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Letter to the Editor, Nov. 17, 2019: Caleb Coffelt on guns in Virginia

Letter to the Editor, Nov. 17, 2019: Caleb Coffelt on guns in Virginia

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'Virginian' loses meaning

if lawmakers target guns

Editor, Times-Dispatch:

On April 20, 1775, tensions between Royal Governor Lord Dunmore and Virginians came to a head. Due to his fears of Colonial uprising, Dunmore had Royal Marines remove the gunpowder from the public storage house in the shadow of night. This act inflamed tensions to the point that the Virginians, under the command of Patrick Henry, eventually marched on Williamsburg, which was the capital and where Dunmore had confiscated the powder from. Regardless of Dunmore’s threats to release the slaves and to burn the city, the only way that the Virginians were mollified was by the crown repaying them for the stolen powder.

Further connecting the bonds of descendant generations to their Colonial counterparts came in 1971 when the people of the state voted to allow the General Assembly to amend the state constitution and place in it an article guaranteeing the right of the people “to keep and bear arms.” In the resolution laying out this proposal, the General Assembly specifically made allusions to the founders of this state and their views on the necessity of private ownership of weapons.

These stories show the level of importance that our Virginian forebears placed upon the availability of arms for the populace. But how many Virginians know the story? Likely very few. The Democratic Party just gained a trifecta in the state government, with gun legislation measures at the top of the priority list.

This is what happens when people forget their common history and other people enter the state without respect for that history.

“Virginian” is now a meaningless name that holds equal value to showing the address on your driver’s license.

Caleb Coffelt.


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