“Democracy is two wolves and a lamb voting on what to have for lunch. Liberty is a well-armed lamb contesting the vote.”
— Benjamin Franklin
It is refreshing when I come across a citizen who can cogently explain, with clarity, the true meaning of the 2nd Amendment to our Constitution. I have shared one such incident with many friends and like-minded acquaintances, namely, Rapper “Ice-T’s” take on the subject.
I suggest you listen to it. Share it. Send it to anyone who is confused in regards to what the right “to keep and bear arms” denotes as it is laid out in the 2nd Amendment.
There are legions of writers, politicians, pundits, groups and scholars who disagree with Ice-T’s definitive, crystal-clear analysis of our bestowed right to own guns. Be that as it may, Ice-T’s statement reveals the true intent of James Madison’s text when he states that, “… the right to bear arms…[is] the last form of defense against tyranny – not [merely] to hunt.”
We are told in rebuttal to this posit that we are ridiculous, that a tyrannical government will “never occur.” Ignored is the fact that our Republic is barely 250 years old, a mere footnote in history. Any study of civilizations thousands of years old lays waste to this ignorant retort.
Consider this precept espoused in our Declaration of Independence: “whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government.” Why was this included? Because our Founder’s knew that it was possible for any government, even ours, to turn tyrannical.
How could we “alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government?” How can this be accomplished when the government commands a standing army? It cannot be executed if the citizenry is disarmed. Ask the citizens of Venezuela. We already see the signs of an increasingly divided country. Presidents, now more than ever before, are more apt to bypass Congress and rule using their “pen.” Congress is ineffective. The separate branches of our government have become increasingly impotent or worse — coordinated. More and more bureaucracies and regulatory agencies have powers once only held by The Congress. How long before our Government breaks down?
Countries across the world are descending into chaos. To believe that we are immune to such is naive.
Edward Erler, a political science professor at California State University, San Bernardino has gone so far as to outline how our 2ndAmendment secures our right for outright revolution.
To wit: “an essential ingredient of the social compact and a right which is always reserved to the people. The people can never cede or delegate this ultimate expression of sovereign power. Thus, in a very important sense, the right of revolution (or even its threat) is the right that guarantees every other right. And if the people have this right as an indefeasible aspect of their sovereignty, then, by necessity, the people also have a right to the means to revolution. Only an armed people are a sovereign people, and only an armed people are a free people—the people are indeed a militia.”
Our right to “keep and bear arms” secures our right to be free from a tyrannical government. Period.