Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn, Russian novelist and author of a landmark book about the Soviet detention camp system titled Gulag Archipelago, said that if everyone bound for the Gulags resisted when the GPU came for them, even if it was just a one-for-one trade of dead resisters for dead secret police, eventually they’d run out of GPU. This is one of the core truths that eludes people who express their opposition to the right to keep and bear arms as a means of resisting tyranny by saying that pistols and rifles can’t resist tanks and planes.
The only reason resisting tanks and planes is ever even necessary is people who believe resistance is futile reduce the sheer numbers of resisters. The general populace so thoroughly outnumbers the military of any nation that widespread resistance could eliminate tyrannical government almost before it starts. The fewer people stand up to tyrants, the more and better weapons those people need.
Another common opposition to legal protections of the right to keep and bear arms as insurance against tyrants, and by far a more dangerous opposition, is the tendency to label anyone wary of encroaching governmental oppression an “extremist”. Nobody really believes it could ever happen here. Nobody believes that secret courts, secret police, and secret detention camps where political dissidents are tucked away without due process could ever happen in the United States of America. Hell no. We’re the Land of the Free and the Home of the Brave.
Guess what: it has already happened here, to varying degrees. It’s happening again. In the past . . .
- Acadian Great Expulsion, a forcible relocation and ethnic cleansing of American Indians and Acadians (the latter of whom would become the Cajuns after relocation to Louisiana)
- Bonus Army
- Japanese American internment camps during World War Two
- Kent State shootings
That’s not an exhaustive list.
In the present, things are looking grim, including the effective end of habeas corpus, potentially permanently, along with a slew of other institutionalized violations of individual rights with a single stroke of the Congressional pen. Not only could it happen here, but it has several times in the past, and it’s happening again.