From time to time I have come across or been sent some incredible writings, poems, etc. that just beg for publication. I have collected some of these and have published them here for your enjoyment. Some have been written by friends and others by strangers, but in all cases they are worthy of learning.
If you have a favorite monologue or poem that you think would fit in here please send it to me for my review and I may include it.
This page is fairly long so you might want to print it out. Other than the public domain works all of these works are copyrighted by the author
| 2010-03-21 A Day That Will Live in Infamy |
| Benghazi |
| No Enemies | Concord Hymn | Invictus | A letter to the Government - "You're Not the Boss of Me" |
| Saxons | The Wrath of the
Awakened Saxon | Beer for My Horses | Brown Bess |
| Twentieth (Twenty First) Century Politics in Perspective | " Brothers" | I am a Gun Owner | Why Socialism Will Fail |
| The Value of Time | The Gun is Civilization | The Last Prayer of Eli | The Haircut |
A Current Problem | March of Cambreadth | Death of a Soldier | Character |
| The Situation | The Sea | A Visitor from the Past | On Defense | Concord Hymn |
| Two Things | Dane-geld | Privacy | The Lure of the Tropics | The Bequest | Ode to the Rifle |
| The Quest | The Quitter | Grandpa's Lesson | Walking Rifleman | Tribute 1998 | The Flag | Hold! |
| The Ghost From Valley Forge | Why? | The Gods of the Copybook | Cooper vs. Terrorism |
| A Nation of Cowards | Samurai | Freedom Flies In Your heart Like An Eagle | A Hunter's Half-life |
| Thomas Moore | Ode to the Media | The Goblin and the Raven | What I Have Learned From The Twentieth Century |
| The Parable of the Sheep | Integrity | The Monsters and the Weak | I Will Fight | The Ten Truths of Tyranny |
| The Old Man Next Door | A Civilized Act | Why I Keep and Bear Arms |
| The Terror and Slaughter Has Begun | Character Flaws | An American's Creed |
2010-03-21 A Day That Will Live in Infamy.
I have voted Republican since I was old enough to participate in the process, but have also recognized the deterioration and compromise of the party's principles post-Reagan. Therefore, in the past, I have voted for the person that I felt best demonstrated a commitment to building and preserving what I viewed as American principles. But after yesterday, I have this to say If you are a Democrat, or intend to continue supporting the Democratic party, or if you can even partially support what the Democrats have done and are doing to this country, you are the ENEMY. You are part of the problem.
The actions of the Democrats in congress over the past several years are an insult to our founding fathers. Those who condone their actions are either cowards or openly socialist. The Democrats (and those who tolerate or support them) are insulting to the generations of those that have since worked to build this country and those that have served and sometimes died to preserve what this country used to stand for. And their actions yesterday serve to rob my children and my grandchildren of the opportunity to ever understand what a great country used to look like and feel like. I ashamed of what we, as American people have selected to "represent" us. As the cryptic OSS messages of WWII fame would say, "The chair is against the wall". My "line in the sand" has been drawn.
If you are not interested in taking this country back, then you are THE ENEMY. If you think what happed yesterday is okay, then you are THE ENEMY. If you ever stand by and allow the continued deterioration of our God-given rights, or the bastardization of the Constitution, then you are THE ENEMY. And no amount of rhetoric, appeal to "reach across the aisle", or smoke and mirrors will ever change that opinion.
Nor will it sway me in my determination to do whatever it takes to defeat THE ENEMY.
The above was written by a friend of mine and posted here with his permission. It echoes my sentiments exactly.
THE BATTLING BOYS OF BENGHAZI
We're the battling boys of Benghazi,
It wasn't our job, but we answered the call,
Just the two of us and foes by the score,
We gave our all for our Uncle Sam,
... Bumps In The Road.
You have no enemies, you say?
(Sung at the Completion of the Battle Monument, July 4, 1837)
By the rude bridge that arched the flood,
The foe long since in silence slept;
On this green bank, by this soft stream,
Spirit, that made those heroes dare
The Give Me Liberty or Give Me
MR. PRESIDENT: No man thinks more highly than I do of the patriotism, as well as abilities, of the very worthy gentlemen who have just addressed the House. But different men often see the same subject in different lights; and, therefore, I hope it will not be thought disrespectful to those gentlemen if, entertaining as I do, opinions of a character very opposite to theirs, I shall speak forth my sentiments freely, and without reserve. This is no time for ceremony. The question before the House is one of awful moment to this country. For my own part, I consider it as nothing less than a question of freedom or slavery; and in proportion to the magnitude of the subject ought to be the freedom of the debate. It is only in this way that we can hope to arrive at truth, and fulfil the great responsibility which we hold to God and our country. Should I keep back my opinions at such a time, through fear of giving offence, I should consider myself as guilty of treason towards my country, and of an act of disloyalty toward the majesty of heaven, which I revere above all earthly kings.
Mr. President, it is natural to man to indulge in the illusions of hope. We are apt to shut our eyes against a painful truth, and listen to the song of that siren till she transforms us into beasts. Is this the part of wise men, engaged in a great and arduous struggle for liberty? Are we disposed to be of the number of those who, having eyes, see not, and, having ears, hear not, the things which so nearly concern their temporal salvation? For my part, whatever anguish of spirit it may cost, I am willing to know the whole truth; to know the worst, and to provide for it.
I have but one lamp by which my feet are guided; and that is the lamp of experience. I know of no way of judging of the future but by the past. And judging by the past, I wish to know what there has been in the conduct of the British ministry for the last ten years, to justify those hopes with which gentlemen have been pleased to solace themselves, and the House? Is it that insidious smile with which our petition has been lately received? Trust it not, sir; it will prove a snare to your feet. Suffer not yourselves to be betrayed with a kiss. Ask yourselves how this gracious reception of our petition comports with these war-like preparations which cover our waters and darken our land. Are fleets and armies necessary to a work of love and reconciliation? Have we shown ourselves so unwilling to be reconciled, that force must be called in to win back our love? Let us not deceive ourselves, sir. These are the implements of war and subjugation; the last arguments to which kings resort. I ask, gentlemen, sir, what means this martial array, if its purpose be not to force us to submission? Can gentlemen assign any other possible motive for it? Has Great Britain any enemy, in this quarter of the world, to call for all this accumulation of navies and armies? No, sir, she has none. They are meant for us; they can be meant for no other. They are sent over to bind and rivet upon us those chains which the British ministry have been so long forging. And what have we to oppose to them? Shall we try argument? Sir, we have been trying that for the last ten years. Have we anything new to offer upon the subject? Nothing. We have held the subject up in every light of which it is capable; but it has been all in vain. Shall we resort to entreaty and humble supplication? What terms shall we find which have not been already exhausted? Let us not, I beseech you, sir, deceive ourselves. Sir, we have done everything that could be done, to avert the storm which is now coming on. We have petitioned; we have remonstrated; we have supplicated; we have prostrated ourselves before the throne, and have implored its interposition to arrest the tyrannical hands of the ministry and Parliament. Our petitions have been slighted; our remonstrances have produced additional violence and insult; our supplications have been disregarded; and we have been spurned, with contempt, from the foot of the throne. In vain, after these things, may we indulge the fond hope of peace and reconciliation. There is no longer any room for hope. If we wish to be free² if we mean to preserve inviolate those inestimable privileges for which we have been so long contending²if we mean not basely to abandon the noble struggle in which we have been so long engaged, and which we have pledged ourselves never to abandon until the glorious object of our contest shall be obtained, we must fight! I repeat it, sir, we must fight! An appeal to arms and to the God of Hosts is all that is left us!
