By: José Niño
Gun owners, as usual, are standing up for themselves.
Ventura County, California allowed gun stores to reopen before a hearing to deal with the county’s original decision to close gun stores took place.
The case in question, McDougall v. County of Ventura, was initially brought forward by Donald McDougall and Juliana Garcia, in addition to pro-Second Amendment groups such as California Gun Rights Foundation and the Firearms Policy Coalition.
Ronda N. Baldwin-Kennedy, the plaintiff’s attorney, offered her take on Ventura County’s decision to reopen gun stores:
The defendants were obviously wrong on the law and had no constitutional support for their frivolous arguments, so it makes sense for them to change course now. We are delighted that this lawsuit moved the County to issue another order so that our clients and the people of Ventura County can exercise their constitutional rights.
The plaintiffs’ co-counsel attorney, Raymond DiGuiseppe, also chimed in:
The facts are that the Ventura County defendants made it a crime for individuals to patronize and operate firearm and ammunition retailers, and worse, these government officials banned travel for firearms and ammunition as “non-essential”. Those are precisely the kinds of actions our Constitution was designed to protect against, so we look forward to the next phase of litigation in this lawsuit.
Second Amendment Foundation founder and executive vice president Alan Gottlieb remarked:
This legal action was and remains about winning firearms freedom one lawsuit at a time. The county choosing to re-open firearm and ammunition transactions rather than face our motion in court is a victory for gun owners and the Second Amendment.
California has become one of the most anti-gun states in the country. According to Guns & Ammo, it has a putrid 47th place ranking as far gun-friendly states are concerned. Due to the state’s anti-gun profile, many Second Amendment operatives have had to get crafty in their activism. Their political activity has become more localized, from lawsuits against county governments to pushing for sanctuary resolutions.
Small victories like McDougall v. County of Ventura offer a way out for gun owners living in profoundly anti-Second Amendment jurisdictions. A changing political environment requires a change in tactics. The Second Amendment community would be wise to recognize that.
José Niño is a Venezuelan American freelance writer based in Austin, Texas. Sign up for his mailing list here. Contact him via Facebook, Twitter, or email him at firstname.lastname@example.org. Get his e-book, The 10 Myths of Gun Control, here.