The False Sense of Gun Security

One of many arguments of the extreme right in opposing gun control and banning assault weapons is that they are needed against an over-powering enemy, the federal government. To them, the government is in league with NATO and the United Nations, preparing to take away our civil liberties and put us all in FEMA camps. At one time this was viewed as an extremist point of view, but now it’s becoming quite clear that this federal government is not exactly what Jefferson envisioned. Nor is it one that easily fits any particular conspiracy theorist’s framework.

Our federal government has long gone over to the dark side. Whether it fits Dr. Lawrence Britt’s “Fourteen Defining Characteristics of Fascism” or not, it is clear that the interests of the poor and the middle class are barely secondary in Congress’s deliberations. Human, civil, and economic rights have long been ignored for the benefit of the banking industry as well as the military-industrial complex. Have we learned nothing from the Nye Commission of 1934-6 regarding their involvement in our entry into WW1? Have President Eisenhower’s prescient words rung so hollow since?

The latest revelations of how Obama’s police state has worked with local police departments and the banks to suppress, often brutally, a la Bahrain, the Occupy movement should wake up even the most brain-dead Obamabot as to the horrors this administration is planning for us. FEMA camps and UN black helicopters? Maybe that does fall into the realm of conspiracy theories but it’s easy to see how a real fear permeates our society. Jefferson said, “A government afraid of its citizens is a Democracy. Citizens afraid of government is tyranny!”

So what is the response? An armed citizenry? 2nd Amendment advocates see that as the answer while many others view that amendment as a reference to a state-styled militia to protect it from an overreaching federal government. Clearly, the founding fathers, landowners and the elite of society, would not have wanted the average citizen to be armed against their economic interests.

To arm the citizenry against the federal government is suicidal. One can have all of the most effective automatic weapons at one’s disposal, magazine clips to hold dozens of rounds, and the will and determination to take on the federal troops. But wouldn’t it be like Indiana Jones taking out a gun when the other has a sword? Or as Malone in “The Untouchables” said, “Isn’t that just like a xxx? Brings a knife to a gun fight.” Face it. One might have a survivalists’ arsenal, but the feds have tanks. David Koresh’s compound was burned to the ground and not a single federal agent had even their hair singed. If the US can obliterate a wedding party or first responders (as a ‘double tap’) in Pakistan with their joysticks in Colorado, then the idea of ‘militarily’ taking on the feds is foolish and, again, suicidal. Saddam Hussein had an army and still lost to the invading American imperial forces.

The patriotic American revolutionaries learned from the indigenous people how to fight overwhelming enemies. The Brits stood shoulder to shoulder. The Americans learned to hide behind rocks. This is not to educate the dissident or the revolutionary on how to take on such an army. If interested read Che, Sun Tzu or follow Red Cloud.

I would argue that militarily taking on the federal government is not an effective approach to achieve radical change in America. The people of the Philippines took on Marcos without firing a shot. The Arab Spring saw lots of casualties but they toppled dictators in Tunisia and Egypt. Palestinians of Gaza are overwhelmingly outnumbered militarily but finally the world is being forced to see Israel for what it truly is. The southern nations of Europe are heading towards revolution and in time we just might see a victory for the vox populi.

Eat your pheasant
Drink your wine
Your days are numbered
Bourgeois swine.

Myles Hoenig is a veteran of the Prince George's County Public School system in Maryland, USA. He's a long time activist for social justice. He lives in Baltimore. Read other articles by Myles.