There seems to be an issue of semantics that exists amongst those of us who defend the Second Amendment.
For so long, the refrain has always been that “guns don’t kill people, people kill people!” I have always taken issue with this characterization, because I believe it clouds the meaning and intention behind the right to bear arms.
The progressive left has long maintained that guns are weapons of death that are designed to do one thing and one thing only: to kill. Well, in this case, they are not wrong.
In the history of firearms, no gun has ever been designed or manufactured with any other purpose other than to kill the thing that it is shooting. There is no gun that is designed to merely wound its target, and if there were, it would be just be a lousy gun. This is not the Star Trek universe wherein we can set our phasers to stun.
Guns kill people. And the Second Amendment protects our right as a free people to do so.
I can say with absolute assurance that the men who penned the Bill of Rights did not choose to not only include our right to bear arms, but also place it second on the list, with the intention of preserving a sport or to guarantee that future generations would be allowed to have a fun day at the range. And so the debate over the Second Amendment, ultimately, is a debate over whether free men should maintain the right to kill, or whether that ability should only be possessed by a select few.
In a perfect society, we could afford to choose the latter, confident that the aims of the state are always noble and benevolent, and thusly rendering needless free men’s ability to kill. But the genius of the founders was that they understood human nature, and that the depravity of man too often causes governments to turn malicious against their own people.
No culture, no society, no government in the history of mankind has been immune to the ill-intentions of corrupt men, and the Second Amendment exists to protect against those authorities that go rogue. We maintain our right to kill those who might harm or enslave us, because without that right, we are powerless against them. If such people have the ability to kill us, then it is imperative that we preserve our right to kill them.
So the next time someone tells you that guns don’t kill people, remind them: guns do kill people, and oftentimes, so must free men.