What is it about our government masters that compels them to so often exempt themselves from the genius laws they enact?
The latest example of this unbridled chutzpah comes from the village of Deerfield in Illinois. On April 2, the governing council of this village of 18,000 people 25 miles north of Chicago enacted a local ban on so-called assault weapons. In addition to some hefty fines, as high as $1,000 a day, for anyone owning the now-illegal weapons, the law is quite clear:
CNN reports that the rather specific language of the Second Amendment comes in for scorn as well in the law as written:
Notice that prohibition on “keeping” and “bearing.” Those words weren’t chosen by accident, and this law isn’t written in a manner merely ignorant of the Bill of Rights. Instead, it is itself an assault on the precise language of that founding document, once taught to schoolchildren everywhere. In the era of Generation Tide Pod, though, that crinkly piece of parchment is no longer in vogue, and if you have any quaint notions about preserving your Constitutional rights, schoolkids might stage a walkout to collectively express their belief in the power of cutting class.
On its surface, the law is distasteful because it shreds citizens’ Constitutional rights. But far worse is this detail, which the notoriously liberal Snopes.com fact-checking site reports in a post (that seems to bristle with excitement):
“The measure is slated to take effect on 13 June 2018, and includes fines of ‘no less than $250 and not more than $1,000’ per day for people found to be in violation of the ordinance. However, village employees as well as law enforcement officers and ‘the organized militia of this or any other state’ are exempt from having to abide by it.”
So, who are these intrepid government workers that get to keep their high-powered assault rifles, apparently in the event they are ever called upon to serve and protect their recently-disarmed neighbors? A quick visit to the Village of Deerfield’s government website shows that in addition to the village’s Board of Trustees, village employees include the folks running the Farmers Market, the Wastewater Reclamation Facility, and something called “SWALCO,” which turns out to be the Solid Waste Agency of Lake County, Ill. So, while the Second Amendment may not be for the people paying taxes, apparently there is a need to arm the staff of the Farmers Market, in case some nefarious entity endangers the public’s right to “hand-crafted Wisconsin cheese, tasty maple syrup and honey, and other specialty products.”
The National Rifle Association is backing lawsuits to overturn the law, and people who believe in freedom everywhere should hope they win. Barring that, though, someone from the Deerfield village government should at least explain why the municipal trash haulers at SWALCO need to be more heavily armed than Bruce Willis in the remake of “Death Wish.”