They tell us, sir, that we are weak; unable to cope with so formidable an adversary. But when shall we be stronger? Will it be the next week, or the next year? Will it be when we are totally disarmed, and when a British guard shall be stationed in every house? Shall we gather strength by irresolution and inaction? Shall we acquire the means of effectual resistance, by lying supinely on our backs, and hugging the delusive phantom of hope, until our enemies shall have bound us hand and foot? Sir, we are not weak if we make a proper use of those means which the God of nature hath placed in our power. Three millions of people, armed in the holy cause of liberty, and in such a country as that which we possess, are invincible by any force which our enemy can send against us. Besides, sir, we shall not fight our battles alone. There is a just God who presides over the destinies of nations; and who will raise up friends to fight our battles for us. The battle, sir, is not to the strong alone; it is to the vigilant, the active, the brave. Besides, sir, we have no election. If we were base enough to desire it, it is now too late to retire from the contest. There is no retreat but in submission and slavery! Our chains are forged! Their clanking may be heard on the plains of Boston! The war is inevitable²and let it come! I repeat it, sir, let it come.
It is in vain, sir, to extenuate the matter. Gentlemen may cry, Peace, Peace²but there is no peace. The war is actually begun! The next gale that sweeps from the north will bring to our ears the clash of resounding arms! Our brethren are already in the field! Why stand we here idle? What is it that gentlemen wish? What would they have? Is life so dear, or peace so sweet, as to be purchased at the price of chains and slavery? Forbid it, Almighty God! I know not what course others may take; but as for me, give me liberty or give me death!
Out of the night that covers me,
In the fell clutch of circumstance
Beyond this place of wrath and tears
It matters not how strait the gate,
The Saxon is
not like us Normans. His manners are not so polite.
The Wrath of the
It was not part of their blood,
They were not easily moved,
Their voices were even and low.
It was not preached to the crowd.
It was not suddenly bred.
Beer For My Horses (Lyrics)
Well a man come on the 6 o'clock news
the days of lace-ruffles, perukes and brocade
Though her sight was not long and her weight was not small, Yet her actions were winning, her language was clear; And everyone bowed as she opened the ball On the arm of some high-gaitered, grim grenadier. Half Europe admitted the striking success Of the dances and routs that were given by Brown Bess.
When ruffles were turned into stiff leather stocks, And people wore pigtails instead of perukes, Brown Bess never altered her iron-grey locks. She knew she was valued for more than her looks. "Oh, powder and patches was always my dress, And I think am killing enough," said Brown Bess.
So she followed her red-coats, whatever they did, From the heights of Quebec to the plains of Assaye, From Gibraltar to Acre, Cape Town and Madrid, And nothing about her was changed on the way; (But most of the Empire which now we possess Was won through those years by old-fashioned Brown Bess.)
In stubborn retreat or in stately advance, From the Portugal coast to the cork-woods of Spain, She had puzzled some excellent Marshals of France Till none of them wanted to meet her again: But later, near Brussels, Napoleon --no less-- Arranged for a Waterloo ball with Brown Bess.
She had danced till the dawn of that terrible day -- She danced till the dusk of more terrible night, And before her linked squares his battalions gave way, And her long fierce quadrilles put his lancers to flight: And when his gilt carriage drove off in the press, "I have danced my last dance for the world!" said Brown Bess.
If you go to Museums --there's one in Whitehall-- Where old weapons are shown with their names writ beneath, You will find her, upstanding, her back to the wall, As stiff as a ramrod, the flint in her teeth. And if ever we English had reason to bless Any arm save our mothers', that arm is Brown Bess!
To the men that have touched my life. Here's to you!!
A real Brother walks with you when the rest of the world walks on you.
Be the kind of man that when your feet hit
the floor each morning the devil
Brother, life is too short to wake up with regrets. So love the people who treat you right.
Forgive the ones who don't--just because you can.
Believe everything happens for a reason.
If you get a second chance, grab it with both hands. If it changes your life, let it.
Take a few minutes to think before you act when you're mad.
God never said life would be easy, He just promised it would be worth it.
I am a Gun Owner
I am a gun owner. I am a proud advocate of the unalienable civil right to keep and bear arms.
I am a gun owner. I will not be vilified, demonized, or marginalized by those who would seek to disarm me and leave me defenseless against violent criminals and tyrannical governments.
I am a gun owner. I advocate individual responsibility. I realize my life is ultimately my own, and that neither the police nor any other party is likely to save me if I'm attacked by a rapist, murderer, or other criminal. I refuse to be a victim. I will not leave my family unprotected.
I am a gun owner. I realize that guns are inanimate objects, which can be used for good or for ill. But disarmament laws affect mostly honest, law-abiding citizens, not the criminals. I will look the purveyors of pseudo-scientific statistical lies in the eye when I defend my rights. I will not cower before those who harbor bigotry against me.
I am a gun owner. No, I don't believe the world should operate by the "law of the jungle," nor do I harbor suspicions that every person might be a criminal. Those are just stereotypes in which some take comfort as they seek to discriminate against me. Nor am I a utopian. I don't believe the world will be safe from criminals just because the anti-gun lobby passes legislation declaring "Gun Free Zones" and the like. Not only do disarmament laws not achieve their desired results, but they lead to unintended bad consequences of making honest people more prone to criminal attack. The more people exercise their right to keep and bear arms, the safer is society and the more we can forget about crime and get on with the business of living our lives.
I am a gun owner. I will not let those who would strip me of my rights forget that I keep them safer, too, because criminals don't know which person might be armed.
I am a gun owner. I will stand tall and defend the American heritage of freedom for which our forefathers pledged their lives, their fortunes, and their sacred honor.
An economics professor at a local college made a statement that he had never failed a single student before but had once failed an entire class.
That class had insisted that socialism worked and that no one would be poor and no one would be rich, a great equalizer.
The professor then said, "OK, we will have an experiment in this class on socialism. All grades would be averaged and everyone would receive the same grade so no one would fail and no one would receive an A.
After the first test, the grades were averaged and everyone got a B.
The students who studied hard were upset and the students who studied little were happy.
As the second test rolled around, the students who studied little had studied even less and the ones who studied hard decided they wanted a free ride too so they studied little.
The second test average was a D! No one was happy.
When the 3rd test rolled around, the average was an F.
The scores never increased as bickering, blame and name-calling all resulted in hard feelings and no one would study for the benefit of anyone else.
All failed, to their great surprise, and the professor told them that socialism would also ultimately fail because when the reward is great, the effort to succeed is great, but when government takes all the reward away, no one will try or want to succeed.
Could not be any simpler than that.
Time waits for no one.
Gun Is Civilization"
Human beings only have two ways to deal with one another reason and force. If you want me to do something for you, you have a choice of either convincing me via argument, or force me to do your bidding under threat of force. Every human interaction falls into one of those two categories, without exception. Reason or force, that's it.
In a truly moral and civilized society, people exclusively interact through persuasion. Force has no place as a valid method of social interaction, and the only thing that removes force from the menu is the personal firearm, as paradoxical as it may sound to some.
When I carry a gun, you cannot deal with me by force. You have to use reason and try to persuade me, because I have a way to negate your threat or employment of force.
