For all of my adult life I have been a proponent of liberty, and a strong proponent of the firearms rights spelled out in the US Constitution. For decades I have been part of the gun rights movement, which seeks to repeal unconstitutional gun laws.
Fountain Valley, like many other locations in southern California, has illegal, unconstitutional laws in place preventing people from exercising their constitutional rights. The key restrictions are based on the California handgun law put in place in the 1920s. At the time it was enacted it was specifically racist in intent and in application. In the past California was a horribly racist place. The 14th amendment, guaranteeing equality to all, was not passed in this state until 1958. Interracial dating was prohibited until 1958. Racial discrimination lawsuits from Orange County were at the US Supreme Court as late as 1970.
Until earlier this year, when the McDonald decision came down, the official position of the State of California was that the whole Bill of Rights, and the 14th Amendment, did not apply to the State of California! The McDonald case was the last battle of the US Civil War, and California was on the loosing side. Sadly, the official position of the City of Fountain Valley remains that the Bill of Rights does not apply in the City of Fountain Valley.
Knowing that the State of California would loose on this point, for several years I have been working with the City Council in an attempt to cause the City to come into compliance with the US Constitution. Despite my efforts, the policies of the City continue to violate the Constitution.
Why? Mostly because men and women of a certain age are ignorant and uninterested in learning the law. For a short period in US history, say from 1950 to 1990, there was an educational fad which sought to write the 2nd Amendment out of the US Constitution. The idea was that the 2nd Amendment had something to do with hunting, or perhaps military service. There never was any truth to this idea, and it has been thoroughly disproved, culminating in a 9-0 loss at the US Supreme court.
But those educated when this fad was in place still cling to the idea, and seek to implement it as policy on the Fountain Valley City Council. These individuals are not inherently bad, just ignorant and lazy.
Deprivation of civil rights under color of authority is the proper legal term what has been going on, and what is going on now. The Fountain Valley City Council refuses to obey the US Constitution, refuses to require the police chief to follow the US Constitution, and specifically requires the police chief to follow the policy of the sheriff of Orange County. That policy is also unconstitutional.
By actively taking a position obstruct exercise of civil rights by citizens of Fountain Valley, the City Council is creating a huge liability problem. Both the city and each member of the City Council is liable for unlimited damage. The federal statute that applies specifically pierces the concept of sovereign immunity and makes each member of the City Council personally liable.
All this so as to keep in place an unconstitutional policy!
When elected to the Fountain Valley City Council, one of my first and highest priorities will be to change this unconstitutional policy and thus reduce the city’s liability exposure. I will sponsor and pursue a policy to change Fountain Valley to a “shall issue” city and request a map be produced showing all the 1000 foot anti-civil-rights zones around schools.
Fountain Valley should be in the vanguard of civil rights, not fighting a rear-guard action to keep in place unconstitutional racist laws from nearly a century ago.