OPINION — With plenty of youthful anti-gun activism currently underway, there’s another, less fashionable discussion that also desperately needs to take place.
It’s time for a long overdue talk with our kids about the morality of owning firearms.
The first thing with which our youth must come to grips is the understanding that there is nothing inherently immoral or evil about owning a particular firearm.
Like any other tool, the morality of its use is entirely dependent upon the intent of the person using it.
Simply possessing a firearm that has certain cosmetic features that some people consider “scary” does not constitute a harmful act that produces a victim.
This is an essential moral distinction that must be made.
Considering that there is no law so small that the state won’t kill you in order to enforce it, this means that even so-called “reasonable” gun regulations are calls for violence against firearms owners who have harmed no one. Advocating for government to send armed men to threaten violence against individuals who have committed no harm is about as immoral as it gets.
It doesn’t matter if a majority of people subjectively feel a certain displeasure about firearms. The only morally justifiable use of government force is in seeking justice when an objective harm has occurred.
Even then, that force must be limited to the specific individuals who allegedly caused the harm and should leave everyone else unmolested. Blanket prohibitions that deny due process to an entire class of people are not within the scope of valid government power.
It’s curious how that foundational principle of limited government has somehow escaped the outspoken young people we’re told are too brilliant to ignore.
It’s a safe bet that the kids who marched out of their schools last week and their adult enablers are unacquainted with the first principles upon which legitimate government is based.
Firearms ownership is a freedom based in the natural right of resistance and self-preservation. Natural rights are those that exist prior to and outside of the existence of man-made government. This was understood by our nation’s Founding Fathers and those whose thinking influenced their own.
For instance, Sir William Blackstone, in his “Commentaries on the Laws of England,” provided clear inspiration for the framers of American government. Blackstone referred to “the natural right of resistance and self-preservation,” which necessarily entailed “the right of having and using arms for self-preservation and defense.”
This means that our right to protect ourselves, by the most useful tools available, is not subject to the whims of public opinion or the preferences of politicians and bureaucrats. Would be sophists who claim our natural rights are dependent on the pronouncements of black-robed jurists are forgetting that the creature cannot exceed its creator.
We the people are the creators of our government and it exists to protect our authentic rights and freedoms. It does not exist for the purpose of enforcing spurious “rights” based on a pathological desire to control others.
Watch the video linked here showing a youthful spokesman at one of the nationwide walkout events last week and you’ll see this entitled mindset in action. His uninformed self-righteousness demonstrates a serious lack of understanding of what “rights” are and what they are not.
The fact that implacable gun control activist Sen. Charles Schumer is nodding and smiling behind him should be a big clue as to whose agenda is being served.
Power seekers love government because it affords them the opportunity to consolidate authority over their fellow citizens. The longer they remain in power, the more their mendacity begins to show through as they clamor for greater dominance over the people.
This is why gun control has always been the common precursor to the most despicable acts of oppression and mass murder within the last 100 years. Gun control may not cause genocide but genocide cannot happen without government first obtaining a monopoly on force.
As it stands today, our government claims authority to spy on us, to indefinitely detain us and even to murder us—in the name of national security—all without a shred of due process.
Does that sound like the kind of government we can trust with an exclusive control of force?
It’s in the DNA of government officials to grow and consolidate their power over the people. This was understood by the founders and it’s why they specifically placed the right of the people to keep and bear arms off limits to government infringement.
There’s nothing wise or courageous about becoming a political puppet who demands that government deny more of your remaining freedoms.
We all deplore the senseless violence that has played out in a handful of our schools, but it is not the result of too much freedom. It certainly will not be solved by violating of the rights of innocent people.
Even when those in power attempt to weaponize under-informed youth to be their propagandists.
Our young people must understand that we’ve each inherited a moral duty to claim, exercise and defend all of our rights. That’s why gun owners continue to hold the moral high ground and should emphatically reject all attempts to guilt or shame us about owning the tools to do so.
Bryan Hyde is an opinion columnist specializing in current events viewed through what he calls the lens of common sense. The opinions stated in this article are his and not representative of St. George News.
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