All across the country, right-wingers are lining up behind a standard answer to the question: “Why are we against a ban on assault weapons”? And that answer is: civilians need assault weapons so they can defend themselves against tyranny. What tyranny? Well, they don’t really say. And though it sounds like a talking point from some militia survivalist bunker, even learned judges are arguing it, gentle reader. At least Fox's friendly judge, Andrew Napolitano, was arguing that point in a foxnews.com op-ed which was also posted on the Fox Nation.
The core of his argument is that rebels against tyranny need as much firepower as the tyrant they’re trying to overcome. “The limitations on the power and precision of the guns we can lawfully own not only violate our natural right to self-defense and our personal sovereignties; they assure that a tyrant can more easily disarm and overcome us,” Napolitano maintains. “The dictators and monsters of the 20th century -- from Stalin to Hitler, from Castro to Pol Pot, from Mao to Assad -- have disarmed their people, and only because some of those people resisted the disarming were all eventually enabled to fight the dictators for freedom…”
The main reason the colonists won the American Revolution, he says, is because they had firepower to equal the British. "If the colonists had been limited to crossbows that they had registered with the king’s government in London, while the British troops used gunpowder when they fought us here, George Washington and Jefferson would have been captured and hanged.”
Really? What tyrants are threatening us, that we need to arm civilians with assault weapons? Napolitano won't go that far. Fox Nation also has a post about Piers Morgan getting “SHREDDED” by Ben Shapiro of breitbart.com, who's been getting around a lot lately, and Shapiro didn't go that far either. He answered that question this way.
MORGAN: Do you believe your own government is going to turn on you In a way that you require an AR-15 to challenge them?
SHAPIRO: They may not turn on me, they may not turn on my children. But the fact is this; history is replete with democracies going tyrannical. It happened in France in the 19th century, in Spain in the last century, happened in Germany, in Italy. It has happened repeatedly, it has happened in Japan --
So I guess I need an assault rifle now, to pass on to my great-great-grandchildren just in case. I'd rather leave them my jewelry and guitars.
The threat of despotism does not go away, unless the government fears its citizenry.