These Sheriffs Are the Difference Between Freedom and Tyranny
Richard Mack, a retired sheriff and current president of Constitutional Sheriffs and Peace Officers (CSPOA),1 is hard at work, educating sheriffs around the country to get them up to speed on the Constitutional rights of U.S. citizens.
Before the COVID-19 pandemic, I was essentially clueless as to the importance of your local county sheriffs. I had no idea how crucial they are. Today, I view them as some of the most important elected officials we all have the opportunity to vote for. (Three states — Alaska, Hawaii and Connecticut — do not have sheriffs, so their laws are enforced by other officers such as marshals or deputy sheriffs.2)
In this interview, Mack details the action steps you can take to make sure your sheriff is safeguarding your Constitutional rights and protecting your civil liberties against unlawful government overreach.
Your Sheriff Is the One Protecting Your Constitutional Rights
Ultimately, your local sheriff is in charge of actually enforcing whatever rules and regulations are laid down by state lawmakers, your city or county councils,3 and executive orders from city mayors or governors. Contrary to what some people think, mayors and governors don’t make laws — the state legislatures do that — but they can influence city and state legislation as well as invoke executive orders under certain circumstances.4
Sometimes sheriffs and local and state police may be asked by their mayor or governor to enforce an executive order. However, some sheriffs may refuse to do that, if they believe the executive order is unconstitutional. For example, some Michigan5 and Texas6 sheriffs informed their governors they won’t enforce mandatory mask orders since they aren’t actual laws.
Knowing this, if you do not have a good sheriff who knows the Constitution and adheres to it, you could end up at the mercy of tyrannical government officials trying to create rules and orders outside the powers of your elected legislative officials.
During this pandemic, we’ve seen quite a few mayors and governors implementing pandemic response mandates that violate the U.S. Constitution and infringe on civil liberties. The counterbalance to such overreaches is the local county sheriff. As explained by Mack:
“This is a crucial time in American history, and we actually have a peaceful and effective solution to it. The only thing that needs to happen is your local officials, especially your sheriff, keep [their] oath of office.
That’s the only thing he has to do in order to effectuate the philosophy you just mentioned, and that is that the sheriff is here to protect your civil liberties, your God given rights.
As the founding fathers put it in the Declaration of Independence, ‘The laws of nature are nature’s God.’ Either way, you don’t have to believe in God to appreciate this or to be a part of it. You don’t, because these are the rights you were born with.”
The Brady Bill
Mack is perhaps best known for suing the U.S. government over the Brady Bill, also known as the Brady Handgun Violence Prevention Act,7 signed into law by President Clinton in November 1993, which for the first time in U.S. history conscripted county sheriffs to enforce federal law.
“Cornell University did the best review8 of the case that I ever saw. If you want to look up the case, see Printz, Mac V. U.S.9 It’s the most amazing 10th Amendment decision in the history of our country. It is so powerful,” Mack says.
“Justice [Antonin] Scalia wrote the decision, and it went 10 times further than I ever dreamed. In fact, I never dreamed of even going to the Supreme Court. I thought it would all be squashed and forgotten at the district level. But we went through the district court. Six other sheriffs joined me in this lawsuit. All of them won at the district court except the one in Texas.
I don’t know how you lose a 10th Amendment, Second Amendment case in Texas. People need to understand we sued on the 10th Amendment to protect the Second Amendment, yes, but also to protect state sovereignty. This is the one thing that really got to me the most.
I understand we’re always going to have people believing in gun control. I do not, because it’s against the Constitution. However, and I’m not a big gun guy — I never even owned a gun until I was elected sheriff … But I am a freedom guy. That’s all this was about.
And I said that the federal government cannot tell any sheriff what to do. Not me, not the sheriff in Bangor, Maine, or any sheriff across this country. They have no authority. They have no jurisdiction to tell us what to do. And that is where we won.
It pushed the federal government back, but nobody knows about this decision. It’s very hidden. Nobody enforces it, and I’m trying to wake the country up to enforce (1) the Constitution, and (2) this decision that just reinforced the Constitution and the principle of Federalism.”
The Constitution Protects Us From Our Best Intentions
Had it not been for Mack winning this lawsuit, sheriffs would not have had the legal ability to stand up against tyranny and protect Constitutional rights today. Hundreds of sheriffs have refused to enforce the often ridiculous and biased mandates issued by mayors and governors under the guise of protecting public health.
“One of our best Constitutional sheriffs is Mike Carpinelli out of Lewis County, New York, and he’s actually announced10 that he’s going to run against [New York governor Andrew] Cuomo …
[Carpinelli] is a really solid Constitutional conservative — somebody who actually believes in freedom, who wants to put aside the socialist, communist takeover of our states and our country, and who really believes in individual liberty.”
Another example is sheriff Sharon Wehrly in Nye County, Nevada. She is a lifetime member of the CSPOA. Pam Elliott in Edwards County, Texas, is also a Constitutional sheriff who has gone through CSPOA’s training.
“Sheriffs know that when they come to our training, it will change America,” Mack says. “I’m going to tell everybody right now; communism and socialism are the antithesis of individual liberty. They do not allow for property rights.
They do not allow for personal freedom. It’s all about the state mandating and controlling everything, including your own property. You don’t have property under those systems.
Scalia, like I said, went a lot further than I ever thought he would. He said this: ‘But the Constitution protects us from our own best intentions.’ You would think that quote right there would be enough to get everybody so excited about this case that they would go to our website and buy the reviews of the case.
I have this little pocket sized review, all the highlights, all the best parts of the case, called ‘The Victory for State Sovereignty.’ You can get that at cspoa.org. You should be passing them out to everyone so that they wake up to this.”
The Constitution Protects Us From the Crisis of the Day
In his court decision, Scalia also talked about how
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