An oath is a solemn calling upon God to witness that one sincerely intends to do what one says. An oath is something that I have taken but a few times in my adult life. I took an oath when I was sworn in as a deputy in 1993. I swore to uphold laws set forth by the Constitution of the United States and the state of North Carolina. In addition to taking my oath as a deputy, I was blessed to take the oath as your sheriff in this great county we call home. It is something that I did not take lightly. It is in all sincerity, a promise that I not only made to you, but one I made before God.
Most of us have watched with great foreboding as the Second Amendment rights of our neighbors in Virginia have come under attack. Attempts have been made to enact laws that will take the most basic of rights, the right to bear arms, from the hands of law-abiding citizens who live in that state. Make no mistake: Laws and regulations that take guns away from law-abiding citizens are detrimental to our society, because criminals will always find a way to possess a gun, therefore leaving citizens empty-handed, so to speak.
I have always made my stance known that the importance of being proactive, not only in law enforcement but life in general, reduces the amount of reactive response needed to resolve an issue. Where I can address or approach a potential issue before it becomes an issue, I have a better chance of achieving the desired end result.
For this exact reason, my office and I took a proactive approach to research, draft and refine a resolution to declare Iredell County a Second Amendment sanctuary. Quite simply meaning, your Second Amendment rights will not be infringed upon, nor will actions be taken to erode the intent of the Second Amendment.
This resolution was submitted to the Iredell County Board of Commissioners last week, with the desire to reiterate, and publicly state the obvious: Iredell County will stand by and support the rights set forth in the Second Amendment of the Constitution, the rights of the people to keep and bear arms.
Several years ago, I was fortunate to visit Washington, D.C., and the National Archives, where the documents that our country was founded upon are stored and displayed. This area is heavily guarded, which is indicative of the importance of what the Constitution means to the country and every citizen. While drafting this resolution over the past few weeks, I thought about the irony that the pieces of paper that bear the signatures of our Founding Fathers are protected by men and women, all bearing arms, and how the ideals and rights on those precious documents are under attack, and at risk of decimation. It is up to each of us to protect the ideals that we all hold dear, and to hold to the truth that once a right is taken away, it is nearly impossible to have those rights restored.
The proclamation sent to the Iredell County Board of Commissioners only requires approval, a simple vote of “yes.” It does not require policy changes, it will not place new laws into effect, it will not cost taxpayers money, nor will it jeopardize any federal or state funding the county receives. It is simply a promise between a local government, a sheriff and the people of this county that we will support, protect and defend the Constitution.
As always, I can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or 704-878-3180.