If I didn’t read this myself, I would say the headline was sensationalistic, but it’s not. Gov. Kenneth E. Mapp signed an emergency order activating the Virgin Islands National Guard into Territorial Active Military Service in preparation for Hurricane Irma. By most measures, this would seem to be a prudent and reasonable step for a governor to take.
Here’s where he went off the rails:
“In accordance with Title 23 Section 1522, Virgin Islands Code, The Adjutant General is authorized and directed to seize arms, ammunition, explosives, incendiary material and any other property that may be required by the military forces for the performance of this emergency mission, in accordance with the Rules of Force promulgated by the Virgin Islands National Guard and approved by the Virgin Islands Department of Justice.”
He authorized and directed the USVI National Guard to seize privately owned firearms and other property by force. The one-page order can be read below or downloaded from The Daily Caller (PDF file): http://dailycaller.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/09/NATL-GUARD.pdf
There is no word of a legal challenge to the order at this time, and frankly, the people of the USVI are not in a position to be doing anything other than preparing for a record-setting hurricane. Congress has already passed legislation prohibiting “persons acting under color of federal law, receiving federal funds, or acting at the direction of a federal employee from seizing or authorizing the seizure of lawfully-possessed firearms…” or imposing or enforcing certain restrictions on firearms during a state of emergency. Gov. Mapp’s order is clearly in violation of that as well as the Second Amendment, which has no exception whatsoever to its protection of the right to keep and bear arms.