Last Monday, a gun-owning friend of mine posted a bunch of internet memes on his Facebook page, culminating with “There are two types of people: gun owners and victims.” Someone please remind me what last Monday’s holiday was for — was it gun owner James Earl Ray or victim Martin Luther King, Jr.? I forget.
There are lots of things our government does that I disagree with. Throughout our history, our government has taken away rights of individuals, and we have been able to make great progress without actually taking up arms against the government.
For instance, the civil rights movement led by King helped to convince Americans that the law had to be changed, and they accomplished this with non-violent protests. Other advances were made through our political system (by electing politicians who promoted change) or through our legal system (with lawsuits to force the government to extend rights). In a truly democratic form of government, this is how you progress.
But some gun owners believe that if you don’t get your way in America, it is perfectly fine to advocate violence. They read the 2nd amendment in a way no court has done, and in a way counter to the majority of Americans, but insist, like religious fundamentalists, that they and they alone know exactly what the Constitution means. “We must obey the Constitution!” they scream. “We are true patriots, obeying the will of the Founders! And we will use violence against the government if you try to stop us!”
Yes, because the Constitution must be obeyed. Oh, except that part about treason. That doesn’t count.
(EDIT: It is pure coincidence that as I am writing this, I hear on the news that there is another shooter killing people in a Mall. I could have re-rerun my “Gun Control Shuffle” post, but I’m getting tired of having to run that every few weeks.)