The gun is the only personal weapon that puts a 100-pound woman on equal footing with a 220-pound mugger, a 75-year old retiree on equal footing with a 19-year old gang banger, and a single guy on equal footing with a carload of drunk guys with baseball bats. T he gun removes the disparity in physical strength, size, or numbers between a potential attacker and a defender.
There are plenty of people who consider the gun as the source of bad force equations. These are the people who think that we'd be more civilized if all guns were removed from society, because a firearm makes it easier for a [armed] mugger to do his job. That, of course, is only true if the mugger's potential victims are mostly disarmed either by choice or by legislative fiat--it has no validity when most of a mugger's potential marks are armed.
People who argue for the banning of arms ask for automatic rule by the young, the strong, and the many, and that's the exact opposite of a civilized society. A mugger, even an armed one, can only make a successful living in a society where the state has granted him a force monopoly.
Then there's the argument that the gun makes confrontations lethal that otherwise would only result in injury. This argument is fallacious in several ways. Without guns involved, confrontations are won by the physically superior party inflicting overwhelming injury on the loser.
People who think that fists, bats, sticks, or stones don't constitute lethal force watch too much TV, where people take beatings and come out of it with a bloody lip at worst. The fact that the gun makes lethal force easier works solely in favor of the weaker defender, not the stronger attacker. If both are armed, the field is level.
The gun is the only weapon that's as lethal in the hands of an octogenarian as it is in the hands of a weight lifter. It simply wouldn't work as well as a force equalizer if it wasn't both lethal and easily employable.
When I carry a gun, I don't do so because I am looking for a fight, but because I'm looking to be left alone. The gun at my side means that I cannot be forced, only persuaded. I don't carry it because I'm afraid, but because it enables me to be unafraid. It doesn't limit the actions of those who would interact with me through reason, only the actions of those who would do so by force.
It removes force from the equation... and that's why carrying a gun is a civilized act.
So the greatest civilization is one where all citizens are equally armed andcan only be persuaded, never forced.
Last Prayer of Eli
Dear Lord, Thank you for giving me the strength and the conviction to complete the task you entrusted to me.
Thank you for guiding me straight and true through the many obstacles in my path, and for keeping me resolute when all around seemed lost.
Thank you for your protection and your many signs along the way.
Thank you for any good that I may have done, I'm so sorry about the bad.
Thank you for the friend I made. Please watch over her as you watched over me.
Thank you for finally allowing me to rest. I'm so very tired, but I go now to my rest at peace. I fought the good fight, I finished the race, I kept the faith.
One day a florist went to a barber for a haircut.
After the cut, he asked about his bill, and the barber replied, 'I cannot accept money from you , I'm doing community service this week.' The florist was pleased and left the shop.
When the barber went to open his shop the next morning, there was a 'thank you' card and a dozen roses waiting for him at his door.
Later, a cop comes in for a haircut, and when he tries to pay his bill, the barber again replied, 'I cannot accept money from you , I'm doing community service this week.' The cop was happy and left the shop.
The next morning when the barber went to open up, there was a 'thank you' card and a dozen donuts waiting for him at his door.
Then a Congressman came in for a haircut, and when he went to pay his bill, the barber again replied, 'I can not accept money from you. I'm doing community service this week.' The Congressman was very happy and left the shop.
The next morning, when the barber went to open up, there were a dozen Congressmen lined up waiting for a free haircut.
And that, my friends, illustrates the fundamental difference between the citizens of our country and the politicians who run it.
ago . . . A Current Problem
"The Imperial Chancellor, Kung sun Hung, petitioned the Emperor, saying "The people should not be allowed to possess bows or crossbows. When 10 bandits bend their crossbows to the full, a hundred officials dare not advance .... If the people are not permitted to possess bows or crossbows, then thieves and robbers will carry only short weapons, and when 2 groups carrying short weapons meet, the larger number will be victorious .... In your subject's humble opinion, it will be advantageous to forbid the people to carry bows or crossbows."
When the Emperor sent down this suggestion to his council for discussion an elder, Shou wang, replied, saying "Your subject has heard that when the ancients made the 5 kinds of weapons, it was not for the purpose of killing each other, but to prevent tyranny and to punish evil. When people lived in peace, these weapons were used to control the fierce animals and to be prepared against emergencies. If there were military affairs, then these weapons were used to set up defense and to form battle arrays ....
"Your subject has heard that the Sage Rulers brought the people together and practiced shooting to demonstrate instructions, and he has never heard any prohibition on bows or arrows.
"Furthermore, the cause for prohibition is that the bandits use them to attack and rob. The crime of attacking and robbing is subject to death; yet that they have not been stopped is because the great lawbreakers do not care, indeed, to avoid severe punishment. Should the suggested prohibition be enforced, your subject fears that wicked persons will still carry weapons and the officials will not be able to stop them from carrying them, and that the good people who keep their weapons for self defense will encounter the prohibition of the law. This will make the power of robbers exclusive and take away the means of defense from the people . . . ."
When the petition was presented, the Son of Heaven questioned the Imperial Chancellor, Hung, who promptly withdrew his suggestion.
Axes flash, broadsword swing,
Follow orders as you're told,
Guard your women and children well,
Dawn has broke, the time has come,
REPEAT FIRST VERSE
You can hear the music at www.library.beau.org/lib/ebooks/baen/04/Heather_Alexander.htm
OF A SOLDIER
getting old and paunchy
Of a war that
he once fought in
sometimes to his neighbors
hear his tales no longer,
He won't be
mourned by many,
He held a job
and raised a family,
politicians leave this earth,
of their life stories
It's so easy
to forget them,
It is not the
find yourself in danger,
Or would you
want a Soldier--
He was just a
countries are in conflict,
If we cannot
do him honor
a simple headline
The ancient Greeks reduced righteous character to the sum of four virtues. This is the precious heritage of Western Civilization. and defines the term "honorable man"
(1) Fortitude, strength of
Two things move under this night sky
He, released from prison to roam,
He carries a knife and drug-addled sense,
I detect movement, intuitive fear
Worried, alone in that gloomy blight
He sees my pistol and makes no sound,
No predator dares go hunting for me
I holster my pistol and slowly stand down
For there are two things that, this night, shall
Many a thug is thriving
When beholding the tranquil beauty and brilliancy of the ocean's skin, one forgets the tiger heart that pants beneathit; and would not willingly remember that this velvet paw but conceals a remorseless fang.
A Visitor from
I had a dream the other night, that I didn't
"We fought a revolution to secure our Liberty.
"The Freedom we secured for you, we hoped you'd
"You buy permits to travel, and permits to own a
"Your children must attend a school that doesn't
"Your money is no longer made of Silver or of
"You've given government control to those who do
"Your public servants don't uphold the solemn
oath they've sworn.
"Can you regain the freedom for which we fought
"Sons of the Republic, arise and take a stand!
As I awoke, he vanished, in the mist from whence he
If he stood by your bedside, in a dream while you're
Learning to Shoot
To the tune of the Pink Floyd song "Learning to Fly"
This fatal attraction is holding me fast,
A soul in tension, committed to this shot
Instrumental with background noise of a rifle range
(e.g.. "Shooter this is
An X unveiled by the morning light,
"Demons who enter your circle must be pushed out
"No matter what world you walk in--office, school, temple, prison, or the streets--there is an underworld populated with demons. These are people who are avaricious, aggressive, sadistic, and cynical. They not only take advantage of others without compunction, they delight in it. They find pleasure in seeing others suffer.
