Note: Due to recent anti-American voices, which seem to have reached a fever pitch, and I feel constrained, yet again, to write about gun rights infringement.
To all American gun rights advocates
I am addressing my words to everyone who is a gun rights advocate, not just to the latter-day saints (Mormons), so the intended audience is much wider than usual. Use any of these ideas as you see fit, in your fight to protect American rights.
Use the proper terms
Gun control is a misnomer, so never use it. Instead, begin a conversation with the term, so-called “gun control,” and then label it correctly as gun rights infringement. Continue to use the proper term for the rest of the conversation. Remember, so-called “gun control” is not about controlling guns, but about controlling people by infringing on their right to keep and bear arms.
Gun control advocate is another misnomer. When someone says they are a gun control advocate, call them instead a gun rights infringer. (It does not matter that the word infringer is not in the dictionary, everyone will understand its meaning. Sometimes creating a new word is the best option. Shakespeare did it many times, so can you. Besides, used enough times, you can be sure it will eventually make it into the dictionary.)
When someone says that he or she is an American in favor of gun control, refer to him or her ever afterward as an anti-American in favor of gun rights infringement, or just as an anti-American gun rights infringer. The term anti-American fits, for only anti-Americans attack or seek to weaken the constitutional protections of the rights of American citizens.
When referring to behavior that undermines the Bill of Rights protections, call it un-American. That is, after all, what it is.
These terms: gun rights infringement, gun rights infringer, anti-American, and un-American, make people immediately think of criminals and communists seeking to undermine or subvert the American system and way of life. Because they themselves make the connection between infringement and crime and anti/un-American and communist, these terms have a more powerful effect upon the minds of the people hearing them. Never, ever, label someone a criminal or communist or socialist or whatever, for if you do, people’s doubt will come into play and they will not believe the rest of what you say.
Use the terms undermining and subversion liberally in a conversation when describing actions that promote gun rights infringement. No one wants their rights undermined, nor does anyone want the Constitution subverted. These are descriptive terms that paint an immediate picture in one’s mind of spies trying to overthrow the government.
Use the term subversive as a label for anyone who promotes gun rights infringement. When a person calls someone else a subversive and describes their actions as subversive behavior, those that listen to the conversation immediately think of cloak and dagger stuff, such as an enemy trying to destroy the American way of life.
These terms are effective because they are based upon word associations. The words criminal, communist, spy and enemy, all pop up in people’s mind automatically, as soon as you start using these terms. Because they themselves do the associations, or because they themselves make the connections, or think of the associated words themselves, they believe them. Now, everything you say about the person you have just labeled will be more receptive to the audience listening in, for they now will view the gun rights infringer with suspicion.
Use “no infringement” as the standard
Never call so-called “gun control laws,” gun control laws. They must always be called, gun rights infringement laws. Everything must be brought back to the central issue: the infringement of unalienable rights.
Every gun rights infringement law on the books must be regarded and labeled as illegal. Never, ever refer to them as legal. They are all illegal, unconstitutional laws, and always refer to them as such. As long as people think of these illegal gun rights infringement laws as legal, they will be accepting of so-called “legal” gun rights infringement. People need to be presented with contradictory information, before they wake up out of their sleep. They must be presented with two, opposing “realities,” one side saying, “gun control laws are legal” and the other side saying, “gun rights infringement laws are illegal.” They must understand that there is no such thing as “legal” gun rights infringement.
“No infringement” must be the standard. Partial infringement is unacceptable. A full infringement of one’s right to life would be immediate execution. A partial infringement of that same right might consist of poison administered over time so as to shorten one’s life. Full infringement of the right to property would be taking it all, partial infringement might consist of taking only half. The right to liberty could be partially infringed upon by requiring that you be confined three days out of every week. Partial infringement of the right to free speech might be that your mouth be taped shut every Monday and Tuesday. If this all sounds absurd, it is because it is. Infringement is infringement, whether it is partial or full, and it is all unacceptable, tyrannical behavior. This same principle applies to the right to keep and bear arms.
Needs have nothing to do with rights
If a person wanted to administer poison to you, to shorten your life span from 75 to 65 years old, while telling you, “Oh, but you don’t need those last ten years of life!” would you let him? Does your right to life have anything to do with your needs? Are not your years yours, to do with as you want? Does the argument that you don’t need 50% of your property, or you don’t need seven days of freedom because four days is enough, or you don’t need to speak your mind on Mondays and Tuesdays, make it alright to infringe upon these rights? Of course not! So, in like manner, no one has the right to infringe upon the right to keep and bear arms because a person doesn’t “need” another gun, or more ammo, or a bigger and more powerful weapon. His or her needs have nothing to do with the matter.
