The people that live in Alaska are some of the most independent, hard-working, and self-sufficient American citizens around, people that constantly face some of the harshest conditions Mother Nature could choose to throw at us – and some of the most beautiful natural landscapes across this great country.
They depend on firearms to protect themselves not only from animal attacks (vicious grizzlies, wolves, and all kinds of other apex predators are constantly on the prowl in Alaska) but also from other people living in this state when the average police response time is almost always measured in hours – if not days.
When lawmakers in Congress started talking about finding ways to limit firearms across the United States, state senators in Alaska decided that they weren’t going to allow representatives that didn’t speak for them – most that had never even visited Alaska – decide something as important to their day to day lives as this.
In 2012, Speaker of the Alaska State House Mike Chennault put forward a bill that was quickly ratified, a bill designed as a “nullification bill” that would all but invalidate anything the US federal government decided to do regarding the personal possession, acquisition of, or continuous ownership of a firearm in the state of Alaska.
The bill, House Bill 69, wasn’t going to be able to actually step in and overruled the federal laws that never actually ended up being passed but was instead designed to totally limit and invalidate the ability for federal law enforcement officers to work with ANY state agencies or officials looking to curb these constitutional rights.
This law is still on the books (and likely will remain on the books indefinitely in independent minded Alaska), and lawmakers in the state of California are starting to pay close attention to the way that this legislation was written and passed to take advantage of the same kinds of nullification benefits – not necessarily to protect firearm rights in the state of California, but to be used to protect the recreational use of marijuana.
California assemblyman Reggie Jones Sawyer has just recently introduced new legislation that would stop any California state official from participating in ANY federal government led crackdowns on cannabis or marijuana without court orders that had been specifically signed by state judges.
If this law is successfully passed into existence and signed by current Gov. Jerry Brown, federal agencies would have to receive a court order just to get public records pertaining to the marijuana and cannabis industry throughout the state of California. Because existing laws specifically bar the Justice Department from interfering in state laws regarding cannabis and marijuana, that seems all but impossible to pull off right now.
The spirit of these two laws are almost identical in nature and reflect the approach to self-governance that more and more states are starting to embrace, regardless of what their over arcing political beliefs may be in the grand scheme of things.