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Jarchow: Why Second Amendment sanctuaries matter

Empower Wisconsin | March 13,  2020 

By Adam Jarchow 

Adam Jarchow

I used to think our entire country was a Second Amendment sanctuary. But I’ve watched with increasing concern over the past couple of years while state legislatures and governors across the country flagrantly violate the right of the people to keep and bear Arms. I’ve also been shocked at the rapidity with which Democrats went from “no one wants to take your guns” to openly advocating for confiscation. 

As per usual, our courts have failed in their central function of protecting liberty.  Judges (lawyers in robes) seem particularly good at figuring out why a bureaucrat should be able to do this or that to citizens and particularly bad at simply saying no to bureaucrats. 

So in this environment, I’m not surprised that citizens have risen up and demanded protections. Many have done this through their local governments, passing “sanctuary resolutions”. My Town (Town of Apple River in Polk County) passed one this week and my county will be considering one next week.  

Some have questioned the efficacy of these resolutions. But here is why I favor them. First, it sends a message. Remember, regardless of what they say, most politicians are spineless. So having a loud, organized movement of pro-Second Amendment voices sends a very clear message and helps otherwise feckless politicians to do the right thing. 

Second, most of the resolutions prohibit funding for enforcement, and provide the local law enforcement with a good way to not enforce certain laws. This is particularly true of our independently elected sheriffs. Most law enforcement officers I know are strong supporters of the Second Amendment. But most also have a tremendous sense of duty. So when faced with enforcing a law that they may believe is unconstitutional but the courts have not yet struck down, most law enforcement officers will feel duty-bound to enforce the law. 

But under the sanctuary resolutions, the sheriff or local law enforcement official will have a very strong reason to say in their county, town, city or village, they are not authorized to enforce that law and are not authorized to spend money on it because they believe it’s unconstitutional. This can be huge. Most policing is done at the local level. Do you think the FBI or state troopers are likely to do this work?  Probably not.  Our sheriffs and local police departments are the frontline. So giving them a good, legal reason not to enforce these unconstitutional laws will be quite helpful (assuming your sheriff cares about the constitution). 

So push your town, village, city and county to get on board to pass a resolution making your jurisdiction a second amendment sanctuary. It’s up to We the People to save our constitution, and our country.  

Adam Jarchow serves as president of Empower Wisconsin. The small business owner, attorney and volunteer firefighter is a former Republican state representative in the Legislature. 

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