"The why of it cannot be answered. There is only the fact, with no metaphysical meaning or other ramifications. It is not karma, it is not fate. If these people decide to attack you, it is circumstance. You must fight or be mowed down.
"Compassion and humility may be among the most treasured of human virtues, but they are not useful in conflict. A beautiful gold statue of your most adored god is a treasure, but you would not use it as a weapon. Virtue is to be valued in the proper context; only a sword will do in battle.
"Whether an attack is physical--assault, rape, murder--or whether it is mental--business intrigues, emotional abuse--you must be prepared. It is best to prepare for conflict by learning as much self-defense as possible. You will not become a bully or a monster, but instead, you will learn that you can respond to any situation. If you are never attacked, that will be wonderful. Training will still help you work out your fears, inhibitions, and anxieties. In the case of conflict, no one, not even a veteran, is ever sure that they will come out alive from a confrontation. but they resolve to go in there and give themselves a fighting chance. This in itself is a triumph over evil."
With thanks to Ric Wyckoff
By the rude bridge that arched
The foe long since in silence
On this green bank, by this
Spirit, that made those heroes
It is always a temptation to an armed and agile
And that is called asking for Dane-geld,
It is always a temptation to a rich and lazy nation,
And that is called paying the Dane-geld;
It is wrong to put temptation in the path of any
"We never pay any-one Dane-geld,
The Eternal Value of Privacy
The most common retort against privacy advocates -- by those in favor of ID checks, cameras, databases, data mining and other wholesale surveillance measures -- is this line "If you aren't doing anything wrong, what do you have to hide?"
Some clever answers:
"If I'm not doing anything wrong, then you have no cause to watch me."
"Because the government gets to define what's wrong, and they keep changing the definition."
"Because you might do something wrong with my information."
My problem with quips like these -- as right as they are -- is that they accept the premise that privacy is about hiding a wrong. It's not. Privacy is an inherent human right, and a requirement for maintaining the human condition with dignity and respect.
Two proverbs say it best "Quis custodiet custodes ipsos?" ("Who watches the watchers?") and "Absolute power corrupts absolutely."
Cardinal Richelieu understood the value of surveillance when he famously said, "If one would give me six lines written by the hand of the most honest man, I would find something in them to have him hanged." Watch someone long enough, and you'll find something to arrest--or just blackmail--with.
Privacy is important because without it, surveillance information will be abused to peep, to sell to marketers and to spy on political enemies--whoever they happen to be at the time. Privacy protects us from abuses by those in power, even if we're doing nothing wrong at the time of surveillance.
We do nothing wrong when we make love or go to the bathroom. We are not deliberately hiding anything when we seek out private places for reflection or conversation. We keep private journals, sing in the privacy of the shower, and write letters to secret lovers and then burn them. Privacy is a basic human need.
A future in which privacy would face constant assault was so alien to the framers of the Constitution that it never occurred to them to call out privacy as an explicit right. Privacy was inherent to the nobility of their being and their cause. Of course being watched in your own home was unreasonable. Watching at all was an act so unseemly as to be inconceivable among gentlemen in their day. You watched convicted criminals, not free citizens. You ruled your own home. It's intrinsic to the concept of liberty.
For if we are observed in all matters, we are constantly under threat of correction, judgment, criticism, even plagiarism of our own uniqueness. We become children, fettered under watchful eyes, constantly fearful that--either now or in the uncertain future -- patterns we leave behind will be brought back to implicate us, by whatever authority has now become focused upon our once-private and innocent acts. We lose our individuality, because everything we do is observable and recordable.
How many of us have paused during conversation in the past four-and-a-half years, suddenly aware that we might be eavesdropped on? Probably it was a phone conversation, although maybe it was an e-mail or instant-message exchange or a conversation in a public place. Maybe the topic was terrorism, or politics, or Islam. We stop suddenly, momentarily afraid that our words might be taken out of context, then we laugh at our paranoia and go on. But our demeanor has changed, and our words are subtly altered.
This is the loss of freedom we face when our privacy is taken from us. This is life in former East Germany, or life in Saddam Hussein's Iraq. And it's our future as we allow an ever-intrusive eye into our personal, private lives.
Too many wrongly characterize the debate as "security versus privacy." The real choice is liberty versus control. Tyranny, whether it arises under threat of foreign physical attack or under constant domestic authoritative scrutiny, is still tyranny. Liberty requires security without intrusion, security plus privacy. Widespread police surveillance is the very definition of a police state. And that's why we should champion privacy even when we have nothing to hide.
Bruce Schneier is the CTO
of Counterpane Internet Security (www.counterpane.com)
and the author of
Most ways, I would say, my father did well
So I hate to admit it, but in one way he failed me
Had the Guru not told us what the best rifle is,
As my dad did not have one, I had to go out
Then I thought about fathers and how we have more
I thought of our fathers who lived life as hunters
How they must have dreamed of a weapon to reach,
In my veins still runs the hunters’ blood
And I thought of our fathers who settled the land,
They lived under threat from savage men
How our fathers must have yearned for a weapon
This will to be able to stand my ground
And I thought of those whose strong, striving minds
Through the genius of these, our fathers,
And there’s another set of fathers
They knew that their Republic
It was their will that we should all
For more than half my life now,
Now I’m a father and one day plan
But I think that now I understand
And for all I know it may well be
If so, I say, let him sell it off
You hold in your hands the bow of Diana,
Your rifle embodies the gift of Hephaistos,
Bare-handed you live at the mercy of numbers,
Vulcan has given you means to establish
It should never end.
Jim Crews is an instructor of weaponry of the first class and is always ready to examine new ideas, learn from them, and apply what is learned--something we should all do.
Pappy took to drinkin' back when I was barely three.
I learned a heap 'o lessons from the yarns he liked to tell.
But there ain't many troubles that a man caint fix
Grandpa courted Grandma near the town of old Cheyenne.
Her daddy softened up when Grandpa said that he could fix
Grandpa herded cattle down around Jalisco way.
Didn't take much doin' 'cept a couple special tricks
Then there was that Faro game near San Francisco Bay.
Those others were professionals and they don't play for kicks.
He begged some woolen trousers off the local storekeep there
He left one bleedin' badly and another mostly lame.
Grandpa's slowin' down a bit and just the other night
I'll bet this here old rifle and this honest money too
But.....ain't many troubles that a man caint fix
Lindy Cooper Wisdom
"The tree of liberty must be refreshed, from time to time, with the blood of patriots and tyrants." -- Thomas Jefferson
When a man takes his rifle awalkin'
Written for Col. Jeff Cooper and first recited in Botswana on the occasion of his 79th birthday. This is about the mindset the author learned from him; hence the title.
Okavango Birthday Tribute 1998
History makes this lesson quite plain;
When the Israelites cowered and hid in their holes,
When the founders grew tired of the greed of the king,
When Theodore Roosevelt led his men up San Juan,
It's really just silly, this "New Age" idea
If a goblin assaults you on the streets of your town,
Ladies and gentlemen. I give you the flag
Essential to the defense of freedom is the absolute resistance of tyranny. If tyrants know we will fight to the death in our defense of our Constitutionally affirmed God-given rights then we may continue to enjoy peace, for they know that even if they kill us all they will have lost more than they could possibly have gained.
