The name of County Sheriff Mike Lewis may not have be a familiar name a week ago, but he hit national news on NBC recently for doing something different. This Wicomico County Sheriff in Maryland sees his job as a defender of the people and a defender of the Constitution and takes it seriously. Sheriff Lewis is standing up against the increasingly restrictive gun laws in Maryland. He said, ” State police and highway patrol get their orders from the governor; I get my orders from the citizens in this county.”
He is not alone in his actions. He joins a growing group of sheriffs across the country that have the courage to protect the citizens from unconstitutional laws. Close to 3,080 sheriffs nationwide are elected to the position of sheriff. This is in starch contrast to many state and city officials that are appointed to their positions.
According to Lewis and the people that elected him, this puts him in the best place to defend their rights protected by the second amendment. He was one of many sheriffs that testified at the the state’s Firearms Safety Act in 2013. It banned over 40 types of firearms and limited magazines to 10 rounds only. When Sheriff Lewis openly opposed the bill he was showered with letters, calls, and face to face visits by people thanking him for standing up for their rights.
“I knew this was a local issue, but I also knew it had serious ramifications on the U.S. Constitution, specifically for our Second Amendment right,” said Lewis, one of 24 sheriffs in the state. “It ignited fire among sheriffs throughout the state. Those in the rural areas all felt the way I did.”
This doesn’t stop with the state of Maryland. The sheriffs association of New York has openly objected the states SAFE ACT which restricted magazine sizes to 10. A few in the state have even said that they would not enforce the assault weapons bans. Sheriff Tony Desmond said the following:“If you have an (assault) weapon, which under the SAFE Act is considered illegal, I don’t look at it as being illegal just because someone said it was”.
Even Colorado made national news in 2013 when 55 sheriffs attempted to sign a lawsuit against the state with the ban on magazines of 15 or more in size. It was ruled by a federal judge that the sheriffs could not sue elected officials. Some in that group are preparing an appeal.
Sheriff Lewis in Maryland will be running for reelection this year said he will not stop pushing back on the federal governments continued attempts to violate citizens rights.
“I made a vow and a commitment that as long as I’m the sheriff of this county I will not allow the federal government to come in here and strip my law-abiding citizens of the right to bear arms,” he said. “If they attempt to do that it will be an all-out civil war. Because I will stand toe-to-toe with my people.”
The Sheriff does have stiff opposition. Maryland Senator Brain Frosh who sponsored the Firearms Safety Act told the news that the sheriffs understanding of sheriff’s duties is flawed.
“If you are a sheriff in Maryland you must take an oath to uphold the law and the Constitution,” said Frosh, now the Democratic nominee for Maryland attorney general. “… It’s not up to a sheriff to decide what’s constitutional and what isn’t. That’s what our courts are for.”
We stand with the Sheriff in Maryland and all of them throughout the country who stand for the people’s rights.
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