Virginians Push Back on Gov. Northam’s Calls for Increased Gun Control

Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam is hoping a special legislative session to address “gun violence” will be the political boost he needs. (Photo: Facebook)

Virginians aren’t giving up their Second Amendment rights without a fight. Local media coverage of six roundtable discussions hosted by Democratic Gov. Ralph Northam’s deputies indicates that the governor’s anti-gun policies aren’t sitting as well with his constituents as he no doubt hoped.

The governor, most famous recently for appearing in a yearbook photo wearing blackface, called for the roundtable discussions leading up to a special legislative session to address “gun violence” in the wake of a Virginia Beach massacre that left 12 people dead.

The roundtables were held across the state and were led by Secretary of Public Safety and Homeland Security Brian Moran, Secretary of Health and Human Resources Daniel Carey, and Democratic U.S. Sen. Tim Kaine.

The overall tenor of the discussions is difficult to parse via local coverage, but nearly every article mentions gun rights activists showing up and speaking out. The attendees at the roundtable in Abingdon, Va., were especially upset at the gun control proposals to be considered during the special session.  

SEE ALSO: Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam Calls for Special Session to Ban Suppressors, Assault Weapons and More

The roundtable began with the recital of the Second Amendment and, apparently, got better from there.

“You are chipping away at people’s gun rights,” a woman told Moran, according to the Roanoke Times.

“This is confiscation without representation,” another man said about extreme risk protection orders, one of Northam’s proposals. “What you’re proposing is not about guns, it’s about control.”

The Times reports that the crowd rebuked Northam for being a “liberal” and for exploiting tragedy for political gain.

“Out in this part of Virginia, we’re not going to stand for it,” one man told Moran.

Republican State Sen. Ben Chafin was also in attendance, and he characterized Northam’s special session as a “political stunt” and vowed to “oppose every single thing you got.”

The crowd in Abingdon was reacting to a slate of gun control proposals Northam asked the legislature to consider, including universal background checks; a ban on “assault weapons,” to include suppressors and bump stocks; an extreme risk protective order; and reinstating the one-gun-a-month law, among others.

Moran felt the room’s hostility but maintained his claim that none of Northam’s anti-gun proposals would hamper Second Amendment rights.

“Clearly the majority of this room felt that we were trying to take their right to defend and their Second Amendment rights away,” said Moran, according to WJHL. “None of these pieces of legislation takes their right to defend themselves away.”

The Republicans control both chambers by narrow margins, so the success of Northam’s strategy is anything but certain. It’s also true, as Second Amendment Foundation Founder Alan Gottlieb noted in USA Today, that not one of the governor’s proposals would have prevented the massacre in Virginia Beach.

SEE ALSO: ‘Gun-Free’ Policy Disarmed Virginia Beach Victim, Family Calls for Investigation

What’s more, the folks in Abingdon aren’t alone in their opposition. Gun rights supporters also showed up to the other roundtable discussions.

Sheila Furey, a psychiatrist, argued at a discussion in Richmond that firearms training for women could help them defend against domestic violence, according to the Richmond-Times Dispatch. She also doesn’t believe police can be trusted to stop mass shootings in schools.

“We should train everyone in our schools to use a gun … and be competent with a gun,” she said, “because this is how we save our children.”

At another roundtable in Fredericksburg, long-time gun owner Jim Price told Fredericksburg.com that he doesn’t believe Gov. Northam is acting in good faith.

“I want to see those freedoms preserved that our Virginia forefathers sacrificed their lives, their fortunes and their sacred honors for,” said Price. “I assume with Gov. Northam calling a special session on July 9, that there must be some leanings, or some backdoor deals that have already been made.”

Perhaps the most incisive comment came from Bobby Howard at the Abingdon roundtable, who worried that the government will “chip away” at gun rights “one right at a time, until they actually really get somebody hurt because they can’t protect themselves.”

Since the Virginia Beach massacre, officials have learned that one of the victims, Kate Nixon, wanted to bring her handgun to work because of her concern that one of her coworkers might be dangerous. She decided against it due to the city’s gun-free zone policy. The next day, that coworker killed her along with 11 other people.

Nixon’s family is calling for a full investigation.

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About the author: Jordan Michaels has been reviewing firearm-related products for over four years and enjoying them for much longer. With family in Canada, he’s seen first hand how quickly the right to self-defense can be stripped from law-abiding citizens. He escaped that statist paradise at a young age, married a sixth-generation Texan, and currently lives in Waco. Follow him on Instagram @bornforgoodluck and email him at jordan@gunsamerica.com.

