I’ve repeatedly said that the problem with guns is not that they are too readily available in society, but rather that when one is needed they are not readily available enough.
Allow me to explain. While exact numbers are difficult to ascertain, the best estimate is that about 1% of the law-abiding U.S. population carries a firearm daily. That excludes police and private security.
Despite the rhetoric from anti-gunners, when it comes to firearms, there is no such thing as putting the genie back in the bottle. Guns are here, and here to stay. Not only did the U.S. Supreme Court declare in 2008 and again in 2010 that owning and carrying firearms is a fundamental, individual, constitutionally protected right, but there would be an armed revolution in this country if confiscation was ever attempted. As I said they’re here to stay.
A universal truth that even many anti-gunners have agreed with is, “The only thing that can stop an evil man with a gun is a good man with a gun.” This dovetails perfectly with Edmond Burke’s famous statement, “The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing.”
When the Founder’s enshrined the right to keep and bear arms in the Bill of Rights, its essential elements were understood to be protection of self, protection of loved ones, protection of property, protection of community, and protection of the state and nation. For the purpose of this article we’ll restrict the discussion to protection of self, loved ones, and community.
The Founders understood a truth that has been lost over the last 60 or 70 years in America; no one is responsible for your safety but you.
When we look at the most serious violent crimes such as murder, forcible rape, and robbery, how many times do police arrive in time to prevent the act from occurring? That’s pretty close to never. It’s important that all Americans understand that not only can’t the government save you from violent crime, it doesn’t. These violent acts are committed and then the police investigate. Did you know only about 25% of all robberies are solved, and only about 20% of rape cases are prosecuted? Let me put that another way. 75% of all felons who commit a robbery are free as a bird, as are 80% of the men who commit rape.
What becomes clear from these figures is that not only is the government incapable of stopping these crimes before you become a victim, but the vast majority of perpetrators are never brought to justice.
We live in a nation in which the Founders’ model is that all authority resides in The People. This has also been pronounced by the U.S. Supreme Court as the foundation of our system of government. Let me repeat the important part – “all authority resides in The People”. Tell me something – have you ever heard of authority existing disconnected from responsibility? I haven’t.
So let’s take a moment and recap:
- You, and you alone, are responsible for your safety and the safety of your loved ones.
- The government cannot and does not stop violent crimes before they occur, and bringing most violent felons to justice occurs in 25% or less of the time.
- You, me, and hundreds of millions of other citizens are THE source of authority in America, and that authority has a commensurate responsibility.
You’ll notice the word “responsibility” is used a lot in this dialogue. That’s because you can’t make anyone else “responsible” for your safety. Even if you could slough it off on someone else, who would want it? It’s yours and yours alone.
The latest numbers available from the FBI tell us there were just over 1.2 million violent criminal attacks in 2012. So…if you, and you alone, are responsible for your safety and the safety of your loved ones, are you living up to that responsibility? Or have you shirked it with lame excuses?
Anti-gunners scream bloody murder about how an armed citizen cannot stop violent attackers. But headlines prove them liars every day. In fact as I was preparing this presentation I had a news story on my desk about a businessman who was shot on the street by two robbers. While he was lying on the ground being robbed he got his hand on his pistol and killed them both. And that’s just one of thousands of similar stories each year.
So why do anti-gunners engage in what can only be properly described as a lie-fest when it comes to carrying and using guns for self-defense? It’s not complicated. It’s because they are fearful. Show of hands – how many of you WANT to have to fight for you life, and the lives of your family members, against a three-man crew of violent home invaders tonight? That would be no one. How many of you are willing to do it to defend yourself and your family? You see, the anti-gunner isn’t willing. His fear is what is preeminent. The anti-gunner will cower in the corner, fumbling with his cellphone, trying to call 911, as the thugs grab him and slap him down. They’ll tie him up and spend hours repeatedly raping his wife and daughter. Then they take whatever property they want. I’m not making this up; this is right out of the headlines. And somehow, the anti-gunner deludes himself with the notion that he is morally superior and righteous for allowing his wife and daughter to be raped rather than owning a gun, learning how to use it, and protecting his family.
In the face of such abject cowardice – the rejection of the responsibility we’ve been discussing – what could we expect from them but to accuse brave and honorable men of being the problem. Since the coward can only be recognized as such when compared to the action of a brave and honorable man, the cowards attempt at every turn to demean the brave and honorable.
I said earlier that the Founders’ understood that self-defense is every man’s responsibility. And indeed it was practiced accordingly in those days. As an example, historians have ascertained from his writings, expense ledger, and gunsmithing bills, that Jefferson carried pistols whenever he traveled on the roads. And he advised his nephew, “Let your gun…be the constant companion of your walks.” And of course it is well known that George Washington never travelled without his pistols. There were no phones. They lived or died, or kept or lost their property, or defended their women and children, based on carrying firearms. It was simply how life was. And, in truth, it remains so, though the irresponsible and cowardly strive mightily to convince themselves, and everyone else, that someone else is – must be – has to be – responsible for their safety.
Today a certain type of person abdicates personal responsibility in the vein belief that dialing 911 will save him. But the average response time in a big city with a well-funded police department is over 6 minutes. In places like Detroit, or a rural locale, it’s not unusual for response times to be 20 or 30 minutes, or longer. But even at 6 minutes, the unarmed person is still a victim. Go to YouTube and watch videos of violent street attacks. A lengthy one is over in 30 seconds. Hence the adage, “Police: when seconds count they’re only minutes away.”
As Americans, we are the ones who possess the ultimate authority for our nation – and with that comes responsibility. One of those responsibilities is to stand up to violent criminals. As we’ve seen the government cannot and does not do the job. It is a mere illusion that facts destroy. There is no one else. The job is yours. I’ve long held that whoever is your protector is also your master. If you believe – even falsely – that the government is your protector, then it is also your master. But if you are your own protector then you are truly a free man.
Copyright 2015 Dave Champion