I've been absent from writing for close to two years now, and my New Year's Resolution was to break that streak. I will ask for your patience, and forgiveness, as I try to remember the English language, grammar, and attempt to keep my resolution.
Earlier today I read an interesting proposition regarding our firearms freedoms. Why shouldn't all prospective gun owners be forced to submit to a mental health screening and firearms safety classes? The writer of the comment had allowances for the poorer among us so they wouldn't be left out. There were many responses to this inquiry, all of which were civil and well reasoned. I was a late arrival to that thread, but the big blaring, missing argument was freedom.
the state of being free or at liberty rather than in confinement or under physical restraint:
He won his freedom after a retrial.
exemption from external control, interference, regulation, etc.
the power to determine action without restraint.
political or national independence.
personal liberty, as opposed to bondage or slavery:
a slave who bought his freedom.
exemption from the presence of anything specified (usually followed byfrom):
freedom from fear.
Freedom is a simple word with a very powerful meaning. I am particularly fond of the 2nd definition. "Exempt from external control, interference, regulation, etc." As gun lovers, the definition of freedom should become our first and foremost argument when confronting the Anti gun argument. However, when we use this explanation it can't be with the simplistic "Because I'm free". That argument would be correct, but falls short of educating the public about the rights reaffirmed by the Constitution, and not granted by it.
the absence of or release from ties, obligations, etc.
First common mistake - the bill of rights are not granted by the Constitution, but reaffirmed by it. The Constitution prevents our own Government from taking away these liberties, but it does not keep the politician from trying.
"The Power to determine action without restraint." If I am free, how do I reconcile freedom of firearms ownership with seeking permission from the Government to purchase a firearm? Why is the Government qualified to determine what guns I can and cannot own. Why is the Government qualified to tell me what accessories I can or cannot have?
Have you ever looked at the ballot for an election, any election, and looked at all the amendments and ballot measures and thought to yourself that too many people want to save you from yourself? I understand protecting the young, the immature, the elderly and those that cannot protect themselves, but have ever thought of this as the public execution of your freedom?
"The state of being free or at liberty rather than confinement or under physical restraint"
You are undoubtedly familiar with the phrase "Freedom is not free". We usually associate that saying with the lives of our troops lost in battle. However, I believe it also ties directly to the lives lost when criminals use guns to break the law, or when drunks drive on suspended licenses...for the 3rd time. Furthermore, it is a price we pay for living in an open society where offensive speech is protected, where under the guise of religious freedoms organizations display hatred and protest the lives of our fallen heroes and rant about the sexual orientation of other citizens. Freedom does come with a steep price, but the cost of loosing freedom is steeper still.
Tomorrow - Live Free!
The day after that....buy a 30 round AR Magazine just because. You know where you can get them.