{ 14 comments… add one }
  • cjh May 31, 2021, 1:19 am

    Their ideological and spiritual messiah Mao ZeDUNG knew that real political power comes from the barrel of a gun and was responsible for ‘only’ 65 million killed, how many of us must perish in their quest for “real power”? The 2nd Amendment is no joke to we the American people of Va. and infringing on our right to keep and bear arms was the spark that ignited our epic struggle to resist the oppression of tyrants to live FREE OR DIE. We must honor that commitment and with the help of God we’ll prevail against the forces of darkness, of those tyrants who murder the most innocent of us all, the unborn. Just how bad would life be in their “Utopian” dystopian world where they have a monopoly of force? Killing babies after they’re born? Really that is the definition of EVIL governor douche nozzle. So go back to Hell where you belong! you’re not turning this state or this nation into a Hellhole it ain’t happening, audit this guy’s votes I’d like to see how many votes you really got, ones that actually were legal and legitimate, and not by fraudulent Dominion voting machinery.

  • krinkov545 June 22, 2019, 9:37 am

    BUMPSTOCK BAN!!! BUMPSTOCK BAN!!! BUMPSTOCK BAN!!! Do I need to present any more evidence to prove antigunners are whacked out of their tiny narrow minds and are mentally ill and insane?

    • Jim June 25, 2019, 1:24 pm

      The bumpstock ban was implemented (with no prompting I might add) by Trump. By executive order. It’s amazing how his supporters were completely silent over this. You could hear crickets on my state gun forum concerning the ban. I understand how facts have become “whatever supports my position, regardless of accuracy and truthfulness” lately. But seriously….you’re actually trying to blame that on the Dems???

  • OldOutdoorsGuy June 21, 2019, 9:29 am

    @ Sepp W – “These are all schemes that eventually lead to confiscation and make it so onerous for a law-abiding citizen to purchase and use a firearm it is no longer worth it.”

    So, you had my agreement on your statements up to this sentence, ….. are you telling me that there is a limit to how far you will go to preserve your 2nd Amendment Rights to own and defend your personal property and use it to defend your personal safety and welfare?? That is what I am “hearing” in your sentence above.

    [In all fairness, for the lack of a comma or a descriptive word, that same sentence could have a totally different meaning]

    As long as they use upfront tactics and are so transparent about their actions and their goals, you are willing to fight for your Constitutional Rights to defend yourself against any and all threats to that personal safety. But, if they choose to “chip away at your/our rights” one bit at a time, you don’t have the time to spend on constantly going back up against their threats and attempts to “chip away”?? If so, Sir, then you are a part of the REASON why we are in this situation today, in my opinion!

    If our forefathers took such an attitude and went forward to “defend their rights to self defense and the possession of arms to do so” whenever it fit into their SPARE TIME and INCLINATION, we would NOT be in this discussion today! All of our Constitutional Rights would ALREADY BE GONE!! Freedom doesn’t come easy for anyone! If you truly enjoy the freedoms and the personal rights to those freedoms which we enjoy in this great country we call our “United States of America”, then you MUST be willing to stop and take time to do what has to be done to PROTECT and DEFEND those rights WHENEVER and WHEREVER they face being removed from our bank of freedoms which our forefathers fought and died to defend!!

    What part of that simple plan do you NOT understand?? It isn’t a Saturday afternoon activity that you participate in like watching your kid play Little League baseball, it is ongoing, it is a call to respond to EVERY THREAT thrown in the direction of those rights! It is the commitment to do whatever needs to be done, no matter when or for how long those threats remain a threat to our freedom. THAT is what FREEDOM is about.

    And the steps to keeping our freedoms strong are so easy, like notifying your legislators of your feelings on upcoming bills and issues concerning you in changing these rights or modifying them in the guise of “making them better” or “adding to them”. Most of this type of “fighting back” is already done for you by the NRA and the GOA, and Guns America by having all of the contact information already at your disposal, and writing the boilerplate language for you if you don’t “have the time” to do it yourself. It is a matter of a few clicks to get your voice heard where it will make a difference in the outcome!! But it takes 2 HANDS to make this happen, so you need to set down the can of cold beer or the bowl of chips ‘n dip and actually click your mouse button a couple of times to get ‘er done, along with typing in some information on yourself so those in command will know that this is a VOTER sending this reply to THEM …….

