(DailyVantage.com) – New Mexico Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham instituted an emergency public health order that suspends all open and concealed carry laws in Bernalillo County for 30 days. Grisham said she made the decision because of recent gun violence involving the deaths of children. She gave one example of an 11-year-old who was killed outside a minor league baseball stadium.
The temporary ban on gun rights has caused outrage among many residents, especially in Albuquerque. Several residents gathered to protest the ban in Albuquerque’s Civic Plaza on Tuesday, September 12. Many wore their pistols by their sides, while others carried rifles. Protestors expressed their displeasure with the public health order by carrying signs reading “Do Not Comply” or wearing shirts with messages advocating gun rights.
One protestor, Alicia Otero, carried a sign that read, “I blame the shooter! Not the gun!”. Otero lost an adult son to gun violence in 2021. She said she does not believe the new order will do anything to curb gun violence and would instead strip citizens of a means to protect themselves. Otero wants Governor Grisham to hold offenders accountable instead of punishing law-abiding citizens.
Raul Torrez, New Mexico Attorney General, announced in a letter to Grisham that he cannot support the temporary ban on firearms. He urged the governor to focus her time and energy on developing more “comprehensive legislation”.
Grisham recognized and admitted that her actions may be unconstitutional and that she expected legal challenges. She also said she “welcomes the debate” on how to make residents of New Mexico safer.
The order will be enforced by the state police and not the local Albuquerque Police Department. The Bernalillo County Sheriff said in a news release that he has “reservations” about the order and is concerned it could put his agency “at risk”.
Two lawsuits have already been filed in reaction to the gun ban. One by the National Association of Gun Rights and a second class-action suit.
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