Are you tired of wearing masks? How about social distancing? Has your business been shut down, or extremely harmed due to capacity restrictions? Has your child’s school been shut down, forcing you to take time off of work to help your kids attend online classes? Have you been otherwise negatively impacted by the health mandates sent down from your state-level elected leadership? Then why don’t you do something about it?
Imagine what the four men on Mount Rushmore would think if they saw the citizens of the great nation they left for us, cowering in fear behind masks that don’t work. Imagine what they would make of the notion that a state governor had the power to tell you what to wear, where you can go, whether or not you were allowed to work, whether or not you could go to church, or any of the other blatant power-grabbing efforts they have taken in response to this virus. They would probably ask us why we put up with it… We don’t have to.
The Second Amendment Sanctuary Counties Movement represented an awakening of many American citizens to the fact that our elected leaders have been taking upon themselves powers that they were not granted, specifically as that applies to our right to keep and bear arms. It is a successful movement that has thus far spread across one-third of our nation’s counties. However, the focus of the 2A Sanctuary movement is not broad enough to cover this particular crisis of government overreach. It needed some modification, which is exactly what Morrill County, Nebraska did back on August 13, 2020, when they passed a resolution that we have named the “Health Mandate Sanctuary Resolution.”
The premise of this resolution is simple: government officials at various levels have responded to the virus in ways that have had severely negative impacts on American citizens while also infringing upon our rights and failing to stop the spread. The “cure” they are peddling has proven to be worse than the illness itself. So the county leadership in Morrill County resolved to refrain from any county-level virus-related mandates that might infringe upon the rights of their citizens. They decided instead to trust their citizens to make safe and responsible decisions for themselves.
If there were one area where I would nitpick this particular resolution, it would be in the fact that they focus on county-level mandates. I would prefer that they also point out that they would not use any county personnel or finances to enforce state-level health mandates as well. If any of you wish to create a Health Mandate Sanctuary Resolution of your own, I would encourage you to add such a clause.
In many instances, the state-level clause actually may not be necessary. This is because the governors that are making these mandates have in a number of cases left the actual enforcement of the mandates to local governments at the county and city-level. For instance, in Virginia, Governor Northam left decisions about when it was safe to open up schools to the counties. This seems to be a way to create restrictions while ensuring that he will not be blamed for their consequences; after all, all he did was create some guidelines. The counties made the final call. Very convenient for him. I don’t know if this is the case in Nebraska, but it’s something worth taking into consideration.
If you live in a county that has passed a Second Amendment Sanctuary Resolution, then you may already be familiar with the process of getting one of these resolutions passed. If you do not, then here are some basic steps: you’ll want to edit the text of this resolution so that it applies to your county and state. Then submit it to your representative on the Board of Supervisors (sometimes called “County Commission” or another name). You may need to get a petition signed by a particular number of citizens in your county. If so, you’ll want to work on that as well. The end goal, however, is for you to get this resolution to a public hearing at your Board of Supervisors and have them vote on it. My article, “How to become a Sanctuary County,” might give you some more ideas as well.
Below is a copy of the Morrill County, Nebraska resolution. I will also include a link to download an editable copy in Microsoft Word format from my Google Drive folder. LINK TO EDITABLE RESOLUTION TEMPLATE
RESOLUTION NO. 2020-26
BE IT RESOLVED BY THE CHAIRPERSON AND COUNTY BOARD OF COMMISSIONERS OF THE COUNTY OF MORRILL, NEBRASKA, as follows:
WHEREAS, After considering at the County level, the effects of government policies across the nation concerning the SARS-Cov-2 virus pandemic (virus) and the various policies regarding the virus that have arguably resulted in social ills including: increased unemployment, business closures, suicides, poverty, domestic abuse, homelessness, and alcohol and drug abuse;
WHEREAS, the Constitution of the State of Nebraska sets forth the following provisions applicable to all Nebraskans (emphasis added):
Article I. § 1
All persons are by nature free and independent, and have certain inherent and inalienable rights; among these are life, liberty, the pursuit of happiness.
Article I. § 3
No person shall be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law, nor be denied equal protection of the laws.
Article I. § 4
All persons have a natural and indefeasible right to worship Almighty God according to the dictates of their own consciences…nor shall any interference with the rights of conscience be permitted.
Article I. § 19
The right of the people peacably to assemble to consult for the common good, and to petition the government, or any department thereof, shall never be abridged.
Article I. § 21
The property of no person shall be taken or damaged for public use without just compensation therefor.
Article I. § 25
There shall be no discrimination between citizens of the United States in respect to the acquisition, ownership, possession, enjoyment or descent of property.
Article I. § 26
This enumeration of rights shall not be construed to impair or deny others, retained by the people, and all powers not herin delegated, remain with the people.
WHEREAS, the County Commissioners in and for Morrill County, Nebraska, upon their election to office, having sworn allegiance to the Constitutions of the United States of America and the State of Nebraska;
WHEREAS, the Morrill County Board of Commissioners agrees that the rights bestowed upon Nebraskans by the Constitutions of this State and the United States, are inalienable and cannot be infringed upon by any Local, State, or Federal Authority;
NOW THEREFORE, having duly met at a regular meeting and considered the matter, for the aforesaid reasons, and in order to notify the public of its intent to refrain from any county-level virus-related mandate(s) that might infringe upon the rights enumerated to the citizens of Morrill County by the constitutions of this State and the United States, including, but not limited to, mandatory mask requirements, mandatory contact tracing, mandatory social distancing, mandatory business closure/curtailment, restrictions on peacable assembly, and/or any other matters that may directly or indirectly infringe upon the said rights;
BE IT RESOLVED THAT the Morrill County Board of Commissioners hereby expresses the intent of this Board to encourage the public to make appropriate virus-related healthcare decisions for themselves and their families;
BE IT RESOLVED THAT the Morrill County Board of Commissioners hereby expresses the intent of this Board to refrain from enacting and/or supporting any county-level virus-related mandates that might infringe upon the rights of the citizens of Morrill County bestowed upon them by the Constitution of this State and the United States.
DATED THIS 13th DAY OF August, 2020.
COUNTY OF MORRILL, NEBRASKA