    I pray that you and those like you in similar negative attitudes, will take a more serious look at what you have now and what you may have a few years from now, IF you do NOT take this liberal attitude seriously in our Federal governing bodies in Washington, D.C and do SOMETHING POSITIVE to make your feelings known to those for whom you have placed your trust in how to represent your feelings, then there is little that can be done, in your “spare time”, to do what is right for this nation.

    YOU CANNOT EXTINGUISH THE EMBERS of LIBERALISM and SOCIALISM by occasionally BLOWING ON THEM whenever it suits your needs and your spare time!!! That takes dedication to reach the goal of putting them out and preserving the entire forest we call our “Democratic Freedoms” for the future. You are surely fanning them into a FULL SCALE CONFLAGRATION if you choose to fight liberalism/socialism, whenever it is “convenient”, to keep our Democracy STRONG and ALIVE!!

    • Dan 71 June 22, 2019, 5:55 am

      No where in the constitution is our system of government referred to as a “democracy”. It is a republic.

      • Sartech June 23, 2019, 11:30 am

        Bingo. Words do matter. This “experiment in government” so many call a democracy is distinctly NOT a democracy. Rather, those debates that resulted in our Constitution illustrated the extended efforts to form a government that would eliminate the many and terrible pitfalls of democracies. The result was a constitutional representative Republic. We err when we allow ourselves to be forced to use their terminology and don’t take umbrage with it. Alas, as this writer has shown us, we seem to have lost the battle already. Very prominent 2A supporters are just as guilty as he is of allowing the opposition to frame the discussion. Shame on us all!

  • Andrew Ling June 21, 2019, 7:41 am

    Too many libtarded people in our beloved VA state. All politicians know this and they have to sell their souls to these libtards to earn their coveted seats in our governments. Northam is no exception. Wexton is no exception. I just can’t imagine where we may end up if us pro 2A people don’t speak up. I propose that VA institute electoral vote system to elect our next governor, that way all those non patriotic libtarded majority will be kept in check. We might have a fighting chance in keeping our 2A alive in VA for our posterity this way.

  • James Sutton June 20, 2019, 6:00 pm

    Northam is an absolute wimp and a weather vane when it comes to the prevailing political winds. He believes that unrestricted abortion and total gun control are the way the wind is blowing in Virginia and the rest of the nation. It’s what his out-of-touch pals in Richmond and around the Capitol Beltway are whispering in his ear and he is hoping to use those positions as a springboard to higher office. The voters of Virginia should make clear that they do not support the killing of babies, the confiscation of their firearms and most assuredly they do not support Ralph Northam.

  • bob onit June 20, 2019, 3:24 pm

    the guy is plain and simple scum ,murdering babies ,and trying to remove constitutional rights

  • JonsOn June 20, 2019, 10:10 am

    Never let a crisis got to waste. It’s the same after every shooting. I hope that this douche bag governor doesn’t turn Virginia into California. Northam probably knows this but he is why we have the 2nd amendment.

  • Steve June 20, 2019, 9:06 am

    These liberals that want to take away our rights as honest citizens with no criminal records MUST BE STOPPED! I live in WA. State and here the laws have changed where ANY semi auto rifle regardless of caliber is considered an ASSAULT weapon and liberals are chipping away at our rights at this time, at warp speed. Disappointed that NRA did not fight Bill 1639 that stands now. Soon the next step will be to confiscate semi auto rifles OR make us pay an annual fee to own one. Yes, they can access records when we’ve bought them legally through BATF records. Bunch of no good bastards now running things and need to be voted out of office with these liberal agendas.

  • Dr Motown June 20, 2019, 8:39 am

    \”None of these pieces of legislation takes their rights to defend themselves away.\” Really? When you dictate what I can and cannot use to defend myself, you ARE taking my rights away

  • James Sampson June 19, 2019, 9:34 pm

    Leave our guns alone do your damn jobs and go after the criminal.

  • Sepp W June 19, 2019, 5:27 pm

    Guns are not inherently violent, but can be used to commit a violent crime. Doesn’t make any sense to a liberal because in liberal ideology the only way to gain and consolidate power and control the masses is to disarm arm them. Not made up, but plenty of examples throughout history and today where citizens were disarmed by the dominate political force.

    These are all schemes that eventually lead to confiscation and make it so onerous for a law-abiding citizen to purchase and use a firearm it is no longer worth it. In the mean time the criminal element goes on about their business. The top 3 executives in VA government are liars, can’t be trusted, radicalized liberals, and strongly anti-gun.

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