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Sheriff Supports Citizen Gun Rights

Gwinnett County Sheriff Butch Conway posts statement encouraging law abiding citizens to acquire firearms to protect themselves.

Adding to the local and national discussion on guns, Gwinnett Sheriff Butch Conway has released a statement in support of citizens' right to legally use firearms.

"I encourage all law abiding citizens to acquire and maintain the skills to safely carry a firearm in order to protect themselves and others," the statement reads.

Conway issued the statement under the heading 'The 2nd Amendment." The U.S Constitution's Second Amendment says: "A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed."

Also, it was in response to "the many emails received," the website says. The statement comes just over a month after the Dec. 14, 2012, shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary in Newtown, Conn., that killed 20 students and six adults.

How do you feel about Sheriff Conway's statement? How do you feel about President Obama's stance on gun control? Share your opinions in the comments below.

"Sadly, our society contains those that will harm others when given the opportunity. An armed citizen certainly presents much less opportunity to those that would do them harm," Conway's statement concluded.

Earlier this month, President Obama proposed a series of gun-control actions in response to the Connecticut school shootings.

Also, in his inaugural address this week, Obama made a statement that some people interpret as being soft on the Second Amendment. The president said:

Being true to our founding documents does not require us to agree on every contour of life; it does not mean we will all define liberty in exactly the same way, or follow the same precise path to happiness.  Progress does not compel us to settle centuries-long debates about the role of government for all time – but it does require us to act in our time. For now decisions are upon us, and we cannot afford delay.  We cannot mistake absolutism for principle, or substitute spectacle for politics, or treat name-calling as reasoned debate.

Also, the Gwinnett Daily Post has reported that Gwinnett's probate court received 8,610 applications in 2012 for firearms permits, up from 4,700 in 2011.

~ Suwanee Patch

James Dunham January 27, 2013 at 02:12 PM
The sheriff doesn't impress me. Who are they being protected from. I don't trust anyone whose gun caliber is higher than their IQ.
Cowboy January 27, 2013 at 02:47 PM
James, The Sheriff impresses all the ones that have known him and voted for him this many years... I guess thats why he wins hands down in so many elections. He has gotten where he is in this county by being honest, productive, and trustworthy. I'm just glad we don't live in Fulton county.. Look at that mess... and the crazy thing is, people are stupid enough to vote back in a Sheriff that is under indictment.. YES.. I'm glad we have Conway for Sheriff... No criminal record there....
Stan January 27, 2013 at 05:47 PM
Well at least he's not saying he won't enforce laws he feels are unconstitutional like some sheriffs here have said. It's not the sheriff's job to decide what's constitutional. When people start making statements about which laws they'll enforce or obey what they are really supporting is anarchy. It's the courts in this country that determine the constitutionally of laws. If elected officials don't feel obliged to follow are system they should be removed from office.
Billy Wise January 27, 2013 at 09:32 PM
Amendment II to our Constitution states that "the right of the people to keep and bear arms, shall not be infringed." That is a very clear and unambiguous statement of a right. The laws that are being proposed by Gun Control supporters do in fact constitute infringement under Amendment II, thus rendering them unconstitutional, although it may require a judicial review to affirm the obvious. If Gun Control supporters do not like the right expressed in Amendment II, then they need to propose an amendment to the Constitution changing Amendment II and let the State's vote on that new gun rights amendment. Attempting to pass laws that clearly violate the no-infringement principle of Amendment II is not an appropriate approach. Furthermore, Executive Orders by the President do not establish law. Laws are established only by action of the Congress. The many Sheriffs in this country, including Sheriff Conway, are elected by the voters and take an oath to protect and defend the Constitution. What these Sheriffs are saying is that they will not enforce unconstitutional restrictions on gun ownership, as guaranteed by Amendment II to the Constitution, regardless of whether the restrictions arise from an inappropriate attempt to amend the Constitution (Amendment II) by passing unconstitutional laws, or from Executive Orders from the President. The Constitution rules!
James Dunham January 27, 2013 at 09:52 PM
I don't believe that having more guns will make us safer. I know a lot of nut cases who own guns, and they certainly don't make me feel secure. Just because someone is re-elected doesn't mean they are honest and hard working. I was in Walmart recently and a man had a gun, it didn't make me feel safe, I got away from him as soon as I could. There are too many guns and too many unstable people with them.
Tom Wood January 27, 2013 at 11:57 PM
James, I see a lot of things in Walmart that don't make me "feel safe", but we won't go there. So, perhaps you should just stay home and hide under your bed, where you"feel safe and secure". Hopefully the government will come to your rescue. There are a lot of "nut cases" in almost every aspect of our lives, on the streets, the highways, the shopping malls, in our neighborhoods, and that fact does not make me feel 'safe and secure' either, but I will shoulder the responsibility for my own security. DO NOT try to take away my right to do this.
James Dunham January 28, 2013 at 01:03 AM
No one is trying to take away your rights. I don't need your sarcasm. I'm not running around scared to death. I don't need a gun to prove my manhood or to make me feel safe. I don't need to be rescued from anything, I don't believe I said I was afraid.
Jeff Haas January 28, 2013 at 01:46 AM
I'm looking forward to sane gun control laws being implemented in this country, hopefully this year. Individual citizens are not allowed to own their own nuclear weapons, and they should not be allowed to own their own semi-automatic weapons.
Afairhope January 28, 2013 at 01:40 PM
Buying more guns for safety is like having more sex for virginity
Randy Everette January 28, 2013 at 08:45 PM
I think it is stupid and irresponsible for the sheriff to be advocating that citizens arm themselves. We have too many guns out there already. More guns will not solve our gun violence problems in this country.
Sean January 29, 2013 at 08:10 PM
More people in this country are killed by cars, knives and heart attacks than guns. Where is the call to ban cars? What about knives and cheeseburgers? All are more dangerous than a gun. Guns are inanimate objects that require a human being to operate. Just like cars. There are plenty of gun laws now, do some research. Maybe you'll find the government isn't even enforcing the laws we have now like prosecuting felons who attempt to purchase guns. Guns are used more often in self-defense than they are used in crimes. When you make items illegal only honest law-abiding citizens are affected. Criminals don't read your 'No Guns' signs.
Gwalchmai Munn January 29, 2013 at 08:22 PM
Excellent point, Sean. Many people are under the illusion that removing guns from society would make us safer. If that were true prisons would be the safest places on earth.
Michael k January 29, 2013 at 09:41 PM
@Steve Burns: It isn't........... " a statement that some people interpret as being soft on the Second Amendment" ............. how it should read is: " a statement that *I* interpret as being soft on the Second Amendment" If you aren't a fan of the President and his inaugural address go ahead and say so. You don't need to be passive about it and lay it at the feet of "some people". I support the Sheriff and his statement. There is nothing wrong with encouraging law abiding citizens to acquire and maintain the skills to safely carry a firearm in order to protect themselves and others. I also support the existing laws in place that put restrictions on the sale and transfer of weapons. I would agree to guns that are sold privately also requiring a background check.
Brenda January 30, 2013 at 12:16 AM
What happened at Sandy Hook was horrific, but I can't think of a law being proposed that would have protected those poor children. The assailant used a stolen gun and forced his entry into the school. Try as we might, we cannot eliminate all risk in life.

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