My favorite C.S. Lewis quote goes thusly: “Of all tyrannies, a tyranny sincerely exercised for the good of its victims may be the most oppressive. It would be better to live under robber barons than under omnipotent moral busybodies. The robber baron’s cruelty may sometimes sleep, his cupidity may at some point be satiated; but those who torment us for our own good will torment us without end for they do so with the approval of their own conscience.”
Nowhere is this tyranny more blatantly exercised than when leftist politicians exercise dictatorial powers in violation of the 2nd Amendment in the Bill of Rights in the U.S Constitution. And the most recent and egregious example of this tyranny is New Mexico Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham’s attack on the 2nd Amendment.
But before we delve into that, a bit of backstory is in order here.
Good News Backstory Part I: New Mexico Becomes a Shall-Issue State
In 2003, New Mexico was one of the four states – along with Missouri, Minnesota, and Colorado – that became “shall-issue” states, i.e. states in which law enforcement officials are required to issue a concealed carry permit (CCP, also known as “CCL” for “concealed carry license,”, “LTC” for “License To Carry, “CWP” for “concealed Weapon Permit,” or, most commonly, “CCW” for “Concealed Carry Weapon”) to any applicant who meets the requirements specified by law.
Prior to that year, New Mexico and Missouri had been no-issue states, whilst Minnesota and Colorado had been “may-issue.”
In other words, in these Shall-Issue states, sheriffs and police chiefs are not allowed to exercise discretion – no playing political favorites or making arbitrary denials on a whim — when deciding whether or not to issue a CCW to an individual meeting state and federal requirements.
As Beckie Gaskill of Concealed Coalition puts it, “The ‘Shall Issue’ meaning is that it’s guaranteed you’ll obtain your permit for carrying a concealed weapon (CCW) if you meet all local requirements. The key word here is “guarantee.”
Good News Backstory Part II: the SCOTUS Bruen Decision
Concealed carry rights got a further boost on or about 23 June 2022, when the Supreme Court of the United States (SCOTUS), in a 6-3 decision on the New York State Rifle & Pistol Association, Inc. v. Bruen case – with the majority opinion authored by Justice Clarence Thomas – ruled that New York’s long-lingering concealed carry law violated the 2nd Amendment.
Throughout the nation, anti-CCW laws started falling like dominoes. Even my home state of Maryland – a longtime anti-gun bastion, became a shall-issue state, thanks in part to then-Republican Governor Larry Hogan.
But then along came anti-Constitutionalist Democrat Party state governors like Wes Moore in Maryland, and Mrs. Lujan Grisham in New Mexico.
Bad News Current Story: Gov. Lujan Grisham Shreds the Constitution
Make that not just “Constitution” singular, but “Constitutions,” plural! In addition to the U.S. Constitution – you know, the supreme law of the land – there’s the State Constitution of New Mexico, specifically Article II § 6, which reads: “No law shall abridge the right of the citizen to keep and bear arms for security and defense, for lawful hunting and recreational use and for other lawful purposes, but nothing herein shall be held to permit the carrying of concealed weapons. No municipality or county shall regulate, in any way, an incident of the right to keep and bear arms. (As amended November 2, 1971 and November 2, 1986.)”
But, you see, Gov. Lujan Grisham doesn’t care about her state’s Constitution or the Constitution of the U.S. as a whole.
This past Friday, 8 September 2023, she arbitrarily and dictatorially decided to slap law-abiding New Mexico gun owners in the face via an emergency order suspending the right to carry firearms in Albuquerque and the surrounding Bernalillo County. All in the name of public safety and the common good, of course (just like COVID lockdowns and mask mandates). She’s counting on the New Mexico State Police (NMSP) to enforce her monthlong edict, which carries civil penalties and a fine of up to $5,000.
Gun Rights Groups – and New Mexico Cops – Fight Back
Fortunately, freedom-loving real Americans are not taking the Governor’s guff lying down.
Her arbitrary ban has spurred a federal lawsuit to block the ban before it was filed, and GOP state lawmakers have called for her impeachment. More specifically, the National Association for Gun Rights (NAGR) – an organization led by Dudley Brown — and Foster Haines, a member who lives in Albuquerque, are suing the governor in the U.S. District Court in New Mexico and seeking an immediate injunction against implementing her Draconian order.
The New Mexico Shooting Sports Association has openly and fearlessly declared on social media: “We will not comply.” Meanwhile, State Reps. Stefani Lord and John Block are calling for the impeachment of the monarch, er, Governor.
Furthermore, Albuquerque Police Chief Harold Medina has stated he will not enforce the order, and Bernalillo County Sheriff John Allen has publicly questioned the infringement upon self-defense rights.
Even Anti-Gunners Don’t Like It
You know something is amiss when CNN of all entities – Lord knows they’ve never been supporters of gun rights – is grilling Gov. Lujan Grisham about the unconstitutionality of her actions, reminding her not only about the SCOTUS Bruen decision but about that aforementioned section of the New Mexico Constitution as well!
What’s more, as noted by Washington Times reporter Kerry Picket, the Governor’s actions are even being opposed by “a liberal Democratic congressman and a prominent gun control activist,” namely Rep. Ted Lieu (D-CA) and David Hogg respectively. As Hogg posted on his X (formerly Twitter) page: “I support gun safety but there is no such thing as a state public health emergency exception to the U.S. Constitution.”
Wow! Yet Governor Marxist Michelle persists with her attack on freedom.
Christian D. Orr is a Senior Defense Editor for 19FortyFive. He has 34 years of shooting experience, starting at the tender age of 14. His marksmanship accomplishments include: the Air Force Small Arms Ribbon w/one device (for M16A2 rifle and M9 pistol); Pistol Expert Ratings from U.S. Customs & Border Protection (CBP), Immigration & Customs Enforcement (ICE), and the Federal Law Enforcement Training Center (FLETC) Criminal Investigator Training Program (CITP); multiple medals and trophies via the Glock Sport Shooting Foundation (GSSF) and the Nevada Police & Fires Games (NPAF). Chris has been an NRA Certified Basic Pistol Instructor since 2011.