of all counties in Virginia adopted resolutions indicating they were gun sanctuaries.

Northam, who Democrats have allowed to remain in office despite his racist past, proposed another $2 million to hire 10 more officers to enforce other gun control proposals, including universal background checks, a one gun purchase per month limit, and “extreme risk legislation.”

“We see in the governor’s proposed budget that he wants $4 million and 18 new law-enforcement positions to enforce a ban on commonly-owned firearms,” said Erich Pratt, Gun Owners of America senior vice president.

“Gun owners want to know: Is this money going to be used for gun confiscation?”

The Virginia Citizens Defense League called on Virginia’s gun owners to “demand to know if the delegates and senators plan to allocate money — as delineated in budget — to confiscate common, household firearms from Virginia citizens.”

On Jan. 20, Gun Owners of America and the VCDL are planning to bus in thousands of gun owners for a “lobby day” in Richmond to reinforce demands not to pass new gun laws.

The National Rifle Association has signaled that it is joining the fight, having recently issued a “Take Action” notice. In it, the NRA said: “Law-abiding gun owners throughout the Commonwealth must continue to join together to fight against gun bans, gun rationing, and confiscation this January in Richmond.”

Meanwhile, as the gun sanctuary movement gains momentum, the leftist media continues to slam it.

Washington Post In a Sunday op-ed for The Washington Post, Peter Galuszka called the movement “disturbing,” “reactionary,” “hysteria,” “ugly,” and “dangerous.”

As leftists tend to do when whining about nearly all topics theses days, Galuszka likened the gun sanctuary movement to slavery, writing: “A sad irony is that the ‘sanctuary’ movement conjures the disturbing nullification movements of the past three centuries in Virginia. Thomas Jefferson and James Madison argued that the states have the right to ignore federal laws they consider unconstitutional. That thinking was applied to proslavery movements, leading to the Civil War and the fight over integration in the 1950s and 1960s.”

Galuszka also cited polls showing what he said was broad public support for gun control.

Pratt, a leader in the sanctuary movement in which some 116 Virginia communities and counties have voted to ignore gun control laws emerging from Richmond, said the Post and Galuszka are misreading the polls and the public’s desire for gun control.

“There’s a lot The Washington Post got wrong in this story,” Pratt told Washington Examiner columnist Paul Bedard. “The author is wildly wrong about the supposed public support for gun control. Consider that a majority of Maine residents voted for Hillary Clinton in 2016, even while defeating a ballot initiative that would establish ‘red flag’ gun confiscation orders. So if these red flag gun grabs are opposed by a majority of voters even in certain blue states, how can anyone really claim with a straight face that a majority of Americans support such a law?”

Pratt added that any comparison to slavery is simply an effort to demonize gun owners: “In an attempt to demonize ‘nullification,’ ” he said the Post column “completely ignores how anti-slavery forces helped to undermine the Fugitive Slave Act — such as when juries refused to convict defendants who assisted runaway slaves.”

And, he added, “Sanctuary resolutions are important because they provide the best way for local officials to inform the newly elected General Assembly and the governor that if they rush forward to create new felony crimes to jail law-abiding Virginians — just for exercising their most fundamental and natural right of self-defense — then they cannot expect localities to enforce such unjust laws. What these sanctuary jurisdictions are doing is not resistance, but noncooperation — a principle that runs through all levels of government dating from colonial America.”

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