By David Beilstein
CLASSICAL LIBERALS, trying to conserve the constitutional parameters of government and individual rights have long defended the importance of the 2nd Amendment – the right to keep and bare arms.
The logic of this is obvious. From the Declaration of Independence, to the following Amendments to the U.S. Constitution protect inalienable rights. One of those basic rights is individual sovereignty and the right to property. Therefore, the ability to protect ones property, which means their physical wellbeing too, necessitates the ability to defend oneself. This, obviously, is one reason why there is a 2nd Amendment. The second, to enable individuals to protect themselves from the tyranny of the civil magistrate.
Sports commentator Bob Costas’ recent harangue against the 2nd Amendment in the face of the late NFL player, Jovan Belcher shooting himself, then his girlfriend, is an apt opportunity to discuss the nature of gun ownership in the United States. I have often said conservatives, classical liberals, do not enhance our argumentation by denying the verity of particular circumstances. Leftists identify real problems in American life, and it is important in the macro to understand classical liberals should never deny these problems when true. If they do, they cease being adequately conservative. In example, leftists and classical liberals see rising health care costs as problematic. It is problematic. The debate is waged over free market solutions to reduce cost, or against the intentions of leftists, increasing healthcare costs on everyone because of the consequence of collectivist realities.
The battle between classical liberals and progressives, then, is most often over solutions – not problems.
In consequence, too many conservative voices went into ‘don’t look at the man behind the curtain’ mode when Costas alleged an unhealthy gun culture, especially in the black community. It is quite understandable in one sense, as conservatives understood Costas’ motive was to blame gun ownership, an attack upon the 2nd Amendment of the U.S. Constitution. At the same time, and more troubling, is Costas – in the micro – is correct. There is, and continues to be, a destructive “gun culture”, especially in inner city America within the black community.
As a black man, this shames me to no end.
Consequently, nobody ably defends a position when denying facts. There are two facts about this issue that must get our proper attention.
1) Gun control does not work (in America or elsewhere, historically or within modernity). Gun control creates victims of law abiding citizens, denying those citizens the ability to defend their property, including their physical wellbeing. More guns, equals less crime. These are indisputable facts.
2) At the same time, there is an unhealthy gun culture in black America, and in other rough neck cultures, promoted by various pop cultural entities (professional athletes, music stars, etc.). The late Jovan Belcher and many prominent celebrity personalities personify this disaster. We can call this, then, a ramification of the punk/thug/bad-ass Nigga culture.
Just because Number 1 is true, and it is, does not mean conservatives should ignore Number 2. Too many conservatives do, however. Much of this stems from the lack of minority conservatives, so a proper peek-a-boo at the issue is evaded. In America, we have elevated the notion of white folks not being able to talk about “black” issues as gospel. Hence, conservatives are silent. But this is willful blindness to the nuances of the problem. The result then, is men like Costas – statist progressives – are left to speak up, speaking up in favor of gun control, obviously. That being said, since Number 2 is also true, to my mind, such admittance of that fact does not have to end up “in favor of gun control.”
It’s exactly the opposite. The more American culture decays, (the unhealthy ghetto gun culture is just another symptom of cultural decay) the greater need for law-abiding individuals to protect themselves (and their property) in an efficient manner. And that manner means arming oneself with weapons those law-abiding citizens can shoot accurately, store safely, and maintain the functionality of their weapon by proper cleaning.
Let’s beg some honesty from ourselves. NFL player or not, Jovan Belcher was a punk. No man who hurts a woman is anything else, regardless of the woman’s moral rectitude. A man is to protect and honor a woman no matter what – even when she’s wrong. And the more Jovan Belchers’ our culture has running around, scowling, pimp rolling; the more guns free people – black and white – need at the ready. This is simply common sense. To rely on law enforcement, all too often hostile to citizens carrying weapons is absurd.
Progressivism exacerbates problems. Perhaps we can come to realise the tangled web the statist progressive weaves, too. As I have written before, progressives embraced the ghetto culture as authentically black decades ago. It was progressives who looked upon the lowbrow culture birthing in ghetto environs and praised its diversity; it’s essential authenticity to modern black life. Those who critised it – especially non-blacks – were deemed irreparable bigots. Many Negroes who did not fit the cultural, physical accouterments of the ghetto culture, light-skinned or dark-skinned, had their black authenticity questioned – by progressive whites!
It was if a Negro who did not know the heft and feel of the inner city, a Negro farming in Iowa for instance, was less authentically Negro then those mose’ living in Negro dominated inner cities. So much so, that Negro celebrities who grew up in the upper-middle classes, did all they could to act the clipped, mush-mouthed ghetto-head. This was apparent when Miles Davis, whose father was a Dentist, grew up riding horses in the country. Miles came from bread, lots of bread. But when the scowl-looking, badass nigga culture began, beautiful Miles Davis – horn and all – scowled and acted as nasty as he could to fans and foes alike.
When fusion came, Miles changed, acting like he grew up in the worst tenement project hell – a quietly talented vagabond sifting through street corner trash; going without food for days, knifing ghetto-hooded competitors. But Miles did not grow up that way – but preciously the opposite. Consequently, it was this upper class environ that gave America Miles Davis – this upper-class, rooted in family, and mediating associations, that had the cultural capital to invest in Miles’ vaunted musical talent.
Such is the stitching on the fastball. It is the dismantling of the family, and the mediating associations rising out of localism and community – Edmund Burke’s mediating platoons – that have winnowed away the hierarchical virtues of much of inner city, suburban Negro life – spawning generations of fatherless sons and daughters, steeped in lowbrow culture. That lowbrow culture has consequences. And those consequences have eliminated the preciousness of life and the things of life for many Negro Americans, exchanged for the contrivances of punk posture, and rough neck machismo.
In essence, the progressive has created the modern atrophy in ghetto environs, and the progressive solution, therefore, must be to fix the problem by the power of the State. The fix, likewise, becomes the attenuation of individual freedom and sovereignty to protect property and one’s gift of life, by large-scale restriction of weapons made for such a purpose.
The snake, then, in progressive environs, is happily eating its own tail.
We come to Chicago, a beautiful city. It also has some of the strictest gun laws in the nation. And the Windy City has a lot of munitions popping off in muzzle fulguration within its city limits. Strange too, since guns are anathema within Chicago city limits. The Windy City is home to one giant illustration of a coddling of unhealthy ghetto gun culture, producing murders by the week. Chicago has packs of ghetto gun culture punks running around and few law abiding citizens packing heat. Thus, many innocent victims, buried in early graves, can attest visually to the culture of death Chicago has erected.
Chicago is a perfect, though tragic, illustration of what not to do concerning guns.
Obviously, Bob Costas’ garrulousness should be ridiculed and condemned because of its anti-2nd Amendment presumption, by freethinking Americans. Costas has gotten his way, policy-wise, in major cities across the United States. And an unnecessary amount of victims unable to defend life and property has been its consequence. Still, truth should not be a victim in the rightful condemnation of anti-2nd Amendment effusiveness. It attenuates the rightful position on gun rights conservatives do hold.