Guns

NPR reports modern gun control laws

were first legislated action against African-Americans.

guns

Karen Grigsby Bates of NPR’s Code Switch team found out, many African-Americans believe that owning guns is crucial to protecting themselves and their rights.

sacramentoIn 1968, The Black Panthers marched on the California state house with loaded weapons. The

“Shocked lawmakers made carrying loaded firearms illegal. And in 1968, after several urban riots, the Federal Gun Control Act was passed, which attempted to ban the sale of cheap handguns. What that did, said Robert Cottrol, a law professor at George Washington University, is to leave black residents in high-crime areas vulnerable.” (NPR)

Notice, the powerful made the people powerless. Injustice comes in many forms.

All people desire freedom coupled with safety to secure their homes and neighborhoods.

Gun ownership by law-abiding citizens stems the tide of crime in any municipality.

gun controlPeople do not purchase weapons based on fear. It is those who fear gun ownership who call for gun control. The call for “responsible gun ownership” is simply twisting words of those who want to declare an “enemy” of gun owners.

I submit that gun ownership is nothing more than an act of love.

sheriff-clarkeLove of law America is a nation of laws. Laws protect the responsible purchase and possession of firearms by peaceful, law-abiding citizens. David Clarke, Sheriff in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, has said simply “Take advantage of your legal right to carry a firearm.”

Love of freedom We are citizens in a nation of freedoms. Watch the commercial celebrating the freedom of the person to defend herself. What happens when someone is told to obey the law but has little protection against those who would break it? If responsibility is demanded, freedom to act must go hand-in-hand.

dana_loesch-e1443446377444Love of life If women give birth, give life, shouldn’t we care that they can protect themselves? Dana Loesch gives a compelling one minute commercial telling why moms “are freedom’s safest place.” The lives of major politicians are protected by body guards with weapons on their person. Why shouldn’t the woman getting off the bus after a second shift job in downtown Chicago have the same protection?

Love of place “No Americans should have to face evil with empty hands” says Coloin Noir. Life is sacred. Property is to be protected. A person has a right to her place, to feel safe, to be at rest. We all love our homes, where we live. We care for property not because it is an idol but because we are its steward.

protect homeLove of family David Mamet, praising the president for making a law that gives his family life-time protection, said “The individual is not only best qualified to provide his own personal defense, he is the only one qualified to do so.” The screenwriter and filmmaker’s point? If the president gets to protect his family, we should be able to protect ours. Love of family is another reason for gun ownership.

Eric Jewell HayesBut I would like my readers to hear a voice similar to those with whom I began. My African-American brother, Pastor Eric Jewell Hayes Sr. maintains,

While gun ownership can be an expression of love for the culture at large, for Blacks it is also an expression of identity. It becomes a way for African-Americans to assert that they too are Americans; that they should enjoy the same privileges of other ethnicities without impediment. In a very real way, gun ownership for blacks is saying, I’m an American, let me be an American too.

I stand with Pastor Hayes, with the voices in the NPR report, and for all those who love life, their place, their family, and their freedom.

Gun ownership is an act of love.

Mark knows that some will celebrate this essay, others will be outraged. Dr. Eckel says to the second group, the first group will always be willing to defend your right to your opinion.

Afterword

Please read/watch the hyperlinks. Some will be surprised at the various sources noted.

There will be those who will want to regale me with statistics. Please make sure your statistics have been measured against those numbers running counter to yours. Stats are easily twisted.

“Article wars” serve neither side of a debate. Throwing opinionated perspectives from online sources does little but stoke the flames of anger. Set aside op-ed pieces; left- and right-leaning firebrands to do the hard work of thoughtful involvement with the best positions from both sides.

Others will want to tell me about the awfulness of accidental shootings and incidents which involve obvious issues of injustice. Awful suffering happens every day. I care deeply for what seems to be inexplicable horror. Emotional responses never make good motives for action, however.

Some will call into question my Christianity. They will say, “Christians should be peaceful.” I agree. I also agree that peace is best preserved by those ready to repel those who would want to take peace away.

Still more will begin to label me. They will call me a “war-monger,” “a conservative ideologue,” “a tool of the NRA,” “ill-informed,” or “insensitive.” Labeling only does one thing; it reduces dialogue, discussion, and open conversation to a rant. Before you label be sure you have heard the best arguments from the other side, spending hundreds of hours studying the folks with whom you disagree.

At the end of the day, I stand with Pastor Hayes. We are fellow Christians, fellow preachers, fellow Americans, and fellow defenders of the right to keep and bear arms.

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