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Opinion >  Letters

Constitution still matters

Initiative 1639 is blatantly unconstitutional. There are many issues, but these are the biggest ones.

Beyond violating the Second Amendment, this initiative creates a registry violating Fourth and Fifth Amendment protections against unreasonable searches and seizures, self-incrimination and due process of law.

The secure storage aspect has already been ruled unconstitutional by the Supreme Court in District of Columbia vs. Heller (2008) and McDonald vs City of Chicago (2010).

Perhaps the most egregious part of this initiative is that it violates HIPAA protections. Just for applying to buy a semi-auto rifle, a person waives their right to health privacy forever. The state will be able to access health records a least once a year, or “more often as is necessary.” Forcing someone to choose between their HIPAA rights or their Second Amendment rights is a violation of Equal Protection under the 14th Amendment.

In reference to unconstitutional laws, the Supreme Court in Norton v. Shelby County (1886) said: “An unconstitutional act is not a law; it confers no rights; it imposes no duties. It is, in legal contemplation, as operative as though it had never been passed.” This initiative is not needed. It is not necessary. It is not common sense. It is unconstitutional.

The Constitution still matters. Liberty still matters. Freedom still matters. Vote No.

Mike Plewnarz

Spokane


 

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