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Safer Streets 2011: Time for gun owners and non-gun owners to unite.

I can imagine a political cartoon where a gun owner, denoted by a sidearm on his hip, is turning his back on a non-gun owner who is denoted by some sort of political demonstration sign on anything but second amendment politics. The non-gun owner's caption balloon shows his thought of thinking that gun owners are single-minded nuts at the same time the gun owner's caption shows his thoughts that the other one is a nut. Both are for freedom, but they are not united.

Gun owners I know are liberty savvy, they know their constitution and case law when it comes to second amendment and other liberties, but they have not seen the potential in getting together with others whose non-armed citizen rights are equally disrespected.

The right-to-life activists cannot imagine the genius of the armed citizen as a safeguard of the right to life and as safeguard of all our rights, and think of second amendment activists as ..well, single-issue voters.

The privacy advocates are on top of everything Privacy - all privacy all the time - from RFID Chips to the negligent security of credit histories to hackers to turtle-pace Congress.

Christians are fractured on second amendment, as I have been a guest on Christian Radio where our host was pro-second amendment, while many others cannot see a connection between their freedoms and the ubiquitous armed citizen. Utah is largely Latter Day Saints, and the whole state of Utah is right-to-carry.

Still, the marriage and family activists have not connected with the gun owners any more than the privacy activists have joined up with the education reform crowd. The TEA Party is close for being inclusive, but the entire electorate needs to see how adhering to a totality of values will restore safeguards of our sovereignty.  

The fact is that our sovereignty is best protected by an aggregate of values, as it is the coherence and cohesion of all our values system as one that works best on one important ground: with an aggregate of values intact as one people, it would be politically silly even to suggest what has been suggested over the decades. It would never be tolerated.

Why not? Because up until now, gun regulation has not affected marriage and family activists, and RFID Chips have not been of interest to gun owners. It is the embodiment of the concept of "When they came for the Catholics, I did not speak out, because I was not Catholic."

This is why second amendment values need to be brought to non-gun owners for the realization that non-gun owners share the same values of independence and simply were never noticed as allies before.

They're noticing now. With a new Congress next month, they'd better hurry. The kind of person who works without a net and prefers it is the kind of person who is very clear on why he or she must own a gun. It's delightfully more complex that this, and most satisfying when non-gun owners get it that it isn't about guns, but about several things non-gun owners want every bit as much as gun owners do.

This is why I did not write a gun book, I wrote a liberty book. Educating the rest of the adult electorate on second amendment freedoms as a safeguard won't be talking about guns, but about safer streets and smaller government, actually. It won'thappen, really, until privacy, education, business and second amendment all hook up.

As the nation is divided, or more precisely, preoccupied with single issues, the result is that groups are issue-driven and goal-driven rather that unity-driven as the one and only real safeguard of the nation: namely, our insistence that our sovereignty be respected in all things. Driving constituents to go for one issue only will only divide the public and stall our self-rule. The best way to unwind this is to clarify that what actually safeguards our liberty and sovereignty best will be an aggregate of values we adhere to, not a series of loose causes, some of which may be respected.

This means the welcome of gun owners into the fold of what everyone wants. Not a welcome of guns, but of greater numbers of liberty oriented allies who will listen to non-second amendment issues as much as they will be speaking about second amendment connections to other freedoms.

The privacy advocates need to listen to the right-to-life people, and the marriage and family people need to be listening to the second amendment people. We all want the same thing and have been disparate for too long.

It's time to get together. Talking among the liberty and freedom advocates of all issues and learning how the loss of one right affects all the others is just as important as talking to the incoming Congress. It's time to stop asking Congress how it feels about the second amendment and tell them what we expect in the way of marriage and family, privacy, banking, currency, world affairs, and, of course, second amendment.

With one voice. An e pluribus unum voice.

There is a lot to understand about what the second amendment is really all about in the 21st century, and the best way to begin is to know that it is really a mainstream value.

Be sure to register for my Safer Streets Newsletter and Commentary: every edition is filled with a lineup of liberty analysis as it relates to a totality of sovereignty values.


Safer Streets 2010 isn't about guns, it is about the path back to safer streets and smaller government. Go to


  • Anonymous 4 years ago

    Actually, the quote begins "When they came for the Jews, I didn't speak up because I was not a Jew."

  • Luis 4 years ago

    Anonymous, Martin Niemoller's famous observation does indeed start with the Jews. It then goes on to mention communists, Catholics, Protestants, (I believe) union workers, and ends up with Niemoller himself. ('When they came for me...")

  • Anonymous 4 years ago

    Luis -- you are correct sir, but I just found it odd that Mr. Longnecker selectively quoted from Niemoller. While many good Christians were persecuted and killed by the Nazis, the focus was obviously on the Jews and Niemoller was moved to make the observation because of Nazi persecution of Jews, not Catholics.

  • Mama Liberty 4 years ago

    some great ideas here, John, but oversimplified, I'm afraid. Yes, some of these "single issue" groups indeed want liberty and justice for all. And many do NOT. Many of them want to use the power of government and "democracy" to force their agenda and will on others, regardless of their rhetoric.

    There will always be more than "one voice."

    Choose your friends wisely. Choose your enemies even more carefully.

  • Anonymous Archer 4 years ago

    Excellent article, John, as always.

    Indeed, in the words of a famous patriot: "We must all hang together, or assuredly we shall all hang separately."

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