The following in response to some questions raised on Facebook about guns:
I will address your questions below, but first, a little background.
The whole Target controversy revolves around the fact that Texas law prohibits the Open Carry of handguns, while authorizing Concealed Carry, if one has a permit issued by Texas or any state Texas recognizes. As a means of attempting to get Open Carry of handguns legalized in Texas (as it is in Tennessee), some individuals made the decision (erroneous, I believe) to Open Carry long arms into some businesses. This action precipitated some businesses to articulate bans on any carry, e.g. Starbucks, Chipotle and Target, and Open Carry, e.g. Chili’s.
Now, to your questions - -
Are we afraid of shoppers? Generally speaking, those who carry defensive firearms are not afraid of any particular person, but are aware of certain undeniable facts:
- There are bad people in this world who will kill you for your pocket change; or just for the thrill of doing it..
- Police officers will usually rush to the scene of a crime, but no matter how quickly they get there, the event is almost certainly complete by the time they arrive.
- In cases of multiple victims, the perpetrators don’t quit until they run out of ammo or a good guy arrives with a gun. If you were in a store, and someone came in and started shooting indiscriminately, would you prefer, a) that we wait for the police, or b) that a citizen with a legally carried gun attempt to stop the carnage.
You state a fear of the psychologically unstable with guns. I suppose practically all of us do. Yet, even the most unstable of them, due to public policies set in place years ago, are allowed to walk the streets. The answer is not to disarm all the good guys in hopes of disarming the unstable.
You state you grew up in an area where you lost a number of friends in knife fights but mostly gunfire. You don’t mention the circumstances surrounding these deaths. Were there other factors such as alcohol or drugs? Were any of these justifiable homicides. You must understand that Use of Force is both moral and legal, when faced with violent, unlawful aggression.
You state, “But, it was his (Chris’s) killer's right! Right?” That depends on the totality of circumstances. Was the killer in such a position that he believed he would have suffered grave bodily injury or death had he not acted in self defense? Then, yes, it was his right. On the other hand, if he did not have a clear articulable reason, then no, it was not his right.
You state, “ I have the right to defend my castle and hunt if I so desire but we never used ak's or machine guns. It spoils the meat.” Are you inferring that you don’t have the right to defend your person after you cross the threshold? All creatures that are able to perceive a threat will take action to mitigate that threat. You would ask no one’s permission as a mother of a young child, to defend that child from harm. It is your natural right. History has proven that violent offenders will be armed, and use those arms without mercy against the rest of us. There is no logical reason to impose the doctrine of prior restraint and deny the good person the means to defend against that violent person.
If you are talking about the AK’s the people have carried into stores, yes, that was a bad idea for ever so many reasons. Machine guns, on the other hand, are extremely expensive, and consequently reside mostly in the homes of wealthy and/or high income individuals. Joe Sixpack might dream of having a machine gun, but Dr. Good Hands is the guy with $30,000 Tommy Gun in his safe.
You wonder what the Founding Fathers would say about machine guns?
The Founding Fathers, when they ratified the Bill of Rights, had just won a bloody war against the British Army, the mightiest armed force on earth at the time. They had no way of knowing all the technology that would appear in the next century. They couldn't have known about the communications abilities coming down the pike, the means of transportation, or the weaponry yet to be invented.
But, they understood human nature. They understood despotism. They had a great fear of a standing Army. They understood the need for the militia, and the need for the militia to be well armed. Just 442 days before the Declaration of Independence, British troops had marched on Concord and Lexington, in an attempt to disarm the colonists.
We could rephrase the question to ask, what did the Founding Fathers have to say about guns? Here are a few quotes from them, with thanks to Buckeye Firearms for the compilation:
"Arms in the hands of citizens may be used at individual discretion in private self defense." - John Adams
"The Constitution of most of our states (and of the United States) assert that all power is inherent in the people; that they may exercise it by themselves; that it is their right and duty to be at all times armed." - Thomas Jefferson
"To disarm the people is the most effectual way to enslave them." - George Mason
"I ask sir, what is the militia? It is the whole people except for a few politicians." - George Mason
"Before a standing army can rule, the people must be disarmed, as they are in almost every country in Europe." - Noah Webster
"Americans have the right and advantage of being armed, unlike the people of other countries, whose leaders are afraid to trust them with arms." - James Madison
"The right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed. A well regulated militia, composed of the body of the people, trained to arms, is the best and most natural defense of a free country." - James Madison
"To preserve liberty, it is essential that the whole body of the people always possess arms, and be taught alike, especially when young, how to use them." - Richard Henry Lee
"Guard with jealous attention the public liberty. Suspect everyone who approaches that jewel. Unfortunately, nothing will preserve it but downright force. Whenever you give up that force, you are ruined.... The great object is that every man be armed. Everyone who is able might have a gun." - Patrick Henry
"This may be considered as the true palladium of liberty.... The right of self defense is the first law of nature: in most governments it has been the study of rulers to confine this right within the narrowest limits possible. Wherever standing armies are kept up, and the right of the people to keep and bear arms is, under any color or pretext whatsoever, prohibited, liberty, if not already annihilated, is on the brink of destruction." - St. George Tucker
"... arms ... discourage and keep the invader and plunderer in awe, and preserve order in the world as well as property.... Horrid mischief would ensue were (the law-abiding) deprived the use of them." - Thomas Paine
"The Constitution shall never be construed to prevent the people of the United States who are peaceable citizens from keeping their own arms." - Samuel Adams
In summary, people carry guns into businesses, in their vehicles, into churches, and into parks every day. Most of them will never need a gun. But when one is needed, it is needed very very badly. Nothing else will do. Why else would the police always carry them?
Dr. John Lott has done extensive, unrefuted firearms research, and over and over again, his book title, More Guns, Less Crime, has been proven factual.
Yet the ‘denier’, whether legislator, mayor, governor, or bureaucrat, is looking into their crystal ball and predicting that you will not need to defend yourself, as they travel around with armed guards, who are often paid with taxpayer money. This very denial of your right to an effective means to self preservation is absolutely immoral.
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A prudent person foresees danger and takes precautions. The simpleton goes blindly on and suffers the consequences. Proverbs 22:3 (NLT)
Disclaimer: The information and ideas presented in this column are provided for informational purposes only. Firearms, like cars, kitchen knives and life itself all can be dangerous. You should get professional training as part of any plan to use firearms for any purpose. I have made a reasonable, good-faith effort to assure that the content of this column is accurate. I have no control over what you do, and specifically accept no responsibility for anything you do as a result of reading my columns. Any action or lack of action on your part is strictly your responsibility.