Gun sanctuary proposal presented
The Union County Board of Commissioners has been asked to consider a proposal to formally voice opposition to the enactment of any legislation that would infringe on the right of people to keep and bear arms.
The issue was on the agenda at last Friday morning’s regular meeting of the Union County Board of Commissioners.
The meeting was Friday morning, July 26, at the Union County Courthouse in Jonesboro.
The gun sanctuary movement in Illinois was the presentation made by Jeff Wittenborn at Friday morning’s county board meeting. Wittenborn is a Southern Illinois resident and a retired Illinois State Police trooper who supports the effort.
The gun sanctuary movement began early in 2018 in Effingham and Iroquois counties in Illinois. Sixty-six of the 102 counties in the state now have shown support for the movement.
Wittenborn said during Friday morning’s county board meeting that the initiative is supported by “people who are concerned about the direction in which the state is going. They don’t want to surrender their rights.”
“What it should be is a civil rights issue,” Wittenborn declared during his presentation.
He suggested that the county board could show it supports the rights of the people by acting on the matter.
Wittenborn’s presentation also focused on the issue of prosecutorial nullifcation, which addresses action which can be taken by key law enforcement personnel.
Wittenborn shared a resolution which was passed by the Effingham County Board in 2018 which voiced opposition to the enactment of any legislation which would restrict the “Right of the People to keep and bear arms.”
The issue also has been on the ballot in some Illinois counties.
The resolution approved in Effingham County follows:
Resolution opposing the passage of HB1465, HB 1467, HB1468, HB1469, SB1657, any trailer bill, or any bill similar too, or any bill where the 100th Illinois General Assembly desires to restrict the Individual right of US Citizens as protected by the Second Amendment of the United States Constitution
WHEREAS, the Right of the People to Keep and Bear Arms is guaranteed as an Individual Right under the Second Amendment to the United States Constitution and under the Constitution of the State of Illinois, and;
WHEREAS, the Right of the People to Keep and Bear Arms for defense of Life, Liberty, and Property is regarded as an Inalienable Right by the People of Effingham County, Illinois, and:
WHEREAS, the People of Effingham County, Illinois, derive economic benefit from all safe forms of firearms recreation, hunting, and shooting conducted within Effingham County using all types of firearms allowable under the United States Constitution and;
WHEREAS, HB1465 is a violation of the 4th Amendment to the US Constitution requiring responsible persons under 21 to surrender lawfully owned firearms or face becoming instant felons; fails to define how to relinquish firearms; only allows possession at Sparta shooting complex, but fails to provide similar exemptions for recreational shooting at gun clubs, private ranges or under supervision of responsible adult or parent, unless certified as a firearms instructor;
WHEREAS, HB1467 is violation of the 4th Amendment to the US Constitution requiring persons to immediately relinquish lawfully owned bump stocks or trigger cranks, while also failing to provide where and how to relinquish firearms devices, thus creating instant felons upon passage;
WHEREAS, HB1468 contains broad and unclear definitions which will cause confusion amongst firearm owners and dealers as to which type of firearm is subject to 72 hour wait period; bans nonresidents from purchasing certain long guns defined loosely as assault weapons, puts dealers in jeopardy of unknowingly violating the law;
WHEREAS, HB1469 is violation of the 4th Amendment to the US Constitution requiring persons to immediately relinquish lawfully owned magazines, fails to provide how to properly relinquish banned magazines, creates instant felons if enacted as written, creates conflicts allowing for sale to out of state persons while stating possession is a felony, bans body armor worn as protection for those who employ the use of chain saws, motorcyclists, range officers and firearm instructors, shop owners and employees who work in dangerous neighborhoods or during night shifts;
WHEREAS, SB1657 and trailer bills will create economic hardship on lawfully owned and operated, small business firearm dealerships, in effect forcing them to close; will create undue burdens and price increases on persons to lawfully purchase firearms; will have a direct negative impact on local economies thru job loss and sales tax loss; will create another layer of burdensome government regulation on top of the heavy Federal regulations; imposes new fees on top of existing Federal license fees;
WHEREAS, Effingham County Board, being elected to represent the People of Effingham County and being duly sworn by their Oath of Office to uphold the United States Constitution and the Constitution of the State of Illinois, and;
WHEREAS, the Illinois House of Representatives and the Illinois Senate, being elected by the People of the State of Illinois and being duly sworn by their Oath of Office to uphold the United States Constitution and the Constitution of the State of Illinois, and;
WHEREAS, the Governor of Illinois, being elected to represent the People of the State of Illinois and being duly sworn by your Oath of Office to uphold the United States Constitution and the Constitution of the State of Illinois, and;
WHEREAS, proposed legislation, any bills similar to, under consideration by the Illinois State Legislature would infringe the Right to Keep and Bear Arms and would ban the possession and use of firearms, magazines, body armor now employed by individual citizens of Effingham County, Illinois, for defense of Life, Liberty and Property and would ban the possession and use of firearms now employed for safe forms of firearms recreation, hunting and shooting conducted within Effingham County, Illinois;
WHEREAS, the proposed legislation potentially violates the 5th Amendment failing to provide just compensation under the takings clause, 8th Amendment imposition against excessive fines and punishments on law abiding citizens by punitive forfeiture/relinquishment of lawfully owned property, and Ex Post Facto Law Clause of the United States Constitution.
NOW, THEREFORE, IT BE AND IS HEREBY RESOLVED that the People of Effingham County, Illinois, do hereby oppose the enactment of any legislation that would infringe upon the Right of the People to keep and bear arms and consider such laws to be unconstitutional and beyond lawful Legislative Authority.
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that the Effingham County Board demands that the Illinois General Assembly cease further actions restricting the Right of the People to keep and bear arms, and hereby demand that the Governor of Illinois veto all such legislation which restricts the Right of the People to keep and bear arms.
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that the Clerk of Effingham County is hereby directed to prepare and deliver certified copies of this Resolution to all members of the Illinois General Assembly and to the Office of the Governor.
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that if the Government of the State of Illinois shall infringe upon the inalienable rights granted by the Second Amendment, Effingham County shall become a “sanctuary county” for all firearms unconstitutionally prohibited by the government of the State of Illinois, in that, Effingham County will prohibit its employees from enforcing the unconstitutional actions of the state government.
After Wittenborn’s presentation, county board member Kent Pitts voiced support for the proposal.
County board vice chairman Bobby Toler Jr. said he wanted to review the information which had been presented.
Board of commissioners chairman Max Miller said the matter would be reviewed and taken under consideration.
An informational petition to make Union County a Second Amendment Gun Sanctuary County is circulating locally.
The intent of the petition is to have the county board of commissioners pass a gun sanctuary resolution.
A community member who attended Friday morning’s county board meeting said that strong, bipartisan support has been shown for the petition.
Supporters plan to have the petitions available at the upcoming Cobden Peach Festival and Union County Fair in Anna.