The Referendum Is The Way

There are few things that Oregon gun owners do really poorly. One is getting involved in the legislative process. The other is being present in the process to protect their own constitutionally protected rights. Far too often we become complacent and not engaged in the process. I must admit it’s really disheartening at times. It feels like our voices aren’t being heard. The majority dictates to us and continues to march forward to further restrict our rights. All in the name of “safety.” Unfortunately this is dishonest because all of these new regulations do nothing to save any lives or punish criminals. It puts law abiding citizens in the crosshairs of the legal system. Quite frankly the entire system is broken. I try not to be partisan but, it’s really hard not blame the party in power that has been in charge for 30 years and to see the moral decay of our beautiful state. It puts our families and our communities at risk. It ignores all data and logic. It is an absolute failure and lack of leadership. We are now put in a position where it is almost impossible to follow the law. They are creating a patchwork of laws that puts us in the dangerous situation of being on grounds adjacent to places that are now considered off limits.

We do have one thing working to our advantage. The referendum process is something, as gun owners, we need to learn how to master. We have an opportunity to repeal SB 554 and refer it to the ballot. Where it really should have been in the first place. We deserve the right to have our voices be heard. I spent over 100 hours in emailing and calling our representatives in defense of our 2A rights. It was like speaking to a brick wall. They spoke about fear and emotions. They used that concept to dismiss my logic, data, and valid points. All of those points came from years of professional experience both as a firearm instructor and as child’s firearm safety expert. The most vocal in support of SB 554 used fear and emotion to further erode our freedoms. It was so frustrating to hear their excuses. Special interest money and bribery controls Oregon politics.

We do have a very unique opportunity here though. There is a referendum that was started to put SB 554 on the ballot. 301 is the referendum number and currently people from all over the state are trying to gather 75,000 signatures in order to get SB 554 on the ballot. We face a tremendous fight and have a lot of work ahead of us to make this happen. The stakes are extremely high, but if we can pull it off we can replicate the process. It is all about developing the infrastructure necessary to be successful in other areas. A victory will give us the momentum we need to challenge any law that is bad for Oregonians. It just takes one victory to change Oregon in a way that WE see fit. We could repeal any bill under this process and could refer it to the ballot. This way we would have an opportunity to vote on it. We would still have to show up and vote, but at least we would have a chance. In reality this could help us save our state from this type of insanity. We could unite to pushback to make a difference.

What we need to realize is, as gun owners we are on our own. I don’t mean that literally, I mean it figuratively. We have to realize that there’s no one from the state or federal government that is going to side with our freedoms. It is OUR responsibility to get motivated and get involved. It is very easy to say “I’m too busy” or “someone else will do the work.” We are often complacent and we don’t get involved until it is too late. All while the other side continues to push forward to further restrict our rights. We have options here. 1 get involved and rally in the support of our gun rights or 2 keep our head down in denial and not comply. The latter of the two puts us in a position where we could potentially become felons. There will someday become a point where mass noncompliance might be our only option. Until then I highly encourage us all to learn the referendum process.

How it works is, we can now gather signatures on a state authorized signature sheet. You can sign it individually or you can gather legal signatures of registered Oregon voters. It is quite a process and is time consuming. It does take work and resources to make it happen, but at this point it is one of our only options, less someone getting arrested and then suing the state because their rights were violated. I have spoken in previous blog posts about the constitutionality of SB 554. I’m no lawyer, but there is a Supreme Court decision DC vs Heller that states that we do have a right to lawful self defense and that the government doesn’t have the authority to tell the citizens how they have to secure their firearms inside of their homes. SB 554 at face value seems to be a direct violation of the 2nd amendment. We are currently gathering signatures all over the state. We have to gather at least 75-90,000 valid signatures by Oregon registered voters by the end of August. This is no easy feet. It will take sacrifice, it will take organization, it will take a network. If we are successful though, this could be a catalyst to unite different factions from around the state. This could help us develop the infrastructure necessary to go after other unjust laws. This is basically the only way that we can take control back of our state. That is until our lawmakers change the law to make it harder to use the referendum process.

Until that happens WE all have a duty to ourselves and future generations to get off of our butts. We have to do the work. Nobody is going to do it for us. The politicians will continue to infringe. My question for you is are you going to continue to allow it? I also want to make another important point. IT IS NOT MY RESPONSIBILITY TO SAVE YOUR RIGHTS! It is ALL of our responsibilities to get involved in the process to stop this insanity. You can do it, we all can! So in closing check our Facebook page there is all of the information about printing out the signature sheets. Download and print them out. Make sure you follow the instructions carefully. They will be looking for reasons to dismiss valid signatures. Talk to your friends or neighbors. Set up a table at a local event that has a lot of people there. Gather some signatures, help us fight back. Get involved! Until next time. Be safe!