The Second Amendment Sanctuary movement continues to gain ground at both the local and state levels, as gun owners and supporters of the right to keep and bear arms push for greater protections against federal infringements of their rights.
In Nebraska on Wednesday lawmakers listened intently as dozens of residents turned out to testify in support or opposition to a pair of pro-2A measures, including one bill that would prohibit the state from enforcing any new federal gun control laws.
Ashland resident Tony Arnold, who was the first Nebraskan to testify explained why he supports the initiative.
“I really think that it’s important that for Nebraska, we really should be looking at Nebraska, our heritage, our legacy, and really our own Constitution,” Arnold said.
Arnold believes LB188 is a necessary 2nd Amendment protection that will keep state officials from enforcing potentially restrictive federal gun laws that don’t already exist at the state level.
Judy King, who opposes LB188, says she is most concerned about some of the people who are in support of the bill.
“If they’re giving more protection for the guns than they are to the people, then they’re associating with that crowd that took over the Capitol,” King said. “These guys took over the Capitol and so I should be afraid. I’m afraid and almost all my friends are afraid.”
King was one of the few opposers of the bill to appear in person to testify. She says several of her colleagues mailed in their testimony, in part because they were uncomfortable with some supporters’ refusal to wear masks at the public hearing.
As you can imagine, King’s testimony went over about as well as a fart in church. The Second Amendment Sanctuary movement began long before the 2020 elections, much less the storming of the Capitol on January 6th, but King and her anti-gun allies seem convinced that any measure to protect the Second Amendment rights of human beings (not just their guns) is a call to insurrection.
LB 188 is actually a pretty standard Second Amendment Sanctuary proposal that appears be in line with precedent established by the U.S. Supreme Court in Printz vs United States, which established that state and local law enforcement agencies are under no obligation to perform federal law enforcement duties, though they cannot impede enforcement of federal laws by federal agencies.
Lawmakers also heard testimony on LB 236, which would give counties the ability to declare themselves Constitutional Carry communities and allow for the lawful carrying of firearms by legal gun owners, regardless of whether or not they have a carry license. To my knowledge, Nebraska is the first state to attempt to pass a county-based Constitutional Carry system, and while the legislation doesn’t go as far as the Constitutional Carry bills already signed into law in Utah and Montana this year, it would still be a step in the right direction for gun owners in the Cornhusker State.
The two bills still need a committee vote before heading to the floor of the unicameral legislature, but with the vast majority of residents on Wednesday testifying in support of both proposals, the prospects of getting to the Senate floor appear to be pretty good. If Nebraskans want these bills signed into law, however, they should be contacting their state Senators on their own and urging them to strengthen the Second Amendment by supporting LB 188 and LB 236.