By: Governor Kristi Noem
April 9, 2021
The Constitution doesn’t always use plain language, but when it comes to our right to defend ourselves, the Second Amendment is quite straightforward: “The right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed.”
It’s often been said that the Second Amendment exists to defend all the rest, including the First. I couldn’t agree more. That’s why the very first bill that I signed as governor was Constitutional Carry, which guarantees the right of every law-abiding South Dakotan to keep and bear arms.
I love hunting with my family. My grandma Dorris taught me how to bird hunt, and to this day my favorite way to decompress is to hunt big game with my brothers. The Second Amendment guarantees our ability to hunt, but it’s so much more important than that. Government exists to protect our rights, but that doesn’t preclude us from protecting ourselves and our loved-ones. In fact, our Founders intended the Second Amendment to include protection from a tyrannical government. That’s why they took up arms against Great Britain in the first place.
Unfortunately, many politicians seem determined to directly infringe on our right to bear arms, despite the Second Amendment’s clear wording that it “shall not be infringed.”
President Biden recently announced several executive actions regarding gun control. He claimed that these actions wouldn’t infringe on the Second Amendment. But that’s false.
President Biden’s actions include a Red Flag order. Such laws can be used to take away guns from a law-abiding citizen. They deprive individuals of both their liberty and property rights. And they aren’t just an infringement on the Second Amendment; they’re also a violation of both our Fourth Amendment right against unreasonable search and seizure and our Fifth Amendment right to due process.
President Biden is also proposing new limits on firearm sales and ammunition purchases. But these, too, are infringements on the Second Amendment. What good is the right to keep and bear arms if you can’t first purchase them? What good is the right to keep and bear arms if you can’t buy ammo to load them? Why would we want to limit ammo purchases when we’re in the midst of a nationwide ammo shortage specifically because of the threat of gun control?
To top it off, President Biden indicated that his executive orders don’t go far enough, and he called on Congress to further infringe on the Second Amendment. In response to such threats to our rights, I promise that South Dakota will do everything in our power to defend your right to defend yourself and your loved-ones.
“Shall not be infringed” could not be any plainer. If only President Biden could be forthcoming and realize that his actions are a direct infringement on our right to keep and bear arms.