The Mission Statement

241 years ago a mission statement was issued. They didn’t use that fad term of course but, that’s exactly what it was. it was a mission statement for a revolution, indeed it was a mission statement for a whole series of revolutions extending down to the present day. Here it is.

When in the Course of human events, it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another, and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature’s God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation.

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. — That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, — That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness. Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn, that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security.

Such has been the patient sufferance of these Colonies; and such is now the necessity which constrains them to alter their former Systems of Government. The history of the present King of Great Britain is a history of repeated injuries and usurpations, all having in direct object the establishment of an absolute Tyranny over these States. To prove this, let Facts be submitted to a candid world.

He has refused his Assent to Laws, the most wholesome and necessary for the public good.
He has forbidden his Governors to pass Laws of immediate and pressing importance, unless suspended in their operation till his Assent should be obtained; and when so suspended, he has utterly neglected to attend to them.
He has refused to pass other Laws for the accommodation of large districts of people, unless those people would relinquish the right of Representation in the Legislature, a right inestimable to them and formidable to tyrants only.
He has called together legislative bodies at places unusual, uncomfortable, and distant from the depository of their public Records, for the sole purpose of fatiguing them into compliance with his measures.
He has dissolved Representative Houses repeatedly, for opposing with manly firmness his invasions on the rights of the people.
He has refused for a long time, after such dissolutions, to cause others to be elected; whereby the Legislative powers, incapable of Annihilation, have returned to the People at large for their exercise; the State remaining in the mean time exposed to all the dangers of invasion from without, and convulsions within.
He has endeavoured to prevent the population of these States; for that purpose obstructing the Laws for Naturalization of Foreigners; refusing to pass others to encourage their migrations hither, and raising the conditions of new Appropriations of Lands.
He has obstructed the Administration of Justice, by refusing his Assent to Laws for establishing Judiciary powers.
He has made Judges dependent on his Will alone, for the tenure of their offices, and the amount and payment of their salaries.
He has erected a multitude of New Offices, and sent hither swarms of Officers to harrass our people, and eat out their substance.
He has kept among us, in times of peace, Standing Armies without the Consent of our legislatures.
He has affected to render the Military independent of and superior to the Civil power.

He has combined with others to subject us to a jurisdiction foreign to our constitution, and unacknowledged by our laws; giving his Assent to their Acts of pretended Legislation:

For Quartering large bodies of armed troops among us:
For protecting them, by a mock Trial, from punishment for any Murders which they should commit on the Inhabitants of these States:
For cutting off our Trade with all parts of the world:
For imposing Taxes on us without our Consent:
For depriving us in many cases, of the benefits of Trial by Jury:
For transporting us beyond Seas to be tried for pretended offences
For abolishing the free System of English Laws in a neighbouring Province, establishing therein an Arbitrary government, and enlarging its Boundaries so as to render it at once an example and fit instrument for introducing the same absolute rule into these Colonies:
For taking away our Charters, abolishing our most valuable Laws, and altering fundamentally the Forms of our Governments:
For suspending our own Legislatures, and declaring themselves invested with power to legislate for us in all cases whatsoever.
He has abdicated Government here, by declaring us out of his Protection and waging War against us.
He has plundered our seas, ravaged our Coasts, burnt our towns, and destroyed the lives of our people.
He is at this time transporting large Armies of foreign Mercenaries to compleat the works of death, desolation and tyranny, already begun with circumstances of Cruelty & perfidy scarcely paralleled in the most barbarous ages, and totally unworthy the Head of a civilized nation.
He has constrained our fellow Citizens taken Captive on the high Seas to bear Arms against their Country, to become the executioners of their friends and Brethren, or to fall themselves by their Hands.
He has excited domestic insurrections amongst us, and has endeavoured to bring on the inhabitants of our frontiers, the merciless Indian Savages, whose known rule of warfare, is an undistinguished destruction of all ages, sexes and conditions.

In every stage of these Oppressions We have Petitioned for Redress in the most humble terms: Our repeated Petitions have been answered only by repeated injury. A Prince whose character is thus marked by every act which may define a Tyrant, is unfit to be the ruler of a free people.

Nor have We been wanting in attentions to our British brethren. We have warned them from time to time of attempts by their legislature to extend an unwarrantable jurisdiction over us. We have reminded them of the circumstances of our emigration and settlement here. We have appealed to their native justice and magnanimity, and we have conjured them by the ties of our common kindred to disavow these usurpations, which, would inevitably interrupt our connections and correspondence. They too have been deaf to the voice of justice and of consanguinity. We must, therefore, acquiesce in the necessity, which denounces our Separation, and hold them, as we hold the rest of mankind, Enemies in War, in Peace Friends.

