In my retirement years, I’ve spent much of my time reading the actual words of the Founding Fathers. You know, those dead racist, slave owning, white guys, that the cultural left, Progressive Democrats, and many of the Zinnia prone educators on both college and secondary levels seem to denigrate in their reductionist treatment of anything dealing with the history of the United States. Revisionist historians who promulgated academia, especially in the 1950s, along with their baby-boomer descendants, are now firmly in control of what is taught, but more importantly, what is not taught in schools. They seldom cover the Jeffersons, Henrys, Madisons, Adams, Hamiltons, Franklins and the Publius or Federalist Papers without the obligatory post-modern, post-colonial and deconstructionist’s chatter. A chatter despite its punctiliousness has the very bad habit of seizing upon extremely complex issues related to history, economics, culture, immigration, the military, science, and conveniently stuffing them into decanters labeled, race, gender, and class.
Indeed, if one did not read, nor was exposed to the primary writings Washington, Adams, Paine, Jefferson and others, it is no wonder that those who see themselves as our intellectual betters (many of them neo-socialist catechists) have an extremely pejorative understanding of the people, documents, events, and struggles we had to parley as a nation, in order to have the freedoms and often unappreciated liberties that exist today.
Once again, primary documentation about the constitution is not covered in any meaningful manner, short of the “America is bad and irredeemable racist” prism that many individuals identified as Progressives anchor themselves to. Instead, a synergistic mixture of neo-socialist, anti-American, anti-military, anti-religious, anti-Israel, pro-abortion, pro-gun control and anti-capitalist rhetoric is lavishly dispensed by education institutions, the news media, and many within the Democrat and Republican Parties. What makes this mixture especially toxic is, that it is often done at the exclusion and ridicule of other opposing viewpoints.
As a consequence, if you want to get a clear and yet wholistic perspective concerning our nation’s founding principles, the universities are often the last place you would find them. It is vital, if not categorical imperative, to begin reading the constitution, the Federalist Papers, the writings of Jefferson, John Jay, Franklin, Washington and others, and forego the revisionist minutiae touted up as critical thinking by the cultural left and the Priesthood of Progressive Liberalism. Their faith statement has singlehandedly truncated intellectual freedom and true diversity of thought in many of our cultural institutions. Unfortunately, this same left-of-center orientation is also making headway in the corporate cultures of Google, Facebook, YouTube and other mega giants of social media.
Youthful Idiots and Gun Control
The recent shooting at a Parkland Florida high school has once again brought to the forefront the issue of gun control, the NRA, and the validity of the second amendment. As seen in recent news broadcasts, high school students, with prodding from individuals and the body politic that would like to abrogate the second amendment has reached a frenetic pitch. The March for Our Lives demonstrations is the latest political opus, orchestrated by the cultural left. The real targets of these protests are the millions of law-abiding gun owners which the previous Neo-socialist and Chief, Barrack Obama, labeled individuals who cling to their religion, guns with antipathy toward people who aren’t like them.
While these student’s hearts are in the right place, their concerns about school safety, the selling of assault weaponry (whatever the hell they are), and the requisite attack on that insidious evil known as the NRA, will do little to either make schools and other public venues safer from crazies ,criminals and free-range terrorists. Democrats, and unfortunately many Republicans lawmakers, marching with these students and engaging in typical Progressive political theatre are the most prominent hypocrites in all of this. Nancy Pelosi, Chuck Schumer, and others come to these rallies exceptionally well protected by their security details with “lots and lots of guns.” The well-armed Robert Kraft, the owner of the New England Patriots, also contributed his jet to fly down victims of the Parkland shooting to a Washington DC protest.
After all, it is a fait accompli that politician’s lives and that of their children must be protected by good people with guns, while the rest of us are asked to disarm ourselves in “gun free zones” or shelter, and in many cases, die in place areas. The ban on AR-15s and other weapons being wheeled by dysfunctional constituencies will do absolutely nothing to stop these events from occurring either now, nor in the future. Once again, the hard truth is stirring us in the face. Bad people with guns, must be stopped by good people with guns. It is no accident that domestic crazies, to be distinguished from Jihadist free-range terrorists, never attack institutions or people, who can protect themselves. Reality does not completely unencumber most criminals and even the mentally ill. They make self-preservation choices in initiating their murderous escapades, where they might encounter an armed citizen. In other words, they normally try to avoid the “good guys” with guns.
Of course, in our Post-Modern deconstructionist wisdom, prodigally dispensed within the education system for decades, we all know that good and evil are meaningless social constructs.
To those sincere students and all the manipulative politicians with their well-armed security details, let me share a little secret. Crazies, criminals and free-range terrorists, won’t adhere to gun control laws or other restrictions. This is because, and wait for it! They are crazies, criminals, and free-range terrorists.