Churchill spoke the truth when he said: "Still if you will not fight for the right when you can easily win without bloodshed, if you will not fight when your victory will be sure and not so costly, you may come to the moment when you will have to fight with all the odds against you and only a precarious chance for survival. There may be a worse case. You may have to fight when there is no chance of victory, because it is better to perish than to live as slaves."
My family will never be disarmed. We will never be loaded passively on the cattle cars to be hauled away to the camps. We are God's children and we will go home to Him before we submit to the murderers and rapists who people this government. This spirit of absolute resistance is what enabled Switzerland to survive during WWII when every republic in Europe was consumed by the Reich.
I pray that the hearts of all are moved to greater resolve by the following words:
"Everywhere, where the order is to hold, it is the duty of conscience of each fighter, even if he depends on himself alone, to fight at his assigned position. The riflemen, if overtaken or surrounded, fight in their position until no more ammunition exists. Then cold steel is next.... The machine-gunners, the cannoneers of heavy weapons, the artillerymen, if in the bunker or on the field, do not abandon or destroy their weapons, or allow the enemy to seize them. The crews fight further like riflemen. As long as a man has another cartridge or hand weapons to use, he does not yield." -- General Henri Guisan Commander In Chief of the Swiss militia during WWII, From "Target Switzerland" by Halbrook
Our duty is to hold the position.
The Ghost From Valley Forge
I had a dream the other night I didn't understand,
Note, just substitute names from the current administration for Justinian and crew and you will be able to see the WHY of things as they are at the present.
The West had long been preparing to receive them, too. Generations of fighting against Alans, Gepids, Goths, and Huns, and of fighting with them shoulder to shoulder, in alliance now with one and now with the other, had transformed the Roman military state into the thing it had been fighting. Narses consciously and successfully employed not Roman but Hunnish tactics against the Franks, and the closing chapters of Jordanes show a Roman army indistinguishable from any barbarian horde. The last chapter of all makes the significant remark that the ultimate victor to emerge from the world shambles was "victor gentium diversarum Justinianus Imperator" (the Emperor Justinian, conqueror of diverse peoples). It was in this man Justinian that the Huns won a great and abiding victory over the West.
The Emperor Justinian displayed at all times a single-minded devotion to the Huns that puzzles and dismays historians. Apparently there was nothing he would not do to please the Huns, even to the wrecking of his own foreign policyand the ruination of trade and agriculture throughout the empire. A passionate devotee of the factionists, he had worn their Persian beards, Hunnish hairdo, Hunnish cloaks, Hunnish shirts, and Hunnish shoes,the girdles and brooches of the steppes having already supplanted the more civilized styles of the West."The greatest destroyer of established institutions that ever lived," Justinian was determined to make the Western world "completely change its clothes" and he succeeded.
All the absurdities and contradictions in his policies vanish if we consider that this Illyrian, who hated Greek things, was set upon becoming a grand khan. Justinian handed over the wealth of the state to the Huns "who were always turning up" at court (a significant note) in ever increasing numbers. He would claim for himself all the private property of the citizens, either charging the Romans with a crime or pretending that it was all being brought in to him as gifts, and then promptly give it all away again to the Hunnish lords before his throne: a thing that made perfectly good sense to his visitors from the steppes but appeared to his Roman subjects as "a thing that had never happened since the beginning of time." What he did not thus throw away to the barbarians, says Procopius, he wasted on absurd buildings, constructed simply to outshine all other emperorsa thing that any khan would have understood. This Hun-worship actually amounted to the enslaving of the empire, says Procopius and Agathias, but that was how Justinian wanted it. He insisted that all his subjects, from top to bottom, be called his slaves, and instituted the strictly Central Asiatic style of prostration and foot-kissing. He was not averse to giving the impression of being a sort of super-shaman and apparently even adopted the well-known Mongol custom of making those who entered his presence step clear of the threshold. In short, "instead of acting like a Roman Emperor, he was the complete barbarian in language, dress, and thought. "What more could one ask? The welcome barbarians poured into court from all directions, to the immense delight of the emperor, who never failed to send them away loaded with gold,till presently "the barbarians in general became complete masters of the wealth of the Romans. "In the end, all the offices and officials of the state were supplanted by one officethe royal court, and by two personsthe emperor and empress, for the new ascendancy of the empress, intensely resented by Procopius, was the crowning Asiatic touch.
Justinian's weird innovations were no ephemeral thing. They were but the culmination of that process of Asianizing which had been deplored by the poets of the Republic. And they were there to stay...
From, The Ancient State, p. 127 - 128, By Hugh Nibley
This from Kipling speaks to us across the ages--80 years downstream it still holds true. Perhaps more true than before. I believe the background is related to the fact that Sir Rudyard's son had been killed in the meaningless morass of the Great War. The message is: we never learn. It's fairly long but it's elegant.
The Gods of the Copybook Headings
As I pass through my incarnations in every age and race,
We were living in trees when they met us. They showed us each in turn
We moved as the Spirit listed. They never altered their pace,
With the Hopes that our World is built on they were utterly out of touch
When the Cambrian measures were forming They promised perpetual peace.
On the first Feminian Sandstones we were promised the Fuller Life
In the Carboniferous Epoch we were promised abundance for all,
* * * * *
As it will be in the future, it was at the birth of Man --
The Modern Samurai
Mindset makes a Samurai. Service to society.
Freedom Flies In Your heart Like An Eagle
Dusty old helmet, rusty old gun,
Audie Murphy, CMOH winner
A Hunter's Half-life
I'm a hunter; I've never been other.
Lay his sword by his side - it
hath served him too well*
Fellow-labourers in life, let
them slumber in death,
Yet pause - for, in fancy, a
still voice I hear,
And it cries, from the grave
where the hero lies deep,
"Should some alien,
unworthy such weapon to wield,
But, if grasp'd by a hand that
hath learn'd the proud use
* It was the custom of the ancient Irish, in the manner of the Scythians, to bury the favourite swords of their heroe along with them.
Ode To The Media
You media pansies may squeal and may squirm,
To hell with you wimps from your Ivy League schools,
You slick talkingheads may preach, preen and prattle,
and the Raven
A pretty little
raven went out walking late one night,
But she tried to
take a short-cut down a street devoid of light,
But the goblin saw
the raven, and with lust his heart was filled.
So he stepped from
out the shadows dark, and with an evil sneer,
The raven never
faltered, never altered, didn’t run,
Said the raven to
the goblin, "When I do a thing it’s done right!"
"What I Have Learned
From The Twentieth Century"
(With Thanks to schoolmasters Josef Stalin, Adolf Hitler, Benito Mussolini, Mao Tse-Tung and Pol Pot for the Teaching.)
by Mike Vanderboegh
Reflect upon these six lessons. Folks who wish to live free and prosperous in the next century would do well to understand the failures of the last.
Lesson No. 1
If a bureaucrat, or a soldier sent by a bureaucrat, comes to knock down your door and take you someplace you don't want to go because of who you are or what you think-- kill him. If you can, kill the politician who sent them. You will likely die anyway, and you will be saving someone else the same fate. For it is a universal truth that the intended victims always far outnumber the tyrant's executioners. Any nation, which practices this lesson, will quickly run out of executioners and tyrants, or they will run out of liberty.
Lesson No. 2
If a bureaucrat, or a soldier sent by a bureaucrat, comes to knock down your door and confiscate your firearms-- kill him. The disarmament of law-abiding citizens is the required precursor to genocide.
