On January 20, 2020, an impressively peaceful gun-rights rally took place in Richmond, VA, when gun owners showed up armed in order to oppose the legislation that plans to restrict access to firearms in the state of Virginia. It is estimated that around 22,000 protesters attended the rally, according to the Virginia Division of Capitol Police.
Virginia’s governor, Ralph S. Northam, declared a state of emergency, basing his decision for doing so on what the Virginia government called on their website “credible threats of violent extremism.” Just another Charlottesville episode, perhaps? Nope. Not even close! Not one single bullet was fired. The only thing that did backfire was the misconstrued accusation that guns bring more violence.
In the face of the harmful and derogatory notion that anyone with a gun is dangerous and that guns divide us as a nation, the thousands of men and women who stood in Richmond shattered these stereotypes. They proved actions speak louder than words as people from different genders, races, cultures, and socio-economic backgrounds shined a light on the fact that guns do not inherently generate more violence. Furthermore, it also highlighted that one’s right to protect oneself is rooted in diversity and a commonality that we all share, no matter our differences.
What the entire nation witnessed was a clear message that not all laws are just or even enforceable, especially when they are a threat to liberty. After all, the world has not yet seen unarmed individuals dethrone any tyrant during times of upheavals. Thus, any government’s attempt to disarm its own citizens should be seen as a suspicious act.
With or without the Constitution, we have the right to defend ourselves and the ones we love.
The truth of the matter is our right to bear arms supersedes any political or legal document ever written by any human. The idea that our right to bear arms depends on governmental approval is a foolish misconception. No one needs the government or another person to grant them the moral right of legitimate self-defense they are born with. So the message must be clear, gun rights do not come from the Second Amendment, they preexist this constitutional concept.
There is no doubt that our Founding Fathers knew that the right to defend ourselves from any domestic or external threat was so important that it needed to be included in the Constitution. However, the Second Amendment exists not to tell individuals that they are allowed to bear arms, since that is implicitly expressed in our Constitution as a natural right, but rather it is in place to remind the government that it does not have the right to take away the means through which individuals can defend themselves.
Nevertheless, it is an undeniable truth that as individuals we have the natural right to defend ourselves against others. The government does not have the capacity or means to protect every individual living within its borders; it is objectively impossible. Therefore, it is not a privilege, but a right for every citizen to have the choice to defend themselves against evil actions and criminal activities, whether they are committed by private individuals or a government authority.
Regardless of one’s political proclivity toward left or right, every elected politician should undergo at least a basic philosophy and constitutional law class where they are taught that political opinions do not give them the authority to destroy natural rights that precede the Constitution itself.
The correct question isn’t why do we want to own guns, but why would anyone want to try to take them away?
It is not just that we care about our right to bear arms in order to protect ourselves and our loved ones. It is also that we question anyone’s motivation for trying to stop us from being able to do so. Absolutely no one has the legitimacy to take away someone’s right to self-defense. Thus, when politicians try to enact a law that takes away our natural right to bear arms under the excuse of societal protection, all that is left is the maximization of a nation’s inability to stand up against any sort of governmental threat. If Venezuelans, Cubans, and North Koreans were as well-armed as Americans are, would they still be at the complete mercy of appalling state control that has caused the death of thousands of individuals through waves of terror, famine, and violence?
Something that is deeply rooted in any liberty movement is the love for peace and the wish that people be left alone undisturbed so that they can live life according to their own principles. So it is highly unlikely that a plot to start a new civil war is taking place among the gun rights activists, especially when many of these activists, if not all, truly believe in the NAP (Non-Aggression Principle).
However, if a boogaloo ever becomes a possibility, the best way to avoid it is for the government to just leave people alone, more specifically the ones not committing crimes. This protest was merely a peaceful way to show the government that the Gadsden flag’s motto gladly still stands. In fact, “Don’t tread on me” has finally, in this case, become not a threat but a warning about what well-armed men can do. If you have any questions about it, perhaps it is time you go ask the British what happened in 1776.