We, therefore, the Representatives of the united States of America, in General Congress, Assembled, appealing to the Supreme Judge of the world for the rectitude of our intentions, do, in the Name, and by Authority of the good People of these Colonies, solemnly publish and declare, That these United Colonies are, and of Right ought to be Free and Independent States; that they are Absolved from all Allegiance to the British Crown, and that all political connection between them and the State of Great Britain, is and ought to be totally dissolved; and that as Free and Independent States, they have full Power to levy War, conclude Peace, contract Alliances, establish Commerce, and to do all other Acts and Things which Independent States may of right do. And for the support of this Declaration, with a firm reliance on the protection of divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other our Lives, our Fortunes and our sacred Honor.

What did it all mean on that long ago 4th of July? Nothing, not a damned thing, it was just a revolt of part of the middle class in an unimportant colony.

But, through heartbreaking efforts and sacrifices, they made their high-flown words good, against the greatest empire of the age, plus its hired mercenaries.

Thus was formed the United States of America and even more, the Free World itself.

Because from this mission statement came not only the American Revolution but, the French Revolution, the Russian Revolution, and the very quiet revolution in Great Britain itself as the common man took on the roles and responsibility that had belonged to the knights and squires of the country.

Thus was lit the fire of the torch of liberty, never extinguished since.

I’m sure that my readers in the Anglosphere will note that our grievances all were about the traditional rights of English freemen. That is the reason that the revolt was cast against King George III, who was more German than English, rather than the Parliament.

Nor is it to say that even in that day that the colonists were bereft of friends in England, William Pitt the Elder, Charles James Fox (who wore the Continental colors into Parliament itself), Edmund Burke, and Adam Smith (whose Wealth of Nations was published that year also) come to mind.

Thus was fired the torch of Liberty that has lighted the path for us, the descendants of Rebels, and Rebels still, from that day to this, nor will we willingly see it change in the future, for if the torch is extinguished there will only be the darkness of tyranny.

I have not the words to describe my love of America but, luckily others do. Here is an excerpt from Cassandra of  Villainous Company,  who phrases it better than I could dream of doing.

We were the First. We are the guardians of the flame. Not perfect beings, but in all the world the only ones, it seems, still naive enough, still brave enough, still daring enough to put our money where our mouths are. We are the only ones who are still willing to defend the dream with our lives, our fortunes, our sacred honor.

Not all the time. Not in every single instance, because that is impossible. And honest liberals will admit that: in a universe with limited resources, choices must be made. But where we can, where it aligns with our interests and with the interests of the rest of the world: yes.

Our own Revolution was not without blemish. Innocent men were tarred and feathered. Families torn asunder. People bled, and suffered and starved. There was even [shudder] terrorism. But it lit a flame that has burned brightly for over 200 years. […]

We would like certainty. We would like painless progress. We would like closure. We will not get any of those things.

On July 4th we must ask ourselves, what do we believe? Our military – brand new immigrants who enlist before the ink is dry on their visas – believe in those words so strongly that they will lay down their lives to spread the fire of democracy. They also believe (as I do) that their purpose is to serve American foreign policy aims, no matter how abstract and long-term they may seem. No matter how difficult to explain to the American people. No matter how frustrating in the short term.

What kind of world will we bequeath to our grandchildren? It may be that long before we know. But our actions today will have an incalculable effect on that far-off tomorrow. And if our policy is not firmly grounded in the spread of those long-ago words:

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights…

…then I wonder if we shall not be the first Americans who fail to pass the blessings of liberty on to the next generation?

“The only thing necessary for evil to triumph. is for good men to do nothing.” – Edmund Burke.

Happy Birthday, America. May you always be great. May you remain a nation of thinkers, of dreamers, of believers, of doers; striving always towards our ideals without despising the imperfect means we use to achieve them.

But most importantly, may you never give in to cynicism and despair. In life as in sports, ninety nine percent of success lies in simply showing up.

D0 read her entire article here.

Hey listen, the band is playing our song

The world knows that where that flag flies, there is liberty.

Happy Birthday, America, Press on, Continue the mission!

We’ve Come a Long Way, Baby

Continental Army General Horatio Gates. by Stuart

Here is a bit about how we got from that ragtag Continental Army overlooking Boston Harbor to where we are now. It’s a saga, that’s never told too often, how this laughing upright nation of freeman, have fielded forces with, in Frederick Douglass’ words, with the eagle on their button, and the musket on their shoulder, always in defense of Freedom and Liberty.

