Saturday, October 22, 2016

Our Hypocrisy About Guns

I expect we will see a lot more essays like this one, which appears to be crafted to induce us to give up our guns:

And yet, if you haven't noticed, the US is still the world's biggest arms merchant. Here's a report about weapon we have sold to Saudi Arabia:

There are two big questions here:

(1) Since it's clear the US government doesn't care how many Yemenis are being slaughtered, why would they want to take away OUR guns? It certainly isn't because they care about how many of us are being killed.

(2) Why do we still believe that guns are tools of liberation and freedom?

For some reason the whole event [Patriot's Day at Lexington and Concord, MA] reminded me of the following observation made by Audre Lorde many years ago:

"The master’s tools will never dismantle the master’s house. They may allow us temporarily to beat him at his own game, but they will never enable us to bring about genuine change."

The legend of the Minutemen implied that guns were tools of liberation, and as a nation we had previously promoted the private ownership of firearms partly because, in the words of the Second Amendment, they were “necessary to the security of a free State”.

But in reality guns are tools of subjugation, oppression, regime change, and counterinsurgency. They can never “dismantle the master’s house” because as one of the master’s chief tools, they are essential to the very building and maintenance of that house.

The proof of this is writ large in America’s history. How did our ancestors clear North America of its original inhabitants? By giving them guns, liquor, and blankets contaminated with smallpox or the measles. And how do we continue to subjugate the peoples around the world whose natural resources and/or land we covet? By giving them guns, drugs, and HIV/AIDS. Would we have given them guns if firearms were tools of liberation? Of course not.

Every instance in which we gave guns to so-called “freedom fighters” was motivated by a desire for regime change and subjugation. And the result nearly every time was a new regime which oppressed its own people so that our extractive businesses could siphon off the wealth of that nation while its American-armed new rulers kept the local population under control. It was a well-honed strategy which worked everywhere, including right here in the good ol’ U S of A.

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