It’s been three weeks since an Oak Harbor city councilmember started a national controversy by trying to kick out a wounded Army veteran who was legally carrying a weapon during a council meeting.
Councilmember Rick Almberg then walked out.
The council was met by 160 people Tuesday night, many who were packing heat.
There were handguns in holsters and rifles slung over shoulders and an unknown number of people concealing their weapons as the Oak Harbor City Council met. Many attended the meeting to show support for veteran Lucas Yonkman who Councilmember Almberg tried to have kicked out of City Hall last month, including Joe Hawkins who openly mocked him. “Mr. Almberg I just want you to know that I have a concealed ham sandwich right here I don’t want you to get up and walk away,” he chuckled.
Most attended the meeting to oppose the city’s ban on guns in parks and the marina. The Second Amendment Foundation had threatened to sue if the ordinance wasn’t overturned.
Sandy Peterson spoke out against the ordinance. “If the city council members are intimidated by people exercising their Second Amendment rights to bear arms, perhaps they need to examine what it is about that that makes them uncomfortable,” she said.
William Frail had an M-1 rifle on his shoulder as he testified. “Sir, my mother was Jew,” he said. “My family went to the chambers. I will not go into the night quietly while these two ask me to board the train.”
I should note, the issue with the city banning the possession of firearms in public parks should never have been raised by the City Council, because state law in Washington preempts local laws, and does not allow cities to enact such bans. Oak Harbor almost certainly would have, and Seattle almost certainly will, face costly court challenges to their laws, and lose.