Ah, Brazil! That Utopian society where law-abiding citizens do not need the right to bear arms. It is so peaceful and serene. It is the 5th largest country on the planet, you know. It has abundant natural resources. It is a democratic republic. It is the 7th largest economy in the world. It sounds so perfect. And the best thing about Brazil is, while the police have guns and the military has guns and the criminals have guns and the drug lords have guns, the law-abiding citizens do not have guns. Brazil’s rate of violent death is nearly 29 per 100,000 in population. That is 4.5 times higher than the rate of violent death in America, where, to our shame, law-abiding citizens can shoot back. It really sucks to live in America, I guess, where you can actually go see a major sporting event without fear of being murdered by street thugs over a matter of $80. I wished I lived in Brazil, so the police could warn me not to scream for help while being robbed. Not.
The Second Amendment of the Constitution of the United States: “A well regulated militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.”
- Keep: To have or retain possession of.
- Bear: To carry on one’s person.
- Infringe: Actively break the terms of a law or agreement.
Here is a list of the thirty-eight states where the individual’s right to keep and bear arms are consistent with or exceeds the U.S. Constitution’s guaranteed protection. Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Hawaii, Idaho, Indiana, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Massachusetts, Michigan, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Mexico, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, South Dakota, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia, Wisconsin, and Wyoming. The twenty-six bolded states explicitly protect the right to bear arms even during times of peace when a standing militia is not necessary. (Note that only six states, California, Iowa, Maryland, Minnesota, New Jersey, and New York, have no constitutionally guaranteed right to keep and bear arms, theoretically deferring authority to the U.S. Constitution.)
The Death of The Right to Bear Arms
The Constitutional right to keep and bear arms is not completely dead because it is difficult to pull the teeth out of a bear’s mouth even when it is asleep. Every once in while you can ply one out, but it is tedious and requires a lot of persistence. That is why every year hundreds of local, state and federal legislators (all of whom swore to uphold the Constitution) write or sponsor all sorts of crazy, unconstitutional gun-control laws in hopes a few will pass here and there. Legislators such as Oregon’s wacky State Rep, Merwyn Greenlick, who proposed HB3200, a law that would send all owners of high capacity magazines to jail for 10 years and fine them $250,000. Greenlick’s bill failed, but a similar bill passed in New York State, and now owning a magazine that holds 11 or more bullets is a Class D Violent Felony, no different from 2nd degree rape. That is right, folks, New York State has declared that all Americans who invoke their Constitutional Right to Keep and Bear Arms are just as bad as rapists.
Using this shotgun approach, legislators across the country have forced an unconstitutional patchwork of bizarre restrictions to the 2nd Amendment on Americans with the penultimate being Washington D.C.’s ban on empty shell casings. No kidding, if you are from Virginia, and you drive your truck through D.C. on your way to Delaware, you better not have any 22LR brass floating around your rig or you could find yourself in jail. A well-regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms, shall not be infringed? Er… did I miss the news where the District of Columbia seceded from the Union? Then again, if we could turn D.C. into its own little nation, put a wall around it, lock all our politicians inside with all the PACs, lobbyists and Fortune 500 CEOs, and then turn off the electricity, it would solve a hell of a lot of problems… and be really funny at the same time.
The bottom line is that making it illegal for law-abiding citizens to keep and bear arms does nothing to prevent crime or suicide. As a matter of fact, globally, the risk of violent death dramatically increases as the ordinary citizen loses their right to keep and bear arms. I am sick of progressive, anti-gun nuts going about preaching that firearms cause violence. As the saying goes, “God made man, but Samuel Colt made them equal,” and the global statistics prove it. Nothing makes the bad guys think twice more than knowing the good guys can shoot back.
I promise. Two simple, yet powerful words. I swear. My solemn oath. The ‘promise’ is the most common form of contract known to man, and holds sway from the least of children to the greatest of leaders. Yet it is entirely unenforceable, for there is no controlling legal authority beyond the character of the promise maker. In politics the solemn oath of office is a satirical farce. The citizen knows the politician has no intention of keeping any promise or oath. For instance, in the United States, every politician swears to uphold and defend the Constitution, and then relentlessly attempts to subvert it. Why? The Constitution interferes with the politician’s ability to force their personal agenda upon an unwilling population.
The ‘promise’ is also the foundation of journalistic integrity. A journalist’s power is found solely in their integrity. Journalists want their readers to believe they are credible, so they promise to be truthful and adhere to a code of ethics and fairness. Like politicians, journalists spend a huge amount of resources maintaining the illusion of honesty and integrity. Unfortunately, with no controlling legal authority, journalists, like politicians, often undermine public enlightenment with falsehoods and misinformation. Why? The truth often interferes with the journalist’s ability to force their personal agenda upon an unwilling population.
