Thoughts on our current state

To the Editor,

I have a friend, Stefan, who lives in Germany. We were chatting, online, and he remarked that one thing he always admired about Americans is our individualist spirit, and the way it makes us distrust and resist authority.

Stefan made a good point when he said that after millennia of empires, monarchies, dictatorships and now heavily centralized socialism, Europeans, generally, have been programmed to just go along with the government. “To always say ‘yes’,” is how he put it.

He sincerely hopes that Americans aren’t losing their individualist spirit. He’s skeptical, however, because we’ve allowed socialized medicine (which he informs me that we do not want) to be foisted upon us without much resistance, and we elected Obama, twice.

He says that Obama’s re-election made Americans a laughingstock among Europeans. European newspapers apparently say that America must be a nation of blind, illiterate sheep, to have elected him again, that we’re weak under Obama, and can no longer be trusted to aid our allies, if need be.

Remember, Stefan is a foreign national, the kind of people who cheered Obama in 2008, who thronged the streets to see him, on his worldwide “apology tour”.

This is how the radical-liberal Obama and his comrades have made the world love and respect America again, in the wake of the Bush administration’s “bungling.”

Also, some question the necessity, even the sanity, of firearms ownership and possession. These folks often insist they don’t want guns banned, per se, they just want them more rigidly controlled, as in other countries, where gun deaths are seemingly not so prevalent.

Of course, here, we’ve seen that banning firearms is no guarantee of an end to gun violence. Chicago, Detroit, New York City and Washington, D.C., all areas where firearms possession is either banned or heavily discouraged, lead the nation in gun deaths. Conversely, in cities where gun ownership is common, gun crime is often lower.

Those aforementioned other countries are often heavily centralized at best, outright dictatorships, at worst. Is government-initiated firearm violence included in UN statistics? Doubtful. Those people have no recourse against government oppression – we do. It’s not hard to see that our government has grown significantly in the last few decades, taking more power, but less responsibility, unto itself. Certain, more progressive-minded people may not mind, or even encourage it, but personally, I’m alarmed at this increase, and its usurpation of authority, overreach, and ever-growing intrusiveness.

The Founders were the first – but sadly not the last – to realize that if their new nation was to be, and would remain, truly free, the individual would need some defense against growing, encroaching government. Hence, the Second Amendment. Parse the language and intended meanings all you want, but is “the right … shall not be infringed” really so hard to understand?

I may not own a gun (as yet), but I certainly see the value, and the necessity, in firearms ownership, and admire those who lawfully, safely, exercise their Constitutionally-guaranteed right to bear arms.

Rob Denham