County Board Passes Resolution Regarding Sanctuary County


Published on April 16 2018 6:23 pm
Last Updated on April 16 2018 6:23 pm
Written by Greg Sapp


The Effingham County Board Monday passed a resolution opposing certain bills introduced in the Illinois General Assembly that the Board views as violating the US Constitution. The resolution also resolves that if the State of Illinois infringes in the Board's view on 2nd Amendment rights, the county would become a "sanctuary county" for all firearms unconstitutionally prohibited by state government in that the county would prohibit its employees from enforcing those unconstitutional actions by the State.

A good-sized crowd was on hand Monday for the vote, with citizens present on each side of the issue. Some felt the resolution was spot on, while others felt the measure gave the county a black eye in the minds of some.

Dr. Michael Sehy asked the Board members whether they've talked with their kids about the issue. He said the proposal made him "sick a little". Sehy said his attendance at a First Communion ceremony and the site of the small children present made him think of Newtown and the many children killed in that incident.

Dan Niebrugge said, "I'm embarassed, I'm having a very difficult time explaining this" to those outside Effingham County.

John Cohorst contended, "allowing these guns to come in here, I'd feel guilty the rest of my life for letting them come in here."

On the other side of the issue, John Haslett said of the murders committed in the nation, a small number of those were with long guns. He said he's used A-R 15s without incident and encouraged those present to check the statistics on weapons before deciding on whether they should be banned.

Others in the audience were also supportive of the initiative but did not join in the public comment.

We went to the website Statista and checked on murders committed in the US in 2016. The website said there were 17,250 murders and non-negligent manslaughter incidents in 2016. Of those, 7,106 were by handguns, 374 by rifles, 262 by shotguns, and 186 by other guns, but there were another 3,077 by other firearms that were not identified.

When Board member Dave Campbell, who proposed the legislation, moved to call the matter for a vote, Board member Karen Luchtefeld was the only member to oppose the proposal, saying "guns have changed (since the 2nd Amendment was adopted), but our gun laws have not kept pace." She noted the number of people that could be killed in a minute by a flintlock rifle as opposed to modern firearms.

Some of those criticizing the action said it reflects badly on Effingham County, but the Jasper County Board discussd a similar measure at this month's meeting, and there were two members of the Fayette County Board present Monday who indicated they are looking at a similar proposal in their county.