INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) - Gun rights advocates launched a grassroots movement on courthouse squares across Indiana this week asking people to sign a petition supporting the second amendment right to bear arms.
"Statistics show that gun control does not work," said Robert Wogerman as he held a petition in downtown Peru. "Gun control laws are for law-abiding citizens. They're not for the criminals. The criminals don't obey the law."
In Johnson County, even the county commissioners are taking a stand. This week, they put it in writing.
"More laws governing our personal freedoms is not going to help," said Commissioner Ron West. "At some point, we've got to stand up and say we're just not going to bend. We're not going to relinquish these certain constitutional rights we have."
Commissioners voted unanimously for a "second amendment preservation ordinance" telling the sheriff to take all measures necessary to prevent the enforcement of any federal acts, laws, orders, rules, or regulations in violation of the second amendment to the constitution.
West said he's concerned the government will keep chipping away at gun rights, until there's nothing left.
"If they get a little here, then what's the next one? They just keep plucking away plucking way," he said.
Last month, commissioners in Franklin County approved an ordinance exempting their county from federal gun control laws.
Daniel Conkle, professor of law at the IU Maurer School of Law, said from a legal perspective, the ordinance would be more symbolic than anything else.
"If Congress does pass a federal regulation, that regulation will be enforced by federal agencies, not by the Sheriff," Conkle said. "The county cannot prevent the feds from enforcing it, (but) the feds cannot force the sheriff to enforce the federal statute either."
"With all the discussion coming from many sides of this in all areas of our nation, I felt it was necessary to establish my stand on these issues," said Commissioner Brian Baird, the proposal's author. "I think a few people are getting overly excited about it and the content of the proposed Ordinance."
Baird said the ordinance simply reaffirms citizens' rights.
"I am hopeful that common sense and reasoning will apply with our leaders and this discussion of trying to impede the rights and freedoms of the people of this great nation will not be pushed too far."
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