You see when the Declaration of Indepenence was issued, there were troops (militia, really) called the Continental Army bottling up the British in Boston with some artillery captured at Fort Ticonderoga by Ethan Allen in the name of the “Great Jehovah and the Continental Congress” and hauled to Boston with great difficulty. The army could barely move or fight because of the lack of training but they hung in there.

Later that year, the British invaded New York with the largest British Armada before the invasion of Europe in 1944. We lost that battle too, but kept on keepin’ on.

General Gates in the south had a strategy a few years later best described (by Daniel Morgan “The Old Wagoner”. I think) as “we fight, get beat, retreat, and do it again. That pretty much sums up how we held on till the French showed up.

Even then we shouldn’t forget those huts in the snow where the barefoot, starving, freezing army lived at Valley Forge. Nor should we forget that the Continental Army paraded naked through Philadelphia on their way to Yorktown. And we think we have it bad?

But you don’t want to read 4000 words of military history on the 4th of July, after all there’s hot dogs to eat and beer to drink. So here’s a summary from Bill Whittle.

We’ve really come a long way even in the last 70 or so years. I doubt that anybody realizes what our military (descended from that rag-tag bunch) could really do, if we let them fight a war in the fashion of World War II, and I’d bet money I couldn’t afford to lose, that no one would try it a second time.

 

Let every nation know, whether it wishes us well or ill, that we shall pay any price, bear any burden, meet any hardship, support any friend, oppose any foe, in order to assure the survival and the success of liberty.

President Kennedy said it but that’s not a politician’s promise. That’s the record and promise of the American People.

If you wish us ill, you would be well advised to remember that we are also allied to most of the best warriors in the world, we learned well enough from them to beat them.

But, you know the toughest war we’ve ever been in was the one we fought with ourselves 150 years ago, today marks the beginning of the end of that one too, as Gettysburg ended today and tomorrow Vicksburg surrendered.

Eagles are patient birds but, they have a limit and a very, very long reach. When US Secretary of Defense Jim Mattis was asked recently, ” What keeps you awake at night?” He could answer, “Nothing. I keep other people awake at night,”

And so, back in 1908 an Irishman was our flagbearer at the opening parade of the 1908 London Olympics and started one of our most cherished traditions.

“This flag dips to no earthly King or Potentate”

and it hasn’t.

A Committee of the Whole

Oil on canvas painting of Richard Henry Lee. Photo credit: Wikipedia

Something different this week. I’m a bit tired of the Stürm und Drang of politics, especially in Washington and London. I also suspect that they’ll still be going at it when we return, soap operas are like that. And besides it’s the Fourth of July weekend, and nothing they’re going to do in the next few days is anywhere near as important as what the Second Continental Congress did this week 241 years ago. Most of these posts are from 2012 when this blog was less than a year old, and I’m making minimal changes to them, and most of you are new here, and they are just as valid as they were then. Hope you enjoy them.

Let us take note that today there is a document in the committee of the whole of Congress, for editing. It was written by Mr. Jefferson of Virginia, pursuant to a resolution offered by Virginia Delegate Richard Henry Lee and seconded by John Adams of Massachusetts.

“Resolved, that these United Colonies are, and of right ought to be, free and independent States, that they are absolved from all allegiance to the British Crown, and that all political connection between them and the State of Great Britain is, and ought to be, totally dissolved.”

We would be wise to note that this resolution was passed with heavy hearts, not from fear, but from long affection for our cousins in the United Kingdom.

Believe me, dear Sir: there is not in the British empire a man who more cordially loves a union with Great Britain than I do. But, by the God that made me, I will cease to exist before I yield to a connection on such terms as the British Parliament propose; and in this, I think I speak the sentiments of America.

—Thomas Jefferson, November 29, 1775

So it would be. It is the same conflict that led to Magna Charta, and to the Glorious Revolution. This time carried out in a war that would change the world. In fact, many of us refer to it as the Second English Civil War, for such it was.

We probably won’t take the time later this week so let’s note now that the ensuing unpleasantness would lead to one of the largest mass emigrations the United States would ever see, that of many Loyalists to Canada. They imparted to the Canucks some measure of understanding us without taking our world famous rowdiness with them. God Bless them.

They like the United Kingdom itself would in time become the friends that prove Bismarck’s dictum true, “Great Nations do not have friends, they have interests”. This nation does.

