Who's Responsible For Gun Control?

After being deeply embroiled in the gun control issue for over a decade on every conceivable level from local to national, I feel fully qualified to answer the question posed by the title of this essay. The answer is we, the gun owners of America, are responsible. Everyone wants to place blame on a Brady or a Schumer, but it is YOUR fault!

No, we certainly do not make it happen, but we most decidedly do allow it to happen. It has been reported that there are approximately 60,000,000 citizens in this country that own at least one firearm. That figure had to be arrived at mathematically, of course, but nonetheless there is obviously a huge segment of the population that has a firearm of one type or another tucked away in either a dresser drawer or closet.

Even given a figure of say, one-half, or 30,000,000 gun owners, the question that begs to be answered is, "How can any gun control legislation be passed if we have such large numbers of gun owners?" The answer to this question sadly is that there may indeed be 30,000,000 owners of firearms, but only a handful actually have the courage to stand up to the anti-gun culture.

The rest are lazy and fearful. The vast majority of the gun owners in America cannot, or probably more accurately, will not by choice, see that a serious suspension of their rights is taking place . It is far more convenient to ignore the pleas of a victim, in this case the Second Amendment, than it is to get personally involved and face possible embarrassment. No, in the face of confrontation, there are those who would prefer to be cut down as they cower rather than put up even a token resistance. It is altogether too easy to let some faceless activist sacrifice position and property while they sit safe and cozy drinking a cold root beer, watching the nightly news while snuggled into the folds of the old recliner. Bill Clinton and Sam Donaldson have convinced them that verything is just fine.

In the privacy of their homes, while crouched over the keyboard of a home computer or at a local gun shop with friends, these "Paper Patriots" bark like mad dogs in a pen. They have all of the solutions and berate the actions of other pro-gun activists who are considerably more earnest in their determination to fight for the RKBA. They also find a false sense of courage behind the anonymity that a computer gives. The motivation for the local self-appointed expert is a need to be recognized as an authority by his or her (normally his) peers. Unfortunately, none of the useless drivel spit out by any of our allegedly pro-gun friends and neighbors who hope that we believe they support the RKBA , are as valuable as a single truly selfless and pro-gun action.

Ask the "Paper Patriot" to put the money where the mouth is however, and the true person is revealed. The flurry of excuses or reasons why they can't "get involved" come so fast as to be indistinguishable from one another and while some of the excuses are clever, none are acceptable. All of the reasons for not supporting the NRA, all of the reasons for not wanting to be on some "list", fictitious or real, all of the reasons such as "They can't find me if they don't know where I am..." and all of its variants, are bullshit. They may have convinced themselves that these reasons are valid, but those of us who have been at the vanguard of this fight know better. We know that what they are really feeling is fear. How do we know? Well, most of us whose names are at the top of those infamous "lists" have been where they are now. Most of us were "Paper Patriots" at one time.

The difference is that those of us who have been interviewed by CNN or do interviews with newspapers such as the Washington Post, the Detroit Free Press and USA Today (and I have...) have found courage. How? It has been said that "...without fear, there can be no courage..." No more accurate words were ever spoken. The fear of being on a list or the fear of speaking publicly never goes away. Rather, the fear learns to live with your personal conviction that gun control is wrong, that gun control is bad for this country and that gun control is bad for the future of our children. At that point, when you are so fed up and furious with the unending crap that threatens the RKBA that you would step into the fires of Hell itself to stop it, is when you find courage. "Doing that which frightens you the most..." That is what will win the day for those of us who own firearms.

As I perform the tasks that need to be done in the defense of the Second Amendment, I do it knowing full well what the costs could be to myself and my family. I have already given up one promising career with a Fortune 500 company to fight this fight. I have spent countless hours and many dollars that could have taken us on very nice vacations or allowed us to buy that new dishwasher and furniture we need so badly. However, to give up at this point would be worse. It would be worse because I would be letting my country down. I would be letting down all of those who are interred under small white crosses at Arlington or in any of the American military cemeteries around the globe. I would be letting down my father, now suffering from congenital heart failure, who kept B-24 heavy bombers flying over Europe in 1944. I would be letting down every man or woman who fought for civil rights during the 1960's. I would be letting down myself, my wife and my three kids. Worst of all, I would be a traitor to my belief in God and His teachings. I cannot, I will not, stop until the RKBA is secure for all generations.

If you own a gun, you should be prepared to do no less. Look back a couple of hundred years. There was a time not so long ago that other "Paper Patriots" found the courage to defend what was right and just by sacrificing their positions and property. Is there something that makes this fight for the very life of The Constitution of The United States different than the fight for freedom two centuries ago? I say no.

Who is responsible for the current state of gun control in America? You are. I am. We have thus far done a deplorable job of protecting our rights. The anti-gun culture is fully aware of our self-absorption and they are quick to capitalize on our passivity. They are even quicker to recognize our in-fighting and exploit it to their own full benefit. We have to cease thinking that when we win but one legislative battle, that we have somehow won the war. We must be united and on the offensive constantly.

We can take the fight to the anti-gun culture and beat them at their own game. Rest assured it can indeed be done, but it will take 30,000,000 American gun owners who have found courage to do so successfully. Start by joining the National Rifle Association, Gun Owners of America, The Second Amendment Foundation or any one of a half dozen other pro-gun organizations. But, don’t join for the hat or the magazine subscription or the insurance. Join because you want to want to be a part of a fraternity that will kick the anti-gun cultures’ ass!

The next time you meet someone somewhere who is ranting about what is wrong with the NRA or what should be done to beat the anti-gunners, ask them this simple question. Look at them and say, “Are you a member of (insert favorite pro-gun here)?” Given that there are allegedly 60,000,000 gunowners and fewer than 4,000,000 have the guts to stand up and be counted on any level, the chances of a “No” answer are pretty good. Tell them...well, you tell them what you want. For me, I usually tell them to take their bullshit excuses and piss off.

Jeffrey H. Dissell, Proprietor
The Conservative Diner

Copyright, 1997, The Conservative Diner