It is likely, and almost certain, that every American can recall at least once in their lives hearing a parent tell a petulant child that “this is my house and my rules; if you don’t like them you can get out! When you pay for your own house you can make the rules, but as long as you live under my roof you’ll follow my rules.” The child then has a choice; follow the rules or leave home. In a nation there is a similar situation except that instead of expelling citizens who are unwilling to follow the rules (law), violators are arrested and thrown in jail to protect society as well as teach the violators that if they are going to enjoy the privilege of living in society they have to follow the law. America has rules that every citizen is required to follow and, for the most part, the overwhelming majority of citizens tend to adhere to the law of the land unless they are Republicans controlling state legislatures.
Since Americans elected an African American President, states with Republican legislatures and governors refuse to follow the law of the land (Constitution) they claim to love more than any being who is not a hardline conservative, and argue vehemently for nullifying the Constitution because they, like petulant children, cannot tolerate following rules. According to a rule in the Constitution, the Supreme Court is the ultimate arbiter of the law, but an inordinate number of Republican-controlled states contend that they, not the High Court, decide constitutionality of laws. In Idaho this week, Republicans decided to nullify two parts of the Constitution and federal gun statutes because they believe the National Rifle Association is the law of the land.
Last Friday, Idaho Republicans overwhelmingly passed legislation proclaiming Idaho does not have to tolerate federal gun laws going forward, and to prove the NRA makes and adjudicates federal law they criminalized enforcing federal gun statutes. The law nullifying federal firearm laws passed unanimously in both the House and Senate and takes effect immediately upon the Republican governor’s signature. The legislation does not just criminalize enforcement of federal gun laws by federal officials, it criminalizes enforcement of federal laws by Idaho state law enforcement officials for adhering to their sworn oath to defend and uphold the U.S. Constitution.
According to a spokesman for the Tenth Amendment Center, nullifying federal gun laws, the Supremacy Clause, and Article III, Section 1 of the Constitution “is an important first step for Idaho. Getting this law passed will ensure that any new plans or executive orders that might be coming our way will not be enforced in Idaho. Then, once this method is established and shown to be effective, legislators can circle back and start doing the same for federal gun control already on the books.” The federal gun law nullification frenzy already saw Alaska and Kansas pass laws similar to Idaho, and an investigation by ProPublica discovered at least 37 other states introduced nullification legislation because they hate America and its Constitution. Besides nullifying federal laws and the Constitution, the Republican states strictly follow NRA law requiring all Americans to be armed and allowed to carry loaded guns any place they are legally allowed to be to use Stand Your Ground laws allowing them to shoot and kill anyone anywhere they are legally allowed to be, especially in Georgia.
A new gun proliferation bill in Georgia is waiting for Republican Governor Nathan Deal’s signature to allow Georgia gun fanatics to carry loaded guns in churches, bars, schools, restaurants, and airports. Regarding loaded guns in airports, the new law eliminates federal criminal charges for gun zealots caught with guns at airport security that probably accounted for the federal Transportation Security Administration’s opposition to the law. The new law also gives convicted felons the right to claim Stand Your Ground defense after they shoot to kill someone if they reasonably believe their life is in danger which is likely why the state’s police chiefs association bitterly opposed the new law. Likely, the police chiefs are aware that a convicted felon will believe, or claim to believe, their life is in danger when they are caught in the commission of a crime or stopped for a parole violation by law enforcement. In fact, the legislation was opposed by the restaurant association (bars), Episcopal and Catholic churches, and an overwhelming majority (over 70%) of Georgia residents. The legislation also authorizes school districts to appoint staff members to carry loaded guns in schools to make sure there is no public area in Georgia that is safe from gun fanatics.
The new NRA dream law did not set well with a preponderance of bar owners who were surprised at the legislation’s scope. One bar owner in downtown Savannah said, “I don’t have any problems with people owning guns, but I do have a problem with guns and alcohol. Everybody could be in here having a good time, but all you need is one bad drunk with a gun and it could be a bad situation.” The organization founded by former Arizona congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords, Americans for Responsible Solutions, called the NRA legislation “the most extreme gun bill in America,” and dubbed it the “guns everywhere” legislation. It is precisely the legislation the NRA lusts to see enacted in every state in the Union.
The NRA heavily lobbied the bill’s passage and hailed it as “the most comprehensive pro-gun” legislation in Georgia history and praised legislators voting to allow anyone, including convicted felons, to carry loaded firearms anyplace as an “historic victory for the Second Amendment.” One local group, Georgia Carry, promoting the “guns everywhere” bill claimed “you can bet those politicians who voted for it knew what their constituents wanted.” That is patently untrue; those politicians voting for the law knew what their masters in the NRA wanted, not their constituents who, according to an Atlanta Journal-Constitution poll in January, opposed both the “guns everywhere” aspect and expanded Stand Your Ground protections by over 70% of voters.
The Georgia law, like Idaho’s nullification law, will likely run afoul of the federal government’s (TSA, Homeland Security) prohibition on carrying loaded weapons into airports, but Georgia Republicans pre-emptively nullified the federal TSA restriction by eliminating federal criminal charges for violating a federal TSA law. The huge effort to allow gun fanatics to carry loaded weapons in any public area is the NRA’s response to the tragic massacre at Sandy Hook Elementary School and not due to a rash of new gun restrictions. In fact, no major federal gun control laws have been passed for twenty years (since 1994), and nearly every state allows people to carry guns in public places with 42 states allowing assault rifles, so the NRA focused its legislation on expanding gun fanatics’ rights to carry loaded guns “in all corners of society with expanded Stand Your Ground laws” while nullifying federal gun safety measures and criminalizing their enforcement.
According to Republican states nullifying federal gun laws, they are simply adhering to the National Rifle Association as the law of the land and claim the NRA, not the Supreme Court, decides the constitutionality of federal laws and the High Court’s ability to adjudicate. Another Republican who hates America and the Constitution, Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach, said last year that state legislation nullifying federal laws are not symbolic and that he hopes such laws “make it to the Supreme Court” so the court will disavow every ruling it has made upholding the Supremacy Clause, rule the Constitution null and void except for the 2nd and 10th Amendments, and then disband to allow the NRA to govern unchallenged with their ALEC cohorts the Koch brothers.
Audio engineer and instructor for SAE. Writes op/ed commentary supporting Secular Humanist causes, and exposing suppression of women, the poor, and minorities. An advocate for freedom of religion and particularly, freedom of NO religion.
Born in the South, raised in the Mid-West and California for a well-rounded view of America; it doesn’t look good.
Former minister, lifelong musician, Mahayana Zen-Buddhist.