“I think the norms have really
changed in terms of, what you can do
to somebody against their will….”
Interview on PBS NewsHour
The Gun Culture’s Dirty Little Secret
by L. Neil Smith
Attribute to L. Neil Smith’s The Libertarian Enterprise
Does the United States Constitution mean what it says? Does it say what it means? Was it written as some kind of obscure code that can only be interpreted into English by individuals with special education and credentials? Or was it written as the “operating system” for a free society, by and for ordinary men, women, and children, and intended to be read and understood by everyone?
Does not the insane, relentless struggle, year after year, decade after decade, excuse after lame excuse, to write certain provisions out of the Constitution that those in authority don’t really approve of, comprise that “long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same object, evincing a design to reduce them (meaning you and me) under absolute despotism” that Thomas Jefferson warned us about in The Declaration of Independence?
As you probably expected, I’m writing here of the Second Article of the Bill of Rights, which is the highest law of the land: “A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.”
Look up the definition of “infringe”. It’s what “progressives” call “gradualism.”
Individuals capable of reading history are aware that “well-regulated” has nothing to do with “laws governing the conduct of … ”. It refers to the fact that, in the eighteenth century, when the Second Amendment was written, firearms were manufactured by hand, and varied from one another in their internal dimensions. Each gun was supplied with its own bullet mold, appropriate to its bore diameter, which cast bullets (round lead balls), whose dimensions didn’t match those of any other weapon. This was no small matter, applied to supplying a large body of armed men charged with protecting their families and property from “enemies, foreign and domestic”. The problem wasn’t really solved until the War Between the States.
The term “well regulated” referred to the idea of making weapons—and supplying ammunition for them—of uniform dimensions. It had nothing to do with controlling the behavior of individuals who own, or want to own, guns. In other words, the colonial militias desired that all their balls to be of the same size. Strangely egalitarian, you may think. Modern ammunition manufacturing has made that dream come true.
Similarly, laws written in the first part of the twentieth century, to make the ownership or possession of “fully automatic” weapons or “machine guns” illegal or hopelessly burdensome had nothing to do with their supposed use by gangsters in the 1920s, as invariably illustrated by highly fictionalized movie versions of the infamous 1929 “St. Valentine’s Day Massacre”, presented by mass media fully as corrupt as they are today. There are even some historians who believe it was committed by the Chicago police.
Wikipedia’s primarily Marxist interpretation of phenomena and events makes it difficult to determine what was really going on back then, but the election of Franklin Delano Roosevelt was supposedly “transfomative” (for which read “socialist”), the same way Barack H. Obama’s was. There had already been one attempt, in 1932, to assassinate the Democrat President-Elect, and a veterans’ “Bonus Expeditionary Force”, several tens of thousands strong, who marched on Washington D.C., and had to be put down brutally by the U.S. Army. Roosevelt intended to seize control of American manufacturing and agriculture, altering the composition of the United States Supreme Court in order to do it. In 1933, supposedly, a number of businessmen, apparently from Delaware, decided to stop him.
To accomplish this, they recruited a large number of World War I veterans, promising to arm them with Remington weapons and DuPont ammunition. To lead them, they recruited Marine Corps major general Smedley Darlington Butler, the highest-ranking Marine officer and one of only two living individuals to win a pair of Congressional Medals of Honor. Unfortunately for the businessmen, Butler was an enthusiastic leftist who promptly turned them in—although nobody was ever prosecuted, and it’s said that Roosevelt changed many of his more socialist cabinet appointments before taking office.
When Roosevelt’s wacky collectivist economic policies failed to get America out of the Great Depression (which had been caused by wacky collectivist economic policies in the first place), the Second World War he helped to start killed 60,000,000 people. How much harder was it to organize and carry out “a little revolution” as Jefferson prescribed, that might have prevented World War II and saved those lives, because Roosevelt had tampered with the Second Amendment by passing the 1934 National Firearms Act which illegally put automatic weaponry—and adequate protection from power-hungry socialists like Roosevelt—beyond reach of the average individual?
(Similarly, if Germans—especially Jewish Germans—had been better armed, we might never have heard of Adolf Hitler. They don’t call gun control “victim disarmament” for nothing.)
Here’s the dirty little secret even the “good guys” are keeping from you, the truth that most pro-gun organizations lack the gonads to express and defend. Since those days in the 1930s, not a single gun law in this country, at any level, federal, state, county, or municipal, is legal, consistent with the original intentions of the Founding Fathers, or effective in preventing crime. To be brief, in the United States, laws against automatic weapons, semi-automatics, “bump stocks”, silencers, and so on, are themselves illegal. Both sides, Democrats and Republicans alike, deeply fear ordinary people and will do absolutely anything they can to avoid the real solution to problems like school shootings—which is to arm everybody, even responsible kiddies—and kill the shooters as quickly and neatly as possible. Instead, with the encouragement of the putrescently corrupt mass media, we customarily wallow around obscenely in the fetid insides of the murderers’ minds and suffer a progressive loss of our rights with each and every one who strikes.
The Second Amendment does not limit the right to keep and bear arms to adults, or to those individuals that everybody agrees are not crazy, a subjective judgment at best. (Democrats think that anybody who voted for Donald Trump is crazy, and they will eventually try to use it to disarm us all.) The solution to the problem is guns in the hands of everybody, crazy or not.
Likewise, when an individual is released from incarceration, his need for self-defense does not diminish and his rights—including his Second Amendment rights—must be restored immediately, or else the “corrections” system is exposed as the dirty joke it is.
Your rights, under the First, Third, Fourth, Fifth, Sixth, Seventh, Eighth, Ninth, or Tenth Amendments (let alone the Thirteenth, which outlaws slavery) are no more secure from government abuse than your rights under the Second. Thomas Jefferson wrote, “Let your gun therefore be the constant companion of your walks,” although the viciously biased Snopes claims he didn’t. (Leftists like Snopes hate, loathe, and despise Thomas Jefferson.) He also wrote that “No man shall be debarred the use of arms.” Any politician, bureaucrat, or policeman—Democrat or Republican—who ever advocated, introduced, passed, or enforced a gun control law of any kind is a criminal and must be treated as such.
Let us begin today, putting them in prison where they belong.
Award-winning novelist and essayist L. Neil Smith is a retired gunsmith, Publisher and Senior Columnist of L. Neil Smith’s The Libertarian Enterprise and the author of over thirty books. Look him up on Google, Wikipedia, and Amazon.com. He is available, at professional rates, to write columns, articles, and speeches for your organization, event, or publication, fiercely defending your rights, as he has done since the mid-1960s. His writings (and e-mail address) may also be found at L. Neil Smith’s The Libertarian Enterprise, at JPFO.org or at https://www.patreon.com/lneilsmith, to which you can contribute, directly. His many books and those of other pro-gun libertarians may be found (and ordered) at L. Neil SmithΓÇÖs THE LIBERTARIAN ENTERPRISE “Free Radical Book Store” The preceding essay was originally prepared for and appeared in L. Neil SmithΓÇÖs THE LIBERTARIAN ENTERPRISE. Use it to fight the continuing war against tyranny.
My Books So Far
Was that worth reading?
Then why not:
This site may receive compensation if a product is purchased
through one of our partner or affiliate referral links. You
already know that, of course, but this is part of the FTC Disclosure
Policy found here. (Warning: this is a 2,359,896-byte 53-page PDF file!)