My Turn: Gun rights are not negotiable

Published 12:00 am Monday, March 26, 2018

By Wes Rhinier

“The laws that forbid the carrying of arms are laws of such a nature. They disarm only those who are neither inclined nor determined to commit crimes. … Such laws make things worse for the assaulted and better for the assailants; they serve rather to encourage than to prevent homicides, for an unarmed man may be attacked with greater confidence than an armed man.”

— Thomas Jefferson, “Commonplace Book,” quoting 18th-century criminologist Cesare Beccaria, 1774-1776

“To disarm the people … is the most effectual way to enslave them.”

— George Mason, referencing advice given to the British Parliament by Pennsylvania Gov. Sir William Keith, “The Debates in the Several State Conventions on the Adoption of the Federal Constitution,” June 14, 1788

“Before a standing army can rule, the people must be disarmed, as they are in almost every country in Europe. The supreme power in America cannot enforce unjust laws by the sword; because the whole body of the people are armed, and constitute a force superior to any band of regular troops.”

— Noah Webster, “An Examination of the Leading Principles of the Federal Constitution,” Oct. 10, 1787

“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, speech to the Virginia Ratifying Convention, June 5, 1778

“The right of the citizens to keep and bear arms has justly been considered, as the palladium of the liberties of a republic; since it offers a strong moral check against the usurpation and arbitrary power of rulers; and will generally, even if these are successful in the first instance, enable the people to resist and triumph over them.”

— Joseph Story, “Commentaries on the Constitution of the United States,” 1833

“On every occasion (of constitutional interpretation) let us carry ourselves back to the time when the Constitution was adopted, recollect the spirit manifested in the debates, and instead of trying (to force) what meaning may be squeezed out of the text, or invented against it, (instead let us) conform to the probable one in which it was passed.”

— Thomas Jefferson, letter to William Johnson, June 12, 1823

There is only one reason people in power wish to disarm citizens. Control and power.

In 1929, Stalin took guns away from his citizens, then murdered 20 million of them once defenseless. In 1935, Mao disarmed his citizens and proceeded to murder 20 million people. In 1938, Hitler disarmed his countrymen and proceeded to murder 13 million defenseless citizens. In 1956, Pol Pot took guns away and proceeded to murder 2 million defenseless people.

Do you see a pattern here?

We do not have the right to bear arms so that we can go hunting for whatever game we wish to hunt. Our forefathers put the Second Amendment in the Bill of Rights to fight tyranny.

These are dangerous times in America. If you think law-abiding citizens will just freely hand over their weapons, you might want to think again. “Those who fail to remember the past are doomed to repeat it.”

The inborn right to self-defense and the ability of the people to maintain individual liberties in the face of tyranny supersedes all other arguments on gun rights. In fact, nothing else matters.

The solution is simple — abolish all gun-free zones.

Most gun grabbers are oblivious to this kind of logic because they are blinded by ideological biases. Some of them, however, understand the truth of this completely, and they don’t care. They are not in the business of saving lives; they are in the business of exploiting death. They want something entirely different from what they claim they want. They are not interested in life; they are interested in control.

Let me put this in the simplest of terms for gun grabbers. You don’t ever get to disarm us. Never.

In order to enforce this gun control dream, you are going to need people with guns to enforce your will. So really you aren’t against guns; you just want who you choose to have guns.

But we really don’t need to have a conversation about our rights to keep and bear arms. They’re rights. There’s nothing to talk about.

Wes Rhinier lives in Rowan County