The Pennsylvania Second Amendment Preservation act (HB 357) has been sitting idle in the House Judiciary Committee. Although it can still move forward, it’s going to need additional support on a local level to succeed.
What has been most lacking – beyond political courage in the House – is strong grassroots organization behind the bill well in advance.
Gilberton Chief of Police Mark Kessler has taken the lead, introducing a local ordinance directing the town to “adopt and enact any and all measures as may be necessary to prevent the enforcement of any federal, state or local acts, laws, orders, rules, or regulations in violation of the Second Amendment.” This is a great start, and should be replicated around the state
In order to take this to the next level and get a victory, your action is needed right now. Starting today, and all the way through the rest of the year, local governments around the state need to be pressed to take a similar action – passing legislation in support of the right to keep and bear arms locally. And at the same time, calling on the state legislature to do the same. When the state is blanketed with local communities willing to nullify violations of the Second Amendment, the state legislature will be on notice. Do your job, or else.
It’s going to take work to ensure that this is how things play out. Here’s what you can start doing right now.
1. Contact your local legislators – County, City, Town - and urge them to introduce an ordinance in support of the Second Amendment.
local ordinance here: http://tenthamendmentcenter.com/legislation/2nd-amendment-preservation-act/
2. Become a local leader. If you’re dedicated to the right and keep and bear arms, we’ll provide you with the tools you need to not only act on your own, but to organize and lead others to help support these efforts.
contact us here and let us know: http://tenthamendmentcenter.com/volunteer
3. Share this information widely. Please pass this along to your friends and family. Also share it with any and all grassroots groups you’re in contact with around the state. Encourage them to email this information to their members and supporters.
ADDITIONAL READING AND RESOURCES
While the state legislature failed to interpose this year, that doesn’t end the fight – in fact, things have just gotten underway. You can still take action to stop violations of the Second Amendment in Pennsylvania. Government bodies at the local level can step into the fray. Counties and cities can refuse to assist any federal attempts enforce federal gun laws in their jurisdictions.
These measures will not only provide practical protections for citizens, they will send a strong message and put the pressure on lawmakers to nullify unconstitutional federal gun laws at the state level in the next legislative session. And if enough localities throw roadblocks in the way of these unconstitutional acts, it will make them “nearly impossible to enforce”as Judge Napolitano has said.
Local governments won’t act without citizen input and grassroots pressure. The good news is a few dedicated individuals can make a difference at the local level.
That’s where you can step up to the plate.
Form grassroots local nullification groups. Bring your sheriff, local law enforcement, and your community together. Educate each other on nullification, the Second Amendment, and the Constitution. Teach community members that no state or locality is forced into enforcing federal laws. Then introduce model legislation to preserve the Second Amendment to your local lawmakers. Encourage your city, town, municipality and county officials to refuse to aid, enforce, or provide resources to the federal government when it attempts to violate Second Amendment.
Local noncompliance can create major obstructions and impediments. Federal law enforcement agencies lack the manpower and resources to enforce federal laws on their own. They always require the aid of state AND local law enforcement.
Some opponents of these efforts claim that the U.S. Constitution’s “supremacy clause” prevents your local community from taking action. But this is a complete misunderstanding, not only of the supremacy clause, but of the local legislation as well. There is absolutely ZERO serious dispute about the fact that the federal government cannot “commandeer” the states (or their political subdivisions, local governments) to carry out its laws. None. Even the Supreme Court has affirmed this multiple times.
In the 1992 case, New York v. United States, the Supreme Court ruled that Congress couldn’t require states to enact specified waste disposal regulations.
In the 1997 case, Printz v. United States, the Supreme Court ruled that the federal government could not command state law enforcement authorities to conduct background checks on prospective handgun purchasers.
In the 2012 case, National Federation of Independent Business v. Sebelius, the Supreme Court ruled that a significant expansion of Medicaid was not a valid exercise of Congress’s spending power, as it would coerce states to either accept the expansion or risk losing existing Medicaid funding.
In each case, the Supreme Court made it quite clear that, in their opinion, the federal government cannot require the states to act, or even coerce them to act through a threat to cut funding. Their opinion is correct. If the feds pass a law, they can sure try to enforce it if they want. But the states, and your local communities, absolutely do not have to help them in any way.