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La Grande Observer Daily Paper 09/01/14

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Home arrow Opinion arrow Keep kids safe, protect rights

Keep kids safe, protect rights

To the Citizens of Union County:

The recent tragic events surrounding school shootings have rightfully brought to the forefront the safety of our children in schools.  

Our thoughts and prayers go out to the families struck by such horrible and unthinkable acts. As invested law enforcement officers, we have begun the process of assessing safety plans locally with our law enforcement partners and school districts to ensure utmost safety for our children.

The events have also triggered immense discussion locally and nationally with regard to the Second Amendment. As your sheriff, I believe it is your right to protect yourself, family and property. I have recently, for the third time, sworn to uphold the Constitution and I take that oath very seriously. 

Recently, the president outlined and signed 23 executive orders to reduce gun violence. Some of those things are very positive steps which law enforcement could support and similarly believes could help. 

The president also asked Congress to support an assault weapons ban along with a magazine capacity restriction.

These proposals are an intricately intertwined Second Amendment issue, thus needing the vetting process of Congress. It is my hope the president does not extend his executive orders to include such proposals.  As sheriff I cannot support or enforce any executive orders that infringe upon the lawful rights of any Union County citizen. Nor will deputies be required to support or enforce unconstitutional executive orders or laws. 

Your voice counts

As we take a step back for a moment, I ask that all citizens of Union County remember that their voice counts and they should participate in the appropriate manner to affect positive legislation. 

As sheriff I will work with citizens concerned about this issue and have set up a process by which this can be accomplished. 

If you wish to make your views known to our United States elected officials, please visit the sheriff’s office website at unioncountysheriff.us and click on the Second Amendment tab under “Contact Us.”

Additionally, we will be holding a public event to further discuss these issues and seek your input. This event will be held at 6:30 p.m. Tuesday at the Blue Mountain Conference Center in La Grande. 

A concealed weapons class will be offered at a reduced rate from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Feb. 2 at the Union County Senior Center. Educators may attend the class free of charge. Please contact our office to sign up. 

We need to work closely together to keep our children safe while still respecting all citizens’ Second Amendment rights. It is a pleasure to serve you and your families, as well as protect the rights we all cherish as Americans. I look forward to meeting with you soon. 

 

Boyd Rasmussen is sheriff of Union County.

 
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