In my last article I touched on the issue of gun control in the USA. I am the legal owner of a revolver which I keep in my home and I consider the right to have such a weapon is one of the great positives of the US Constitution.
I am not a member of the National Rifle Association though it is an effective organization in defending gun ownership rights. It is said, and I am sure correctly, that the NRA is strongest in states where hunting is popular, and many politicians on the Left are reluctant to provoke its active opposition.
I will leave the NRA to defend gun ownership on the grounds that it is essential to a sport, for it is not my reason for owning one, nor is it the most important reason for defending the right to own a gun.
The issue for me, and for conservatives, is maintaining the ability to defend myself, my family and my home. I certainly hope I never have to use my revolver, and I often pass many months without even looking at it, but my gun, and the ammunition I have for it, are a great reassurance.
I grew up in the UK, an increasingly lawless nation, now Balkanized by mass immigration and where the lawless have guns and the lawful are prevented from having them. The UK seems to be awash with guns despite the longtime ban on them. I cannot remember a time when guns were widely owned in the UK other than by farmers with shotguns. I think one would have to go back well before the Second World War to find gun ownership commonplace, perhaps even to the previous century. Despite this longtime absence of legally owned guns in UK society, it seems that every ethnic street gang and every drug dealer is well armed. Shootings of and by teenagers are now commonplace in all the major cities that have been enriched by multi culturalism.
Burglaries and robbery have long been a fact of everyday life for UK residents and predate the immigration waves, but now those burgled and robbed also have to cope with criminals who are armed and racially motivated. Most US citizens have little knowledge of the frequency of burglary in the UK. The media on both sides of the Atlantic maintain a conspiracy of silence on the matter and readers of this website will know why!
Burglary is relatively infrequent in the US and the reason I am sure is that burglars are coy about meeting an armed resident and mostly do not know who is armed and who isn’t. The gunless therefore benefit from the presence in their neighborhoods of people like me.
I do not expect to be burgled here in the US, but if I returned to live in the UK and lived in a city I would be constantly worried. Some people, especially those who live near public housing or near certain immigrant groups, are repeatedly burgled, sometimes by the same people who have been arrested, ‘punished’ and returned to roam the streets.
The UK legal system may be tolerant of habitual predatory criminals, but it is not tolerant of those who defend their homes with force. This is, I think, the crux of the issue, so I will deal with it. Those on the Left (and they dominate the Media Class), have an instinctive hatred and fear of people who wish to be independent. Wishing to stand on your own two feet marks one out as the sort of person who is likely to oppose big government and to be dangerously ‘independent’. The Left and its masters in the Media Class want a population that is dependent on government, docile and apathetic. When I worked in Publicly funded social work, I was struck by the way that social workers despised the respectable poor who, despite living in rundown neighborhoods, worked regularly, supported their children and aspired to something better. My Leftist social work colleagues saw these people as traitors to their class and not behaving in ways that they (mostly relatively privileged) expected working people to be. They mistakenly viewed the feckless as authenticly working class.
My point is that those who crave an all-powerful state apparatus and a centrally directed society, are deeply hostile to those who take full responsibility for themselves. Thus they seek to heavily tax the hardworking and economically aspiring citizens, and redistribute (via the government apparatus), to the feckless. This impulse extends to crime, and the Leftists seek to prevent decent hardworking people from defending their homes and families from the predatory feckless. When race is added to the mix, the Leftists have even more to get fired up about.
Those of us who wish to be able to defend ourselves from human predators, do not wish to force this responsibility on to everyone else. People who do not want to own guns or do not wish to defend themselves and their homes, need not do so. There the matter could rest as a non-political choice for the individual citizen. Leftists however, always seeks to impose themselves on all and they also seek to reduce us all to dependency on the State. Thus has the issue of gun ownership become a political one.
The police generally would like to see the law-abiding deprived of the ability to defend themselves and police organizations support gun control. We should recognize that gun control is a euphemism for taking guns from the law-abiding citizens, since the criminals are already well armed and would remain so. As things stand in the UK, if a white homeowner makes an urgent phone call to the police, he might or might not get an urgent response. In many places, he will not, unless he says he is armed or about to aggressively resist the intruder, and then the police arrive with alacrity to arrest the homeowner. This is not an exaggeration! In any case, we should remember that even the most responsive police forces are reactive and not pro-active, so the best a victim can expect is action after the fact of a crime.
No doubt, some police officers have been fooled by the Leftist/Media propaganda that is constantly repeated. It is to the effect that guns cause crime and not people. There is a deeper reason for police opposition to citizen gun rights and it is becoming increasingly apparent in the UK. For there, the police have become highly politicized and are being used to further a Leftist move toward totalitarianism. As Hannah Arendt convincingly pointed out in her classic analyses of totalitarianism, (in a book with the same title) the police are highly instrumental in the suppression of political freedom and all communist and National Socialist States have been rightly called ‘police states’.
This is the other reason why conservatives must defend gun ownership for ordinary law-abiding citizens, for it enables them to collectively defend themselves against the imposition of totalitarian socialism.
It may be reasonable to stop people amassing private armories of military weaponry and to prevent the mentally ill from owning guns, but those of us who wish to remain free people must defend the ordinary citizen’s right to gun ownership and self defense.