Monday, May 26, 2008

Memorializing the 2nd Amendment

I've added a new links section titled 2nd Amendment. Non-duplicate links from the deleted section Firearms have been moved.

One of the new links is to a specific article. If you find it interesting, use the site menu to explore further. In any case, I recommend reading Ethics from the Barrel of a Gun.

It is Memorial Day appropriate because it speaks both to the security given to us by those who risk/ed death in freedom's defense and to the mind-set of those of us who would be free.

Self-defense is the fundamental right. That others - strangers - would defend your life is an almost unimaginable gift. "Almost," because we have continuing evidence that our military personnel do just that. They appreciate the following truth, even while they have volunteered to risk the existential threat:

...the bearing of arms functions not merely as an assertion of power but as a fierce and redemptive discipline. When sudden death hangs inches from your right hand, you become much more careful, more mindful, and much more peaceful in your heart — because you know that if you are thoughtless or sloppy in your actions or succumb to bad temper, people will die.

Too many of us have come to believe ourselves incapable of this discipline. We fall prey to the sick belief that we are all psychopaths or incompetents under the skin. We have been taught to imagine ourselves armed only as villains, doomed to succumb to our own worst nature and kill a loved one in a moment of carelessness or rage.

...But it's not so.

...To believe one is incompetent to bear arms is, therefore, to live in corroding and almost always needless fear of the self — in fact, to affirm oneself a moral coward. A state further from the dignity of a free man would be rather hard to imagine. It is as a way of exorcising this demon, of reclaiming for ourselves the dignity and courage and ethical self-confidence of free (wo)men that the bearing of personal arms, is, ultimately, most important.
Clinging to our guns is "clinging" to being free people. RTWT

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