Now, like most young people feeling their protest oats, they are passionate about what they believe and how they dissent. Like all of us in our youth, we measured the rightness of a cause by the sheer emotions that we felt. Regrettably, many adults populating Progressive causes “feel” this same way. This way of “thinking” by many Liberal Progressives is an unfortunate result of growing up within an Oprah Winfrey like cosmology. A cosmology that single-handedly cornered the market of ideas, by confusing emotions and feelings, with cognition.
But no amount of emotions, no matter how crying and heartfelt they may be, will protect these students nor anyone else in the end. Nancy Pelosi, Robert Kraft, and other politicians with their gun-toting security details know this. Politically, they are also aware, why let a good tragedy like students being slaughtered in gun-free-zones go to waste. Politicians recognize they can easily exploit their youthful idiocy, to disarm legal gun owners while at the same time, put an end to that terrible anachronism known as the second amendment. After all, everyone knows, the second amendment was only authored by the Founders so we could kill our quota in deer, squirrels, and other such tasty critters. Or maybe the second amendment was designed for “militia” purposes. This solipsistic homily preached for eons by the ACLU, and Liberal Progressives completely ignores the fact that the term militia as understood at the time, didn’t mean some paramilitary group. According to Paine and Adams specifically, the militia was the people. Their rights to protect their persons was the first and foremost reason for the second amendment.
I recently ran across a Facebook posting, regurgitating one of the Progressive left’s favorite reasons why those dastardly Founding Fathers instituted the second amendment. It was to protect themselves from slave revolts. Never mind the very real specter of Great Britain wishing to recapture their wayward colonies, which was almost realized during the War of 1812. Events up to the Civil War period and beyond, Britain still entertained such thoughts.
In the writings of Jefferson, Paine, and Samuel Adams in particular, this was one of the progenitors of the second amendment. More importantly, even a cursory review of the mindset of the Founders, shows they didn’t trust an all-powerful central authority or government.
One of the unspoken tragedies of today’s America is that many of us have lost our fear of government. It was once embedded in the political DNA of many Americans, the belief that government is, at best, a necessary evil.
The Founders didn’t just “haphazardly” place the second amendment right after the first, just to make it easier for us to hunt squirrels. They wanted to give future generations some protection against government overreach or outright tyranny. Also, as made glaringly clear in the Publius, gun ownership is a requisite for our safety. To quote, Thomas Paine, “Arms discourage and keep invaders and plunderers in awe. Horrid mischief would ensue the law-abiding deprived of their use”. Echoing a similar theme, Jefferson and Paine being students of the 1689 English Bill of Rights, succinctly understood “laws that forbid the carrying of arms, by the common man, disarm only those who are neither inclined nor determined to commit crimes.”
Postscript – The Dangers of Perfection
Democrats, Liberal Progressives, and Neo-Socialists, like the last occupant of the White House, have always sacrificed the good to the perfect. For example, they do it in their evaluation of our society, when they proselytize that America is a systemically racist or misogynist nation. Words that have lost all meaning because of their overuse. If the cultural left and Progressive Democrats wish to understand real racism or misogyny in action, just ask a Coptic or for that matter any Christian community living in most Middle Eastern countries. Ironically, it is only those so-called Islamophobic and money-grubbing Jews who run the only Democracy in the region that provides a haven from the murderous hegemony in far too many Arab countries.
In regards to our Founding Fathers, they were not perfect men. The political left’s unbearable tendency to want to kill the message because of some perceived flaws of the messenger speaks more about their social and political immaturity than an objective analysis of the Founders, free from left’s current-centric view of history. The second amendment, the constitution, our entire way of life was crafted by imperfect individuals with horrendous faults, or original sin if you will. The mendacious history that is omnipresent in our nation schools, does not recognize, that despite the individual failings of these men, they set in motion a socio-political teleology that would serve as the catalyst for such events as the Civil War, confronting Jim Crow, women suffrage and the “real” Civil Rights Movement under Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Without their original message and constitutional aptitude, the history of our Republic would’ve been decidedly less corrective.
Most level-headed Americans would admit that as a nation we have suffered from a prickly historical dialectic, in which we got some things wrong along the way. But someone once said, the unique thing about America, its history, and our Constitutional Republic is, that we could always be counted upon to do the right thing eventually.
The Founders fashioned a document that extracted the best in the long history of Western socio-political thought. They constructed a way of governance which was worth sustaining and if necessary fight to maintain. Many those calling for an unexamined curtailment of our constitutional freedoms, such as enumerated in the second amendment, would do well to remember that these ideas are only one generation away from extinction.
But then again, maybe that is the point of all the protest and hatred toward the second amendment evinced within Liberal Progressive polity.
i One of the most destructive works in the revisionist historians’ arsenal has been Howard Zinn’s, A People’s History of the United States. This work adopted uncritically by the cultural left and introduced into our schools over the last thirty plus years, has done more to promote a “piss and vinegar” view of our nation’s history among Progressives and the various constituencies that make-up their ranks.