n 2019, Virginia's General Assembly vote gave the majority to the Democratic Party, allowing Gov. Ralph Northam and the members of the General Assembly to begin constructing a comprehensive plan to reduce gun violence by providing a set of legislation that, among other things, required universal background checks, limited the frequency of gun purchases and banned certain firearms deemed "assault firearms". The state-wide response to these pre-filed bills was swift and explosive, with the majority of Virginia's counties passing Second Amendment Sanctuary resolutions. The bills will go before the General Assembly during their first 2020 assembly meeting.
The Frederick County Board of Supervisors unanimously passed a resolution tonight opposing any laws that would infringe on Second Amendment rights to keep and bear arms.
About a thousand people attended the meeting at the County Administration Building at 107 N. Kent St. The crowd exceeded the 265-person capacity of the supervisors' meeting room, resulting in some people being moved to other rooms or waiting outside. Public Information Officer Karen Vacchio estimated that 700 people were inside the building, while several hundred were outside.
The resolution was passed in response to Democratic Gov. Ralph Northam's desire to push for gun control measures when the General Assembly convenes in January. Democrats gained control of the state legislature in the Nov. 5 election. Dozens of localities across Virginia have adopted resolutions in recent weeks declaring themselves "Second Amendment sanctuaries."
A Change.Org petition to make Frederick County a Second Amendment sanctuary collected more than 6,300 signatures, in addition to hundreds of other signatures gathered at businesses around the county.
About 50 people spoke at the meeting, the majority of whom favored adopting the resolution. Many accused Northam of trying to strip away their constitutionally protected rights. Many said the weapons they own would make them felons if assault weapons are banned. One couple said the governor's efforts could start a civil war. Others said stricter gun laws would only leave law-abiding citizens defenseless against a shooter.
A handful of people said the resolution isn't necessary and accused the supervisors of pandering to fear, eliciting boos from the crowd.
Gainesboro Districtd Supervisor J. Douglass McCarthy said he was pleased to see so many of his constituents show up.
"There is nothing illegal or improper in saying we support the constitution and our constitutionally protected rights," McCarthy said.
The resolution can be accessed at: legistarweb-production.s3.amazonaws.com/uploads/attachment/pdf/486870/ResolutionAddressingSecondAmendment2019.pdf
See Friday's edition of The Winchester Star for more details.