A film clip perhaps, showing Hollywood’s version of the difference between Americans and Canadians.

And so as we begin the celebration of independence this week, we would be wise to remember that while we have the oldest government in the world, we are amongst the youngest of countries. But we had a head start, for we built this country on the shoulders of giants.

History and How It Moves Us

Headquarters parlor VF right

Well, guys, the blog is having the best week it has had in months, so I’m grateful to you all. The last year has been a trial, some say that Google changed the algorithms to hurt conservative blogs. I have no idea if that is so, which is why I haven’t written about it, but I can tell you our readership suddenly halved last July, and just in the last week are we approaching where we were. Hope I’m not jinxing it by telling you. 🙂

There have been quite a few times in the last year when I came very close to hanging it up, just seemed like I wasn’t accomplishing anything, but habit is strong, and I haven’t run out of things to say. So on we go. Things look a bit better here in the Great Republic but much remains to be done, and one hopes it will be. So we’ll see.

As I write this, I’m feeling very down. It is an anniversary in my life, something started some years ago on this date, that I thought would be part of my life as long as I was in this world. Sadly it seems it was not to be, and I’m much the poorer for it. Nothing any of us can do, but last night was a quite hard one for me. Well, such is life, it seems.

Winge over, thanks for listening!

This, however, is very interesting. Did you ever wonder how they would see us say a hundred years from now? Two Nerdy History Girls published on that very topic a few days ago.

Susan reporting,

The perception of the historical past is always changing. Each new generation looks at history with fresh eyes, and fresh ideas, too.

Nowhere is this more evident than in how we Americans have treated our historically important buildings. In the years following the American Revolution, many of the place we now venerate most were simply old buildings, allowed to grow more shabby by the year.

Portions of Independence Hall in Philadelphia – the site of the signing of the Declaration of Independence – had already fallen into such disrepair that they were torn down in 1812. Federal Hall in New York City – home of the first Congress as well as where George Washington was inaugurated as the first president – was also demolished barely a generation later in 1812. Built in 1713, the Old State House in Boston witnessed the Boston Massacre, but was later cut up into shops and businesses, and finally suffered the ultimate indignity of having a subway station built into its basement.

But the Centennial celebrations of 1876 brought a new interest in preserving the past. Older buildings were finally beginning to be recognized and preserved for their historical importance. Sometimes, however, these early preservationists often relied on a romanticized version of the 18thc, with some interesting results.

The present-day Valley Forge National Historical Park in Pennsylvania first became recognized as a state park focused on history in 1893. Then, as now, the centerpiece of the park was the stone farm house used by General George Washington as his headquarters during the Continental Army’s winter encampment of 1777-78. Also known as the Isaac Potts House for the original owner, the Headquarters was occupied not only General Washington, but by his wife Martha Washington, seven aides-de-camp, servants, and occasional visitors. The house is not large, especially not considering how many people were squeezed inside it, and from contemporary reports, quarters were cramped, and tempers often ran short.

Follow the link above and keep reading, I, at least, think it is fascinating, how our perceptions have changed. And like them, I wonder what they will think in 2117.`I just have to tell you, a few years ago I was visiting Valley Forge (again) and I happened to find the Chapel. Well, I can’t remember when I have been so moved. A small Gothic chapel, with the battle flags of the Continental Army as the only decoration other than the altar furniture. It moved me deep in my soul, to the point that now, some thirty years later, I remember it as if it was yesterday.

And that is what a historical site, well presented, will do. Suddenly, we will be able to perceive the struggles that our forebears went through to make our today’s possible. It is simply amazing.

Mobocracy, Individual Rights, and Government

This new Bill Whittle series is extraordinary. This one, entitled Government may be the best short explanation of why and how America’s government was designed as it is.

The last week has been rather heavy in British constitutional theory and practice, what with the general election and all. It’s not a bad reason to remind ourselves and others why it is so important to limit the size and power of the (especially general) government.

And yes, the Brits actually do know this as well as we do. That’s where we learned it, of course. We here in the United States, when it came our turn to mount the recurrent civil war (English Civil War, American Revolution, and American Civil War) we learned not only from the Stuarts, and their overthrow but from Cromwell and his excesses. And because we started with a clean slate, and toweringly good men, and above them one, George Washington, we were provided with safeguards from almost all dangers, except for we the people ourselves.

My British friends have always been uncomfortable with the emphasis we put on the individual. I understand their concern well, so did Benjamin Rush, who wrote to John Adams, in 1789.

