A Voice of Sanity in the Gun Control Debate

In the following film, historian and Native activist Roxanne Dunbar-Ortiz discusses her book Loaded: A Disarming History of the Second Amendment. The major premise of her most recent book is that the Second Amendment relates mainly to the right and obligation of white settlers to keep guns, which they used in voluntary militias to massacre Native Americans and (in many cases) compulsory slave patrols to hunt down runaway slaves.

She begins by reminding us of the real issue (not the one we we’re taught in school) that triggered the Revolutionary War – namely the British ban on white settlement on unceded Indian lands west of the Appalachians. The hated Stamp Act, which triggered the familiar cry of “taxation without representation,” was enacted to finance British troops to roust settlers who were illegally squatting on Native lands.

She also points out that George Washington and most of the other founding fathers acquired their substantial wealth by illegally surveying and speculating in unceded Native land.

She disagrees with gun control advocates that the Second Amendment right to “keep and bear arms” only relates to their use in “well-regulated militias.” She insists that it refers to an individual right, like all the other amendments in the Bill of Rights. She argues the right to participate in voluntary militias is already covered in Article 1 of the Constitution. Moreover the Second Amendment was specially modeled on an individual right to gun ownership in various state constitutions.

I found the Q&A’s at the end the most interesting part of her talk. Dunbar-Ortiz doesn’t believe gun control laws would end mass shootings in the US – mainly because American gun violence is directly rooted in the historically racist and genocidal nature of US gun culture. She contrasts the US with Switzerland and Canada. Despite the absence of any gun control laws (the Swiss are required to keep weapons in their homes), there is no gun violence in Switzerland. Likewise Canada has much less gun violence despite fewer gun control laws.

In both cases, she attributes the absence of gun violence to the historical absence of slavery or rampant militarism.

Dunbar-Ortiz also disputes Democratic claims that opposition to gun control stems from NRA lobbying. Noting that the US gun culture precedes the NRA by more than a century, she adds that the NRA spends far less on lobbying than Big Oil and Big Pharma. The NRA mainly derives its strength by mobilizing thousands of volunteers at the state level, where most gun control laws originate. These volunteers track the voting records of every state and local politician to ensure that anti-gun legislators don’t get re-elected.

8 thoughts on “A Voice of Sanity in the Gun Control Debate

  1. I think gun violence such as we see or don’t “see”, exactly- in Parkland, and many others is the result of the CIA sponsored false flag events that most of the MSM promote as real. Sandy Hook is the textbook example of how easily the American public can be fed a fake story, followed by Boston. I followed those “massacrees” closely, and have numerous photos that were mostly supplied by the promoters of the false flag, which prove that some crisis actors were used. I commented to an article in my local newspaper, asking the author if he was aware that Parkland was a false flag. His response was that he had never heard the term applied to the mass shootings. Curious, ain’t it? Or…perhaps not. -joe

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    • Joe, I very much share your suspicion that most mass shootings are false flags orchestrated by US intelligence – to stir up calls for gun control by Democrats and liberals. I’m inclined to agree Dunbar-Ortiz that gun control won’t work. I think the CIA knows this. The thing is that gun control is a very effective wedge issue to stir up the white working class and get them to support right wing billionaire politicians who pass tax cuts, deficit spending and austerity cuts that seriously hurt working class interests in the long run.

      Liked by 1 person

    • I’ve just read Dunbar-Ortiz’s book, Kenneth, and she says bans on assault weapons are a farce, as most guns purchased are semi-automatic. She says bans on assault weapons are purely cosmetic as the ban only covers certain “military appearing” weapons.

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  2. What she says makes perfect sense. And Americans cannot stand to hear the truth especially when it goes against their true leanings. This country was founded on the dubious principle of “Live by the gun. Die by the gun!” The settlers lived thanks to their guns and the Indians died thanks to the settler’s guns and the Africans arrived thanks to the Colonialist’s guns.

    I can hear it now. “Get into that goddamn boat or I’ll shoot your Black ass where you stand!” And, “You red mother#&&#&, we now lay claim to this land!”

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Shelby, her book also goes into considerable detail about the early formation of slave patrols (in the 1600s). Membership in the slave patrol (to hunt down and capture runaway slaves) was compulsory in many states and the slave patrol was the basis for the KKK and the extreme racist, white nationalist violence that characterizes police culture of US cities.

    Liked by 1 person

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