Monday, December 10, 2012

The racist roots of gun control

Three parts I'll borrow(bold mine):
Whitlock’s commentary is also problematic at another level that I elaborate in detail in my forthcoming article, Firearms Law and The Black Community:An Assessment Of The Modern Orthodoxy (Connecticut Law Review) and a forthcoming book based on that research, “Negros with Guns: The Dual Tradition of Non-Violent Social Change and Individual Self-Defense (Prometheus).  This work explains that the basic premise of the modern gun control movement – that people should rely on government for personal security- is wildly at odds with the Black experience in America. No group in the nation has better reason to doubt the competency and benevolence of the state. For most of the Black experience in America, the state has been an overt menace.

So it is no surprise that for most of our history, the Black community from the leadership to the grassroots has explicitly and aggressively endorsed the right of armed self-defense and firearms ownership. Kentucky firebrand Ida B. Wells urged that “the Winchester rifle deserved a place of honor in every Negro home.” The first generation of legal battles by the NAACP were centered on defending Blacks who had used firearms in self-defense – e.g., hiring Clarence Darrow to defend Dr.  Ossian Sweet who was mobbed for attempting move into a white neighborhood.
 ...After affirming the strategy of nonviolence in pursuit of group goals King says this:
Violence exercised merely in self-defense, all societies, from the most primitive to the most cultured and civilized, accept as moral and legal.  The principle of self-defense, even involving weapons and bloodshed, has never been condemned, even by Gandhi … . When the Negro uses force in self-defense, he does not forfeit support he may even win it, by the courage and self-respect it reflects.
(Until now; when a bunch of 'because I hate guns and violence' fools who cannot or will  not deal with the difference between predatory violence and protective violence want people totally dependent on the .gov for everything.  Because they'd rather have victims to use, than independent people who don't need to be take care of.)

Finally, one wonders whether Whitlock even appreciates that the history of supply-side gun control in America is rooted in racism. As described in detail in my book Firearms law and the Second Amendment, the first generation of supply-side gun controls were explicitly racist. Ironically, these laws worked hand-in-hand with oppressive state regimes and terrorist organizations like the KKK. On this score Whitlock’s invocation of the KKK is ironic and perverse.

By invoking the specter of racism, Whitlock appropriates and exploits a public good that has been paid for in the sweat and blood of countless Black folk both here and gone. His cavalier deployment of this resource degrades those people and their sacrifice.  Whitlock makes hay by presuming to speak for Black people as a group.  Through the grossest invective he smears those who would disagree with him. I have to believe that he does not realize that this includes millions of lawful Black gun owners who reject the demonstrably flawed approach of relying on the state for their personal security.
Again, they'd rather have victims to 'take care of' than people who can take care of themselves.  And it's even better if the victims are women or of some minority group.

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