The Bourgeois Right to Bear Arms

Jean Christophe Helary helary at
Wed Apr 21 18:53:40 PDT 1999

> Preference for armed or non-violent resistance aside, does anybody on
> this list really believe that the state can control arms? I believe that
> radicals and revolutionaries have a moral obligation to explore all
> non-firearms means (including non-violence) by which people can both
> defend themselves against an authoritarian state and destroy the same.
> But if all fails, I reserve the moral right--with all of it's tragic
> dimensions--to defend myself AND/OR promote a more free society with
> arms. The idea of a state monopoly on guns is morally and ethically
> offensive to me.

I don't really understand the issue. Where, besides the us do you find a "developped democracy" where people have the right to bear arms without any control from the state. I was talking to a friend from Kentucky yesterday and she told me she only realized how dangerous were the us when she came to Japan. I felt the same when I left France to go to the us 10 years ago.

I don't beleive the issue is about freedom to defend yourself. If you really need to you will always find somebody to sell you stuff (see the KLA). The issue is about big business. Guns industry is like Tabacco industry, only the client believes it is about freedom (freedom to waste your money and make society worse than it could be).

Now, gun as a state monopoly might not the best thing. But state has a lot of momopolies if you think about it. And most of them have the purpose to make society a coherent whole (well, I may be a little naive here though). And if you are scared about your country turning into a dictatorship what about getting involved on the political/social level. I think a lot of people who believe having a gun is alright think so because they see it a the only way they have to get involved on the political/social level.

A gun is a symbol of power pretty much like the right to vote. But the selfisness involved in buying a gun and playing with it like a toy, pretending that it is a constitutional right looks to me like what a child does when he does not want to get involved in the complexities of "adult" society.


Jean Christophe Helary

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