Gun reform is nothing but an endless conversation until the past historical narrative is revealed exposing racism and the fear of Southern Caucasians preparing for a race war driving their need for civilian citizens to bear arms. After the Civil War, when all wartime weapons were taken from civilians in accordance with the Second Amendment, police would use billy clubs, and the military would be the only group authorized to bear arms.
Gun reform debates have been an ongoing conversation since the framers of the U.S. Constitution wrote the Second Amendment allowing private citizens the right to bear arms.Many arguments surround the Founding Fathers’ intent when they wrote the Second Amendment: “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.”
What is a well-regulated militia? According to Merriam-Webster’s Collegiate Dictionary, a well-regulated militia means; the whole body of able-bodied male citizens declared by law as subject to a call to military service.
This definition reveals that regular civilians were not intended to own guns; only a well-trained and organized group of civilians called a militia would be qualified to bear arms under the Second Amendment. So what is the motive of those powerful gun control lobbyists like the National Rifle Association (NRA) when they promote guns for the average citizen?
To look to the future, one must study the past. The statement “one must study the past” is to guide the people to explore the activity of the past and understand the future’s direction. If this formula of thought is applied to gun reform, then an apparent deception is revealed.
On December 15, 1791, the nation was not at war when the Second Amendment was ratified. But the Civil War did come into play on April 12, 1861, and ended on May 9, 1865.
The North had Black slaves as a part of their militia, and the south had native American Indians as a part of their militia. In every war, there will be a winner and a loser. History teaches the North won the battle, which introduced the Emancipation Proclamation freeing enslaved people. So Southern slave owners were against freeing their slaves and felt they had to take precautions to ensure their way of life. A free slave would only bring the fear of retribution to slave owners for their cruelty to their Black slaves.
Who Are the NRA?Suppose the intent of the framers was not to arm the civilian community. Why do groups like the National Rifle Association (NRA), Armed Citizens United Gun Rights Organization (ACU), Firearms Policy Coalition (FPC), and the Gun Owners of America (GOA) want to sway public opinion toward arming civilians?
After losing the Civil War, civilian men of the Southern states were hell-bent on keeping their arms to protect themselves from perceived attacks from freed slaves. After the end of the Civil War in 1865, Southern Caucasians men formed the Ku Klux Klan (KKK) extended into almost every Southern state by 1870.
In 1871, after the KKK spread throughout the southern states, the NRA was founded. It is not a coincidence that after the loss to the North, angry Southern Caucasian men began to post themselves in a position that would protect them and their way of life from a perceived Black threat.
The NRA leaders and their members were dismayed at the poor marksmanship shown by Southern troops during the Civil War. They believe that if the Southern civilian militia had been better trained in marksmanship, the south would have won the war. The association’s primary goal would be to promote and encourage rifle shooting.
Racism and Fear Fuel Gun Lobbyists
Now this information from the past should present a clear understanding of the path that brings society to this point in the present, where constant debates are surrounding gun reform. Racism and fear are the fuel that empowers gun lobbyists like the NRA to reinterpret the Second Amendment and do their best to keep guns in the hands of civilians.
It is very hypocritical of gun lobbyists to want people to believe that a citizen in peacetime would require an AK-47 or an AR-15. These are weapons of war and for mass killing. But maybe to them, the anticipated race war between Blacks and Caucasians is an extension of the never forgotten Civil War.
In future Gun reform conversations, the past fears of Confederate Caucasians must be addressed to create a peaceful today and future.
Opinion by Omari Jahi
Edited by Cathy Milne-Ware
The Sun: What is Senate’s gun reform deal? By Jennifer Roback
Aljazeera: What’s in the bipartisan US gun control proposal? And what isn’t?
TribLive: Gun owners, onlookers split on what gun control proposals could accomplish; by Julia Felton, Jeff Himler, and Tony LaRussa
USSA News: NRA responds to gun reform bill with a promise to ‘law-abiding citizens;’ by Melissa Fine
Feature and Top Image Courtesy of Mobilus In Mobili’s Flikr Page – Creative Commons License
First Inset Image by Elliot Schwartz for StudioEIS Courtesy of Wikimedia – Creative Commons license
Second Inset Image Courtesy of Lorie Shaull’s Flickr Page – Creative Commons License