The Second Amendment Is Essential – Vote!

By | November 6, 2016 | 0 Comments
   Marko Kloos

      Choose one

Human beings only have two ways to deal with one another: reason and force. If you want me to do something for you, you have a choice of either convincing me via argument, or force me to do your bidding under threat of force. Every human interaction falls into one of those two categories, without exception. Reason or force, that’s it.
In a truly moral and civilized society, people exclusively interact through persuasion. Force has no place as a valid method of social interaction, and the only thing that removes force from the menu is the personal firearm, as paradoxical as it may sound to some.
When I carry a gun, you cannot deal with me by force. You have to use reason and try to persuade me, because I have a way to negate your threat or employment of force. The gun is the only personal weapon that puts a 100-pound woman on equal footing with a 220-pound mugger, a 75-year-old retiree on equal footing with a 19-year-old gangbanger, and a single gay guy on equal footing with a carload of drunk guys with baseball bats. The gun removes the disparity in physical strength, size, or numbers between a potential attacker and a defender.
There are plenty of people who consider the gun as the source of bad force equations. These are the people who think that we’d be more civilized if all guns were removed from society, because a firearm makes it easier for a mugger to do his job. That, of course, is only true if the mugger’s potential victims are mostly disarmed either by choice or by legislative fiat − it has no validity when most [or even some] of a mugger’s potential marks are armed. People who argue for the banning of arms ask for automatic rule by the young, the strong, and the many, and that’s the exact opposite of a civilized society. A mugger, even an armed one, can only make a successful living in a society where the state has granted him a force monopoly.
Then there’s the argument that the gun makes confrontations lethal that otherwise would only result in injury. This argument is fallacious in several ways. Without guns involved, confrontations are won by the physically superior party inflicting overwhelming injury on the loser. People who think that fists, bats, sticks, or stones don’t constitute lethal force watch too much TV, where people take beatings and come out of it with a bloody lip at worst. The fact that the gun makes lethal force easier works solely in favor of the weaker defender, not the stronger attacker. If both are armed, the field is level. The gun is the only weapon that’s as lethal in the hands of an octogenarian as it is in the hands of a weightlifter. It simply wouldn’t work as well as a force equalizer if it wasn’t both lethal and easily employable.
When I carry a gun, I don’t do so because I am looking for a fight, but because I’m looking to be left alone. The gun at my side means that I cannot be forced, only persuaded. I don’t carry it because I’m afraid, but because it enables me to be unafraid. It doesn’t limit the actions of those who would interact with me through reason, only the actions of those who would do so by force. It removes force from the equation…and that’s why carrying a gun is a civilized act.
Marko Kloos is an author and blogger whose column appears by permission. This is not to imply that Mr. Kloos is pro-Trump, which he is not. But it is to imply – no, to state plainly – that anyone who values the Second Amendment cannot possibly vote for Hillary.

Editor’s Note:
One additional point: Carrying a handgun makes one more willing and able to intervene. If I see a man beating a woman, a child, or an elderly or disabled person, calling 9-1-1 makes me feel better, but it is of no immediate help to the victim. But yelling “Back off, I’m armed!” will usually do the job.
I have a friend who is 6’3,” weighs 265 pounds, and has a black belt in Brazilian jiu-jitsu. Often he can defuse a confrontation merely by his presence. But most of us are smaller, or fatter, or older, or clumsier. We too aspire to be good Samaritans if the need arose. And we would be, if we were allowed to carry an “equalizer.”

Be not afraid of any man
No matter what his size
When danger threatens call on me
And I will equalize.
– 19th century ad for Colt revolvers

This column gives a clear rationale for the personal ownership of weapons, as well as taking personal responsibility for the safety of oneself and one’s dependents. But consider how a parallel argument could be made in the field of international relations.
If you still believe that “violence never settles anything,” read the history of the 20th century. Ask yourself why Nazis do not still control most of Europe, and why Japanese imperialists do not still control most of Asia. Were they stopped by pacifists who appealed to their better natures? Were they stopped by law professors who served them with a writ? Were they stopped by diplomats who tried to talk them to death? Or were they stopped by brave men with Garand rifles and Browning machine guns?
The world does not resemble the upscale neighborhoods where anti-gun activists tend to live and work. They cannot imagine why anyone feels the need for self-defense. They benefit from numerous police patrolling low-crime areas. No, the world resembles the dangerous parts of town, where ordinary people live and work. Whether we admit it or not, the world is a high-crime area where violent gangs vie with one another for control, while searching for the vulnerable to victimize.
Those who live in gated communities and work in upscale offices or university campuses have the luxury of believing that force is an outmoded way of settling disputes. They have the illusion that the police and military are crude Neanderthals who are no longer needed. But we must face a harsher reality. We can no longer afford illusions. As we learned on 9/11, even the most prestigious offices on some of the most exclusive real estate are no longer safe. The whole world is now the dangerous part of town. We must act accordingly if we hope to survive.
Now consider which political party better understands these realities. Consider how many times the Democratic candidates have used the terms “Islamo-fascists” or “Muslim extremists” or even the word “terrorism.” I may have missed it, but in all the debates, I have heard these terms used only by some of the Republican candidates, but not once by a Democratic candidate. And consider which candidates have mentioned, even once, strengthening our armed forces to meet the ongoing danger.
The statement “The Second Amendment is essential” applies just as much to world events as it does to personal life. Recall what Jeff Cooper taught us:

Unarmed men, and unarmed nations, can only flee from evil. And evil is not overcome by fleeing from it.

Before you vote, ask yourself which candidate and which party you would trust with this crucial responsibility – for you, your family, your nation, and your civilization. Our future depends on your answer.
In the figure at the top of this column, the image on the left represents the thinking of Hillary Clinton, who has enjoyed the protection of armed Secret Service agents for decades, supplied at your expense, but who nevertheless wants to disarm you. She calls the 5 million members of the National Rifle Association “enemies.” She expresses admiration for Australian-style gun confiscation. She condemns as “terrible” the Supreme Court decision upholding an individual right to firearms.
The image on the right represents the thinking of Donald Trump, who could afford all the bodyguards he wanted, but who went to the trouble of obtaining his own carry permit. As the caption says, choose one. But if you don’t choose, the choice will be made for you – and it will surely be the one on the left.

Freedom is never an achieved state. Like electricity, we’ve got to keep generating it, or the lights go out.
Wayne LaPierre

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