Lesson No. 3
If a bureaucrat tells you that he must know if you have a firearm, so he can put your name on a list for the common good, or wants to issue you an identity card so that you may be more easily identified-- tell him to go to hell. Registration of people and firearms is the required precursor to the tyranny, which permits genocide. Bureaucrats cannot send soldiers to doors that aren't on their list.
Lesson No. 4
Believe actions, not words. Tyrants are consummate liars. Just because a tyrant is "democratically elected" doesn't mean that he believes in democracy. Reference Adolf Hitler, 1932. And just because a would-be tyrant mouths words of reverence to law and justice, or takes a solemn oath to uphold a constitution, doesn't mean he believes such concepts apply to him. Reference Bill Clinton, among others. The language of the lie is just another tool of killers. A sign saying "Arbeit Macht Frei" (Work Makes You Free) posted above an execution camp gate doesn't mean that anybody gets out of there alive, and a room labeled "Showers" doesn't necessarily make you clean. Bill Clinton notwithstanding, the meaning of "is" is plain when such perverted language gets you killed. While all tyrants are liars, it is true that not all political liars are would-be tyrants-- but they bear close watching. And keep your rifle handy.
Lesson No. 5
Our constitutional republic as crafted by the Founders is the worst form of government in the world, except when compared to all the others. Capitalism, as well, is a terrible way to run an economy, except when compared to all other economic systems. Unrestrained democracy is best expressed as two wolves and a sheep sitting down to vote on what to have for dinner. The horrors of collectivism in all its forms-- socialism, communism, national socialism, fascism-- have been demonstrated beyond dispute by considerable wasteful trial and bloody error. Ask the 200 million dead that collectivism brutally slaughtered in this century. Leaders such as Bill Clinton who view the Constitution as inconvenient and ignorable are harbingers of tyranny.
Lesson No. 6
While nations do not always get the leaders they deserve, they always get the leaders they tolerate. And anyone who tells you that "It Can't Happen Here" is whistling past the graveyard of history. There is no "house rule" that bars tyranny coming to America. History is replete with republics whose people grew complacent and descended into imperial butchery and chaos. Dictators count on the assistance of people who are complacent, fearful, envious, lazy and corrupt. While there is no "Collective guilt" to the crimes of a regime (all such crimes being committed by specific criminal individuals), there is certainly "collective responsibility"--especially for those who watch the criminals at work without objecting or interfering. A French journalist of the last century wrote "I must speak out for I will not be an accomplice." Evil tyrants require, indeed they depend upon, willing and unwilling accomplices-- good people who would never think of harming a soul themselves. Lenin called such people "useful idiots". DeTocqueville observed that "America is great because America is good. When America ceases to be good, she will cease to be great." As related in the Old Testament, God judged nations based upon the immorality and criminality of their leaders. Entire peoples were scourged because of their failure to remove corrupt leaders. As we move from the Twentieth Century into the twenty-first, we should take care to remember the ancient story of Sodom and Gomorrah. If we wish to avoid the butchery of the Twentieth Century and the righteous judgment of the God of our antiquity, we would do well to keep our Bibles, our Constitution and our firearms close at hand.
Parable of the Sheep
© 1997 Charles Riggs
Not so long ago and in a pasture too uncomfortably close to here, a flock of sheep lived and grazed. They were protected by a dog, who answered to the master, but despite his best efforts from time to time a nearby pack of wolves would prey upon the flock.
One day a group of sheep, bolder than the rest, met to discuss their dilemma. "Our dog is good, and vigilant, but he is one and the wolves are many. The wolves he catches are not always killed, and the master judges and releases many to prey again upon us, for no reason we can understand. What can we do? We are sheep, but we do not wish to be food, too!"
One sheep spoke up, saying "It is his teeth and claws that make the wolf so terrible to us. It is his nature to prey, and he would find any way to do it, but it is the tools he wields that make it possible. If we had such teeth, we could fight back, and stop this savagery." The other sheep clamored in agreement, and they went together to the old bones of the dead wolves heaped in the corner of the pasture, and gathered fang and claw and made them into weapons.
That night, when the wolves came, the newly armed sheep sprang up with their weapons and struck at them, crying, "Begone! We are not food!" and drove off the wolves, who were astonished. When did sheep become so bold and so dangerous to wolves? When did sheep grow teeth? It was unthinkable!
The next day, flush with victory and waving their weapons, they approached the flock to pronounce their discovery. But as they drew nigh, the flock huddled together and cried out, "Baaaaaaaadddd! Baaaaaddd things! You have bad things! We are afraid! You are not sheep!"
The brave sheep stopped, amazed. "But we are your brethren!" they cried. "We are still sheep, but we do not wish to be food. See, our new teeth and claws protect us and have saved us from slaughter. They do not make us into wolves, they make us equal to the wolves, and safe from their viciousness!"
"Baaaaaaad!" cried the flock, "the things are bad and will pervert you, and we fear them. You cannot bring them into the flock!" So the armed sheep resolved to conceal their weapons, for although they had no desire to panic the flock, they wished to remain in the fold. But they would not return to those nights of terror, waiting for the wolves to come.
In time, the wolves attacked less often and sought easier prey, for they had no stomach for fighting sheep who possessed tooth and claw even as they did. Not knowing which sheep had fangs and which did not, they came to leave sheep out of their diet almost completely except for the occasional raid, from which more than one wolf did not return.
Then came the day when, as the flock grazed beside the stream, one sheep’s weapon slipped from the folds of her fleece, and the flock cried out in terror again, "Baaaaaad! You still possess these evil things! We must ban you from our presence!"
And so they did. The great chief sheep and his council, encouraged by the words of their advisors, placed signs and totems at the edges of the pasture forbidding the presence of hidden weapons there. The armed sheep protested before the council, saying, "It is our pasture, too, and we have never harmed you! When can you say we have caused you hurt? It is the wolves, not we, who prey upon you. We are still sheep, but we are not food!" But the flock drowned them out with cries of "Baaaaaaddd! We will not hear your clever words! You and your things are evil and will harm us!"
Saddened by this rejection, the armed sheep moved off and spent their days on the edges of the flock, trying from time to time to speak with their brethren to convince them of the wisdom of having such teeth, but meeting with little success. They found it hard to talk to those who, upon hearing their words, would roll back their eyes and flee, crying "Baaaaddd! Bad things!"
That night, the wolves happened upon the sheep’s totems and signs, and said, "Truly, these sheep are fools! They have told us they have no teeth! Brothers, let us feed!" And they set upon the flock, and horrible was the carnage in the midst of the fold. The dog fought like a demon, and often seemed to be in two places at once, but even he could not halt the slaughter.
It was only when the other sheep arrived with their weapons that the wolves fled, only to remain on the edge of the pasture and wait for the next time they could prey, for if the sheep were so foolish once, they would be so again. This they did, and do still.
In the morning, the armed sheep spoke to the flock, and said, "See? If the wolves know you have no teeth, they will fall upon you. Why be prey? To be a sheep does not mean to be food for wolves!" But the flock cried out, more feebly for their voices were fewer, though with no less terror, "Baaaaaaaad! These things are bad! If they were banished, the wolves would not harm us! Baaaaaaad!"
So they resolved to retain their weapons, but to conceal them from the flock; to endure their fear and loathing, and even to protect their brethren if the need arose, until the day the flock learned to understand that as long as there were wolves in the night, sheep would need teeth to repel them.
