Tuesday, January 15, 2013

The anger of a nation aroused

Those who've read this blog over the years, and who know me personally, will be aware that I'm not an extremist.  I tend to be centrist in many of my views, with a conservative or classical-Liberal overtone, but I'm not 'out there' at one extreme or the other.  I also tend to avoid those who are 'out there', as I find the notoriety they attract tends to be contagious.

There are some voices in the pro-Second Amendment, firearms-enthusiast community that I find deeply disturbing.  These include, for example, instructors such as James Yeager of Tactical Response, who's got himself into all sorts of hot water over the years with his outlandish, patently unsafe methods of instruction, and who most recently has had his concealed carry permit suspended thanks to an outburst he placed on YouTube.  It was so 'out there' that it received international attention.  He's since apologized, but it's too late - his rantings have become precisely the sort of 'ammunition' the anti-gunners want in their attempts to demonize all of us as irresponsible hotheads.  Thanks for nothing, Mr. Yeager!

They also include the so-called 'Three Percenters', who tend to be vociferous in their condemnation of any and all restrictions on firearms ownership, carry and use.  (Linoge has written trenchantly about them, and to some extent - but not entirely - I agree with his perspective.)  They appear to completely ignore the long-standing legal position that reasonable regulation of a right does not equate to its denial or abrogation.  (That's the principle underlying the often-cited distinction that the right to freedom of speech does not give one the right to shout "Fire!" in a crowded theater, when there's no fire burning.)  Some states take that to extremes, of course (in particular New York, New Jersey, California, etc.).  Their 'regulation' of firearms rights is so extensive as to arguably amount to a violation of those rights;  but unless and until our legal system agrees with that position (and we are, after all, a nation of laws), we have to accept the status quo.  If we don't, we literally make ourselves 'outlaws' in the true sense of that term - we are outside the law.

However, what happens when the entire nation is subject to a violation of the Second Amendment?  This is what many, including myself, fear may happen tomorrow when President Obama announces new gun control measures.  As I pointed out a couple of days ago, they're likely to have everything to do with 'control', but of the people, not of guns.  New York's just-passed gun control legislation is a classic example of this reality.  It's already been adequately analyzed by others, so I won't repeat the exercise here.  I expect something similarly drastic from President Obama.

There comes a time when one has no choice but to take a stand for one's beliefs.  If you won't do that - if you don't hold any beliefs or principles strongly enough to be willing to stand up for them, to say "Thus far and no further" - you're pitiful.  You're no longer a free human being.  You're a sheep, to be shoved around with the flock by those who want to herd you, sheared of whatever assets you have that are valuable to them, and eventually treated as food to be consumed.  I'm not a sheep, and most of my friends and acquaintances aren't either.  We're not going to be treated as a flock to be herded, particularly in the area of gun control.

I'm not advocating violent revolution;  but others, such as Mr. Yeager, are.  Matt Bracken has put up a blunt warning to all law enforcement officers and agents, making it crystal clear that there are those who will resist the registration and/or confiscation of their weapons by any and all means necessary, up to and including the use of lethal force.  He's not alone in sounding the alarm.  A useful series of links to more such articles may be found here.

I fear we stand at a watershed moment in US politics.  If President Obama attempts to usurp the authority of the Constitution, and intrude on the 'turf' of the legislative branch, by means of executive orders, to impose gun control measures that are unacceptable to many in the country, I believe he will have crossed a line from which it will be difficult to turn back.  I strongly encourage political mobilization and resistance, as I wrote last week, but there are those who will not be satisfied with political resistance alone.

I hope and pray it's not too late for both sides in this debate to reconsider, before taking steps that will perhaps be irrevocable . . . but I fear it may well be too late.  Extremists - the gun controllers and President Obama on one side, and gun rights fanatics on the other - have staked out their positions and show no signs of being willing to back down.

Who will fire the first shot at Fort Sumter this time?



Wraith said...

Regardless of who wins, many will lose. No sane person wants what's coming, but just because no one wants a hurricane to destroy their town, doesn't mean it'll change course one iota.

