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Sheriff Martin states support for 2nd Amendment

By Sheriff Danny Martin, 02/8/13 1:10 PM
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Sheriff Danny Martin

Nevada County Sheriff Danny Martin issued this statement Friday morning concerning his support for the Second Amendment:

Thirty-three years ago I took my first oath in joining the United States Marine Corps to protect and defend the Constitution of the Untied States and the State of Arkansas from all enemies foreign and domestic. I’m currently serving my third term as Nevada County Sheriff with over 17 years in law enforcement. I have sworn to the Oath every year to protect and defend the Constitution of the United States and the State of Arkansas.

I promise to keep the Oath and as long as I am your sheriff I will continue to uphold that Oath. My deputies and I will not support, assist or condone any unconstitutional infringement of your rights to keep and bear arm as set forth in the Second Amendment.

The right to keep and bear arms, often referred as the right to bear arms or to have arms, is the people’s right to have their own arms for their defense, individual use and collective rights. A long-standing common law right to keep and bear arms has long been recognized as pre-existing in common law, prior even to the existence of national constitutions. In the United States, the right to keep and bear arms is also an enumerated right specifically protected by the US Constitution and many state constitutions.

In the 1960s, our nation suffered for the assassinations of a number of prominent people by gunfire, including President John F. Kennedy, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., and Senator Robert F. Kennedy.

Congress responded to public outrage by enacting the Gun Control Act of 1968, which identified categories of individuals considered too high-risk to own a gun. The potentially dangerous or high-risk people included felons, youth, and the dangerously mentally ill, among others.

But under the 1968 Gun Control Act, people considered high-risk could still purchase guns because gun sales operated on an “honor system”. Felons, youth and the mentally ill could still buy guns by giving false information.

In March 1981 there was an assassination attempt on President Ronald Reagan, Secret Service Agent Tim McCarthy, Police Officer Thomas Delahanty and Press Sectary Jim Brady.

Jim and Sarah Brady started in 1986 what turned out to be a seven-year battle which changed the “lie and buy” to “background check-then-buy”.

On November 30, 1993, President Bill Clinton signed the “Brady Handgun Violence Protection Act”, also known as the “Brady Bill”, into law. The Brady Law requires that individuals seeking to buy a gun at a licensed dealer pass a background check.

There have been many attempts to change or enhance the Second Amendment.

I fully realize that this statement or any others will not please all of the people. There will be some on the far left who want all guns banned, and some on the far right who want the sheriff to stand on the borders of our respective counties with armed guards.

What I can assure the citizens is that as you’re elected sheriff I will continue to fight to protect and enhance the quality of life in Nevada County, and I will continue to do what I believe is right.

The Second Amendment comes with responsibility. My belief is that we cannot hold the guns responsible; it is the people who use the guns who are responsible. If a person is drunk while driving and kills someone, it is the person’s fault, not the alcohol brewery or the automobile. Hammers don’t bend nails and pencils don’t misspell words.

Society has become increasingly set on shifting blame to someone or something other than themselves. I do believe that gun owners need to realize that owning or possessing a gun is a significant responsibility. Owners must keep their guns locked up or hidden from children and from people who have mental issues.

We must all do our part, whether we are gun owners or not. We must take responsibility for our own actions and hold others accountable for theirs.

America is a great nation that was founded on solid guiding principles which we must never forget or abandon.

God bless the United States of America,

Sheriff Danny Martin