There is no doubt that 2nd Amendment emotions are a hot button in our country today. To some, it seems like that is all that is being talked, or yelled about, to the detriment of working on other problems. To others, preserving the 2nd Amendment takes precedence over everything because without it, every other Constitutionally guaranteed right and privilege is in jeopardy.
In general, the South seems to have the greatest balance and, until yesterday, those in power as well as the citizenry of the Great State of Alabama seemed to reflect the intent of the Framers when it comes to the right to bear arms. However, things do not seem to be so good in Guntersville, at least in the Mayor’s office. WAAY 31 ran a piece on Tuesday, February 26th that made me cringe.
By way of background, long ago in another lifetime I was super anti-gun. I thought only those who were “rude, crude, and unrefined” would ever consider owning a firearm, and as I have stated on several occasions, I have not only eaten my words for breakfast, lunch and dinner on many occasions, I am happy to report that I have been taught to shoot upside down and to defend myself and others. For my journey, my change of heart and my new skill set I make no apology. In a word, I enjoy shooting for pleasure, and hope I never have to use what I know in any other context.
Having said that, I am dismayed by the comments of Mayor Leigh Dollar. As a part of an ordinance that is designed to improve disaster response, Mayor Dollar sweetly stated that “by no means is it our intent to disarm or seize anyone’s firearms. This is there to protect public workers and any volunteers helping, should someone become unruly, which can happen because emotions are high.” I would say, make sure the volunteers are packing, as well as the public workers, and the “unruly” will probably think twice.
Her statement sounds innocent enough, but let’s think this through. How do you define “unruly?” If someone is “unruly,” are they dangerous? Do you need the SWAT team? Isn’t there already a framework in place that requires that someone do what an officer says when they are commanded to “put the weapon down?” Why do the citizens of Guntersville need another law when it comes to their behavior with specific regard to firearms?
Is it reasonable to even ask the question, “Could this be wrongfully used against citizens?” I think it is prudent indeed to raise that question and have that discussion. Most outrageous acts on the part of governments are carried out in increments. The overused but none the less accurate picture of the frog being boiled alive in the kettle I think is appropriate here. Is Froggy possibly heading toward the boiling point?
No one would have ever thought that a city could determine what was appropriate when it comes to the consumption of soda, or making it possible for girls to get abortions without their parents ever knowing it, or making it impossible for women to protect themselves while outdoors by establishing “gun free zones” for the supposed “protection” of the citizens. To me, that don’t make a lick of sense, and I hope the good folks of Guntersville vote this ordinance down.
By: Ali Elizabeth Turner