From the Japanese internment during WWII to Obamacare, America’s history is rife with constitutional battles pitting the U.S. government against We The People. Today’s constitutional battle pits the majority of American citizens, who believe in the inherent value of the 2nd Amendment, against opportunistic politicians seeking to diminish the citizen’s right to bear arms. In this battle American politicians find themselves with a new and extraordinarily powerful ally, the British Broadcasting Corporation. The BBC’s journalists bring with them a finely crafted cloak of global integrity, a bully pulpit, if you will. The citizens of our world trust that the BBC will demonstrate the highest integrity in it reporting, so when the BBC sides with forces seeking to subvert the Constitution of the United States of America, the BBC legitimizes them.
THE BBC’s ‘BIG FISH’ STORY
On January 16th, 2013, the BBC published an article that intentionally misleads its readers about relationship of lawful gun ownership and violence both inside and outside of the United States of America. The article, titled US gun debate: Guns in numbers, http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-us-canada-20759139 cherry picks data and intentionally omits facts in order to frame the U.S. as a violent “outlier … when compared with other highly developed countries.” They put their data in a slick little chart, threw in a few photos of semi-automatic weapons, and made it a fait accompli. America’s lawful gun culture is at the root of American violence. No further investigation needed.
THE FIRST DECEPTION: The BBC is quick to point out that guns will kill 3.2 of every 100,000 Americans. That is over 30 times higher the United Kingdom’s extremely low rate of 0.1 gun deaths per 100,000! Ouch! What they fail to mention is that America’s overall death by violence rate is 6.5 per 100,000, and the U.K.’s overall rate of death by violence is 1.2 per 100,000. The Brits still kill each other, but simply do it without guns. Both countries are well below the global average of 11.47 violent deaths per 100,000.
THE SECOND DECEPTION: The BBC claims that “On a global scale, this rate puts the US 26th in the world, behind Honduras, El Salvador and Jamaica,” for murder. This is not a factual statement. Worldlifeexpectancy.com ranks 192 countries by their rate of death by violence. 91 countries have a higher rate of death by violence that the United States. Actually, it is Guinea, the former French colony, who is in 26th place with a rate of death by violence of 25.3 per 100,000. The law-abiding citizens of Guinea own so few firearms they make the Brits look like gun nuts.
THE THIRD DECEPTION: The BBC next claims that, “when compared with other highly developed countries, the rate shows the U.S. as an outlier.” This is another false statement where the BBC cherry picks their data points. Yes, the U.S. is a bit high, but is lower than Estonia, and not a far cry from Finland and Latvia, who are all peaceful, developed countries. If any country is an “outlier” it is the U.K. Most countries where citizens have little right to bear arms have extraordinarily high violent death rates.
THE FOURTH DECEPTION: The BBC finally infers that the 2nd Amendment to the Constitution of the United States, what they refer to as “Guns in Numbers” is the direct cause for high murder rates in the U.S. The BBC builds this grand falsehood on a foundation of misinformation and baseless claims – what my father would have referred to as a “whopper!”
First, the U.S. murder rate has dropped 50% in the last twenty years, while at the same time private gun ownership has risen by nearly 50%.
Second, about half of American murderers choose a means of killing other than guns.
Third, statistics show a disarmed population is usually at a higher risk of death by violence.
People are going to kill each other whether they have guns or not, and as the saying goes, “God made man, but Samuel Colt made them equal.” Criminals, terrorists, drug cartels, rebels, and corrupt governments all over the world arm themselves to the teeth with weapons often supplied through legal channels by one government or another. Taking away the right of law-abiding citizens to defend themselves simply creates a vast reservoir of potential victims. For example, Washington D.C. has some of the most restrictive firearms laws in the U.S. yet remains an intractable den of gun violence. Also, I am certain that the genocide in Rwanda would have had an entirely different outcome had all the victims owned the ability to defend themselves.
SHAME ON THE BBC: Like it or not, journalists have an ethical responsibility to present honest, objective findings in the news. Readers believe, perhaps naïvely, that Journalists deal with them fairly and honestly, and take what journalists report as not only factual, but independent of government or cause. With great power comes great responsibility, and organizations such as the BBC have a moral obligation not to be the tool of, or mouthpiece for, any sociopolitical agenda, even if it is an agenda of their own creation. Maybe someone can buy the BBC a dictionary so they could look up the word, “shame.” After all, they own it.