During his Friday press briefing, President Donald Trump went after Virginia Governor Ralph Northam (D) for signing several gun control measures in the middle of coronavirus-related government shutdowns, Breitbart reported.
Trump accused Northam of “using” the current crisis to attack the Second Amendment. “They are trying to take your guns away in Virginia, and if people in Virginia aren’t careful, that’s what’s going to happen to them,” Trump said, according to RealClearPolitics.
Trump also tweeted that Virginians should “liberate” themselves from their power-grabbing governors.
LIBERATE VIRGINIA, and save your great 2nd Amendment. It is under siege!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) April 17, 2020
Guns and freedoms
Northam signed several gun-related bills on April 10, including limiting handgun purchases to one per month, requiring gun owners to report theft of a firearm within 48 hours, and effectively outlawing private gun sales by requiring universal background checks, Breitbart reported.
While Northam had promoted these measures as “common sense” and a way to prevent mass shootings like one that occurred May 31, 2019 at Virginia Beach, the measures he has now enacted would not have prevented that shooting, according to Breitbart.
As Trump alluded, Americans are understandably concerned that politicians will use the coronavirus outbreak to restrict or take away their freedoms, and gun rights are some of the most fundamental in the Constitution. Without the right to bear arms given to Americans in the Second Amendment, it is impossible in a practical sense to hold onto any other freedoms — there is no way to stop authorities from actively trying to take them away.
This is why at least 100 Virginia localities have declared themselves sanctuaries from the governor and legislature’s attempt to impose radical new restrictions on those Second Amendment rights, as Breitbart notes.
Power grabs in blue states
Besides all that, Northam has decided that business shutdowns in the Old Dominion State amid the COVID-19 pandemic will last until at least May 8, according to The Washington Post, and a stay-at-home order for residents will not end until at least June 10.
Indeed, Trump’s comments were directed at Virginia because it is one of the most restricted in the country right now, both in terms of gun control laws and coronavirus-related restrictions.
It’s interesting that all of the most restricted states have Democrat governors. But while politicians in the U.S. may or may not have the constitutional power to tell people they have to shut down businesses, stay at home, social distance, and wear masks, they have no choice but to realize that they serve at the pleasure of the people.
There is a lot Americans can do to get out from under the thumb of oppressive leaders. Trump knows this, and Democrat governors would do well to realize it, too.