Goulishly capitalizing on the tragedy of a mass murder, the anti-gun forces are surging forward with their plans for total gun confiscation. If law-abiding private citizens were disarmed, they claim, criminals and crazies would be unable to kill and maim. That's an obvious lie--criminals, by definition, disobey laws, and madmen can kill with knives, cars, or champagne bottles as easily and as senselessly as they can with guns. The not-so-secret agenda of the State and its apologists is clear: disarm peaceful citizens to render them powerless. Turn law-abiding Americans into criminals with the stroke of a legislative pen. Anyone who refuses to surrender his or her weapons would become an Enemy Of The State, much the same as any armed citizen is right now in the Soviet Union, or Communist China, or Socialist Nicaragua, or Fascist El Salvador, or Monarchist Great Britain. Gun confiscation is non-partisan--it is always and forever aimed at anyone disliked by the current gang in power.
The American Revolution began in a dispute over gun control when British Redcoats marched toward Lexington and Concord to disarm farmers there. London claimed to be the "legitimate" government ruling America, just as Washington or Sacremento or Albany claims to be today. And their attempt to disarm us, stems from the same power lust that drove King George. We must, therefore, hold onto our guns--legally or illegally--for the very same reason the colonists did.
The anti-gunners, certain that the role of government is to grant privileges and dictate behavior, shout that citizens have no reason to be "allowed" to own assault rifles, which have "no legitimate sporting use." The Constitution, though, says nothing about "a well-regulated sporting club" being necessary. We do not own handguns, assault rifles, shotguns, and other powerful weapons because we are hunters or plinkers or collectors. We do not even own guns because the Constitution "allows" us to. The Constitution does not "grant" rights. It recognizes rights already and irrevocably held forever by the people themselves (individuals), and forbids government from trampling on them. We have a right to keep and bear arms regardless of whether the Second Amendment exists or not! All Article Two guarantees is that we shouldn't have to defend that right against "our" federal government. We've seen that simple guarantee erode, though, haven't we?
The real reason for gun ownership is to protect the individual from the State, whether it be an invading State from accross the seas or a domestic State grown tyrannical and oppressive. The goal of total, repressive confiscation is clear in the subtle, shifting arguments of the anti-gun forces. When handguns were the target, they clamored prohibition because handguns were not militia-type weapons protected by the Second Amendment. Now they cry for assault rifle bans because "mere citizens" have no business possessing "military-style" weapons!
These eager confiscators rightly point out that assault rifles, handguns, and indeed all "weapons" have only one purpose: to kill. Again they speak a truth, but only partially. The unasked question is, "To kill whom? And under what circumstances?" The answer is, "To kill any who attempt to rob, maim, rape, or kill us." Even that answer, though, does not fully express the most important reason for gun ownership. Only a small number of people are actually touched by criminal violence. The State, though, touches each and every one of us every hour of every day. People in government seek to tax our earnings to pay for their whims, to draft our children to fight in wars they start, to regulate and interfere with our lives out of pure love of power and their desire to wield it. They have become as tyrannical as any Tory redcoat, Soviet Commissar, or Nazi Gestapo. And they are coming to steal your last line of defense against them. Will you meekly obey?
When any law against guns is passed, how is it backed up? How will the State remove banned weapons from private hands? How will agents of the State disarm the citizenry? Why, by the use of guns, of course! This contradiction has never bothered statists. Why are handguns and assault rifles evil and wicked in the hands of private citizens, yet perfectly fine in the hands of employees of the State? If this is truly "government by the people" why do we see the servants disarming their masters by force? What do they fear from us, if theirs is a legitimate, benevolent government? If the State does not seek to control us, why does it want us disarmed?
The usual answer--stripped of equivocation--is that "mere citizens" are like half-witted children, incapable of safely handling "dangerous" commodities such as weapons or explosives or medicines or information. And only when some half-witted children pass a civil service exam or are elected by other halfwits to work for the wise and benevolent State do they magically become smart and honest and trustworthy enough to carry weapons and decide whom shall be "allowed" to possess guns and what sort of design, shape, or weight such weapons shall be.