So, toss the needs argument right into the trash from the get-go and keep the conversation eternally focused on the rights of man.
Get yourself some weapons and keep them
Get enough firearms and ammunition for every able bodied person of age in your family. Get the weapons you feel are appropriate, including so-called assault weapons. (Notice I used “so-called.”) Make sure your family is trained in their proper use and safety.
Bear your weapons
Rights that are not asserted will inevitably be encroached upon and eventually taken away. Firearms must, of necessity, be borne. In other words, when you go around town to do your daily business, go packing heat. Now, there may be an illegal law against that in your area. If so, then another strategy must be taken. But if there is no illegal law against that, start doing it, and keep doing it.
Educate your neighbors on gun rights
The best means to do that is the following document:
Just print it out as a hard copy and hand it out or snail mail it, email it, or share it online using its 120+ share functions. The video, Innocents Betrayed: The True Story of Gun Control World Wide, is also an excellent teaching tool to use.
Meet with other gun rights advocates
Your local gun and ammo supply store may be able to hook you up with other local gun right advocates. This is an important step to take in order to begin the formation of citizen militias.
Begin to form and regulate a local citizen militia
In conjunction with other local gun rights advocates, begin to form a local citizen militia. It is necessary that citizen militias be “well-regulated.” That of course means that everyone needs to possess weapons, perhaps of a specific kind, and also sufficient ammo, but it may also mean that everyone should have the means to communicate with each other, perhaps through ham radio or whatnot. Each militia will decide how best to regulate itself.
When meeting together as a militia, to conduct business, bring your weapons with you. Bearing arms is the key to gun rights (and all other rights) protection.
Do not keep it local. In other words, seek to establish other “chapters” of citizen militias in the regions round about, and work to have each local militia capable of communicating and working with other militias. This is all part of being “well-regulated.”
Citizen militias are for both local and common defense, so they need to be able to co-ordinate efforts with other militias.
Let the Bill of Rights be the common thread that unites all the citizens in the various militias, so that race, color, creed, customs, dress and all other differences are set aside. The only requirement to unite with a citizen militia ought to be that one be law-abiding. Law-abiding should simply mean that a person supports a “no infringement” stance on the Bill of Rights.
Expect infiltration. G-men get antsy about the prospect of an armed citizenry, and especially about organized, citizen militias, so expect that some undercover agents may be joining your group, to spy on it or even to sabotage it or create false flags.
There is safety in numbers and weapons
When these militias grow in sufficiently large numbers, they ought to meet out in the public, packing heat, in peaceful assembly, exercising two of their rights simultaneously: bearing arms and peacefully assembling. In fact, at every public protest or peaceful assembly, of whatever group, the armed citizen militia ought to be there as a show of force, in support of the people’s rights to protest and assemble.
In areas where there are illegal laws on the books, prohibiting or restricting the right to bear arms in public, several local militias could organize peaceful assemblies using this principle*, with thousands or tens of thousands of armed militia men in attendance, as a public demonstration that illegal laws that prohibit or infringe upon the bearing of arms should not be obeyed. This ought to be done quite frequently and only in large numbers, until the police decide not to enforce the illegal laws and they are removed from the books.
*Btw, in case this comes up in the comments, yes, I am fully aware that Ghandi, who was a supporter of this principle, wrote in Chapter XXVII, “The Recruiting Campaign,” in his autobiography, My Experiments with Truth:
“I used to issue leaflets asking people to enlist as recruits. One of the arguments I had used was distasteful to the Commissioner: ‘Among the many misdeeds of the British rule in India, history will look upon the Act depriving a whole nation of arms as the blackest. If we want the Arms Act to be repealed, if we want to learn the use of arms, here is a golden opportunity. If the middle classes render voluntary help to Government in the hour of its trial, distrust will disappear, and the ban on possessing arms will be withdrawn.’ The Commissioner referred to this and said that he appreciated my presence in the conference in spite of the differences between us. And I had to justify my standpoint as courteously as I could.”
Solutions for statists
These ideas of mine will appeal to those who do not look to the government to solve gun rights infringement, but for any statists who read this blog, who want to change the government via legislation, you may wish to use the Gun Owners of America lobby group as a tool. By becoming a member and giving them money, they will lobby Congress for zero infringement of gun rights. If enough people join them, and if they get enough money, perhaps they will make a difference. Here is their web site:
I suggest the GOA and not the NRA, because the NRA does not appear to have a strict, zero infringement policy. They are as likely to lobby for partial infringement, as for no infringement, which would be a waste of money.