They would still be sheep, but they would not be food!
From a speech delivered by Gen. Charles C. Krulak, 27 January, 2000, at JSCOPE 2000
Integrity as we know it today, stands for soundness of moral principle and character - uprightness - honesty. Yet there is more. Integrity is also an ideal, a goal to strive for, and for a man or woman to "walk in their integrity" is to require constant discipline and usage. The word integrity itself is a martial word that comes to us from an ancient roman army tradition.
During the time of the 12 Caesars, the roman army would conduct morning inspections. As the inspecting centurion would come in front of each Legionnaire, the soldier would strike with his right fist the armor breastplate that covered his heart. The armor had to be strongest there in order to protect the heart from the sword thrusts and from arrow strikes. As the soldier struck his armor, he would shout "integritas", (in-teg'-ri-tas) which in Latin means material wholeness, completeness, and entirety. The inspecting centurion would listen closely for this affirmation and also for the ring that well kept armor would give off. Satisfied that the armor was sound and that the soldier beneath it was protected, he would then move on to the next man.
At about the same time, the Praetorians or imperial bodyguard were ascending into power and influence. Drawn from the best "politically correct" soldiers of the legions, they received the finest equipment and armor. They no longer had to shout "integritas" to signify that their armor was sound. Instead, as they struck their breastplate, they would shout "hail Caesar," to signify that their heart belonged to the imperial personage, not to their unit, not to an institution nor to a code of ideals. They armored themselves to serve the cause of a single man.
A century passed and the rift between the legion and the imperial bodyguard and its excesses grew larger. To signify the difference between the two organizations, the legionnaire, upon striking his armor would no longer shout "Integritas", but instead would shout "integer" (in'-te-ger). Integer means undiminished , complete, or perfect. It not only indicated that the armor was sound, it also indicated that the soldier wearing the armor was sound of character. He was complete in his integrity, his heart was in the right place and his standards and morals were high. He was not associated with the immoral conduct that was rapidly becoming the signature of the Praetorian guards.
The armor of integrity continued to serve the legion well. For over four centuries they held the line against the marauding goths and vandals but by 383 AD, the social decline that infected the republic and the Praetorian Guard had its effects upon the legion. As a 4th century roman general wrote, "when, because of negligence and laziness, parade ground drills were abandoned, the customary armor began to feel heavy since the soldiers rarely, if ever, wore it. Therefore, they first asked the emperor to set aside the breastplates and mail and then the helmets. So our soldiers fought the Goths without any protection for the heart and head and were often beaten by archers. Although there were many disasters, which lead to the loss of great cities, no one tried to restore the armor to the infantry. They took their armor off, and when the armor came off - so too came their integrity." It was only a matter of a few years until the legion rotted from within and was unable to hold the frontiers and the barbarians were at the gates.
Integrity is a combination of the words, "integritas" and "integer". It refers to the putting on of armor, of building a completeness, a wholeness, a wholeness in character. How appropriate that the word integrity is a derivative of two words describing the character of a member of the profession of arms. The military has a tradition of producing great leaders that possess the highest ethical standards and integrity. It produces men and women of character. Character that allows them to deal ethically with the challenges of today and to make conscious decisions about how they will approach tomorrow. However, as I mentioned earlier, this is not done instantly. It requires that integrity becomes a way of life. It must be woven into the very fabric of our soul. Just as was true in the days of Imperial Rome, you either walk in your integrity daily, or you take off the armor of the "integer" and leave your heart and soul exposed and open to attack.
My challenge to you is simple but often very difficult. Wear your armor of integrity, take full measure of its weight, find comfort in its protection and do not become lax. And always, always, remember that no one can take your integrity from you. You and only you can give it away! The biblical book of practical ethics , better known as the Book of Proverbs, sums it up very nicely "The integrity of the upright shall guide them but the perverseness of transgressors shall destroy them". (Proverbs 11:3)
The Monsters and the Weak
The sun beat like a hammer, not a cloud was in the sky.
He never turned his head or took his eye away from the
A thunder clap a tongue of flame, the still abruptly
"Are you for real?" I asked in awe. "You
don't want fame or credit?"
"As bad as all this is though, it could be a whole
"So you can keep your trophies and your fleeting
bit of fame.
"You tell them what it means to folks here just to
speak their mind,
I WILL FIGHT
Fought for power, fought for glory
Fought for avarice and ego,
Fought from horseback and from camels,
Fought with spears and with missiles,
Marched with Caesar and Pizarro,
Stormed a hundred bloody beaches,
Conquered Incas and Apaches,
Lost to Shaka and to Rommel,
Yet through those years and struggles
For I came to love the battle
From the Tigris and Euphretes
As a sniper or a lancer,
I have been a kamikaze
My cause was war itself, you see,
The clash of arms around me,
I have killed two hundred thousand
And then, one dreary battle dawn,
For I thought upon my hist'ry,
The names across the centuries
With Spartacus and Charlie
Call me rebel, call me traitor,
January 2, 1998
The Ten Truths of Tyranny
"Find out just what people will submit to, and you have found the exact amount of injustice and wrongdoing which will be imposed on them; and these will continue until they are resisted with either words or blows, or with both. The limits of tyrants are prescribed by the endurance of those whom they oppress." - Frederick Douglas, 1857
THE OLD MAN NEXT
Hey little boy with the ball and the bat,
Now he sits in his garden with flowers and ants,
He leapt into space with a cork-blackened face
Or…did he starve in the jungle, in the steaming
Hey little boy, pull over your bike,
Seeing his brothers by the hundreds die –
Did he dive from the sun in a P-51
Did he fly all alone over the vast Pacific blue,
Hey little boy, do you see that he limps?
Or was it the cold in a winter of old
Or was it Korea, holding off a defeat
Hey little boy on your way to the store -
Hey little boy, take pause in your plans
Hey little boy, do you KNOW the old man next door?
WHY THE GUN IS
By Marko Kloos
"Human beings only have two ways to deal with one another reason and force. If you want me to do something for you, you have a choice of either convincing me via argument, or force me to do your bidding under threat of force. Every human interaction falls into one of those two categories, without exception. Reason or force, that's it.
In a truly moral and civilized society, people exclusively interact through persuasion. Force has no place as a valid method of social interaction and the only thing that removes force from the menu is the personal firearm, as paradoxical as it may sound to some.
When I carry a gun, you cannot deal with me by force. You have to use reason and try to persuade me, because I have a way to negate your threat or employment of force. The gun is the only personal weapon that puts a 100-pound woman on equal footing with a 220-pound mugger, a 75-year old retiree on equal footing with a 19-year old gang banger, and a single gay guy on equal footing with a carload of drunk guys with baseball bats. The gun removes the disparity in physical strength, size, or numbers between a potential attacker and a defender.
There are plenty of people who consider the gun as the source of bad force equations. These are the people who think that we'd be more civilized if all guns were removed from society, because a firearm makes it easier for a mugger to do his job. That, of course, is only true if the mugger's potential victims are mostly disarmed either by choice or by legislative fiat--it has no validity when most of a mugger's potential marks are armed. People who argue for the banning of arms ask for automatic rule by the young, the strong, and the many, and that's the exact opposite of a civilized society. A mugger, even an armed one, can only make a successful living in a society where the state has granted him a force monopoly.
