A group has launched a campaign in support of making Johnson County a Second Amendment Sanctuary.

According to Zac Ebersole, the administrator of the Kentucky United- Johnson County group, “(the) group is comprised of current or former Johnson County residents who are especially worried about newly introduced bills in the Kentucky House of Representatives that will limit types of guns and kinds of accessories we are allowed to legally own.”

Ebersole cited six pre-filed bills up for consideration in 2020 that would impact gun and Second Amendment enthusiasts — 20RS BR 187, 282, 341, 342, 354 and 835.

“Several newly-introduced house bills would make magazines that hold more than 10 rounds of ammunition at a time illegal, as well as several accessories that we see simply as easier, such as simple pistol grips we use to hold some guns solely for comfort,” Ebersole said. “Numerous items that do not at all affect the performance, aside from comfort for user would be marked illegal. There is also a bill to repeal the newly-passed KRS 237.109 — the law stating conceal carry without a license was legal, a/k/a Constitution Carry.”

The group has made headway recently, bringing their concerns to the Johnson County Fiscal Court and Judge-Executive Mark McKenzie.

“We are solely trying to get Johnson County to state that they side with the Constitution which allows for those rights of citizens and anything at a state level to essentially be void because federal law supersedes state,” Ebersole said.

Ebersole and members of Kentucky United — Johnson County began an online petition to see if their philosophies held community support and explore whether or not they would receive opposition from county officials.

According to Ebersole, “There was zero opposition.”

“It began as an online petition and many former Johnson County residents signed it but they live nationwide now,” Ebersole said. “I started to distribute paper petitions but the judge (McKenzie) was very reassuring that they were on our side so additional petitions wouldn’t be necessary, as again there was no opposition.”

Ebersole stated that he and McKenzie spoke candidly about existing and proposed gun laws, including Red Flag Laws, which permit police or family members to petition a state court to order the temporary removal of firearms from a person who may pose a threat to themselves or others.

“We discussed how these laws would affect folks in Johnson County,” he said. “There was lots of back and forth, all positive and toward the greater good essentially stating Johnson County reflected that the Constitution was the greatest law of the land. Essentially anything else (would be) infringement. If they wanted to alter our Second Amendment, what stops them from altering or taking parts of our First Amendment away?”

In order to address community support for Kentucky United- Johnson County and their mission to establish Johnson County as a Second Amendment Sanctuary, the fiscal court will hold a vote on the matter during their regular meeting at 4:30 p.m., Monday, Jan. 13. The meeting is open to the public.

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