THE LIBERTARIAN ENTERPRISE
Number 654, January 22, 2012
"Violence Solves a Lot"
Violence Solves a Lot
Special to L. Neil Smith's The Libertarian Enterprise
One of the more insidiously deceptive lines of the socialist-liberal agenda is the banal phrase: "Violence doesn't solve anything." How much retrospection is required to understand that Hitler wasn't stopped by peace marches, negotiations, or "conflict resolution" sessions? It is a horrible, disgusting task, but evil acts, whatever shape they take, must eventually be countered by a superior, violent force.
The liberal doesn't seem to understand that the threat of counter violence is perhaps the most effective preventative of actual physical conflict. Liberal pacifists in modern times mocked the phrase "peace through strength" as though the pragmatism contained within such an idea were rooted in some atavistic, macho, testosterone-poisoned psychosis that had been propagated by alpha males throughout history.
Can't the liberal understand that bad people are prevented from committing evil acts by their fear of punishment? Perhaps at a childhood level, the threat of adult disapproval or the disapproval of one's schoolyard peers keeps the behavior of the youngster in some kind of conformity to morality. But it doesn't take long for the criminally-minded teenager to realize that he really doesn't care what other people think. Crime pays. Evil is profitable. Bullying works. Unless, that is, you are harshly confronted with the realization that your malicious behavior will be rewarded by a beating, a bullet, or a prison cell.
A peaceful, free society, of which America (even with its flaws) is the most outstanding example in all of recorded history, is preserved by the willingness of its people, either singly or as a group, to commit decisive acts of righteous violence to counter evil activity.
Hebrew scholars agree that one of the Ten Commandments has been mistranslated. "Thou shalt not kill" is more accurately translated from the ancient Hebrew as "Thou shalt not murder." The punishment for murder in ancient Israelite communities was stoning. Murderers were killed by the citizens. They were executed. And stoning was the most effective way to spread the responsibility for the execution through the mass of individuals who were willing to pay the price for living in a peaceful, moral society. Because of its face-to-face horror, the compassionate individual would, one might imagine, actually cast the first stone ...to make sure it knocked the murderer immediately unconscious, in much the same way the ethical hunter or fisherman puts his quarry out of its misery as quickly as possible. The ancient Hebrews forced personal responsibility on each individual via the group act of stoning.
It comes down to individual responsibility. It comes down to the individual being willing to act with righteous force when confronted by certain criminal behaviors. How many of your would idly stand by and watch a man torture a helpless pup? You would first yell at him to stop. If he continued, you might grab at him or throw yourself between him and the bleeding, cringing animal. What if he slaps you aside and continues his barbarity? You look around and see a two-by-four on the ground. How many of you would not take that two-by-four to the man with a clear conscience? Sorry, there are no cell phones around. You can't call the cops or the Humane Society. You have to act now! What do you do? Are you really going to stand by and watch the travesty, all the time telling yourself that "violence doesn't solve anything"?
If you would club the animal torturer with a two-by-four, how much quicker should you come to the defense of a human victim? I grew up in the Marxist-Socialist, namby-pamby Bay Area, and I wish I had a nickel for every time I heard some pompous person tell me "I could never kill anyone!" I even said it a few times myself during my naive teens and 20s. It felt so good to utter that unctuous homily. But I don't feel that way anymore.
I would kill another human being. I would do it to save my own life or the life of an innocent victim. The act would probably make me physically ill. I might have to live with it in my mind for the rest of my life, but I pray I would have the courage, yes, courage, to stop consummate evil with whatever means became necessary.
And it is for this reason that I am a fervent advocate of the right of the law-abiding and sane individual to possess and carry a firearm. The right to self-defense is not only a right guaranteed to us by the Constitution, it is a duty, a command of "Nature and Nature's G-d" (to quote Jefferson) that each of us must confront if we are to preserve freedom and moral civilization in our communities and nation.
Modern-day "gun control" is not something invented in America by Dianne Feinstein and Barbara Boxer. Adolph Hitler used firearms and ammunition registration to create the paper trails that facilitated the eventual confiscation of the firearms of his opponents in Nazi Germany. America's Gun Control Act of 1968 bears such an amazing resemblance to the Nazi German law that every school child should be made aware of the similarity. Or perhaps we should all think about a very simple fact: slaves can't own guns.
Perhaps the world isn't the way we wish it would be. We all might wish that evil men could be persuaded from their vile behavior with bleeding heart entreaties, a kiss on the cheek, or proper toilet training. But it ain't that way, folks, Pacifism is a sickness, an actual moral perversity, and dangerous when its effects spread to anyone else beside the pacifist. You may choose to walk to the cattle car, but damn you if you let your children be led up the ramp. You must never allow any group or government to steal your right to exercise armed lethal force in a just situation.
One of the greatest instructors in the defensive use of firearms used to say to his graduating classes: "May you never have to use what you have learned here." And in that spirit I would like to see an American citizenry that is armed to the teeth and as skilled in the use of pistols and rifles as we are in the driving of automobiles. Am I insane? Somehow, looking at the tragic lessons of history, I don't think so.