During the last few weeks, we have seen a very troublesome uptick of what we would call abuses of power. We are not in any way discounting the seriousness of the Coronavirus Pandemic, but we are also not so blind as to not see some very troubling things.
In The News
We have seen more than one instance of people who were following the “Social Distancing” policies being subjected to fines and arrests. Whether it was a father being arrested for teaching his daughter to play T-Ball in the empty park in front of their house, to the churchgoers ticketed for sitting in their parked cars with the windows up listening to the Sunday sermon. We’ve seen a paddle-boarder being arrested at a California beach…his crime…being some 2,000 feet into the surf, far, far away from anyone and everyone.
Today in Raleigh North Carolina, a group of individuals protesting the National Shut Down were arrested for violating the policies enacted by “executive decision” of the governor. In each of the aforementioned cases, one might argue that each of these practices are Constitutionally Protected Acts, and that they would constitute an excessive overreach by the authorities.
In the case of the churchgoers, the local mayor rescinded the fines. In the case of the father and daughter, the arrest was nullified. We are still waiting for a resolution of the case in Raleigh. However, there is a very ominous cloud on the horizon, a cloud which we have been pointing at for quite some time…The Red Flag Laws.
In each of the cases wherein people have been being charged, fined, or cited, the authorities have deemed that the actions of the suspect were not only non-essential, but that they posed a threat to the “common good”. If we go and look at the dozens of Red Flag laws that have been enacted from coast to coast, one of the common threaded is that someone can be forced to surrender their firearms if the person at the heart of the matter can be considered a “threat” not only to themselves, but to their community.
This is one of those very flexibly terms that we have been arguing against since the inception of the Extreme Protective Orders, a.k.a. Red Flag Laws.
There is going to be a time in the not very distant future wherein the citizens are going to grow weary, and unable to just remain in “Shut Down” mode. People are going to go out, they are going to protest, and they are going to question just how many liberties can be taken away from them. When that day comes, and it is coming nearer by the minute, there will be little that government agencies can do to stop them without the threat of force, and that first step will be arrest, immediately followed by some judge signing off on the idea that the protester is far too dangerous of an individual to retain their right to their firearms. Peaceable people will find themselves receiving a desk appearance ticket, going home only to find even more authorities waiting at their door, coming to collect their firearms, and with them, the remainder of their civil liberties.
As of writing this article, we have not seen or heard any instances where a Red Flag Law was used against a protester, but you can be certain that one or more authoritarians have considered the idea. Not only will this be used to harass the individual, it will be used to send a message to anyone else that refuses to toe the line. This is exactly why these laws were written, and why they were forced through so quickly, and why you or I were never afforded any input, or why our opposition was never considered. This is NOT what our Founding Fathers intended.
I sincerely hope that I am wrong, but when governors are shutting down gun stores, and people cannot even buy seeds to grow their own vegetables, I find it very hard to dismiss anything that would be used to chill speech, limit movement and curtail freedom. This is a very Dangerous Time….Mind Your Rights.
To better understand Red Flag Laws and crisis situations, read this article by Michael Vasquez.