Colorado was once a staunchly conservative state but things seem to be shifting, at least when it comes to gun laws. The state jammed several new restrictions down the throats of the citizens - but some Sheriffs are standing up and vowing not to enforce the measures. Glenn interviewed one of these brave Sheriffs on radio today.
Full transcript of the interview is below:
we have a Colorado sheriff Terry Maketa on. He is a guy, he's one of the 55 of the 62 sheriffs in Colorado who are signed on now to a lawsuit to stop the new gun control measures in Colorado. He says that they're vague and unenforceable and he's going specifically after the high‑capacity magazine ban and the background check. We had him on the TV show a couple of days ago and I want to make sure you heard of his cause and his name because I think these guys need some help and need some people standing behind them. Terry, how are you, sir?
MAKETA: I'm doing real well. How are you doing?
GLENN: Very good. How far is El Paso County from Denver?
MAKETA: It's about 70 miles to the south, straight south of Denver. And what's surprising to a lot of ‑‑ what's surprising to a lot of people is we are the most populated county.
PAT: Really? What cities ‑‑
GLENN: What towns?
MAKETA: It's Colorado Springs, and a lot of people don't realize, but the Denver metro area is made up of numerous counties, and El Paso County, Colorado Springs has the highest population.
STU: That's interesting. We're always told, Sheriff, that law enforcement is very much behind the left's movement of gun control. They don't want guns on the street and yet in your state it's 55 of 62 sheriffs are standing with you, right?
MAKETA: That is absolutely correct. And one thing that isn't talked about a lot is there are also a lot of chiefs of police that are behind us at the municipal level, but they don't have the freedom to speak their opinions that the sheriffs have.
PAT: Now, this was brought on, Sheriff, by the fact that Colorado just passed, was it four gun measures, and two of them in particular you take exception to. What are those two? And can you describe them a little bit? What do they do?
MAKETA: Well, yeah, there were four bills passed. And of those four, there are two that the sheriffs really have a problem with. The first is the background check, which was really sold to the public in vague terms as a universal background check under the auspice of "We're trying to keep ‑‑ stop criminals from buying guns." And the reality is that it is not limited to just the sale of private firearms. It's far overreaching and it extends to, I like to give the example of a real life scenario of a military friend who goes off on deployment, leaves a firearm with his fiance with whom he shares the house and they are violating the law not only because he doesn't obtain a background check every 30 days but because the magazine possesses more than 15 rounds, which leads me into the second law, and that's the magazine ban. And they banned ‑‑ they set the number arbitrarily at 15 rounds when so many very common firearms are sold and designed with magazines that hold more than 15. But more importantly is they put language in there that if, if it has a removable base plate and can be modified. And when you get into language like that in law, it just subjects law‑abiding citizens to being criminalized and that's really the problem we have with those two in very general terms.
STU: Is there any possible ‑‑ this is interesting because I can't think of anything, in any category of anything you could possibly own that could not potentially be modified in some way. Of course it ‑‑ but anything you buy can be modified if you wish to modify it. How can that ‑‑ I mean, how can you add a restriction like that?
MAKETA: Well, that's our contention is number one, there's some other language that says, you know, what was the intent of the manufacturer? Did they design it with the intent that it could potentially be modified? How is law enforcement supposed to know the intent of the manufacturer? And, I'm not familiar with a magazine that does not have a removable baseplate. They all do because of maintenance and cleaning and so forth. And then for a family ‑‑ or let's say you have a 30‑round magazine. You can never transfer them. I think that's an infringement on your property rights. I mean, we're all ‑‑ we all share a common goal of keeping criminals from obtaining guns. But to be honest common sense should tell us criminals usually don't go to the retail outlets and subject themselves to a background. And when I talk about the lack of empirical evidence to support it, look at how many people are prosecuted who are turned down for checks and it's a dismal, dismal number.