Philadelphia Jany. 22nd. 1789.

My dear friend

Your affectionate and instructing letter of Decemr 2nd. did not reach me ‘till yesterday. I Embrace with my Affections, as well as my judgement that form of Government which you have proved from so many Authorities, to be the only One that can preserve political happiness. It was my attachment to a constitution composed of three branches, that first deprived me of the Confidence of the Whigs of Pennsylvania in the Close of the year 1776. My Observations upon the misery which a single legislature has produced in Pennsylvania, have only served to encrease my Abhorance of that Species of Government. I could as soon embrace the most absurd dogmas in the most Absurd of all the pagan religions, as prostitute my Understanding by approving of our State constitution—It is below a democracy. It is mobocracy—if you will allow me to coin a word. If you will not permit me to compare it to a Wheelbarrow, or a Balloon. I never see our self-ballanced legislature meet, but I feel as if I saw a body of men ascending in One of those air vehicles—without sails or helm.—I have collected materials for a history of the Revolution in Pennsylvania, but despair of being Able to arrange or publish them, while I am so closely confined to the duties of my profession. They contain such an Account the follies & cries of mankind as would tend forever to discredit a single legislature. …

If memory holds, the Pennsylvania government of 1776, was not all that different from that of England, a fairly weak executive, and courts, all subservient to the basically unitary legislature. It was a decided failure. In England at the time, the House of Commons was moderated by both a much stronger House of Lords and crown than they are now.

In many ways, it’s a balancing act, between the executive, the legislative assembly (House of Representatives, now), the States (The Senate as originally constituted), and the courts, not to mention the people.

Mobocracy is always a danger, of course, as we are seeing in our own time, offsetting that is that by guaranteeing the unalienable rights of the individual, we thereby guarantee those of the family, the community, the church, and the constituent state vis a vis the federal government, which then as now is seen as the most likely to degenerate into tyranny, which must be guarded against from all comers, whatsoever. And it also guarantees them in practice from the mob itself.

If you would know why I, and many Americans, supported Brexit, full-throatedly, you will find your answer here. We, as Americans, if we know our history, easily quote from our Founders, to make all these points, on rights and obligations and all the rest. But so can the British, more than any other people in the world. For all of these men, who bequeathed to America whatever share of freedom and liberty we have maintained, every one of them considered himself a free-born Englishman, and a proud one, until that government attempted to remove those rights. Then they became Americans. There is nothing comparable to the Anglo-American concept of responsible liberty on the face of the earth, there is only the autocracy of the elites, and the mobocracy of the serfs.

Only in the Anglosphere, (not so) strangely including Israel, do men walk as free men, with unalienable rights.

 

The Flying Pigs Report

The author, an Indian-American, visiting her first NRA convention on Friday.

I don’t talk a lot about guns here, mostly because others do it and usually better. But like most of my readers, I’m a very firm supporter of the right to own guns, in fact, I tend to think the NFA is unconstitutional (that’s the one that manned machine guns, and such) let alone the ’68 gun control act. I agree with Tench Coxe, who wrote in the Pennsylvania Gazette back in the day

The power of the sword, say the minority of Pennsylvania, is in the hands of Congress. My friends and countrymen, it is not so, for THE POWERS OF THE SWORD ARE IN THE HANDS OF THE YEOMANRY OF AMERICA FROM SIXTEEN TO SIXTY. The militia of these free commonwealths, entitled and accustomed to their arms, when compared with any possible army, must be tremendous and irresistible. Who are the militia? Are they not ourselves. Is it feared, then, that we shall turn our arms each man against his own bosom. Congress have no power to disarm the militia. Their swords, and every other terrible implement of the soldier, are the birth-right of an American…. [T]he unlimited power of the sword is not in the hands of either the federal or state governments, but, where I trust in God it will ever remain, in the hands of the people.

So it was then, so it should be today.

In any case, this story is based on one from CNN (Huh? What? Yeah, I know!) by an Indian immigrant who went to the NRA convention in Atlanta a few days ago. Her name is  Moni Basu, and she learned some things.

Guns are not a part of the culture of my homeland, except perhaps for the occasional Bollywood movie in which the bad guy meets his demise staring down the wrong end of a barrel.

