Good advice: Step up and defend yourselves
by Tribune News Service
President Barack Obama and the growing mob of American anti-2nd Amendment fanatics would have you believe that the state can protect you and your loved ones from all criminal threats. It can’t.
No one knows that better than the men and women who spend their days on the front lines of law enforcement, like Sheriff Paul Babeu of Pinal County, Arizona.
Babeu and his deputies are actively encouraging residents to take their safety into their own hands by exercising their 2nd Amendment rights.
In a social media post, the Pinal County Sheriff’s Office told residents: “You do NOT need the permission of the government to carry concealed in Arizona.”
The post continued: “We are STRONG defenders of our 2nd Amendment rights. We call for Arizona licensed concealed carry permit holders to step up and defend themselves, their families, and others, when faced with an armed attacker prior to law enforcement arrival.”
During a recent press conference, Babeu explained that law enforcement agencies simply can’t be everywhere all the time.
“I wish we could have a cop in every corner, in every neighborhood, in every school … we just can’t,” the sheriff said.
Babeu told reporters that’s why his department wants citizens to “add to the equation.”
While Arizona is among the states that requires no permit for concealed carry, the sheriff did offer sound advice for anyone thinking about purchasing their first gun: Take a safety course to learn “weapon familiarization, weapon qualification, how to carry and education on the laws.”
Babeu’s dedication to encouraging Americans living in his jurisdiction to protect themselves is a refreshing departure from the attitude of another American sheriff we told you about this week.
Pinellas County, Florida, Sheriff Bob Gualtieri recently called legislation that would allow Floridians to open-carry fundamentally dangerous, suggesting that his officers would be more likely to shoot law-abiding citizens exercising the right.
“At a minimum, they’re going to be thrown down on the ground with a gun pointed at them — or worse,” the sheriff said of how he believes officers would react to open carriers when responding to a call.
Gualtieri also added that an armed citizen who attempts to stop a crime better hope that there are no officers nearby because “he’s going to take one in the chest because he’s a threat.”
Beyond the issue of firearm rights, it’s vital to understand the distinction between these two law enforcement officials as it pertains to respect for the Constitution.
The sheriff is the top law enforcement officer in his county. And his authority is actually more powerful than you may have realized.
As noted by the Constitutional Sheriff Project: “The sheriff’s position overrides any federal agents or even the arrogant FBI agents who attempt to assume jurisdiction in our cases.”
In 2012, that organization hosted its inaugural convention in Las Vegas, with about 120 sheriffs in attendance. The conference was organized by former Graham County, Arizona, Sheriff Richard Mack, a Tea Party advocate who, along with six other sheriffs, challenged the constitutionality of the gun control measure commonly known as the Brady Bill that was introduced by the Clinton administration in the 1990s. Mack’s challenge went all the way to the Supreme Court, where it was deemed that local law enforcement could not be compelled to carry out federally mandated background checks.
The point is that, if he is so inclined, your sheriff can serve as the last line of defense against federal abuses of your constitutional rights.
And fortunately for people living in areas with a sheriff like Gualtieri, most sheriffs throughout the United States are elected to the positions they hold on the county ballot.
Find out if your county’s top law enforcement official is a friend of the Constitution. If not, get busy now to change that in the next election.