Have you ever heard those anti gun people say: “Why would I need a gun, it’s safe where i live?” Well, let’s put aside the 2nd’s inherent stance against tyranny for a moment and focus on the “safety” these people enjoy.
The next time you hear something along the “it’s safe where I live” jive, ask them if they lock their doors at night. Ask them also if they leave the keys to their car in the ignition when they are out and about. I mean, if its such a safe area that they live in and people are so good, why wouldn’t they be able to leave the key in the ignition all the time. Why do they feel the need to lock the door when they leave the house?
The why is simple, even if they want to bury their heads in the sand and ignore it; it is the nature of human beings. There are two ways to look at human nature, illustrated by a pair of philosophers from the 17th and 18th centuries, Thomas Hobbes and Jean-Jacque Rousseau.
Hobbes contends that we, as people, by nature are rooted in self interest. That at the core we will do what is best for us, even altruism can be explained by the fact that we derive a sense of self worth from being charitable. Now, while most people do not feel it is in their best interest to chance the possibility of failure in crime, there are plenty of people who do. Furthermore, the easier you make it to get away with a crime the more likely it is to happen.
Rousseau took a slightly more naive look at things. Rousseau believed that people are generally good when they are allowed to exist as a “natural man” (man being the contraction of human). In this Rousseau believes that it is societies fault that crime and evil things are done. Apparently people have been bucking the blame onto society for a while now. Rousseau says that if it wasn’t for societies negative influence we wouldn’t have crime and evil and that mankind would live in a utopia. Unfortunately, to achieve Rousseau’s utopia we as a society would have to pretty much give up everything that makes us one.
But before I digress to much, while Hobbes and Rousseau disagree on the reasons, both agree that human nature will lead to self interest and doing what the individual feels is best for them.
This is why we need the right to keep and bear arms. If we are denied them, then we forfeit our right to dictate the events around us. Be they a response to a directly personal event such as a carjacking, burglary or rape. Or to a larger scale in the defending against tyranny.
Because, have no doubt, the part of human nature that facilitates a criminal’s belief that they can get away with it also fuels anyone with ambition, especially politicians. If the government (run by individuals) does not fear its populace then it has no reason to restrict itself from doing whatever it wants. While that may be fine when the government is altruistic because it wants to be, it can turn horrible very fast when it decides to be tyrannical instead.
I guess I can sum up the entirety of this article recounting a story from my youth.
When I was a child, my father had a small lock on a shed in our back yard. Not that their was a ton of stuff worth stealing in it mind you, but it had a lock. Not a impenetrable fortress, just a little lock that anyone who wanted to get through would only need a little bit of effort to circumvent. I asked my father why bother putting on the little lock if it’s not going to stop a criminal.
His response was: “To keep honest people honest”.
My father didn’t realize it, but he spoke with the true understanding of a philosophy that people spend thousands of dollars to learn in Universities the world over.
So why do we we need the right to keep and bear arms? To keep honest people honest…and to defend against the dishonest ones. Be they the thugs on the streets or the ones in DC.