Sounds pretty condescending and paternalistic, doesn't it? That's how they view us. Sheep for the shearing at tax time, cannon fodder during war time, and dangerous idiots the rest of the time.
And they dare ask us to obey their decrees?
What many gun owners refuse to face, usually by saying "it can't happen in America," is that the government can and does create new classes of criminals with the mere stroke of a pen. In 1919, Prohibition turns millions of people overnight from sociable drinkers to Enemies Of The State. The victimless crime of ingesting alcohol turned neighborly, peaceful people into fair game for imprisonment, fines, and seizure of property. Some fought back, often with simple shotguns against "revenooers" armed with assault rifles (the Thompson sub-machine gun) in a modern version of the Whiskey Rebellion. The Prohibition amendment created crime by definition. If, tommorow, smoking or drinking coffee or owning a book were declared illegal, the State would suddenly point to a new "criminal underworld" of massive proportions. In the eyes of the State they would become "a new breed of criminal" to be weeded out of society and thrown into prisons. So it is with any prohibition of popular activities, including gun ownership.
Let's face it--police respond faster to calls from Beverly Hills than they do to calls from Watts. And the rich can afford armed guards, to boot! When so-called Saturday Night Specials are banned, does it affect those who can spend hundreds on a fine pistol? No. Does it prevent criminals from stealing whatever weapon they want or buying it on the black market? No. The only people harmed by a "cheap handgun" ban are the honest poor who have hardly enough money to feed their children, let alone defend them from inner-city marauders. Any form of gun control disarms those least able to defend themselves. And what good is a 15 day waiting period to someone who is threatened by an armed criminal coming by tonight? When one perceives a threat, one should be able to aquire protection immediately.
The Gun Control Act of 1968 was rammed down the throats of the American public, blatantly exploiting then-current fears of gun-toting black rioters by implying that the law would help to disarm American Blacks, other minorities, and all dissenters at a time of civil upheaval. to paraphrase a popular slogan, "If the government does not trust minorities with guns, minorities cannot trust government." Ask any Native American.
In a mirror image case 20 years later, assault rifle bans are being ramrodded through legislatures by appealing to fears that gun-toting white racists are on the loose.
The real and only purpose of gun control is to disarm the innocent and the peaceful, of whatever race, creed, or social status.
The same goes for women. Police and purported feminists urge women to resist rape with fists, fingernails, keyrings, and screams. But why should any woman allow an assailant to get within arms length of her? Why don't Women's Rights activists in or out of government reveal the most effective way for a woman to defend herself: to buy a gun and learn to use it? The truth is, they want women to feel weak and perpetually threatened so that they will beg the State for protection. A woman standing proud, armed, and fearless is the last thing most self-proclaimed "feminists" want (since that would undercut their perverse longing for a huge paternalistic government!)
How can people who work for or worship the State--statists--point to the murder of five children in a schoolyard or twenty people in a restaurant and claim that as sufficient reason to disarm tens of millions of Americans? Are they so presumptuous as to suggest that we are capable of such violent madness? Perhaps there is a degree of psychological projection going on here: statists feel within themselves the urge to kill and project it onto the people they fear the most--us, the victims of the State. For while tens of millions of people own guns, only a minuscule fraction ever use those guns to aggress against others. Every State, however has guns and even more powerful and terrifying weapons in its clutches and every State has used them, will use them, and are using them to murder hundreds, thousands, and millions of innocent, unarmed people.
How can the insane mind of a Patrick Purdy ever dream of matching the death toll of the most minor skirmish in the smallest of wars or "police actions?" The murder of five innocent children is heart-rendingly tragic, but how many thousands of innocent children were roasted in Hiroshima and Nagasaki? How many unarmed, peaceful, young people were slaughtered in Tienanamen Square? How many women, children, and old people have been shot by the bullets of "their own" government in Vietnam, Cambodia, Angola, Nicaragua, El Salvador, India, Israel, Afghanistan, Tibet, Argentina, Libya, Ireland, Russia, South Africa, Chile, Pakistan, Zimbabwe, Iran, and on and on and on for every State you can name, even "our" United States. For statists to use the "mass murder" of a few people as an excuse to disarm Americans when the State is the largest, bloodiest, longest-lived institution of mass-murder in all of history is appallingly hypocritical. Do we owe allegiance to the apologists for such atrocities? NEVER!
