Commentary by Niger Innis
As a longtime civil rights activist who is keenly aware of attempts to restrict or eliminate our rights, I am opposed to the Question One gun control ballot initiative that will appear on the Nevada ballot in November. This anti-freedom initiative does not increase our civil rights. It undermines them. Question One does not improve public safety. It suppresses our fundamental liberties. It would do little, if anything, to stop criminal activity in our state, and would instead turn many law-abiding gun owners into criminals for everyday activities.
The erosion of the Bill of Rights, the ﬁrst ten amendments to the Constitution, is an erosion of freedom itself. The founding fathers made sure to give the states and individuals an insurance policy against tyranny. It is not an accident that the Founding Fathers choose to embed the God-given right of self-defense in the Second Amendment. The ability to defend ourselves, our families, our property, our community, state and nation is fundamental to the protection of liberty itself. As a civil rights leader, I know how precious liberty is.
Question One would impose new government mandates and taxes on law-abiding Nevadans that will cost them time, money, and freedom. It could easily turn many gun owners into criminals for simply lending a gun to a co-worker, friend or neighbor. Members of our military who serve overseas wouldn’t be able to leave their personal ﬁrearms in the care of a close friend without going through multiple background checks. If a woman couldn’t aﬀord a ﬁrearm and chose to borrow one from a friend, Question One would make it nearly impossible for her to defend herself. If you read through the language of the initiative carefully, as I have done, you will ﬁnd that it would criminalize every day activities of many law-abiding Nevadans.
There is one group, however, that will not be aﬀected by the freedom-sucking mandates of Question One: criminals. As we all know, criminals do not obey the laws. It is ridiculous to think that criminal thugs will subject themselves to government background checks and fees like the rest of us. Instead, they will get their guns the way they always have, from theft and from other criminal associates.
Because I love freedom and fear government tyranny, I am asking you to do your civic duty to protect our rights and stand up for our community. Join the movement to secure our liberties. Fight alongside Nevadans for State Gun Rights to defeat Ballot Question One in November. When we band together, I know we really can make a diﬀerence. As a citizen of Nevada and a leader in the civil rights community, I do not support Ballot Question One and strongly urge all voters to vote no on Question One.”