A city, municipality, or county in the United States that has issued a resolution rejecting the implementation of state or federal gun regulations deemed to violate the Second Amendment is referred to as a Second Amendment sanctuary. Red flag laws, universal background checks, and assault-style weapon prohibitions are examples of targeted regulations.

The term “Second Amendment sanctuary” was coined by gun-rights activists in response to the rise of “sanctuary cities” in the early 2000s, when several liberal localities defied immigration policies. San Francisco and other cities in that iteration barred the use of public resources to aid federal immigration enforcement.

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The language used in Second Amendment resolutions varies by location. Some are broad statements in support of Second Amendment rights, while others specify how a community will oppose state or federal gun laws.

Second Amendment sanctuaries have proliferated in recent years. More than 1,200 jurisdictions in 37 states have passed resolutions opposing state and federal laws that violate the Second Amendment. There are sanctuaries all over the country, from Paris, Maine to Lake County, Florida, Needles, California to Kenai, Alaska.

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Law-abiding gun owners and their local governments saw the need to re-assert their Second Amendment rights as a result of the recent expansion of the immigration sanctuary movement. Many people believe that current and proposed legislation, ranging from universal background checks and magazine restrictions to extreme risk (red flag) orders, would violate an individual’s constitutional right to bear arms.

Several states, including Alaska and Kansas, had passed resolutions declaring that they would not comply with any federal gun laws they deemed unconstitutional years before. These resolutions paved the way for the Second Amendment sanctuary movement.

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Gun owners who are committed to the Second Amendment can take the initiative to persuade local officials and policymakers to pass Second Amendment sanctuary resolutions. The Minnesota Gun Owners Caucus, for example, suggests coordinating efforts with other gun activists, communicating with law enforcement and legislative officials to urge action, and attending public legislative sessions to present petitions calling for a sanctuary resolution.