By Joseph Foster
Demagogic liberals and sensible conservatives all agree that private ownership of a tank would be absurd. I agree, but our right to do so is implied by the spirit of the second amendment to the constitution.
The Constitution of the United States gives the individual the responsibility to choose the type of government he/she needs to protect individual freedom. The second amendment gives the individual the right and responsibility to protect oneself and one’s property from the tyranny of man. The tyranny of man can be found in varying degrees: a mean elder brother, a schoolyard bully, a back-alley thief, a home invader, a rapist, a pedophile, a demagogic politician. The tyranny of man can find it’s utopia in a statist government where a corrupt and inefficient elite historically dictated oppressive and freedom-defying orders to the people. At this point in time, our individual freedoms have prevented the tyranny of man from achieving it’s utopia here in America. Although, the dominant political agenda of the day proves the effort continues.
Our right to bear arms is limited to handguns and rifles because Americans have told the government that limit is acceptable. The argument between the people and the government over automatic weapons and high-capacity magazines is a healthy argument because the people can check and balance the government’s propensity to impose it’s will. If the government breaches the acceptable limit to an unacceptable degree, the people might respond by overcompensating in the other direction to an absurd degree.
American freedoms and the type of government based on the Constitution are contrasted by the statest government rejects of history: National Socialists of 1930’s Germany, Soviet Socialists, the civil war dictator in Syria, etc. The right to own a gun is a symbol of American freedom. If government tramples that right to an unacceptable degree, a tank might be in our future.
The writer lives in Myrtle Beach.