Dear Becker County Commissioners and County Administrator,
I am writing to you to discuss your approval of resolution 4-21-2D “Dedicated Second Amendment County.” I would like to address two of your 2021 goals in light of this decision.
First, Goal #3 is To Enhance the County’s Image Through Improved Communication. I do not believe this goal was met, not even close. In fact, the communication about this resolution was a massive fail. On Feb. 2, it was reported that Ben Grimsley asked the county administrator to work on a 2nd Amendment Sanctuary Resolution following Joseph Allen’s presentation; I immediately emailed the commissioners asking for more information and expressing my concerns about this proposal on the atmosphere in our county whose lifeblood is tourism.
My concern was, and is, that this appears to be based on one individual’s request. Only one commissioner responded me. This commissioner indicted that some compromise might be reached by the board members. Not only was there apparently no compromise but the board did not attempt to seek other opinions or to solicit other ideas. The board agenda for April 20 was not released until late Thursday and was not published in the DL Tribune until Sunday. This did not afford people who may have concerns about such a resolution enough time to offer their input. I tried. I again emailed the county administrator and county commissioners. I did get a response from one individual. The essence of that response was a recap of the resolution and an invitation to the meeting. I was not in the state at the time and did not have enough time to arrange a video presence.
Residents of the County asked for a public meeting. This request was made after the Feb. 2 article which should have indicated to the commissioners that people wanted to have their concerns heard.
There was no attempt to do so. Yes, there were people at the meeting who appeared to support the resolution. It might be interesting to know if select people were given advanced notice. In addition, there may have been some people in opposition who felt nervous about speaking up. It may be they felt that opposition would not be met with respect and had not been encouraged by board members. So the board’s goal to enhance communication needs some work.
Goal #8 is to address growing community violence. I fail to see where this resolution does that. In fact this resolution does nothing but divide our county residents. State and federal laws still stand and any new laws take precedence over this resolution. Hunting restrictions still apply. 2nd Amendment rights are not under attack in this county nor in this state. Rhetoric is not law. It is bluster. What is under attack is reasonable dialogue and encouraging respectful discussion about this hot button issue. This resolution is a waste of taxpayer money and board time. It was unnecessary and detracts from the good work of the board.
If the board wants to truly achieve their goals, perhaps they should foster a more open and welcoming environment at their meetings, in their conversations and communications with ALL Becker County residents and in their future agendas. The Becker County commissioners are deliberately meant to be non-political so they can truly represent a diverse people. It is a violation of their oath and a violation of their commitment to the county to put forth their own political agenda as was done with this resolution.