Spending part of my childhood in Houston, Texas after my dad finished his stint in the Army, was one filled with great memories. We were a typical family living in the suburbs of Southeast Houston complete with chickens, rabbits and a horse named Thunder! Our house backed up against a ditch that followed the entire neighborhood and then some. Beyond that was a vast field that led to Hobby Airport. Kids in the hood would spend countless hours riding their bikes on the trails we created, built make-shift forts and caught turtles in the ditch. Those were good times.
Although our parents trusted us to be home by dark, our innocence was slowly diminishing. Houston was experiencing a huge drug problem, violence, and a serial killer who targeted women who wore purple was on the loose. Some of the houses in our neighborhood were burglarized and my father felt it was time to teach me about self-defence, in particular, how to use a gun. Since I was the oldest, I would have the privilege to learn first.
I’ll never forget that day. I was nine years old and my dad showed me a .22 caliber long-barrel pistol. Now, it’s not like I had never seen a gun before, heck, back then my dad had a gun rack on his truck which he proudly displayed his rifle and a shotgun. It was normal to see that all over town. We went to the ditch and he set up some beer cans along the edge of the dip so our bullets would just go into the water. He showed me how to load it, unload it, and just get a good feel of the gun before I got to shoot it. He told me to use the site at the end of the barrel to gauge my target, hold steady, then shoot! I can’t really remember if I even hit a can that day but I’ll never forget the loving time my dad spent with me to teach me that we are worthy of protecting ourselves. The world is getting crazy and he wanted to make sure I knew what to do in any situation.
Now turn to today when the world around us is ten times worse than it was in the late 1960s and ’70s. I can’t imagine how helpless I would feel without packing heat every time I left the house. I certainly don’t want to imagine our loving, caring government (I hope you recognize sarcasm when you see it) would want to take that right away, but that seems to be a part of the conversation.
Have Americans forgotten what the 2nd Amendment really means? I say yes, they have. Amendment II: A well-regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed (emphasis mine). Now without overloading you with Founding Father quotes on this subject, I did find a few worth mentioning.
“To preserve liberty, it is essential that the whole body of people always possess arms, and be taught alike especially when young, how to use them.” (Richard Henry Lee, 1788, Initiator of the Declaration of Independence, and member of the first Senate, which passed the Bill of Rights, Walter Bennett, ed., Letters from the Federal Farmer to the Republican, at 21,22,124 (Univ. of Alabama Press,1975)..)
Or this one: “The great object is that every man be armed” and “everyone who is able may have a gun.” (Patrick Henry, in the Virginia Convention on the ratification of the Constitution. Debates and other Proceedings of the Convention of Virginia,…taken in shorthand by David Robertson of Petersburg, at 271, 275 2d ed. Richmond, 1805. Also 3 Elliot, Debates at 386).
“…to disarm the people – that was the best and most effectual way to enslave them.” (George Mason, 3 Elliot, Debates at 380).
“The Constitution shall never be construed….to prevent the people of the United States who are peaceable citizens from keeping their own arms” (Samuel Adams, Debates and Proceedings in the Convention of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, 86-87)
“Are we at last brought to such humiliating and debasing degradation, that we cannot be trusted with arms for our defense? Where is the difference between having our arms in possession and under our direction, and having them under the management of Congress? If our defense be the real object of having those arms, in whose hands can they be trusted with more propriety, or equal safety to us, as in our own hands?” (Patrick Henry, 3 J. Elliot, Debates in the Several State Conventions 45, 2d ed. Philadelphia, 1836).
This debate has gone on for centuries but our Founding Fathers knew that to take away gun ownership would be to take away true freedom and liberty. This is not about how fast your weapon shoots and how many rounds your clip holds, this about another attempt to control you and take away a God-given freedom. We will never remove the evil in the world but we can sure turn back to God Almighty and seek his forgiveness, repent, and return to the moral nation we once were. We have a sin issue America, not a gun issue.