Private ownership of weaponry is the last defense against all tyranny, foreign and domestic. The thought that there might come a time when peaceable gun owners (even members of the patriotic NRA) must take arms against an American Li Peng commanding the local police and the US military is anathema to nearly everyone. The possibility, however, must be faced. A lot of American colonists were horrified at the thought of defending themselves against "their" king's army, too.
Some say that the Constitution "granted" the right to keep and bear arms to provide for a "well-regulated militia." Since we have a standing army, the argument goes, civilians no longer need to own guns. Yet that amendment was written precisely because the British used that exact argument in their attempts (from 1768 to 1777) to disarm the colonists. Americans detested the standing armies of the British government and knew that civilian-based defense was the ultimate, perhaps the only protection against any threat to liberty, whether from London, Moscow, or Washington, D.C.
When the day comes (and it will, if we don't raise our voices in protest now) that the Imperial State commands its subjects (that's how they view you and me, regardless of what they say) to turn in our weapons, what will we do? Make no mistake--if people refuse to surrender or destroy their weapons, they will be dealt with by heavily armed police; they will be imprisoned, fined, perhaps even shot if they try to defend their Constitutional--nay, their human--rights.
Of whom should we be more wary--invading troops whose rule we would never sanction, or "our own" government, to which most of us grant some legitimacy and which is right here, right now, all around us? Perhaps paraphrasing a parent's question will help provide an answer: If the State passed a law telling you to jump off a cliff, would you? No fair answering that "good, pure, sober, honest politicians wouldn't let that happen." With guns, it is happening right now.
And when that friendly cop on the beat (whom most gun owners exalt as a good man just doing his job and who may even be a fellow NRA member!) comes around to your house, he will come armed with "good government" handguns and assault rifles. "Sorry pal," he'll say, "but the law is the law."
That possibility is something many gun owners--staunch defenders of law and order and supporters of local police--refuse to face. They blank out the fact that even--perhaps especially--in America, they may have to choose between owning their guns and facing the full implication of the Declaration of Independence,
"...that, whenever any form of government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the right of the people to alter or abolish it..."
Some would rather surrender meekly to the State, giving up their last shred of defense against tyranny, rather than face that choice. But if they do surrender their firepower, the choice will have been made. And it won't matter whether our new masters speak Russian, Chinese, Japanese, English, or American Bureaucratese. They will be our masters nonetheless.
First of all, keep your guns! Do not turn them in just because some law is passed ordering you to do so. That's just what they want--sheeplike compliance. you are not a criminal. Don't let the State treat you like one. The colonists who turned in their weapons to their Tory town governments soon learned the folly of their actions. Any government that outlaws gun ownership is an outlaw government! It is no more necessary to obey an oppressive, tyrannical State than it is to obey any thief who demands that you turn over your property under threat of death. We know the free person's answer to such a demand. So does the State. That is why statists seek to browbeat us into disarming without a fight. They need the sanction of the victim. They cannot hope to disarm us by force. That would tip their hand and guarantee a revolution. But by stealth, instilled guilt, and appeals to our peaceful, law-abiding natures will they attempt to expropriate our only defense against their continued and increasing predations.
Resist the urge to obey the edicts of self-proclaimed rulers. Don't walk timidly into a concentration camp filled with once-free men and women. Decry with every fiber of your being this trampling of our fundamental human rights!
Every law restricting free, immediate access to firearms is a direct attack on individual freedom. The course of action is up to you. Demand the repeal of all such laws or ignore them with impunity. But never accept them as legitimate restraints upon your liberty. Nothing legitimate can issue from the pen of tyrants.