We can only pray that somehow, the light of freedom survives in some form, or it'll be a very long, dark time for humanity.

God be with us...we'll need Him.

JimmyT said...

Well, if there is even one functional “ball” left on all of the Republicans in congress or even a semi-hard backbone one of them will stand up and cry foul. They should be the first to run to the nearest court and cry infringement of the separation of powers. I will not be holding my breath.

One other tactic that should have been applied that could very well have tamped down the administration’s efforts in this arena (and most likely over the Budget deal and Debit talks) would be a full court press on Benghazi and Fast and Furious. Maybe if Watergate style hearings were happening the Administration would be too busy dodging subpoenas and excusing officials from testimony to be out stealing our rights. But then again, it means you have to have Republicans with a set hanging or a stiff back. I have not seen any of those so far this term.

BT: Jimmy T sends (from the CZ)

Jess said...

I think the debate is over. The Second Amendment is clear on the right to keep and bear arms without infringement. How this is settled will soon be known.

Personally, I think the progressive power play was a huge mistake and they'll pay dearly, which is good.

Wayne Conrad said...

I like the example set by our founding fathers: Endure until endurance is no longer possible, and only then fight. The founders endured countless insults to their liberty. They fought the political fight as hard as it could possibly be fought. Only when there was no alternative did they go to arms.

No matter how awful politics is, how expensive, how time consuming, how disagreeable, how difficult, war is much worse in every way. I think it was you, Peter, who once said that war is a dead baby lying the gutter. It ain't "Red Dawn." It ain't a Fourth of July parade. Anyone calling for war who is not also playing full press politics is a mere agitator, not a patriot.

The only question for any man is how much can be endured before even the awfulness of war seems better.

Old NFO said...

Personally, I believe the first 'shot' will be a negligent discharge...

Crucis said...

I'm just as concerned. I fear another civil war and we seem to irrevocably step closer every day. Many LEOs and Sheriffs outside metro areas are just as concerned. Wyoming, Texas, now Missouri have bills on the floor of their legislatures making enforcement of any EOs and regulations on more gun control a felony.

I watch the trends, cultural and political and the resulting split in the country. The last election proved "they" have more votes than we do. What is next? A flying squad of Federal agents falling on some gunowner who refused to comply with some new edict? Inevitably there will be deaths and the split will broaden.

I don't know what will happen. Our remaining time is dwindling and I'm coming to believe we only have months, not years, to resolve the issue peacefully...if we can.

trailbee said...

We are watching the slow disintegration of our Constitution. It is this result we are trying to avert. We also know that the ultimate goal of this WH and supporters is total personal disarmament. Surely a true disaster for US.
The gap in this country is slowly widening, with one section not fully realizing what is at stake, being led by the nose down the garden path by dedicated Destructionists. Ignorance truly is bliss.

Michael said...

I find myself at the same crossroads. There was time I would get calls fromt he NRA to give a donation to help keep gun banning politicians from passing anti-gun laws through Congress and I would give one. But now I am tired of giving money because like anything else they keep kicking the can down the road until one day they can get their bill passed. I told the last person who called from money that Washington can pass anti-gun laws, but it will be a cold day in hell before I follow any law I felt and believed to be unconstitutional and pray to God for those who might have to try to enforce them. I said I was done. I was drawing a line in the sand this time. I as well hope and pray our elected representatives uphold thier oath and do their jobs and not make laws based on the passing feelings of the day. I guess we will have to see.

Linoge said...

Unfortunately, the inertia of the country indicates, at least to me, that we are well past a line which will be hard to recover from, and will eventually cross the line you are concerned about - the only significant variable, in my mind, is time.

Unfortunately, the Sandy Hook murders took place at a perfectly opportune time for the "gun control" extremists - their authoritarian dreams had been faltering of late, but this recent infusion of innocents' blood in which to dance gave them all the boost they needed.

Where the recent surge slows now is up to Congress, and I cannot say as though I am holding out a great deal of hope.

In any case, as I have always maintained, America's problem is not, has never been, and probably will never be its government. Until we address the real problem plaguing our country, things are going to keep getting worse.