The Right of Self-Protection

hunting_the_cave_bear_by_zdenek_burian_1952As humans, we are not equipped with razor-sharp talons or long teeth so we are not effective predators and in our early history, we were often the prey of creatures that were better equipped for the task of killing their food.  How were we able to survive?  The answer is we started an arms race.  We started equipping ourselves with the tools we needed to defend ourselves from those that wished to do us harm.

This act of arming ourselves wasn’t ordained by any government it was a right that we all were born with.  It is the right of self-preservation.  As time went on the predators that once consumed us were now the hunted and were a part of our food products.  We became more because of the weapons that we were able to use to defend ourselves.  These weapons protected us from those that wished to harm us.

As the human species started to mature so did the avenues of attacks that we had to be able to defend ourselves against.  At first, it was against rivals trying to deprive us of the hard-earned food that we needed to survive.  Some of these new dangers had weapons as well and they would use them.  The only means that humans had at their disposal to defend themselves was to have either the same type of weapons or better.

As time went on humans started to realize that as a part of a group they were better able to work together towards common goals with one of those goals being defense.  Humans have to sleep and when they sleep they are not readily able to defend themselves.  By working together as some people slept others could guard against threats (the early form of a militia).

As these groups of humans grew larger it became apparent that a leader was needed in order to effectively organize the group towards common goals.  The way that the earliest leaders came to power wasn’t through elections or appointments but through violent means often killing rivals that were vying for the power they sought.  The only effective means of defense was to have the same arms that your rival had.

Untitled-3-RecoveredThis went on throughout the course of early history and was the common means of determining who was going to rule the kingdom.  This ruler would often insure that his most trusted people were able to defeat any potential rivals.  As a means of controlling the subjects, the ruler would take away any weapons that could potentially be used to challenge the ruler’s authority.  This meant that only the most trusted and loyal people were able to defend themselves and the kingdom.

Because the subjects were defenseless to stand against the ruler and their standing armies many atrocities were committed and the subjects had no choice but to submit to these atrocities or forfeit their lives.  The only way that rulers were unseated was either through a conquering ruler or through an uprising and the subjects having enough numbers to overwhelm the ruler and the army.  Neither of these left the kingdom better than it was under the old ruler and often made things worse for those that remained subjects.

Over time these atrocities changed more to neglect and the subjects in the outer reaches of the kingdom were often left to fend for themselves.  This left them vulnerable to attack from other kingdoms.  In order to defend themselves, the subjects again started to arm themselves.

In the 1700s a colony of the British Empire was being forced to provide for the crown but was not being represented fairly back in England.  This upset many of the colonists and while some were willing to submit to British rule others were demanding that the Crown start treating the colonies the same as the subjects in England were treated.  King George III did not like these demands on the Crown and sent British troops to America to quiet the rebellion that was starting.

In 1775 the American Revolution started in Lexington and Concord.  The colonists had stockpiled some of the same weapons that the British troops had and the Crown wanted them seized and out of the hands of the colonists.  As the British troops attempted to seize these weapons the colonists revolted and these were the first battles of the Revolution.

COTHwmBecause of access to the same types of weapons as the British, the colonists were able to secure their freedom from the tyrannical rule of King George III.  As a means of securing the future of the American people, the Founding Fathers established the Constitution of the United States of America.  These states were not always united as some held that the new Constitution did little to protect the liberties of the individual.  This lead to the Bill of Rights being passed by the First Congress and being ratified by all of the 13 original states.

One of the new Amendments added to the Constitution was the Second Amendment.  A well-regulated militia being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed.  This shows that the Founding Fathers recognized our earliest civil right as one in need of being protected against government restricting the people’s ability to 1. Provide for their defense against a tyrannical government and 2.  As a means for self-protection against all enemies foreign and domestic.

As time continues to march on technologies change and human’s ability for self-protection needs to evolve with the latest developments in weapon technology.  This is the only way that we as a people are able to keep a government in check.  Yeah we have the ability to vote and we have the ability to demonstrate and have protested but all of those can be denied or quieted unless we the people have the ability to be able to stand against a government that attempts to deny the people their rights.

As our society has grown from the time of our Founders so have the weapons that are available.  Some question the need for some classifications of weapons.  When we look at our history and some of the recent histories that have happened we can see why the Second Amendment is a protection of our oldest civil liberty.


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