"Outside the limit of our sight, feeding off us, perched on top of us, from birth to death, are our owners! Our owners! They have us. They control us! They are our masters! Wake up! They're all about you! All around you!" -- Street Preacher in They Live, 1988.
It is almost two in the morning and the dogs are barking outside but that is not why I am awake.
I ran into an old friend at the gun show on Saturday. A long-time libertarian and political activist on behalf of the Second Amendment, I have known him for over fifteen years. We were talking about the NRA, of which he is a Life Member, and he volunteered that he understood the NRA's recent sell-out of the rest of us in cutting their own deal on the DISCLOSE Act.
He also volunteered that if the NRA had not been around we'd have long ago been stripped of the legal right to arms. But, he said, if the NRA endorsed Harry Reid, that was it, that was the end of him and the NRA.
I told him that it would have been better, then, if the NRA had never existed. That it didn't matter what any scrap of paper said, that my liberties are God-given and inalienable and that the sooner the domestic enemies of the Founders' Republic ripped their mask off and declared themselves, the sooner we could get about the business of killing them in earnest and restoring that Republic. The NRA, I said, was like a make-up artist who faithfully retouched the painted mask of the tyrannical monster to lull the peasants out of his own selfish desire to be the last one eaten.
I said all this and more, jumping all over him -- in public, probably humiliating him, yelling, yes, yelling, at him across the table.
And now, just now, in the middle of the night a day and and a half later, unable to sleep, I regret the humiliation of an old friend, but not one word of what I said.
There is a very human tendency to hold onto the status quo as long as possible, even if you realize that the status quo cannot continue and at some point there will be a violent breakdown. This is not new in human history.
Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed.
Jefferson was right about that, and even more right about the next breath of the Declaration of Independence.
But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security.
The NRA, with all their artful compromise, are nothing but paid handmaidens to tyranny. In the end, history will not deal kindly with them. They will be viewed, as I have said in these pages more than once, as our present-day equivalent of the Judenraten.
And note I said "paid handmaidens." The irony is that WE, the armed citizenry, are the ones paying them to sell us out. Alleged dragonslayers need dragons to convince the peasantry to continue feeding them. It is not in the interest of the professional dragonslayer to actually slay the dragon. And if more than a few villagers are, over the years, eaten by the dragon, it is of little importance to the "dragonslayer."
And such is the inertia of many of our peasant village comfort zones that we are willing to ignore the obvious and excuse the inexcusable, lest we have to get off our dead asses and fight ourselves to retain our liberty and property as the Founders did.
"You see, I take these glasses off, she looks like a regular person, doesn't she? Put 'em back on... (puts them back on) ..formaldehyde-face!" -- Nada, in They Live, 1988.
In truth, the NRA has been protecting the tyrant-wannabes from us, not the other way around.
It is long past time we recognized that fact.
So I do not regret what I said to my old friend. I do regret the way I said it. It was if I had slapped him. It hurt him, I know. I could see it in his face.
But, in truth, it will be as Sam Adams said long ago:
“Contemplate the mangled bodies of your countrymen, and then say 'what should be the reward of such sacrifices?' Bid us and our posterity bow the knee, supplicate the friendship and plough, and sow, and reap, to glut the avarice of the men who have let loose on us the dogs of war to riot in our blood and hunt us from the face of the earth? If ye love wealth better than liberty, the tranquility of servitude than the animated contest of freedom, go from us in peace. We ask not your counsels or arms. Crouch down and lick the hands which feed you. May your chains sit lightly upon you, and may posterity forget that you were our countrymen!”
Yet, still and all, it is me who is up in the middle of the night, regretting my part in an old friend's discomfiture, even though I was right.