The other thing you can do is contact your representatives and senators and tell them that if they support any infringement on gun rights, you will not vote for them. Personally, such tactics seem useless to me, but perhaps they are worth a try.
To latter-day saints
Now I would like to turn my attention to the latter-day saints who might read this blog.
The Lord has given us a charge to befriend the Bill of Rights, therefore, any LDS in a governmental position of authority cannot justifiably violate the rights of any law-abiding citizen while performing government duties. This means that latter-day saint police officers, FBI agents, CIA officials, military personnel, border patrol and any other position of government authority, takes second seat to the Bill of Rights. Should you confiscate a law-abiding citizen’s weapons (and the definition of a law-abiding citizen is one who does not infringe upon the Bill of Rights) by command of a superior, you have broken your covenant with God to obey His commandments, which includes His words about befriending these Constitutional protections.
Righteous LDS are prohibited, then, from infringing on a law-abiding citizen’s rights, by God’s laws. They still have their agency, of course, and can choose to sin, but in order to remain justified before the Lord, they must obey this instruction.
The Lord has said that if we keep His laws, we have no need break the laws of the land. This does not refer to the endless laws on the books, but to those justifiable laws that maintain rights and privileges, which are in the Constitution, which are known as the Bill of Rights. That is all He meant by that. (For more information on all of this, see these previous posts: It is a SIN to infringe on the people’s right to keep and bear arms, Talking to myself and What the Lord has said about the Constitution.)
However, the Lord has also said that we are to be subject to the powers that be until He reigns. The question must be asked, then, what are the powers that be?
The applicable gospel principle is the voice of the people, as taught by the seer Mosiah:
It is not common that the voice of the people desireth anything contrary to that which is right; but it is common for the lesser part of the people to desire that which is not right; therefore this shall ye observe and make it your law—to do your business by the voice of the people.
The voice of the people are the powers that be that the Lord referred to. We are to be subject to the voice of the people, we are to observe the voice of the people, and we are to make the voice of the people our law, to do all our business by that voice. This commandment is an actual law of the Lord and must be obeyed for justification before the Lord.
This means that latter-day saints are only justified insofar as they submit to the voice of the people. If that voice is for the government, then latter-day saints must submit to the government. If the voice ever turns against the government, then latter-day saints must submit to the people and stand with the people against their government. Those who do not submit to the powers that be according to this pattern and principle must remain unjustified before the Lord.
Mosiah also said:
And if the time comes that the voice of the people doth choose iniquity, then is the time that the judgments of God will come upon you; yea, then is the time he will visit you with great destruction even as he has hitherto visited this land.
Therefore, if the time ever comes that the voice of the people chooses iniquity by turning against the Bill of Rights, then destruction will come upon the people, from the Lord. But as long as the voice of the people is in support of the Bill of Rights, latter-day saints can only remain free by aligning themselves with that voice. And by extension, all latter-day saints who oppose the just voice of the people will find themselves brought down into captivity.
Therefore, based on these principles, it is possible for latter-day saints to engage in every idea listed above while remaining justified before the Lord, if the voice of the people is with them. Nevertheless, even if the voice of the people has not spoken, no latter-day saint is justified in violating anyone’s rights, whether acting under government or citizen authority.
Citizen militias in Nephite times
To more fully explain why the Bill of Rights is justifiable before the Lord, it is necessary to look to the Book of Mormon. The Bill of Rights was inspired by the Spirit of freedom (see Talking to myself), meaning that it embodies principles that align with laws that the Lord Himself had given to His people who lived on this land anciently.
The Nephites were organized, from the beginning, as citizen militias. Thus, we find Nephi using the sword of Laban to create weapons of war for his people, so that everyone was armed. In the case of the Nephites, they had both a right and a duty to keep and bear arms. Nevertheless, they did not have a standing army. Whenever the Lamanites would invade their lands, the Nephites would stop their daily pursuits, take up their arms, and wage war. When the war was over, they would go back to their normal endeavors. (See The Strength of the Lord.)
The Nephites had no police force, only citizen militias. So, when Korihor was going around telling lies, which was a punishable crime in Nephite law, he was arrested by citizens. It was the citizens, not a police force, that was responsible for making sure that no one’s rights were infringed upon.
