I’m a casual gun owner.
I don’t own a handgun, because I don’t need it. Most of my guns are long arms inherited from family. Until recently, only one was military in any form – a Korean War era M1 Garand – for which I have several cans of military surplus ammunition. I also have some shotguns, of various gages.
I believe in gun rights, and I have a perfectly clear understanding of what the founding fathers intended for gun rights. They were big fans of “inalienable rights,” the chief of which is the right to defend yourself from others who might want to take those rights.
They were clear that you need the tools to fight back against someone who might take your rights, that’s the fundamental basis of the second amendment. It was not the right to hunt squirrels with muskets – it was a hedge against tyranny. The tools may change, but the right stays the same.
So, when you present this very simple, very straight forward position to gun control and seizure advocates, their response always takes one of two forms:
1. But you can’t win against the government! They have bigger guns! And tanks! Do you need a tank? Where do you draw the line?
This is relatively easy to rebut. The point is not to win, the point is make the prospect of tyranny so bloody that nobody would try it. It’s a deterrent.
The location where the line is currently drawn works as deterrent. Exhibit A: a relatively small number of Afghanis did pretty well with some Kalashnikovs.
2. But tyranny can never happen here! We have democracy!
Now this is much tougher to rebut, because the discussion moves into completely hypothetical territory. It all comes down to how well you trust the political infrastructure of the country to do its job. If they’re right, and tyranny can’t ever happen here, do we really need the 2nd Amendment? Maybe private citizens don’t need guns. At that point the argument can’t be resolved, because different people have different levels of trust in the system.
Then 2016 happened
Clinton’s strongest argument against Trump, the one she pushed to the very end (one that is still being pushed by the left today) was “Trump=Hitler,” and “Trump will cause WW3,” and “we can’t trust Trump with Nuclear Launch Codes” etc.
Slate had an entire section devoted to “the Trump Apocalypse.” I saw countless political cartoons where people are huddling over fires in destroyed wastelands talking about “if they only had voted for Hillary.” All just different ways to repackage the message that Trump is a tyrant.
This rhetoric has obviously taken hold, as violence continues to erupt on the left in the wake of the election: there have been four communist riots in Berkeley alone, as of the date of this piece.
Now, let’s pretend that the Democrats not only believe this rhetoric, but let’s further pretend that it’s completely and totally true. Is this not the exact case for the private ownership of tools such as an AR-15? If gun ownership is a hedge against tyranny, is this not the exact reason to keep an AR-15 and a few cases of ammunition in your attic?
Now, let’s have a little fun and look deeper into the DNC’s pied piper operation.
The Podesta emails (released by WikiLeaks) proved that Hillary’s campaign strategized about trying to manipulate the media into promoting Trump as the Republican nominee. Trump certainly got all the air time during the Republican primary, to the chagrin of many of his Republican opponents.
Further, Bill Clinton himself spoke to Trump after this Podesta/DNC strategy meeting, before Trump announced his candidacy, to discuss the political landscape, and Trump declared his campaign soon after. This all but confirms the Democrat’s “pied piper” strategy of planting Trump as the man Hillary would run against.
Yes, I realize the Republicans still had to vote for him, but that’s completely beside my point.
Here is my point: If we take the Democrats’ claims about Trump’s tyranny completely at face value, then they were willing to promote a tyrant, and roll the dice on tyranny, to improve their odds of winning an election.
This is the only rational, reasonable, conclusion that can be drawn from fully believing the Democrats’ own rhetoric.
Do I believe that Trump is Hitler? Doubtful. He’s probably just a glorified used car salesman that’s happened to land in the presidency due to one of the greatest political bungles in American history; a bungle intentionally cooked up by one of history’s worst candidates, no less.
But that’s certainly no way to convince me “it’ll never happen here,” quite the opposite. What it says to me, very clearly, is that the political machinery in America absolutely could produce a tyrant.
After Hillary inadvertently made such a strikingly clear argument, I built a rifle. I named it Hillary.
* Courtney Camp is a business owner in the southeastern US, who’s first submission to Being Libertarian coincides with the arrival of a couple of tax stamps.
Latest posts by Being Libertarian (see all)
- Tournament Style Election: A Way to End the Red and Blue Oligarchy - January 22, 2018
- Empowerment Over Argument - January 17, 2018
- Big Government: The Story of Moral Failure - January 11, 2018