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    Red Flag Laws, a State of Nature and the Right to Shoot Back

     

    By Jason Charles on 2/27/2019 (85 days ago) Natural Law

    White-bread Americans are in for a rude awakening as they find themselves at the end of a barrel and being told to disarm under the guise of “Red Flag” gun confiscation laws.

    The enforcement of Red Flag gun confiscation laws that are currently in place in 14 states now, will statistically impact everyone. In upcoming years as confrontations with law enforcement grows, everyone reading this article will know people impacted by gun confiscation and gun confrontations.

    Dr. Chuck Baldwin accurately described these laws recently in a column entitled An Open Letter To Our Legislators, Judges And Lawmen, an article I beg everyone to pass along, especially to their law enforcement friends. He writes,

    The “red flag” laws that are sweeping the country violate every principle of liberty upon which our country was founded. There is no due process associated with “red flag” laws. A judge’s order to seize the firearms from an American citizen who has not been accused of a crime, charged with a crime, convicted of a crime—or who never even threatened to commit a crime—based on the accusation of a single individual is anything but due process.

    Our accuser could be a disgruntled employee, a bitter ex-spouse or relative, a vengeful neighbor, an anti-gun liberal or even an anti-gun policeman. By definition, “red flag” laws use mere suspicion of what one “might” do as justification to seize a person’s firearms. Tactics such as these have been used in virtually every despotic regime of history. In the name of protecting society, the rights and liberties of individuals were denied. Eventually, these repressive governments included political or religious persuasion as triggering “red flags,” which led to their disarmament—all in the name of public safety, of course.” (Chuck Baldwin Live)

     

    This is a precise description of how these laws operate; they force confrontations with police and civilians based on nothing but unsubstantiated proof. It is obvious to see how this is ripe for abuse, exactly like kids who falsely call in SWAT team raids on video game opponents as a malicious joke in the past. A game that turned deadly, for example the case of Tyler Barriss, who gave a false report and as a result unarmed people died by police. When police act on unsubstantiated proof, without due process, in a militarized manner, civilians die, as does the Constitution and trust of the governed. If police are the cause of violence in suburban, middle class America, as it is in the ghettos, you just watch how fast the public trust erodes.

     

    Let’s Do the Math

    Since the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School shooting occurred in Parkland, Florida, 14 states have started enacting “Red Flag” gun laws across the nation. As mentioned above these laws can, and do trigger raids on private citizens based on nothing more than a tip to police.

    The fact is, in the United States, there are over 118 million gun owning households that could potentially be next because of an anonymous tipster.

    “With an estimated 118 million households in the United States, per the U.S. Census, that would mean that the country's 393 million guns are distributed among 50 million households. The implication is that the average gun-owning household owns nearly eight guns.” (Washington Post)

     

    Statistically speaking, if a conservative 1% of those 118 million houses are stormed by tipped off SWAT teams, that means a potential 1.2 million households could possibly be exposed to military style raids as the practice becomes accepted and routine.

    Now imagine, if just 1% of those 1.2 million households flagged for raids, will fire back at law enforcement, this means statically there could be as many as 11,800 cases of senseless gun violence committed by law enforcement on non-violent law-abiding citizens without proper due process in the upcoming years.

    Let’s face it, under these circumstances many gun owning Americans will not cooperate and instead defend their property, homes, family, and the guns themselves seeing them as essential to their freedom.

    Imagine that upwards to 12,000 incidents of future gunfire between the accused citizenry and police in the near future. Is that something our society can afford? These figures are conservative considering the probability of gun owners becoming violent goes up significantly when you realize many will fight back simply out of principle, and in the name of rebelling against tyranny as more laws take effect.

    Red Flag lawmakers are forcing a confrontation between gun owners in this country. There is no way for scenarios like these to yield anything but violence and bloodshed in homes across America.

    It has been widely reported that literally thousands of gun-owners have already been subjected to Red Flag orders and confiscations. Fox news reports that more than 1700 guns have already been confiscated, the report reads,

    “More than 1,700 orders allowing guns to be seized for weeks, months or up to a year were issued in 2018 by the courts after they determined the individuals were a threat to themselves or others. The actual number is probably much higher since the data was incomplete and didn't include California, where newly-installed Democratic Gov. Gavin Newsom has moved swiftly to curtail gun rights.” (FOX News)

     

    Now out of all these raids in states across the nation, only one accused gun owner died violently, 61 year old Gary Willis of Maryland reportedly answered his door with a gun nearby and a struggle ensued over it, as a result he was shot dead by police.

    “A man, later identified by police as 61-year-old Gary Willis, answered his door with a gun in his hand, Anne Arundel County Police Sgt. Jacklyn Davis said.

