It has come to our attention that in 2016 S.C. Sen. Katrina Shealy R-Lexington voted against a bill that would allow concealed carry without a permit in the state of South Carolina.
In 2015, the senator also supported gun control because of a personal issue. She mentioned a situation involving her sister and an abusive husband. She said that abusive husband almost killed her sister.
The person writing this is a black Republican Trump voter who took this action as tacit support of gun control. It doesn’t matter if gun control is big or small. It doesn’t matter the form in which gun control arrives. It just matters that gun control is here in the state of South Carolina and it is partially because of senators like Katrina Shealy.
Perhaps some S.C. Republicans need a bit of a history lesson as to why gun control in any form is unacceptable.
Let’s take a trip down memory lane and discover the reason why gun control was enacted in the first place.
Gun Control: Black Disarmament
What many proponents of gun control may be shocked to find out is that gun control has a rich and documented history of racism.
Slavery ended in 1865. Since the African-American slaves were now free some of them might have been having some thoughts on getting revenge on their slave masters. There were concerns that if blacks could openly carry arms that it would be harder to keep them in check. Therefore, something had to be done.
An event would kick-off the disarmament events in the United States after slavery. That event was an 1876 U.S. Supreme Court case known as United States v. Cruikshank.
This case happened as a result of a violent lynching of two black men in Louisiana. These men were lynched as a result of them peacefully assembling to protest their lack of voting rights.
On April 13, 1873, a mob lynched Alexander Tillman and Levi Nelson. William J. Cruikshank was one of the more than 100 people who participated in the lynching.
None of the mob that was known to authorities were charged with murder. However, the defendants were charged with federal offenses under the Civil Rights Act of 1870. The defendants were brought to court and were pronounced guilty of murder. There was an appeal. A U.S. Court stayed the guilty verdicts until the case reached the U.S. Supreme Court.
The Supreme Court found that the federal government couldn’t punish these individuals and said that punishments for offenses such as murder should be left up to the states.
To put that into context, Cruikshank was a known Klansman and the then-Supreme Court told this man that he could kill as many black Americans as he liked and the state of Louisiana was the only resistance he would face.
This meant that if a state allowed a black person to be murdered for peacefully assembling to protest then that state could use that situation as a justification and precedent to deny gun rights to black Americans.
At the Court’s 1874 October Term, the prosecution argued that the 1870 act and the Fourteenth Amendment gave the government the power to try and convict offenders like Cruikshank. The defense argued that the Fourteenth Amendment gave the federal government authority to act only against state government violations of civil rights, but not against one citizen’s violation of another’s civil rights, like Cruikshank’s violation of Nelson and Tillman’s rights. The defense’s argument, that Congress could legislate against only “state action,” would have the effect of leaving the federal government powerless to prosecute lynch mobs and groups such as the KKK. African-Americans would be protected only by their state courts against white violence, which in the South, of course, meant no protection at all. (Law Library)
There was more to the Cruikshank decision than just the allowance of the open lynching of blacks but also the control of the 2nd amendment and the granting of gun rights. This decision started a tidal wave of anti-gun laws or “black codes” that were specifically directed at blacks in the United States.
The three main laws—with their extensive articles—that comprised South Carolina’s Black Codes addressed three general areas: new rights following abolition, new restrictions following abolition, and more specific decrees directed toward the labor issue. The first law recognized the abolition of slavery and defined “black,” since the distinction between whites and African Americans needed to be clearly and carefully drawn. African Americans were now allowed to own property (unless restricted under a different article), enter into contracts, sue in court, and attend school. The code also legalized African American marriages, accepted as de facto in the Old South but technically extralegal.
The second law set forth restrictions that actually curtailed rights enjoyed by free blacks before the Civil War. Included were prohibitions on the sale of goods without an employer’s or magistrate’s consent, prohibitions on the possession of firearms (a small fowling piece was allowed), and details of the developing legal situation. African Americans could not appear as witnesses in criminal cases, could not serve on juries, and could only swear out complaints against white persons before white magistrates. Whites, however, had the authority to arrest a “person of color” suspected of a misdemeanor.
S.C. Sen. Shealy should consider the fact that South Carolina has a history of denying black S.C. citizens their right to own a firearm. In some cases, those blacks, even if they owned a firearm, could only do so by informing specifically a white person that they had the gun.
Here are some examples of those laws:
1712. “An act for the better ordering and governing of Negroes and slaves.“
1819. “Master’s permission required for gun possession by slave. Act of Dec. 18, 1819, 1819 Acts of S.C. 28, 31, prohibited slaves outside the company of whites or without written permission from their master from using or carrying firearms unless they were hunting or guarding the master’s plantation.“
1902. “The state banned all pistol sales except to sheriffs and their special deputies, which included the KKK and company strongmen.“
This is why Sen. Shealy shouldn’t support gun control in any way. The bottom line is that Republicans freed the slaves and made sure that horrible gun control legislation didn’t hurt black communities in the United States. Allowing any further gun control has the overt risk of returning this country to the dark past that nobody wants to experience in the present day.
Gun control and gun bans are what helped the situation in Venezuela spiral out of control because the Venezuelan people couldn’t resist their government without firearms. The same could be said for the Jews in Germany who Adolf Hitler intentionally disarmed.
This is an appeal to Sen. Shealy to reconsider ever supporting gun control legislation going forward. There has been an increase in black gun owners in recent years.
Those black gun owners are probably not felons if they own those guns legally which means that those black gun owners are also potential voters. When those black gun owners begin looking for a political party to call home they’d probably want a party that supports gun rights.
Gun owners in general support, not just President Trump, but also Republicans in general over Democrats. Those black gun owners are more likely to gradually support Republican leadership over some time.
But there is just one problem.
If those black gun-owning voters who are now excited because there is a political party that protects their gun rights were to review Sen. Shealy’s vote in 2016 they’d likely be turned off…
…and for good reason.
That means that all the strides that President Donald Trump has made in terms of gaining black support would be for nothing.
It’s one thing to have ineffective South Carolina Republicans who can’t protect unborn life.
It’s another thing entirely to have a bunch of South Carolina Republicans who can’t protect life or vote in ways that support gun control which prevents people from protecting themselves.
On one front, we have baby killing legislation on the books on both a state and federal level. On the other front there are senators such as Katrina Shealy who voted against strengthening gun rights in the state of South Carolina.
It’s as if our Republican lawmakers have an imaginary hit that they’ve placed on their constituency. This series of failures in supporting the end of the legacy of Jim Crow gun control and protecting unborn life could only be the results of someone who didn’t fundamentally care about their constituents or citizens of their state or country.
To Sen. Shealy, this entire piece demonstrates how you came across to a black Trump voter who is a registered Republican. To some black Republican voters, you’re a Democrat with an R after their name.