Keep Them Scared



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By Nicki Kenyon, July 28th 2014
JPFO writer contributor, © 2014.

In a recent speech to the Leadership Institute, Gun Owners of America Executive Director Larry Pratt told an audience of young conservatives the truth about the Second Amendment: its intent was not to protect the rights of hunters, or even the right to self-defense. Although, each of us has the right to life, and by extension, the right to defend that life with the most effective tool available, the Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution is hardly about that, says Pratt.

for restraining tyrannical tendencies in government … Especially those in the liberal, tyrannical end of the spectrum. There is some restraint, and even if the voters of Brooklyn don't hold them back, it may be there are other ways that their impulses are somewhat restrained. That's the whole idea of the Second Amendment.

According to the Hill Blotter, Pratt reinforced his point in March during an interview with conservative talk show host Bill Cunningham when he spoke of a New York Congresswoman who had expressed fear that one of Pratt's members wanted to shoot her. "You know, I'm kind of glad that's in the back of their minds. Hopefully they'll behave," Pratt said.

Pratt is correct. The intent of the Second Amendment was to ensure that the people always had the means to remove a tyrannical government. Alexander Hamilton wrote in Federalist 28 that should a government betray its constituents and become tyrannical, the people have every right to remove it.

If the representatives of the people betray their constituents, there is then no resource left but in the exertion of that original right of self-defense which is paramount to all positive forms of government, and which against the usurpations of the national rulers, may be exerted with infinitely better prospect of success than against those of the rulers of an individual state.

In a single state, if the persons intrusted with supreme power become usurpers, the different parcels, subdivisions, or districts of which it consists, having no distinct government in each, can take no regular measures for defense. The citizens must rush tumultuously to arms, without concert, without system, without resource; except in their courage and despair.

The representatives elected by the people need to be afraid. Very afraid. The people are the ones who put them in power, and any abuse of that power should lead to removal – whether by ballot or other means. Should an elected official transform into a tyrant, the people have every right to defend their freedoms from usurpation. That is the purpose and the intent of the Second Amendment – to keep abusive tyrants in line.

At least one abusive tyrant wasn't happy with Pratt's true contention, so she did what all abusive tyrants do when they don't like the plain language of those they purport to rule. She called on law enforcement to investigate Larry Pratt.

"As someone who has been on the receiving end of violent threats, I can tell you that it is no small matter," [Rep. Carolyn B.] Maloney [D-imwit, NY] told CQ Roll Call in an interview Wednesday, expressing her concerns about Pratt's comments. "To hear Mr. Pratt say he was 'glad' about the threats made against me shows just how unhinged he is."

Maloney's staff notified Capitol Police and House Sergeant-at-Arms Paul Irving of the recent article which declared Pratt the "Gun Lobby's Secret Weapon," the congresswoman said, but they were told there was "no specific danger and nothing to be done."

Don't like specific speech? Ban it.

Don't like what someone says about you? Try to use law enforcement at your disposal to shut them up.

Play victim. Pretend they said something "threatening" and "unhinged."

Use all tools at your disposal to quash their right to speak freely. Does that sound like a petty tyrant to you?

Ironically, had she been truly threatened, she would call on men with guns – police or armed security – to protect her, which is the same right she seeks to deny those who elected her, and whose tax dollars she would use to hire said guns.

Maloney claims Pratt is encouraging extremist nuts to threaten government officials with whom they disagree. We have to wonder how badly Maloney would soil herself at the following from men who helped found this country:

"What country can preserve its liberties if their rulers are not warned from time to time that their people preserve the spirit of resistance. Let them take arms." -- Thomas Jefferson to James Madison, Dec. 20, 1787

"The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time, with the blood of patriots and tyrants." --Thomas Jefferson in a letter to William S. Smith in 1787.

"As civil rulers, not having their duty to the people before them, may attempt to tyrannize, and as the military forces which must be occasionally raised to defend our country, might pervert their power to the injury of their fellow citizens, the people are confirmed by the article in their right to keep and bear their private arms." -- Tench Coxe in "Remarks on the First Part of the Amendments to the Federal Constitution" under the Pseudonym "A Pennsylvanian" in the Philadelphia Federal Gazette

"What, Sir, is the use of a militia? It is to prevent the establishment of a standing army, the bane of liberty.... Whenever Governments mean to invade the rights and liberties of the people, they always attempt to destroy the militia, in order to raise an army upon their ruins." -- Rep. Elbridge Gerry of Massachusetts, spoken during floor debate over the Second Amendment

"The supreme power in America cannot enforce unjust laws by the sword; because the whole body of the people are armed, and constitute a force superior to any bands of regular troops that can be, on any pretense, raised in the United States" -- Noah Webster in "An Examination into the Leading Principles of the Federal Constitution" A 1787 pamphlet aimed at swaying Pennsylvania toward ratification.

"Guard with jealous attention the public liberty. Suspect everyone who approaches that jewel. Unfortunately, nothing will preserve it but downright force. Whenever you give up that force, you are inevitably ruined" -- Patrick Henry, Speech on the Federal Constitution, Virginia Ratifying Convention

"The strongest reason for people to retain the right to keep and bear arms is, as a last resort, to protect themselves against tyranny in government." -- Thomas Jefferson

Fact of the matter is that the men who founded this great nation fully intended for the right to keep and bear arms to be a last bulwark against tyranny. They intended for the citizens to be able to forcibly remove a dictatorial government. They wanted Americans to have the capability and firepower to instill fear in potential tyrants.

There's a reason why tyrants disarm their subjects.

Hitler disarmed the Jews, leaving them defenseless and murdering millions.

Everyone in the former Soviet Union was disarmed by the communists, resulting in egregious abuses and outright murder of dissidents.

Disarming the populace necessarily serves to increase the power of the state. And armed populace necessarily serves to prevent this abuse.

And that's why Maloney should be scared.

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Nicki Kenyon has been an avid gun rights advocate since she returned to the United States from an overseas Army tour in Germany. She began writing about Second Amendment issues in 2001 when published her first essay, "The Moment.". She holds a Bachelor of Science degree in International Relations from the Johns Hopkins University and a Master of Arts degree in National Security Studies from American Military University. Her area of expertise in those fields is European and Eurasian affairs. When not writing about gun rights or hanging out with her husband and son, she practices dry-firing her M1911 at the zombies of "The Walking Dead." Nicki Kenyon's Archive Page.

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