So, “Representative” Eric Swalwell (D-CA) proposed a mandatory “buy-back” (confiscation by any other name, particularly since the “buy-back” price is quite a bit less than the market value of many of those firearms) of so-called “assault weapons” (as usual very loosely defined so that it can mean whatever they want it to mean this week).
That this would violate both the 2nd and the 5th (“nor be deprived of life, liberty, or property without due process of law” and simply passing a law saying “you can’t have that” is insufficient for “due process”).
In response people objected strongly to the idea and pointed out that many of the American people would resist, forcibly if needed, any such widespread confiscation of guns (call it a “buy back” if you want but if it’s mandatory it’s confiscation).
How did Swalwell respond? “It would be a short war, we have nukes” (paraphrased, but that is the gist.)
Yep. He threatened to nuke the American people (it’s not like you can only nuke the resisters–nukes are not exactly precision weapons) if his demands for gun confiscation weren’t met. Oh, he tried to walk it back claim he was being “sarcastic” in which case he was doing it wrong, sarcasm would be more like “Yeah, that will go well, you and your AR15’s against the entire might of the US Military”–it’s saying one thing in such a way that it’s clear you mean the opposite. Words have meanings, Mr. Swalwell. I think the word he was looking for was “hyperbole”–exaggeration for effect.
But even as hyperbole it’s telling indeed that his “go to” argument was an expression of his willingness to kill American citizens (actually, have other people do the killing–I doubt he’d be out there on his own) in order to implement his violation of the Constitution.
Let’s say he gets his way. He gets the law passed to disarm the previously law abiding citizens of the United States (when you use a made-up term like “assault weapon” with no hard, clear definition, you can throw anything into it you’d like). And people take armed exception to that law.
He said it will be a short war. He was wrong.
An armed resistance to gun confiscation won’t resemble the 19th century American Civil War. It won’t be this group of states vs. that group of states with clear borders defining “friendly” and “enemy” territory (although possibly with disputed areas along said borders). It won’t involve units from one side fighting units from the other in set-piece battles. As Swalwell said, this isn’t the 18th century (or even the 19th). It will be an insurgency like Northern Ireland, Beirut, and yes, Iraq and Afghanistan. And in such combat conventional forces, particularly things like the tanks, helicopters, bombers and the like are of limited use. Those big weapons can destroy a country. But to rule it, you need actual troops getting down in the dirt. You need “door kickers” and the like.
If they’re willing to do that, if they’re willing to use their bombers, their tanks, their attack helicopters, and the like to level cities where insurgents are operating, they’re saying their willing to kill more innocent American citizens (while more precise than nukes, even “precision” weapons are not without their collateral damage and civilian casualties when the insurgents are mixed in with the population) than all the criminal uses of guns ever have. And look at history, at the nations that have been willing to do that to their own citizens. Is that really what you want to emulate? (Let me guess. Metaphor about eggs and omelets goes here, right?)
It’s not going to be tanks and bombers on one side of the field and armed citizens on the other lining up to get bombed into oblivion. It’s going to be insurgency with the insurgents thoroughly mixed into the civilian population. And consider, the same people who are suggesting the might of the military being used to crush a domestic insurgency are the same ones who claim that the use of military force overseas “just creates more terrorists”. Have you listened to yourself? Why do you think it would be any different here?
Look, there have never been more than 20,000 or so insurgents in Iraq. Yet it managed to keep the US Military tied up for over ten years. Most estimates put the number of gun owners in the US between 100 and 150 million gun owners–and those are probably low. (Me? Why, no, I don’t have any guns. Lost them all in a tragic boating accident. That’s Americans–worlds most armed civilians or were before all these accidents; world’s worst boat drivers.) If only ten percent of them keep their guns that’s a 10 to 15 million armed individuals (outnumbering our military plus Guard and Reserve by 150, 500 to 750 times as many as kept the US military tied up in Iraq for a decade.
No, it won’t be over quickly. Perhaps you’ll win in the end. And perhaps not. A lot of those military folk are not going to be willing to use their military hardware on people who, when you come right down to it are their friends and neighbors–if not theirs personally, then the friends and neighbors of people they work with. You may think the military is staffed with mindless Myrmidons who will point their guns at whoever you tell them to, but they are people with hopes and fears and relationships outside the military. You might want to take a good hard look at the possibility that people told to go and kill “Cousin Joe,” “Aunt Sally,” and “the nice man who shares his venison with me every fall” may well decide to point their guns the other way.
You don’t want this civil war. You may think you do, but you don’t. You may delude yourself into thinking that it will be some, great, glorious revolution that will bring about the glorious Socialist States of America and that somehow the endless suffering won’t touch you. But, unless you’re a psychopath, it will. What you think you want is the fantasy. The reality will be very different indeed.
I don’t want a civil war. I know how horrible it will be. I know how unlikely it is to lead to the kind of society I want. (It doesn’t lead to the kind of society you say you want either.) But a lot of people want even less that Socialist States of America so many are trying to build, where disarming the populace is necessary before the true results of central economic planning can really be allowed to take hold. So please stop giving people the choice of one or the other.
Stop taking away our basic human freedom.