Three South Carolina lawmakers introduced a bill last week that would re-open the issue of secession if federal legislation quashes Second Amendment rights, The Associated Press reports.
South Carolina was the birthplace of secession prior to the Civil War, declaring itself separate from the Union in December 1860 over the issues of slavery and states’ rights.
State Rep. Mike Pitts says the potential legislation is a response to the increasing calls for gun laws from student protesters and legislators in Washington.
Although the bill won’t be going anywhere in 2018, Pitts said he will pursue the legislative project because it protects the Bill of Rights.
“Without a Bill of Rights, our nation is not what it is. I see a lot of stuff where people even talk about totally repealing the Second Amendment, which separates us from the entire rest of the world,” Pitts told the AP.
He said he has no intention of “promoting secession” but says the state should be ready to do so if basic freedoms are taken away.