“They who can give up essential Liberty to obtain a little temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety.” – Benjamin Franklin, February 17, 1775
The tragic Parkland, Florida school shooting has once again raised the demonic specter of gun control and has stirred people into a mindless and frenzied hysteria against our God-given Liberty and the Constitution which protects it. I want to speak bluntly in this article. I want to refocus this debate on the real issue at play; namely, on our rights. Personal feelings, personal opinions, personal fears and paranoia, all must bow before the exalted throne of individual rights.
Our individual rights are given to us by God. They do not come from man. They do not come from society. They are not granted by government. They are not granted by the U.S. Constitution or Declaration of Independence. They are not subject to the whims or opinions of the majority. They are not subject to elections or votes. They are not subject to populist passions. They are not dependent upon the president’s or Supreme Court’s support. They are inalienable, sacred, and undeniable for those who live peaceably and do not violate the equal rights of others.
The great Thomas Jefferson defined Liberty thus:
“[R]ightful liberty is unobstructed action according to our will, within the limits drawn around us by the equal rights of others. I do not add ‘within the limits of the law’; because law is often but the tyrant’s will, and always so when it violates the right of an individual” (Thomas Jefferson to Isaac H. Tiffany, April 4, 1819).
Liberty is an individual’s right to “unobstructed action.” The only restriction placed upon an individual’s right to act without obstruction is the violation of another’s equal rights. Let’s demonstrate this principle with an example. While you have a right to life, if you murder – thus violating another’s equal right to life – you forfeit your right to the same. And so on and so forth. Unless an individual has violated another person’s rights, his actions cannot be restrained, curtailed, obstructed, or punished by legitimate law. And any law which would limit a person’s Liberty for any reason and because of any pretext is nothing but “the tyrant’s will” and is itself a gross violation of the very notion of Freedom. And it is an explicit violation of the U.S. Constitution.
Inasmuch as government does not grant us rights, government cannot then restrict or curtail those rights unless you have forfeited them by violating another individual’s rights. Our Founding Fathers understood this concept and codified it in the Declaration of Independence and U.S. Constitution. The Declaration of Independence declares that the power and authority of the People supersedes any government or constitution. It plainly stated:
“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.”
To “secure these rights” – rights such as life, Liberty, and the right of self-defense – is the chief function of all legitimate government. When a government violates those rights, the People have not only a right but a duty to “alter or to abolish” that government and erect new laws or forms of government that will best secure their natural rights and Liberties. Government’s job, then, is not to give you a “safe space” or to tuck you in at night and sing you lullabies. The state’s job is not to rock your cradle, hold your hand, and keep you “safe.” The government’s sole job is to secure each individual’s God-given rights against all threats foreign and domestic.
The U.S. Constitution’s Bill of Rights is a list of “thou shalt nots” directed at government. For instance, the government shall not infringe upon the individual’s God-given right of self-defense. That is explicitly stated in the 2nd Amendment. The other amendments similarly use terms like “shall not” and “shall” to restrain government and protect the individual.
The 2nd Amendment, contrary to popular belief, has nothing to do with guns. Firearms is not the issue. Rather, this precious amendment has everything to do with self-defense. Every honest person will admit that individuals have an inherent right to defend themselves, their property, their family, and their rights. Without this overarching right of self-defense, no other right could ever be secured. What does the right of property mean without the right to defend it against those who would steal or plunder? What does the right of life mean without the means of self-defense? By using simple logic and rational thinking we come to the obvious conclusion that the right of self-defense is the most important right, for, without it, our other rights don’t matter and are not secure.
If what I have just said is true, then it is also true to state that any infringement of the Second Amendment is a blow against our safety. It cannot be otherwise. If the right of self-defense is the right that defends all others, to infringe it infringes automatically upon all other rights. Ignorant students and rabid activists like the characteristically communist David Hogg only think with their emotions and aren’t informed enough to understand what Liberty is and what the Constitution says. Their knee-jerk reaction is that which they have been indoctrinated in public schools and by the controlled Establishment media to perform.
Instead of immediately rushing to defend our rights in the aftermath of a tragedy, they immediately rush to destroy our rights just so they can feel safer in their bed at night. This attitude is tyrannical in the extreme. We are a nation of mini tyrants with each person waltzing on the other’s rights whenever it suits them or whenever they feel afraid of some bogeyman the media can make appear, such as the myth of the “white Christian conservative with an AR about ready to shoot up the local school.” We live in an era of fear-based politics and paranoia rules the day.
If you support any form of the curtailment of the right of self-defense – gun restrictions, national data bases, waiting periods, licensing, attachment bans, mandatory screenings, ad infinitum – you, sir, are a tyrant. You stand in opposition to the Constitution. You stand opposed to the Founding Fathers – great men like George Washington and Thomas Jefferson. You are at war with Freedom. And you are at war with the Author of that Freedom, the God who rules in the Heavens. In short, you are an enemy to the Republic if you favor any legislation, policy, program, ruling, or executive order designed to restrict, even in the slightest, our natural right to defend ourselves, our families, our Freedom, and our faith.
In short, my essential Liberty trumps in every imaginable way your so-called need to feel safe. Liberty trumps safety every time. Secured Liberty is true safety. My God-given rights trump your insecurities and paranoia. My Freedom surpasses and exceeds your desire for calm and safety.
The great Thomas Jefferson declared:
“[A]ll timid men . . . prefer the calm of despotism to the boisterous sea of liberty” (Thomas Jefferson to Philp Mazzei, April 24, 1796).
Another time, he accurately wrote:
“The boisterous sea of liberty is never without a wave” (Thomas Jefferson to Richard Rush, October 20, 1820).
Anyone who thinks things will always be tranquil and calm is ignorant of reality and is guilty of wishful thinking. Life will never be calm. There will always be boisterous waves, tempests of thought, contention and differences. Until the Lord returns to reign, this world will be one of disagreement and tempestuous convulsions. We must not react to these bumps in the road by restricting the one thing that could ultimately see us through the storm safely – our Liberty.
Liberty must be the paramount issue. When a mass shooting occurs, our first instinct must be to defend Liberty against rash emotionalism and knee-jerk reactionism. Only by securing our rights – crucially, the right of self-defense – can we be safe. If you can only feel “safe” by destroying another person’s Freedom and the right to defend himself and his family, you have a serious problem. If this is your attitude and proposed solution to the perceived problem of violence, you are not only ignorant of reality, but you are an enemy to Liberty. You see the world through a tainted lens. You are living in fear. You have no respect for Liberty or the Constitution.
Please, be a true friend to the Constitution. Be a friend to Freedom. Be a friend to our God-given rights. Unite with those who want to be freemen rather than slaves, to be self-sufficient rather than rely upon the government for everything, including their personal safety. Unite against the demagogues and despots who want to subjugate you and your family and who use the corpses of school children as talking points to push their sick agenda. Choose the right side and you will have friends. Choose the wrong side and reap eternal infamy and bring shame upon your country.
I close by repeating that my essential Liberty, my individual rights, my right to defend my family and Freedom, trump your need to feel “safe.” When you sacrifice Liberty on the altar of safety, you sacrifice everything. Liberty must not be sacrificed to quiet the fears of a paranoid and insecure segment of society or the demigods in government who bite at every opportunity to increase their power and wrap chains around the American People.
Long live Liberty! Sic semper tyrannis!
April 10, 2018.