Then there's the argument that the gun makes confrontations lethal that otherwise would only result in injury. This argument is fallacious in several ways. Without guns involved, confrontations are won by the physically superior party inflicting overwhelming injury on the loser. People who think that fists, bats, sticks, or stones don't constitute lethal force watch too much TV, where people take beatings and come out of it with a bloody lip at worst. The fact that the gun makes lethal force easier works solely in favor of the weaker defender, not the stronger attacker. If both are armed, the field is level. The gun is the only weapon that's as lethal in the hands of an octogenarian as it is in the hands of a weightlifter. It simply wouldn't work as well as a force equalizer if it wasn't both lethal and easily employable.
When I carry a gun, I don't do so because I am looking for a fight, but because I'm looking to be left alone. The gun at my side means that I cannot be forced only persuaded. I don't carry it because I'm afraid, but because it enables me to be unafraid. It doesn't limit the actions of those who would interact with me through reason, only the actions of those who would do so by force. It removes force from the equation...and that's why carrying a gun is a civilized act."
WHY I KEEP AND
My old grandpa said to me, "Son, there comes a time in
I don't carry a gun to kill people.
I don't carry a gun to scare people.
I don't carry a gun because I'm paranoid.
I don't carry a gun because I'm evil.
I don't carry a gun because I hate the government.
I don't carry a gun because I'm angry.
I don't carry a gun because I want to shoot someone.
I don't carry a gun to make me feel like a man.
I don't carry a gun because I feel inadequate.
I don't carry a gun because I love it.
Police Protection is an oxymoron. Free citizens must protect themselves.
Have you ever noticed that those who want to take our guns away have their own armed body guards? Ever wonder why that is?
Gun Control isn't about guns, it's about CONTROL!
The following was
published in DTI Quips, 11/11/09 by John Farnam,
Comments on the decline of Western Civilization,
"I've come to drearily recognize monotonous behavioral patterns
The following was
originally published at
1) Lack Of Personal Responsibility - As a society, we encourage a "victimhood mentality" and an overweening government that never met an issue it didn't want to dive into with both feet; so we shouldn't be surprised that so many Americans expect to be rewarded for failure. If GM fails, we've got to step in and keep it afloat. If people snuck into his country illegally, we can't be so hardhearted as to obey the law and deport them! If you bought a house you couldn't afford, you shouldn't be penalized for that when the market takes a bad turn. If you bought a blender, tried to start it in your bathtub, and were nearly electrocuted -- that's not your fault! The manufacturers should have put a warning sticker on it. We're descended from pioneer stock. Our ancestors explored, conquered, and tamed a continent. They couldn't rely on the police to show up if an Indian raiding party showed up at their isolated cabin at 3 AM. There was no school lunch program on the Oregon Trail. If your buggy whip company was going out of business because of those new fangled auto-mo-biles, you didn't get 20 billion dollars in taxpayer money so you could open up a new branch in China, you went out of business. If our ancestors were alive, they would sneer in disdain at what a nation full of whining babies their descendants have become.
2) Short Attention Spans -Perhaps because of the internet, the stunning variety of news sources, or the complexity of modern society, we've become much less able as a people to follow logical arguments and deal with complex messages. This has bled over into Congress where they write legislation dealing with issues they don't truly understand. That legislation is voted on by legislators who admit that they haven't read it and it affects the lives of millions of people who were unaware that such legislation was even being contemplated. The problem with this is that there are many issues in life that are too knotty to be broken down into a soundbite or a 30 second commercial. Those affairs require more extensive knowledge and deeper thought and consideration than can be placed on a bumper sticker or weaved into a music video. When we lose sight of that fact, utter disasters that have been in plain sight all along for anyone with an attention span longer than five minutes can blindside much of the population.
3) Excessive Self-Esteem -Perhaps because we've spent decades trying to pump up the self-esteem of children in our public schools, irregardless of whether they've done anything to merit it, we have legions of people in our society who have an excessive level of confidence in their beliefs and abilities. They're just so darn sure that what they believe is right just by virtue of the fact they believe it. Traditions? Codes of conduct? Religious beliefs? Customs? There's no need to even understand why previous generations believed what they did or to question what purpose it served. Just remember that they were racist back then and so they couldn't have had any good ideas. Of course, we don't look back and say, "Gee? How did they make it without welfare, social security, or an income tax? Why is it that they had a divorce rate that was a fraction of the one we had today? How is it that the crime rate was so much lower? What made the people so much more polite than they are today? If we were in the same situation as the Founding Fathers, could our political leaders step up to the plate and do as well?" Because we have forgotten the mistakes that convinced our forefathers to adopt the policies and mores that they did, in our ignorance we will be doomed to make many of those same mistakes again.
4) Short Term Thinking/Instant Gratification - Thomas Sowell once said that killing the goose that laid the golden egg can be a viable election strategy as long as it doesn't die until you're out of office and no one finds your prints on the murder weapon. That is played out in American politics on a daily basis where few politicians think farther ahead than the next election. Time and time again, we have politicians advocating policies that either bring immediate benefits or avoid short-term pain, but are extremely harmful to the country over the long-term. That is primarily how government has gotten so out of control. A problem occurs. In an effort to get re-elected, politicians rush to create a program to "fix" it. Ten years later, the original problem may or may not have been solved, but the program put in place to fix it has caused new issues and costs five times more than it did when it was originally put into place. However, if anyone suggests we get rid of it, there are howls of outrage. Hence, government never shrinks and bad programs almost never die. Meanwhile, large festering problems like Social Security and Medicare are studiously ignored for as long as possible because we don't react until there's a crisis. Only after the horrific events of 9/11 did we start taking terrorism seriously. It took a bridge falling down to get Congress interested in poorly maintained structures nationwide. The whole economy had to crash to get Congress to become alarmed about quasi-governmental agencies handing out loans to people who couldn't pay them back. Incidentally, we've already started going backwards on all of these same problems. The new President shows minimal concern about terrorism, nobody is talking about bridges anymore, and Congress has already started encouraging more bad housing loans. That's because the moment a story drops from the day's news cycle, it goes down the memory hole for most people. That is no way to run a nation.
5) Immorality - The default mode of Hollywood is hedonism and we've been told again and again, at least since the Clinton years, that character doesn't matter for our elected officials. The problem with this is that character does matter -- quite a bit, actually. Our leaders are corrupt to the core -- and that's not just the ones who are in violation of our laws, which have been crafted in order to allow staggering amounts of corruption to be done legally. The families of politicians are given plum jobs and paid ridiculous sums of money in order to gain influence with legislators. Government earmarks that aid campaign contributors or family members of Congress are common. Chrysler has even been handed over to Barack Obama's union allies in broad daylight. Ethics have become the very last consideration for our government and perhaps it's no surprise given the state of our society. Civility is dead and buried. We have people protesting funerals and the private residences of citizens. There are perverted gay parades in the streets of San Francisco. The most grotesque, blasphemous, and offensive material imaginable is regularly displayed on the internet and TV and we are drenched in sex from the time we get up until the time we go to bed. As a replacement for actual human decency and morality, we've turned to political correctness and bloodless legalisms, neither of which is an adequate replacement for doing the right thing because it's principled or virtuous. The corrosive effects of this decline are seen not just in our government, but all throughout our society in the size of our prison population, the number of unmarried women having children, drug use, school shootings, and even our staggering abortion rate.
An American's Creed
I do not choose to be a common man
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