Mormon dissed the Nephites of Zarahemla because when Korihor first began spreading his lies there, the citizens did not arrest him, as was their duty. Instead, they left him free to roam about and deceive the people and he was able to cause many souls to sin. Later, he entered the land of Jershon, but the Lamanites who lived there arrested him because, according to Mormon, “they were more wise than many of the Nephites.” Later he went over to the land of Gideon and was again arrested by citizens (this time by Nephites.) Finally, he was arrested yet again and brought back to Zarahemla for trial and judgment.
No pacifism among the Nephites
The Nephites were operating under commandments of God, from the beginning, from the time of Lehi and Nephi, in which they were commanded to keep and bear arms. That they both kept and bore arms as a routine is shown by the fight between Nehor and Gideon, which began as two men talking religion and ended up with each one reaching for his sword, ending in Gideon’s death. Now, Gideon was a man of God, even a teacher in the church of God, yet he was armed, as were all the Nephites.
The law of the Lord, as given to the Nephites, is the same law that has been given to the latter-day saints, as recorded in D&C 98, which was given as the pattern for all Gentile nations to follow. (See D&C 98:38.) That section starts out by talking about justification before the Lord and befriending the Bill of Rights, which, as we know, includes the right to keep and bear arms. It then ends with a “fourth offense” warfare doctrine, giving latter-day saints warfare laws by which they might remain justified before the Lord. Thus, there is no pacifism in the section, nor was there any pacifism manifested among the Nephites.
The only so-called “pacifism” manifested in the Book of Mormon comes from the Anti-Nephi-Lehies, who took an oath not to take up arms against their brethren (the other Lamanites). This was an exception because they had not previously entered into the same covenant the Nephites had entered into, in regard to the laws given to the Nephites, which included warfare instructions. In other words, the Nephites had to take up arms in defense of their country, according to the covenant they made, otherwise they would be guilty of breaking their covenant and sinning.
The Lamanites, though, did not have such restrictions, so after they had entered into their covenant to take up no arms against their Lamanite brethren, and had joined the Nephites, they could not break their first oath without sinning, so exception was made for them and they were excused from the typical covenant that every Nephite had to make as a citizen, according to the laws given to the Nephites, as revealed to them by the Lord.
That pacifism was not considered a so-called “higher law” by these Lamanites is evidenced by what they taught their children, for they did not teach their children to enter into the same oath that they did, but they taught them to take the Nephite oath and covenant. Thus, the children of these Lamanites, even the 2000+ stripling warriors, were not taught to be pacifists by their fathers, but were taught the same laws given in D&C 98.
Additionally, the Lamanite Anti-Nephi-Lehies, who had taken this oath, voluntarily supported the war efforts of the Nephites with their sons, with their money and with supplies, including retreating inward towards the center of the land so that the Nephite armies could battle the Lamanites, their brethren. At one point, in fact, the Lamanites became so concerned with how the war was going, and the destruction of their new Nephite brethren, that they considered breaking their oath and covenant and taking up arms to defend the Nephite nation against the Lamanites. None of this behavior can be labelled as pacifism. So, why did they lay down their weapons and never take them again? It was because of the oath they took, not because of the philosophy we call pacifism.
This shows that the Anti-Nephi-Lehies were an exception to the rule, manifested under a different set of circumstances and conditions, and to a different group of people, and was never meant to be taken as a pattern for the Gentiles. They were held up by Mormon as a standard of keeping one’s oath and covenant even unto death, and of brotherly love, but not as a standard or pattern for Gentile pacifism.
The Gentiles must obey the instructions given to them by the Lord, which are the same ones given to the Nephites, otherwise they will incur the displeasure of God upon them. Mormons, then, cannot justifiably be pacifists, in the sense of refusing to bear arms in defense of their country, like the king-men did. They may choose not to bear arms for individual or family circumstances, as explained in D&C 98, but when their people is threatened by any nation, tongue or people, if, after the third time of offering peace, the offering is not accepted by the invaders, they cannot justifiably refuse to take up arms. They must defend the nation, just as the Nephites had to.
Modern pacifism, then, is a philosophy of men, and is not of God. All Mormons who claim to be pacifists, and who claim that the scriptures justify pacifism for the Gentiles, or who lift it up as the standard for the Gentiles, or who denounce the law of God as written in D&C 98, denying gun rights, self defense and our duty toward common defense, is either in error, having not understood the scriptures, or is intentionally trying to deceive people.
Befriend the Bill of Rights
I bring all of this up to show latter-say saints that they can justifiably befriend the Bill of Rights. They can justifiably keep and bear and use arms. They can justifiably engage in warfare, self defense and common defense. They can justifiably form themselves into citizen militias. And so on and so forth. It is not sin to do these things, but righteousness, for this is all according to the word of the Lord, as given in the scriptures.