STU: I always find it fascinating. There he an a law in New York that passed, there's this sort of new flurry of gun control laws after Sandy Hook obviously and the one in New York was fascinating in that it said you can have ‑‑ you can't have over, I believe it was seven ‑‑ ten rounds in a magazine, I think it was ‑‑ or seven rounds in a magazine. But, of course, a lot of these guns had a 10‑round magazine. So they had to adjust the law that you can have a 10‑round magazine but you can only put seven bullets in it. That is ‑‑ there is absolutely no way a law like that can have an effect on a criminal. It can only have an effect on a law‑abiding citizen. No criminal is going to stop loading bullets at seven when he's going to shoot up a school. He's going to load as many bullets as he can into there. I mean, do you see any other motivation from these laws, of these laws other than just to take guns?
STU: Is there any sort of law enforcement purpose that could possibly be applied to these rules?
MAKETA: Absolutely not. I mean, that is what is absolutely ridiculous is there is absolutely no fact to back these laws, to arbitrarily set numbers at 7, 10, 15 is absolutely absurd. And that clearly shows there's an agenda. And what we saw in Colorado probably is a Republican indication of what occurred in New York, where facts were not allowed into the debate. It was purely emotional and it was purely political posturing and agenda‑driven with one goal in mind: To disarm law‑abiding citizens. Let's focus on the criminals, let's pass laws that hold them accountable and not punish law‑abiding citizens for the actions of one.
And I'll tell you another thing that was forgotten in all of the tragedies involving mass shootings is in most cases the gunmen had multiple firearms. They didn't just have one weapon that they had to reload. They had two and three and four weapons.
PAT: That's not important to those who are just trying to take our guns, though. They don't care about any of the facts. They skip over them. They ignore them. They lie about them. But your contention is right now that not only are these laws unenforceable but you and your fellow sheriffs have no intention of ever enforcing them, right?
MAKETA: Well, we've made that position clear because you can't enforce them without violating citizens' constitutional rights.
PAT: That's fantastic.
MAKETA: Under the Fourth Amendment and the Fifth Amendment.
GLENN: How do you expect this ‑‑ how do you expect this to end up? I mean, we are headed on a collision course here.
MAKETA: Well, I'll tell you I think we've assembled a phenomenal group of people to defend the citizens and their rights and I think we've raised some very key points in our lawsuit, and I'm pretty confident that this could be a pivotal time, a historic time at least in Colorado to start pushing back. And we've got tremendous ‑‑ it's shocking how much citizen support we have. But I think we're going to be successful ‑‑
GLENN: How can we help you?
MAKETA: And I think the lie told in the legislature is going to come true. And to answer your question, I think the key is to get the word out, get the truth out, and I think citizens will apply the common sense and say, okay, not only was I misled on what these laws are but the facts just don't ‑‑ the facts they were sold to us on just don't add up.
GLENN: All right. Thank you so much and, Terry, let us know how we can help El Paso County, Colorado sheriff Terry Maketa who is leading the fight, new lawsuit now to stop the new gun control measures in Colorado.
You know, as I'm listening to him, I'm thinking the sheriffs like him are going to be the first that are targeted. You know, the ‑‑ I don't know if you saw those pictures on TheBlaze a couple of days ago when there was the small protests that were happening around the country at the IRS offices and these protests were happening and there were police cars there, and in very fine print it said "Homeland Security." In big print it said "Police." And I thought when did we have ‑‑ when did we develop a national police force? When did that happen? We've never had a national police force before. We don't want a national police force, a national police force that would report right directly to the president. You need a national police force, that's the National Guard. And they are called out by the governors, not by the president. By the governors. What they've done is they've destroyed the Tenth Amendment, and this national police force is going to be there to back the other police force, and the first ones that they will bust will be the sheriffs. And the sheriffs are the only ones elected by you. They are elected directly by you. To protect and defend the Constitution of the United States of America. And these guys are going to be outlaws. They really are. I really, truly believe they are going to be in real trouble. Preachers, look. Follow their lead. Follow their lead. If you are a preacher or a pastor or a rabbi, if you are a so‑called community leader, if you don't ‑‑ if you don't know in your heart of hearts that if a tyrant, left or right, ever took control of this country and you don't know that one of the first doors that would be knocked on would be yours, you are not doing your job. You're not standing for man's freedom. What is it you are doing? If you're not the first to be targeted, what purpose do you serve?