Your So-Called Militia Has Failed. Here's Why.

Warning: not about diabetes or running. Just a rant because I feel like it.

Enough already. Enough with your Second Amendment rights being taken away, for a couple reasons.

The first is the idea that limiting magazine sizes is a slippery slope to losing handguns. I don’t buy it. There are speed limits on our highways. By and large, they keep us safe on our way to work. At the very least, they send a message all drivers can understand, so that we can work together to get to the office in one piece.

There are also limits to how much beer I can buy at the store. Make no mistake: I like beer. But these limits don’t keep me in bed at night clutching a cold bottle of Yuengling for fear the government will take it from me. Oh and by the way, those limits are plenty high enough for me and most people to catch a decent buzz or get through a Sunday’s worth of football. Moreover, I suspect the government likes the tax revenue generated by alcohol sales, just as they do the tax revenue generated by gun sales. If for no other reason than that, your guns aren’t going away.

How about what our Founding Fathers thought? People – not lefties or righties – but people of all sorts, love to pull out quotes from smart folks to prove their points. One of the oft-played ones of late is this gem by Ben Franklin:

“Those who would sacrifice freedom for security deserve neither.”

That’s poignant and sure seems to prove a point, doesn’t it? Except that’s not what Franklin said. This was the actual quote:

“They who can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety.” Franklin's Contributions to the Conference on February 17 (III) Fri, Feb 17, 1775

Franklin was comparing essential liberties (not freedom, and not all liberties) to a “little temporary” safety. Well, duh, who would do that?

And because I tend to be a fan of Franklin quotes, allow me to pull out my favorite: “Do everything in moderation, including moderation.”

In an era when a gun could fire a single shot, I wonder what capacity magazine Franklin would consider would go beyond moderation. Thirty? More? Less?

But enough about that. We’ve come to the part that I really want to talk about to those of you who say that you need your assault weapons and high capacity magazines to be part of a “well regulated militia.”

I’m sorry, but if that’s the case, your militia has failed. It has failed consistently, continuously and gloriously. Thousands of people are dying and where are you to protect us from these threats? Where were you in Aurora? Or Sandy Hook? Or any of the myriad of places where these legal weapons were used to gun down the innocent. I’ll tell you where you weren’t. You weren’t there, standing guard, like a proper member of a militia would.

I’ve heard your so-called experts say that defensive gun use prevents a million crimes a year. Really? A million? If that’s the case, why don’t I know about these? Wait! I know your answer: the media! They’re hiding it.

Guess what? I’m a Type 1 diabetic, like approximately one million people in the US. The media largely ignores us, too, yet I can easily give you the names of hundreds of people just like me, even though it’s rare to recognize one in public. You’re telling me that there are similar numbers of defensive gun use and you can’t even put together a Facebook page of people who’ve done it? Please. So the argument that there are a million of you each year is hogwash.

And why not? Well, there are a lot of reasons for this, but let me give you the simplest. The single greatest reason why your so-called militia has failed. Because, unlike the Second Amendment begs of you when it says that you be well regulated, you’re not prepared to defend me.

Top snipers in the military shoot tens of thousands of rounds per year to hone their craft. Policemen continuously learn new assault techniques, defensive strategies, hostage negotiation and more. You? You’re attending company budget meetings and expect I’ll believe you when you say that you’re the best choice to keep me safe when the shit hits the fan. No thanks. I wouldn’t call a cop to balance my budget and I sure don’t trust some weekend cowboy to keep me safe, either.

What it all comes down to is this. You’re not part of any militia. You lack the training, knowledge and experience to even claim that you do. You pretending to be at the ready to defend me from some lunatic armed to the tooth is no less delusional than the 13 year-old convinced she’s the next American Idol.

You have failed to protect us, but it’s not your fault. You have failed because you aren’t militia. You’re a human being. And it’s high time you started acting like one.


  1. Absolutely love this. Thanks for the reason and logic, Marcus! We need more of it in this world.

  2. Anonymous8:46 AM

    we have issued several gun control laws it hasn't stopped gun violence, it never will. laws don't change people's violent choices sadly. If more regulations is what we need than how come after 9/11 we didn't outlaw or restrict who could buy box cutter knives? knives not guns in that case killed thousands of americans that day. How about we try to change americas violent natures. guns don't kill any body people kill people.

  3. Hi Anonymous. Thanks for posting, albeit without a name and face. Because you mentioned 9/11, I'll simply turn the question around on you. How many people would've been killed at Sandy Hook or Aurora with box cutters?

  4. Anonymous8:45 AM

    how many would it take? one is too many! isn't it? don't get me wrong while i own handguns(2) i believe laws help keep people safe as in some cases so do guns or any weapon for that matter. we have enacted gun law after gun law guess what we still have crimes committed with guns every day. in sandy hook people where going to get killed the man was sick he was going to act gun or knife. in aurora if a person had a hand gun on them maybe they could have stopped the bloodshed. i'm opposed to assault weapons they serve no purpose. quick fact: the m16 was designed to wound people not kill them thats why it has a lower caliber .223. that was done so you would wound a soldier making 2 people to take care of him therefore taking 3 guns out of the battle. limiting bullits and magazine capacity is silly! 10 shots 5 shots whatever if a person wants to harm someone they will it just takes more effort. have you ever fired a weapon? i enjoy target shooting or small game hunting with my coonhound. great exercise builds eye hand coordination, stress relief!you should try it it won't make you a bad person or a criminal! andy bartle rochester n.y.

  5. Thanks for coming back, Andy. Yes, I actually do own a hand gun and agree that it does provide the benefits for individuals that you mention. So obviously, I don't think that hand gun ownership does make you a bad person. I think the thing that really irks me - really the essence of my essay - is the idea that having an assault weapon without a lot of ongoing practice and training - somehow qualifies a person to keep me safer. As a society, I don't think we are very diligent. That's why people behind the wheels of automobiles have accidents when they're looking at the phones. A handgun is a responsibility and I believe an assault weapon is a greater responsibility, and I don't trust the average assault weapon owner to keep me safe. I went through scuba training a couple of years ago and had a similar reaction. It's pretty easy to get certified and pretty damn easy to kill yourself doing it if you don't keep up with the training. The difference, in my opinion, is that with an assault weapon you're more likely to hurt someone else than yourself.


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