REPUBLIC, Wash. — Republic Police Chief Loren Culp is proposing that his jurisdiction become a “2nd Amendment Sanctuary City” on the police department’s Facebook page.
Culp said the sanctuary city law would keep the department from enforcing legislation that violates the 2nd Amendment.
Washington recently passed gun-safety initiative I-1639, which raises the legal age to purchase some firearms and requires enhanced background checks.
Culp wrote about his recommended legislation for his Eastern Washington town. He said it would “prevent federal and state infringement on the right to keep and bear arms; nullifying all federal and state acts in violation of the 2nd Amendment to the Constitution of the United States and Article 1 Section 24 of the Washington State Constitution,” according to Culp’s Facebook post.
The term “sanctuary city” often describes a local government that does not use its own resources, such as local police departments, to enforce federal immigration laws.
Culp initially posted about the right to bear arms on Nov. 7 – the day after Election Day.
“I’ve taken 3 public oaths, one in the US Army and Two as a police officer. All of them included upholding and defending the Constitution of the United States of America. The second amendment says the right to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed. As long as I am Chief of Police, no Republic Police Officer will infringe on a citizens right to keep and Bear Arms, PERIOD!” Culp wrote on Facebook.
Washington voters passed Initiative 1639 on Election Day.
Under the initiative, anyone who wants to buy a semi-automatic rifle must take a safety training course, pass an enhanced background check and wait ten business days. This is in line with the checks for handguns in the state.
The law also raised the age to buy these types of weapons. The legal age to purchase a semi-automatic rifle will be 21. People ages 18 to 21 can have one, however, in their home or place of business.
People voiced concern about the "Secure Gun Storage" section of the initiative. It states a gun owner can be criminally responsible if their gun gets into the wrong hands and a crime is committed with it. The initiative said they could face a misdemeanor or even a felony charge of “community endangerment due to unsafe storage.” That is, if a gun was not stored in a way to keep what the law calls a "prohibited person" from getting to it. A prohibited person is defined as anyone who is not legally allowed to have a gun, a child or felon for example.
The full ordinance Chief Culp proposed reads:
WHEREAS, the City of Republic believes that:
A. The 2nd Amendment to the Constitution of the United States reads as follows, “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.”
B. Article 1 section 24 of the Washington State Constitution reads as follows, “The right of the individual citizen to bear arms in defense of himself, or the state, shall not be impaired, but nothing in this section shall be construed as authorizing individuals or corporations to organize, maintain or employ an armed body of men.”
C. All federal and State acts, laws, orders, rules or regulations regarding firearms, firearm accessories, and ammunition are a violation of the 2nd Amendment to the U.S. Constitution and Article 1 Section 24 of the Washington State Constitution.
THE CITY COUNCIL OF THE CITY OF REPUBLIC, WASHINGTON STATE, DO ORDAIN AS FOLLOWS:
SECTION 1: PROHIBITION ON STATE AND FEDERAL INFRINGEMENT OF THE RIGHT TO KEEP AND BEAR ARMS
A. The Republic City Council declares that all federal and state acts, laws, orders, rules and regulations past, present or future, in violation of the U.S. and/or State Constitutions are not authorized by the said Constitutions and violate the true meaning and intent as given by the Founders and Ratifiers and are hereby declared to be invalid in the City of Republic, shall not be recognized by the City of Republic, are specifically rejected by the City of Republic and shall be considered null and void and of no effect in the City of Republic.
B. No agent, employee, or official of the City of Republic, or any corporation providing services to the City of Republic shall provide material support or participate in any way with the implementation of federal or state acts, orders, rules, laws or regulations in violation of the 2nd Amendment to the United States Constitution and Article 1 Section 24 of the Washington State Constitution.
C. Nothing in this Ordinance shall affect City Ordinance 94-05 which prohibits, for safety reasons, the discharge of firearms in the City limits except in the defense of self or others.
SECTON 2. REQUESTED INVOLVEMENT OF NEIGHBORING COMMUNITIES
The City of Republic calls upon other local jurisdictions within the State of Washington to join us in this action by passing a similar ordinance.
SECTION 3: URGING ACTION BY THE STATE GOVERNMENT
The City of Republic requests that copies of this ordinance be immediately transmitted to each individual legislator that represents our district in the State government urging each to introduce similar legislation on a state level during the next legislative session.
SECTION 4: SEVERABILITY CLAUSE. If any provisions of this ordinance or its application to any person or circumstance are held invalid, the remainder of the Ordinance, or the application of the provision to other persons or circumstances is not affected.
SECTION 5: EFFECTIVE DATE. This Ordinance shall become effective from and after the date of its passage by the City Council, approval by the Mayor and five (5) days after publication as required by law.