    Sgt. Davis said the man put the gun down. But then, according to a police press release, Willis "became irate" when officers attempted to serve the order. Willis picked the weapon up again, "a fight ensued over the gun," and a shot was fired, Davis said. The first shot didn't strike anyone, but the officers then fatally shot the man, Sgt. Davis said.

    Neither of the officers were injured. Their names weren't released.

    It wasn't clear why the "red flag" order was issued. A spokeswoman for the Maryland Judiciary denied a request from the Baltimore Sun to release protection order requests associated with the home, citing the law which states the orders are confidential unless a court rules otherwise.

    Michele Willis, the man's niece, told The Baltimore Sun that one of her aunts requested the protective order against Willis, but she declined to say why.” (CBS News)

     

    This is a testament to how wrong police and lawmakers are to take law-abiding citizens guns, if they were violent and mentally disturbed that number would be way higher than one person. A person who didn't even shoot back.

    Nonetheless, anyone could be the subject of a Red Flag accusation and be forced to make snap decisions as to how they will handle the confrontation. Will they calmly turn in their guns, or will they fire upon law enforcement in such situations?

    The public trust is fragile thing, it is the glue of civil society. Without it we live in want philosophers have termed a “State of Nature,” were there are no laws besides the law of the jungle. When bullies come to your door with guns blazing, people snap. It doesn’t matter if it is a police officer or a criminal, nobody will be calm at the point of a gun, especially in their own homes.

     

    Back to a State of Nature

    We have no obligation to submit to another’s violence on the macroscale of government, or the microscale by a robber at gun point. A harmful government is a criminal government, and to be rebelled against seeing it will continue a cycle of violence.

    In one of the most powerful lines of the Declaration of Independence we get a clear description of the role of good government,

    “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.--That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed. That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government…” (Source)

     

    Note that the sole reason governments are instituted is to secure our natural rights, if a government is destructive towards this end, like the British crown was in 1776, then the people have every right to reform under a new government body.

    The Constitution underscores our natural rights of self-defense, property, speech, privacy, due process and more. All of which are dangerously overridden by these Red Flag laws. These Red Flag laws create what is called a “State of Nature” confrontation.

    State of Nature: State of nature, in political theory, the real or hypothetical condition of human beings before or without political association. (source)

     

    When confronted by an attacker, any attacker, in that moment there is no law, there is no government, there is nothing but an attacker and a victim of aggression. Everything dissolves away in that moment as the victim of aggression has to make a split-second decision. Do I submit myself to the attack and try to cower my way out of this violence, or do I escalate the violence in an effort to protect myself and my property?

    This is what these Red Flag laws do; they literally legislate, and create “State of Nature” confrontations with government and the public. Instead of a government working to limit these types of scenarios, in the case of Red Flag laws they actually are creating mass amounts of violent scenarios. This is an egregious violation of the public trust, and is a classical definition of tyranny.

    Laws are made in society in an effort to avoid these state of nature confrontations from happening. That is the whole purpose of the rule of law, to prevent anyone and every from executing their own will and their own brand of justice without due process. A higher power like government is ordained as a method of collectively scaring people from engaging in state of nature type confrontations and is very effective at minimizing these types of engagements among societies.

    So, we know it is wrong for government to conduct these raids, seeing they inevitably will cause violence in neighborhoods all across America. The U.S. government has crossed a sacred line, going from protector to predators, the inevitability of the escalation of arms and conflict with in our own government has grown exponentially as result of these laws going into effect.

    ...

    Picture this scenario, a man in his late thirties is upstairs in his bedroom trying to work on family taxes while his mind replays an ugly confrontation he had with an employee earlier in the day. The kids are in the living room casually watching TV, and mom is washing up the last few dishes from that night’s dinner. What he doesn’t know is earlier that day, after that confrontation, that same employee had called the police and told them that his boss brandished a firearm at him in a threatening manner at work, which was completely untrue.

    As a result of this “Red Flag” tip this man’s night is suddenly interrupted. The door violently gets kicked off its hinges allowing for a stream of black-clad militarized men, all with pointed rifles to pour through, barking orders for everyone to get down on the ground.

    Dad, who is upstairs fails to hear those orders, and can only ascertain that a violent struggle is taking place in his house, where his kids and wife are located. Grabbing a 12 gauge shotgun under the bed he had prepped for this exact defensive scenario years ago, he races down the stairs to confront the attackers.

    Pause; we know how this will end don’t we?

    Upon realizing it is police does this falsely accused family man throw his gun down and surrender? Maybe, if he can fast enough. Or will the cops just mechanically gun the man down for having a weapon in hand? You and I know they will shoot, they always shoot. Realize, this scenario was set in motion based on nothing more than a phone call to police.

