By: Wayne Brown
I just saw an article which implied that a person having to right to own a legal gun also has the right to kill, insinuating a right which basically comes with gun ownership. I did not spend any time reading the article as the conclusion at the outset was so absolutely flawed that I saw no value in pursuing what had to be the flawed thinking supporting this premise. On a positive note, it did give me greater insight into the logic applied by those who think gun control is the answer to society’s ills….as if to insinuate that abortion is the key to controlling poverty and orphaned children.
Let’s get something straight here at the outset. If you are a person who is contemplating the purchase of a legal firearm rationalizing that with that purchased you gain the “right to kill” under the law, then, I beg you, please, please do not buy that gun. In doing so you would be applying the same logic used by those mentally unstable individuals who get their hands on a gun and feel the need to use it. They correlate possession with the right to use as they see fit. Instead of buying the gun…turn yourself in and get some treatment. I say that knowing that if you buy that gun and use it on the basis of the rational applied, you will find yourself on trial for murder at the very least.
Plain and simple, the 2nd Amendment to the Constitution prohibits the federal government from depriving citizens the right to bear arms or diminishing that right (i.e. “infringe upon”) by offering alternatives to personal defense such as a standing military or a local police force. The Constitution recognizes the individual citizen’s right to bear arms in order to protect themselves, their family, and their property from those who would come forth with the intention of harm. There is no reference to the “right to kill” nor is there one intended or implied. There is no basis to rationalize that gun ownership insulates one from the laws of our society, in fact, the opposite is actually true in that it raises the bar for that individual.
Contrary to what those touting gun control or in the more politically correct light, “gun violence” may espouse, gun ownership comes with a great amount of responsibility as a citizen of this country. Along with the gun comes the responsibility to practice firearm safety, to keep the gun out of the hands of those who are not trained in its functionality or possess the capacity to make a judgment in terms of its use. Laws related to Murder, Man-Slaughter, Malice, and Endangerment are not drawn up solely because of the existence of firearms. Those actions can be accomplished with any access to a firearm thus a gun, shotgun, or rifle is only one means of carrying out such actions. Responsible, law-abiding citizens understand that premise and when they become gun owners, that perspective does not change though the awareness is greatly raised in the logical mind.
Gun ownership is a condition of self-defense, no more, no less. When one makes a conscious decision to own a gun and possibly also earn a CHL License, not only is responsibility at the forefront but also judgment. Under the laws of our country, we are not prosecuted for our actions when they are carried out in “self-defense” and determined as such by the proper authorities or a court of law. Gun ownership is a function of “self-defense”…a chosen method to employ that action if the need arises. When or if that time comes, the gun owner must be fully aware of their responsibility under the law and apply the proper judgment to the situation or otherwise be prosecuted under the terms of that particular law. In other words, if you have to shot someone, you better be damn sure that you were only defending yourself or others and that the actions of the individual were such that it was apparent that they intended to do harm. The fact that a person owns a gun or has earned a CHL does not relieve them from that responsibility under the law. If we had an implied “right to kill”, our actions would not be questioned or prosecuted.
The gun control fanatics want to sell the conclusion that confiscating all the guns in the possession of law-abiding citizens will put an end to gun violence in the USA. On the contrary, it will only accomplish two things: 1. it will turn many otherwise “law-abiding” citizens into criminals by definition as a great majority of gun-owners do not believe or subscribe to the government’s legal ability to carry out such actions. 2. It will set off a black market for guns which will meet or exceed the financial value of the illegal drug market of today. Guns will still be very prevalent in our society and the violence associated with them will likely increase as the “law-abiding” citizen interested in “self-defense” will no longer have that ability.
The intent of the Founding Fathers in writing the first ten amendments to the Constitution was to give clarity to the basic Constitution document in terms of the relationship between the people and the government and the limitation thereof. Cleary, the Bill of Rights was put into place to show that the intent was to protect the people from the government which they, out of necessity, must tolerate in order to have a functional nation. The Bill of Rights is not intended to “infringe upon the people” but to clearly limit the powers of the government and those elected to direct it from exercising undue will and control over the people. When we as a nation begin to embrace the counter to that position, then we are setting ourselves up to lose those rights defined unto the people and ultimately to lose this nation as we know it historically.
All actions have consequences. The decision to buy a gun comes with the necessary awareness to employ safety, security, and a total respect of the standing laws of the nation and the state. The two go hand in hand. Those who cannot or will not recognize this necessary awareness will eventually suffer the consequences of their actions which started with the decision to purchase a firearm. Those who own legal firearms and who possess a CHL will tell you that sense of responsibility and awareness is there and they welcome it.
The President recently observed that we are bound to take whatever action is necessary if it “will only save one life”. Thinking back over all the shootings which have occurred in schools, theaters, malls, and other locations, and the innocent lives lost in those tragic events, one should stop and consider how many lives might have been saved if just one person present had been legally armed and trained. That singular difference might have greatly chanced the outcome in every one of those situations and saved lives in the process. Unfortunately, those who control our government today are more interested in destroying the 2nd Amendment than they are applauding lives saved by the presence of firearms. Do not confuse activity with productivity in this case. The actions demanded by the President would not change the outcome in any of the previous situations.
Sane individuals do not possess the predatory instinct to kill others nor do they desire or pretend to have that right. The vast majority of police officers complete an entire career without ever having to pull their gun from the holster and kill an individual. Is this because they are governed by regulations and restrictions which keep them from carrying out such actions? One might think so but in the final analysis, those regulations and restrictions actually work because the vast majority of those people who wear the uniform are responsible individuals who take their responsibility regarding human life seriously and who do not desire to kill unless other lives, including their own, are in intimate danger. The same can be said for responsible, well-trained gun-owners. The laws on the books are not the primary driving force so much as the inherent desire within the person not to take the life of another unless there is no other choice. How can anyone construe that as “a right to kill”?
We live in a very complex and complicated world today where many things are immediately at our fingertips with the advent and development of electronic technology. In many ways, we are a public that has come to expect immediate gratification and results as we have little patience and no desire to put forth the necessary effort involved to achieve the result. We easily embrace the idea that a large, over-bloated, and extremely expensive federal government can provide all the security that we need and that a nation totally void of legal guns will be one in which there is no violence against people. We take comfort in the fact that the 911 System exists and our ability to get a police officer to our aid is at our fingertips. We bask in those assumptions and cast off responsibility and awareness until that fateful day when some criminal minds decide to kick down the front door and endanger our family and assets. At that point, it becomes extremely evident that neither the federal government nor the 911 System is going to be adequate to responding to the attack. In that moment, we weigh the value of our “right to bear arms” and our ability to defend ourselves from harm. The “right to kill” never crosses your mind.
© Copyright WBrown2013. All Rights Reserved.
24 January 2013