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Grassroots Commentary

The Statist Tower, 2012

John Longenecker · Aug. 20, 2012

The real truth is that an armed citizenry is a less dependent citizenry.

When I talk about how gun control paved the way for big government, I am speaking of two things, each vital to the non-gun owner’s understanding of what is ailing us all as one people: dependency and the practice of forcing it. I have been writing about this since 2003. Forced dependency is a misery shared by most Americans by now, irrespective of political affiliation. If there is one thing which can unite Americans, it is this single misery visited upon us all.

The emphasis is on most Americans, roughly, I’d say, about 80% of our population. Libertarians, independents and conservatives are the mainstream. Be sure to register to vote and get out and vote.

The first concept is personal dependency on government to the exclusion of your personal options. You see this recently in the garden police now who forbid you to grow things. This, since food shortages began to loom. Reports abound. It is serious when food furnishes fewer and fewer nutrients in the stuffs of foods.

And the second is this: a common response I hear when I talk about dependency is that it is nothing new, that it’s been going on for generations now, and that it is almost impossible to reverse. Let me explain why it is far from impossible in spite of its scope and power.

The solution begins in how the concept is perceived. Like the three blind men who feel the elephant because they cannot see it, each has a different take and speaks it: the first, who is at the ear, believes that this elephant must be a leafy creature, flat, supple and large. To be sure. The second blind man is at the leg, and is sure this creature is like a tree trunk, firm, tall and somewhat rough. Yes, it is. The third blind man is at the tail, and reassures us all that this creature is much more like a serpent, gentle, long and slender, and for the most part small.

In a way, they’re all right, but each is generally wrong. It does not depend on how you see it as much as what you can see.

Dependency in America is what we must see not as a single facet of the creature, but as its entirety. Lesser characteristics of this dependency would be force of the state, interference with and disabling of working safeguards of our country, and chaos, using various devices such as riots, shortages and other tools for the purpose of keeping people off balance and promoting self-doubt.

Some, in believing that leftism in America is established and institutionalized, extremely widespread, and irresistible, believe it is hopeless. They see it as an ocean which can never be bailed out to lower the water level. In fact, the level seems to be rising.

I see leftism differently. I see it as an aggregate of separate parts in one, such as a building, a tall building. Leftism’s belligerent attitudes, incoherent policies and brute force of the state are stones of a tall building, something they have acquired little by little and erected almost like a brazen self-indulgence. Think of liberalism, leftism, and statism as one tower in our midst, calling attention only to itself, being the only beacon for miles, tolerating no other tall buildings, having stolen title to its real state and built the thing block-by-block on the takings of liberty in this country. Statism dwells there. Its next generation is born there.

This tower of hate and spitefulness isn’t a sea of water, it is a building with a cornerstone, and that cornerstone is gun control. It is important to understand that none of today’s harassment – from food shortages to energy shortages to rotten education content, attacks on Marriage and takings of land and assets – would be possible without first putting gun control in place.

The criticality of gun control is that it is the norm today; it is a perception that punitive gun laws must necessarily exist, that one cannot even imagine freedom of all armed citizens as a norm, and that we must take even more action against guns. It first not only eroded a vital safeguard of the nation, but now it warms people to the idea of statist rule… as the norm.

Can the repeal of gun control in January of 2013 actually reverse food and energy shortages? How can the repeal of gun control mean smaller government? Hint: it is not about guns; it is about attitudes of both citizens and servants.

Gun control took great leaps and bounds in the 1930’s. Then again in 1968. It persisted repeatedly through various untoward events such as shootings, just as civil disturbance will play a role in crackdowns in months ahead.

Contemporary gun control advocates know rather well from their own political experience and the record of generations prior that if you can coax the electorate to delegate to government the responsibility for your personal safety – or even obtain the illusion of it – they are irreversibly convinced that you will delegate them anything. When there is any question or any resistance, they simply take what they want, and this convinces them utterly that they are reading the electorate correctly. This read of the people as stupid is the brick and mortar of the Statist Tower.

This is at the core of their contempt for America. This mentality of misleading the people and then openly blaming them for stupidity is familiar by now, isn’t it? It is the anti-social thinking of a criminal. Add yet another stone to raise the height of the tower another floor.

In 2012, we’ll vote on candidates who think of the people not with contempt, but respect.

And obeisance.

The repeal of gun laws and gun control will be very strong evidence that candidates at all levels understand us better and concentrate less on our understanding them. This would be a critical change in politics.

The repeal of gun laws will furnish added proof that incoming officials trust the electorate far beyond the record of any other official instead of persuading us to trust them. These two would change the entire complexion of politics for years, wouldn’t you say?

For, as long as there is gun control in any form, there is a disrespect and suspicion of the electorate, this enduring idea that citizens cannot have a gun and be trusted with it, because they may realize how little they need giant government. The real truth is that an armed citizenry is a less dependent citizenry, the real threat to officials.

These people do not want safer streets – they want safer seats.

The power of the proof in repealing gun control – and why it must be first in 2013 – lies in the admission that an armed electorate presence can perform better than an absentee government body. This is why 49 states affirm the second amendment values. In those 49 states, it is not about the gun, it is about the citizen.

Where the read of the people is the glue of the Statist Tower, removing the cornerstone of the Tower – removing crisis, including violence and gun control – can shake the thing to its foundation. We know crisis is integral to this, and the hand is played well. One of the most utilized crises is violence, and as long as violence seems to run amok, big government will run amok … and will continue to believe that we are fools. The hand has been overplayed, and the bluff called. Gun control is the cornerstone of statist boldness.

Remove it.

Big government cannot run amok without first tying the hands of citizens from fighting violence. Violence is not fought after-the-fact, it is fought at the scene of the crime. Untie the hands of the people in places where gun control and bans prevail and you will complete a picture of the ubiquitous armed citizen who is the Sovereign under our system, people who do not need servants as much as the servants want to be needed.

What officials before 2012 feared in the armed citizen was never the idea of putting a gun to the head of Congress as Americans’ method of fighting tyranny; that’s not how it works best. It was always in showing plainly how unneeded big government really is, thereby humiliating statism and tyranny. The guns had to go.

When government substitutes can never be as effective as citizen involvement is, from charity to self-defense, the assumption in a void will naturally be that the officials were best. As the norm. Though officials are superb at various tasks, sure, they cannot be effective against violence when they are absent. The law and all authority are present within the citizen such that where the citizen is, so the law is also. This is the refreshing new attitude of trust in the citizen that has been so lacking in official contempt for the people.

It is the armed citizen which must be regarded as the norm. Incoming officials can show unequivocally that they trust the people more than getting us to trust them.

Hurry November.

Americans know the difference between Good Samaritans and Vigilantes. America is a nation of Good Samaritans. See John Longenecker’s monograph, The CPR Corollary.

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