    This is now a reality for lawful gun owning families in 14 states and counting, are now facing at any moment. They are being forced to think through these scenarios and figure out what they will do. Most turn the guns in rather than risk a violent exchange with police in the confines of their homes and proximity of loved ones. But what if that gun owner snaps, seeing barrels pointed in your face and the face of loved ones can trigger defensives impulses that are embedded on an instinctually level. You simply can’t predict what a person would do in such scenarios. Again, governments exist, to create space for investigation and due process prior to bullets flying in chaotic situations, not create the perfect storm for such confrontations.

     

    Shooting Back?

    So, if a lawful gun owner who has hurt nobody finds themselves in a government subjected state of nature, where their person and property are being infringed upon, they need to know how to handle this escalation based on a couple of overarching principles. Here are a couple of things to think about before you pull the trigger if that be your intention.

    In the case of a married family man like my example above, never shoot back first. God has charged you with the care of others and that responsibility under God comes first. Shooting back in Red Flag raids will most likely just get you and everyone you are supposed to protect killed. Always find a way to deescalate and get your wards to safety first, then count the cost of retaliation. A man can’t protect anyone, or right government wrongs when dead. Going down in a hail of bullets with children and women present is cowardly, not heroic.

    In my opinion, in the case of a single man, who has no responsibility to anyone outside of just himself, like Gary Willis, the Maryland man killed by police mentioned above. I would say he is well within his natural rights to shoot back and take out as many perpetrators as he can. Law enforcement having created a state of nature encounter in this instant are no better than animals stealing from a free man at the threat of violence, and he is no better than an animal shooting back defending his property.

    The rule of law does not exist, they are in a state of nature and in a state of nature only the strong will survive such an encounter. Obviously, he will die and maybe a police officer will die, but the state will survive and march on to the next house on their list perpetuating this violent cycle. In my opinion this scenario is a net loss on that man’s life, on the police who initiated the violence, and also on society as whole, and I would encourage people to not do this, but let’s face it do to Red Flag laws the government has made it inevitable.

    In this scenario most would say that is what I plan on doing, my gun rights and freedom is a matter of principle and they are willing to die for that principle in that moment. I would stop you and say, no body is arguing your right, but strategically speaking seeing that government has gone rouge as these raids become common place, would you rather shoot now or shoot later when the ire of the public has organized itself in a way that can overcome the collective power of that rogue government? So, if your intent is to defy government then do it in a time and place in which you can match power for power which means force multiply as quickly as possible. Maybe have some decoy registered guns would be a good idea, while you have a stockpile of unregistered guns elsewhere so you don't have to even feign resitence to await a better moment.

    In battle you never let your opponent pick the battlefield, you pick the battlefield, you pick the target and proceed only when success is assured. If you die in the heat of the moment when you could of succumbed, and come back later on your own terms, with more power to bear that is what you should do. Dying in a hail of bullets is a huge tactical error, you allowed your enemy to get a jump on you and now are dead as a result. Pick your battles, sometimes it is best to give what you have and come back later with more power, when others are ready to join the cause. This is what the founders did. They did not fight as rag tag bands, instead they waited until every colony was represented and ready to engage in the fight, only then did they win, only then did they have the entire body politic at their backs in order to take on such a large force like the British army.

    Every instance of government Red Flag overreach just brings more and more people to the side of revolution against such tyrants. Choose your battle; giving up a little ground to gain a great deal of strength later will always be a wiser path. You want to put yourself in a winning position, not a losing position. These lawmakers and cops who are enforcing these laws are tantalizingly close to causing full out armed rebellion in this country and that is their bad, and the consequences in this life and the next will be on them.

     

    Conclusion

    Having to talk this way and encourage people to think through these scenarios is a sad day for America. The fact that our governing officials are so eager to throw law abiding gun-owners into lawless states of violent confrontation again and again is a staggering realization. To think this is happening under Trump, not Obama should be a wake up call to conservatives who mindless praise the man.

    Red Flag laws become a self-fulfilling prophecy for the state. The politicians have already proven they will unthinkingly write these laws, and law enforcement personnel will undoubtedly continue to subject themselves to the dangers of enforcing these laws. I am asking everyone to count the risks, and prepare for the worst knowing that government has decided to invade homes, steal property, and disarm citizens. The public trust has been dashed to pieces in the face of Red Flag laws.

    Our founding fathers knew what it meant to be subjected to government force in a way that willfully disregarded the safety and well-being of their citizens. It didn’t end well for the British crown, and it most certainly won’t end well for D.C. tyrants.

    “Guard with jealous attention the public liberty. Suspect everyone who approaches that jewel. Unfortunately, nothing will preserve it but downright force. Whenever you give up that force, you are inevitably ruined.” - Patrick Henry

     

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