Second Amendment sanctuary issue heats up

Published 1:23 pm Wednesday, February 26, 2020

Resolutions from three counties on the subject of the Second Amendment were sent to Tyrrell County commissioners before their Feb. 4 meeting.

The Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, ratified in December 1791, says: “A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.”

The preamble to the Beaufort County resolution recited that the right of the people to keep and bear arms is guaranteed as an individual right; that the right to keep and bear arms for defense of life, liberty and property is regarded as an inalienable right of the people; and reminded that county commissioners and members of the North Carolina General Assembly have all sworn to uphold the U.S. Constitution.

Beaufort County’s commissioners resolved “that the People of Beaufort County, North Carolina 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.”

The Beaufort commissioners also resolved “that, if the government of the State of North Carolina shall infringe upon the inalienable rights granted by the Second Amendment, Beaufort County shall become a ‘Sanctuary County’ in that Beaufort County will prohibit its employees from enforcing the unconstitutional actions of the state government.”

The resolutions forwarded by the Davidson County and Yadkin County commissioners acknowledge “that the right of individuals to keep and bear arms is under attack in the United States of America by elected officials from many levels of Government.”

They reminded that they, and the sheriffs in those counties, have taken an oath to defend the uphold the constitutions of the United States and of North Carolina.

Both boards expressed their “deep commitment to protecting all Constitutional rights” of their citizens, and they stand “opposed of any law, regulation or other act that would unconstitutionally infringe on the citizens’ Second Amendment rights.

Both boards also declared that they will “use every power and authority of the county to protect the Second Amendment Rights” of their citizens, and they “implore the North Carolina Legislature and the United States Congress to use all of their powers and authority to protect our citizens’ freedom under the Constitution and specifically the Second Amendment.”

Dare County’s commissioners stated on Feb. 4 that the Constitution is the foundation on which the nation was created, and that “all amendments therein exist co-equally in importance and stature as originally written by the founders.”  They then resolved “that the Dare County Board of Commissioners opposes any and all attempts to infringe upon these rights and freedoms, including the right to keep and bear arms, as defined in the Second Amendment.”

Three Tyrrell commissioners, answering questions during a Candidates’ Night forum on Feb. 18, said they wanted more time to study the issue before committing the county to a course of action.

Creation of a Second Amendment sanctuary in Tyrrell County could mean, one resident said later, that law enforcement officials would be prohibited from confiscating weapons from suspected criminals or terrorists or illegal immigrants, and might lead to such persons living elsewhere