My childhood in India was steeped in ahimsa, the tenet of nonviolence toward all living things.
The Indians may have succeeded in ousting the British, but we won with Gandhian-style civil disobedience, not a revolutionary war.
I grew up not knowing a single gun owner, and even today India has one of the strictest gun laws on the planet. Few Indians buy and keep firearms at home, and gun violence is nowhere near the problem it is in the United States. An American is 12 times more likely than an Indian to be killed by a firearm, according to a recent study.
It’s no wonder then that every time I visit India, my friends and family want to know more about America’s “love affair” with guns.
I get the same questions when I visit my brother in Canada or on my business travels to other countries, where many people remain perplexed, maybe even downright mystified, by Americans’ defense of gun rights.
I admit I do not fully understand it myself, despite having become an American citizen nearly a decade ago. So when I learn the National Rifle Association is holding its annual convention here in Atlanta, right next to the CNN Center, I decide to go and find out more. […]
“Why do you want to own an object that can kill another human being?”
The answers are varied, but they center on three main themes: freedom, self-defense and sport. The first type of response is rooted in the Second Amendment to the US Constitution, which allows for the ownership of more than 300 million guns in America. How many other countries have the right to bear arms written into their very foundation? It’s unique and because of that, foreigners often have trouble grasping it. […]
I meet Chris Styskal at a booth set up by the NRA Wine Club. […] But then we get into serious talk. Gun ownership, he tells me, has its roots in the birth of this country. “George Washington’s army fought off the British with rifles,” he says. “They overthrew an oppressive government.”
His statement gives me pause. The gun laws in India stem from colonial rule, when the British aimed to quell their subjects by disarming them. Perhaps my Indian compatriots should consider the right to own guns from this perspective. […]
It’s a thought echoed by Brickell “Brooke” Clark, otherwise known as the American Gun Chic. She has a website by that name and also a YouTube channel. Both are bathed in hues of pink and dedicated to her recently formed passion for guns. […]
“What would you tell my friends in India who say Americans are infatuated with guns?”
“I wouldn’t say Americans have an obsession with guns,” Clark says. “We have an obsession with being free.”
I ask what the Second Amendment means to her.
“It means I can live my life without anyone overpowering me,” she says. “It makes me equal with everyone else.”
The great equalizer. I never thought of the Second Amendment in that way.

The Equalizer

Well maybe she hasn’t, many don’t, but we always have. The most iconic of American guns, the old Colt Model 1873 Army, got itself a few nicknames, one of them was “The Equalizer” because in a very real sense it made everybody equal, even a 95-pound woman being attacked by men, or a black man who the KKK was trying to lynch. It’s one of the ways America has made and kept itself free. It’s the one you see in all the movies. To continue.

Morris is 35, petite and soft-spoken, but she’s fierce about her opinions on guns.
“I’m 5 feet tall and 100 pounds,” she tells me. “I cannot wait for a cop to come save me when I am threatened with rape or death.”
People look at guns as this evil tool whose job it is to kill,” [Derrick Adams. He’s a 32-year-old electric lineman from Nottingham, Pennsylvania. He describes himself as part black, part Puerto Rican and part Caucasian] says. “They’re not at all that. They are about protection.”
Adams believes that if all law-abiding citizens were armed, crime would drastically go down. He tells me that Chicago would not have such a high gun homicide rate if good folks in the inner cities were armed to fight “thugs and gangs.”
“Stop looking to government to help us. They are not our parents,” Adams says.
Liberals in America who want more gun control, says Adams, want to keep minorities and poor people dependent on government. Gun control started after slavery ended and was a way to keep black people disarmed, he says.
He’s right, on all counts, way back in April of 2013, I ran an article by Enza Ferreri an Italian blogger working from London, who dug into the stats, and came away with the same conclusion. She wrote a most interesting (and long) article on it, which is linked from there.
Back to Ms. Banu
“You idiots,” Adams says, referring to all people of color. “It was invented to suppress you.”
He looks at me as though to say: You should know better.
Again, I think of colonialism in my homeland and how the British passed strict gun control to keep Indians from rising up.
She ends this way:
I leave the convention trying to reconcile what I’ve gathered on this day with the philosophy of nonviolence with which I was raised. I am not certain that vast cultural differences can be bridged in a few hours, but I am glad I got a glimpse into the world of guns. I have much to consider.
She does, and she wrote a fair article, and that’s rare. In a very real sense, we are who we are because of who we were. Americans were the first to throw off colonialism, and we pretty much did it ourselves, and we still remember how we did it. And the other thing we know is just how horrible a time the Revolution was, and we, none of us, want to go there again. And so we believe that an armed American citizenry is the best defense of freedom anywhere in the world, as it has been for 250 years. Welcome to our world, Moni, and all the others “yearning to breathe free”.
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