Is it possible I had a civil, indeed, delightful conversation with a Progressive about guns because I gave him a vision of himself as an open-minded person?
I had a very nice New Year’s Eve attending a couple of parties. At both parties, of course, I was the only conservative there. I know this because, in my world, people freely trumpet their liberal bona fides, confident that no one present could disagree with them.
One woman I’ve known for almost twenty years — and like a great deal — said that 2018 was one of the worst years of her life because Trump was in the White House. I gently counseled her not to take politics so personally. I didn’t mention that I eschewed public whining during Obama’s eight years, despite thinking them terribly damaging to the country and to my children’s future. I prefer to use my whining and persuasive skills where they might make a difference. Which brings me to the point of this memo, which sees me wondering whether I did make a difference.
To set the scene, I need to explain that, while I’m excellent at solitude, I’m also a very social person. When I go to parties, I don’t just talk to people I know, where conversations revolve heavily around children, work, and vacation. Instead, I also meet new people.
Anyway, one of those new people I met, a man raised in both Europe and America, apropos I can’t remember what, stated that ideally he would like to seize all privately held guns. Rather than bristling and accusing him of being a fascist tyrant, I mildly pointed out that he’d have a hard time doing that with the Second Amendment in place. He responded with the usual: “Well, the Second Amendment applies only to militias.”
This was my opening to tell him — politely — two facts most Progressives don’t know. The first is that all American men are automatically militia members. A man’s automatic membership in the militia was understood as a matter of common law in the colonies before the Revolution and was instantly instituted into American statutes after the revolution. After all, the whole point of the revolution was to get rid of powerful government armies operating on domestic soil and, instead, to make every man the defender of his own liberties.
In addition, I made two other points about the Second Amendment. First, I pointed out that it is the only Amendment in the Bill of Rights dedicated entirely to a single proposition. The other Amendments cover a multitude of issues. Take for example, the First Amendment, which addresses speech, assembly, the press, and religion. Others address broad topics such as criminal justice, police powers, and more. Only the Second Amendment focuses like a laser on a single proposition: A free people’s right to be armed. [Read more…]