By Jon Dougherty @TheNatSent
(TNS) ‘Stay-at-home’ Orders issued by state and local leaders around the country aimed at slowing the spread of coronavirus also contained lists of businesses that had been deemed “essential.”
Grocery stores, take-out restaurants, medical clinics, pharmacies, and some industrial operations were all deemed necessary and vital. All other businesses, however, were deemed “non-essential” and ordered closed.
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In many jurisdictions, gun retailers were deemed ‘non-essential’ and ordered to close, sparking outrage among Americans — including many who never owned a gun before but now sought to purchase one as a hedge against any social upheaval caused by the shuttering of our economy.
Those of us who do believe that the right to self-defense is always ‘essential’ got a huge boost from the Trump administration this week.
The Department of Homeland Security issued a list of businesses officials believe should remain open that included gun stores and gun ranges.
In updatedÂ guidanceÂ issued March 28, DHS deemedÂ â€œworkers supporting the operation of firearm or ammunition product manufacturers, retailers, importers, distributors, and shooting rangesâ€ to be essential employees during the sweeping shutdown of businesses across the country.
Granted, the guidance is just that — guidance. It’s not binding on states. But the fact that the Trump administration recognizes the right to keep and bear arms should not be predicated on whether a national emergency exists is a good thing.
If nothing else, the existence of a national emergency is another reason why the Second Amendment remains relevant; as conditions turn ripe for potential unrest due to prolonged economic recession or depression, it will become increasingly necessary for Americans to be able to defend themselves and their communities.
In a letter this week, the National Shooting Sports FoundationÂ wroteÂ that Americans are entitled to defend themselves in the event of civil unrest due to the hysteria surrounding theÂ coronavirus pandemic:
We have seen in the past that law enforcement has turned to firearm retailers in times of civil unrest, such as when during the Los Angeles riots in 1992 local law enforcement went to retailers to obtain more effective firearms in order to restore the peace and protect residents and local businesses.
Food, water, shelter and adequate medical care are paramount for survival, but so too is the ability for an individual to defend his or herself, their family, as well as their home, business and property.
The fact is if widespread rioting and looting begin out of desperation — or because certain groups try to take advantage of the desperation — there won’t be enough law enforcement or National Guard personnel to go around, as the NSSF noted further:
Right now, across America, tens of thousands of our fellow citizens are lining up at their local federally licensed firearm retailer to purchase firearms (after an industry-supported background check) and ammunition to protect themselves and family during this uncertain time.
Law enforcement resources will be taxed and stressed thin if this pandemic continues to spread. Americans increasingly understand that they cannot always rely on law enforcement to be there in a time of need. They have a duty to be responsible for their own safety.
The Second Amendment protects each law-abiding Americanâ€™s God-given right to self-defense. And, the lawful commerce in firearms and ammunition products is constitutionally protected. Without our industry, the right to keep and bear arms would be a mere illusion.
Contributing to the angst growing among many Americans are pronouncements by Leftist mayors that they will no longer allow their police departments to arrest certain (violent) criminals, even as they empty their jails using the BS excuse of trying to protect inmates from the virus.
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