This commentary is by Eric Davis, president of Gun Owners of Vermont.
As I’m sure many of you already know, the legislature came back this week, which means that GoVT will be making our annual pilgrimage (sort of) back to Montpelier on behalf of all you Green Mountain supporters of gun rights.
Alas, it seems that once again, for the third year in a row, we will be doing so virtually, as the spicy flu continues to be much more resilient than anyone originally predicted. This is probably just as well, given how the committee rooms at the Statehouse more closely resemble sardine cans when in session, and generally turn the whole place into a writhing factory of communicable disease by the end of the first week. Plus, I can wear sweatpants when giving testimony from home via Zoom.
But to continue the metaphor of a writhing factory of communicable disease which infects any poor fool unfortunate enough to draw its attention, it appears that our elected (and appointed) central planners’ strategy for besting the microscopic easternly menace will continue to hinge largely on the usurpation of power and butchery of individual rights in the name of “public safety.”
It also appears that, for the third year in a row, the right to keep and bear arms will be first on the chopping block. Those who have been around a while will remain unsurprised by this approach; it seems the government in this state attempts to solve all problems through the expropriation of individual decision making and abolition of personal choice wherever possible. Consent also appears to remain as alien concept to our legislature as it is to a virus, but I digress.
Anyhow, back to the point of this post, the return of silly season is also a harbinger of everyone’s favorite (semi) weekly political column by yours truly, in which we seek to keep everyone up to speed on the happenings under the virtual golden dome. It’s here, in your (usually) weekly “GoVT Updates,” with a healthy dose of cynicism and my best attempts at humor, that we do our best to break down the politics of gun rights in Vermont into something that’s a little more easily digestible to the casual observer.
We will be discussing more details in the coming weeks, including in-depth analysis of all the two gun bills currently making their way through the legislative process, so be sure to stay tuned. Just having an awareness of what’s being considered is more involved than many people ever get; and way more involved than the proponents of gun control would ever like us to be.
GoVT is an all-volunteer, non-partisan, organization dedicated to the preservation of civil rights and specifically the right to keep and bear arms. Being an all-volunteer org means that we rely heavily on our supporters to get active in the political process and in their communities. Being politically active can be demanding at times but any level of involvement helps more than one might realize, and it’s easier than you’d think.
“Getting involved” can mean anything from emailing your elected officials a few times per year to running for public office yourself, but the key is to get involved in some capacity, no matter how small. It’s becoming increasingly apparent that the events of the past few years have permanently changed the way legislative and electoral processes will be conducted going forward, but that doesn’t have to be a bad thing. These changes have made access to the process more widely available to more people in many ways; it has never been easier to attend a committee hearing (you can participate via Zoom from the other end of the state now) or run for public office (many paperwork requirements were waived in 2020 and look to remain so.) Also, most lawmakers are now happy to set up virtual meetings with constituents which makes it easier to talk to them “in person” as it were, for those with limited time or access to transportation.
Check out our website for a comprehensive analysis of all things related to gun rights.