Pro-gun resolution fails in Tennessee's Montgomery County

AP Photo/Charles Krupa, File

Some communities tend to land on the pro-gun side and some on the anti-gun side. This is true in every state in the nation. No matter how anti-gun the state, there are pro-gun enclaves and vice versa.


As a result, you will have counties that will offer up resolutions on either side of the gun debate. It’s inevitable.

While these resolutions usually don’t mean much from a legal standpoint, they do tend to signal where folks in that county stand.

In Montgomery County, Tennessee, a pro-gun resolution was offered up as the state gears up for a special session of the state legislature intended to address gun control.

Bad news, though.

On Monday, Aug. 14, the Montgomery County Commission turned down a resolution to request the Tennessee General Assembly preserve the fundamental right of Tennesseans to keep and bear arms.

The proposed resolution encouraged Gov. Bill Lee, the Montgomery County Legislative Delegation, The Tennessee General Assembly and the Tennessee Attorney General take all steps possible to oppose, protest and challenge any such legislation that restricts or, “infringes upon this Constitutional Right.”

The resolution was sponsored by Montgomery County Commissioner Nathan Burkholder, who said in the Aug. 7 informal meeting the purpose of the resolution was to reassert the fact that the county values Second Amendment rights.

“We are wanting to make sure the Governor and our State Delegation understands our opinion on this,” Burkholder said.

Commissioner Rashidah Leveritt reminded the Commission that in March [2020], the body approved a resolution designating the county a Second Amendment Sanctuary.


The vote came down nine to nine, with Leveritt joining those who opposed the resolution.

This is troubling, in part because Montgomery County did become a Second Amendment sanctuary. Did something change?

Three members of the commission were absent, which might have made the difference. Or, it may have not made any difference at all.

However, being a sanctuary, while laudable, is also irrelevant when you’re asking lawmakers to oppose infringements in the first place. That sanctuary status shouldn’t be a shield from trying to stand for the rights of people in general.

Especially since we’re not entirely sure how the Second Amendment sanctuary thing will play out in the courts over the long haul.

That said, the county of over 220,000 people has the right to pass whatever resolutions they want or, conversely, to not pass them. That’s the way the system works and we can’t change that, nor would I really want to simply because I disagree with the outcome.

But if the people of Montgomery County support the Second Amendment and want to see that resolution pass, they might need to start making some phone calls to their commissioners and let them know how they feel.


I’m quite sure that with enough public backlash, those nine naysayers will be happy to revisit their position on this resolution. After all, their jobs might well depend on that come the next election and politicians at all levels have a tendency to prefer to keep their jobs.

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