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Does Gun Control Cause Mob Rule?

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In response to Switzerland's stronger gun control legislation, somebody sent me an email and said:

How wonderful that in the United States, we are NOT a democracy, but are a constitutional Republic. That means that our Constitution protects freedoms and individual liberties. No mob majority can undo the fact that our Second Amendment says: 'shall NOT be infringed'.
The email also contained several important quotes and historical facts:
  • “The strongest reason for the people to retain the right to keep and bear arms is, as a last resort, to protect themselves against tyranny in government.” —Thomas Jefferson
  • In 1911, Turkey established gun control. From 1915 to 1917, 1.5 million Armenians, unable to defend themselves, were rounded up and exterminated.
  • In 1929, the Soviet Union established gun control. From 1929 to 1953, about 20 million dissidents, unable to defend themselves, were cut off from their food supplies and starved to death or rounded up and exterminated.
  • Germany established gun control in 1938. From 1939 to 1945, 10 million Jews and others who were unable to defend themselves, were rounded up and exterminated.
  • China established gun control in 1935. From 1948 to 1952, 20 million political dissidents, unable to defend themselves, were rounded up and exterminated.
  • Guatemala established gun control in 1964. From 1964 to 1981, 100,000 Mayan Indians, unable to defend themselves, were rounded up and exterminated.
  • Uganda established gun control in 1970. From 1971 to 1979, 300,000 Christians, unable to defend themselves, were rounded up and exterminated.
  • Cambodia established gun control in 1956. From 1975 to 1977, one to two million 'educated' people, unable to defend themselves, were rounded up and exterminated.
  • In 1956 no one in Cambodia could imagine total confiscation and citizen enslavement in the "foreseeable future", ... but per capita, more citizens were eventually murdered by their own government than in any other country in history.
  • "TOTAL number of defenseless people rounded up and exterminated in the 20th Century because of gun control: 53 million. And this is a VERY low, conservative estimate. Professor R.J. Rummel says it's closer to 170 MILLION."

The author's conclusion? "A Nation of DIS-Armed Citizens IS A Nation of Victims!"

The following is my response to that email, which captures the essence of several points in the Gini book.

Yes, many of those facts about government tyranny are in the Gini book. I'm a liberty-loving human; so, I'm not a big fan of strict gun abolition, but I am a big fan of truth. The commentary about Switzerland's gun control laws ignores a basic truth: Switzerland has had the most peaceful and stable government on Earth for centuries and it consistently ranks number one as the country with the highest quality of life on Earth. This has nothing to do with guns; it has everything to do with the unique, democratic structure of its government.

In contrast, the U.S. ranks near the bottom of all OECD countries across virtually all the most important quality-of-life, quality-of-governance and corruption metrics. The primary reason for this is because Switzerland has a much more responsive form of democracy than the U.S., not because of "mob majority".

In a country that has meaningful democracy, the vast majority of citizens do not have an obsession with gun-control because their government operates, by design, with much more transparency and responsiveness. In every case of "disarmed citizens" above, their governments were corrupted and then co-opted by a tiny handful of land- and wealth-hoarding elites (not a "mob majority"). When governments, laws and economies become rigged in favor of a tiny number of so-called elites, they naturally fear the wrath of their citizens.

It's the so-called elites who usually seek gun-control, not the general citizenry. The political impulse toward gun-control is a symptom (not a cause) of corrupt government, which can only occur after a country's wealth and political power has already been concentrated into a tiny number of hands. This inevitably triggers violent revolutions, which are then exploited by sociopathic dictators. This is what leads to the extermination of millions of humans, not a "mob majority". (This phenomenon is summarized in the Gini Whitepaper.)

It is a self-destructive myth that the U.S.' particular form of constitutional republicanism leads to more freedom. To the contrary, it leads straight to corporatocracy, political tyranny, civil unrest and civil war precisely because it is so unresponsive to democratic majorities. Indeed, democratic majorities are essential to the long-term peace and stability of every large population and economy.

The fear of "mob majority" is only justified in a society that does not place a high priority on educating its citizens. An uneducated citizenry is indeed scary, but that is a symptom (not a cause) of bad government. Again, Switzerland and virtually all other OECD countries rank higher than the U.S. in virtually all pre-college education system metrics. This creates a more educated and engaged electorate overall, which is why their governments and societies tend to operate more cost-effectively, efficiently, peacefully and with greater institutional integrity than the U.S. Government. (Anybody who doubts this should read the Global Governance Scorecard.)

Most of the "facts" coming from partisan, ideologically-driven sources on the Left AND Right today are cherry-picked and intended to distort truth and reality. The nonpartisan truth and reality is this: Real democracy does work and U.S. citizens suffer from one of the most corrupt and unresponsive governments on Earth, which has nothing to do with "mob majority". (The Gini book explores this topic extensively.) The U.S. Constitution's Second Amendment will not protect us against the overwhelming power of a rogue government with a gigantic, drone-infested military-industrial complex that is perpetuated by a sprawling corporatocracy controlled by a tiny handful of self-serving zombie elites. That scourge has nothing to do with "mob majority".

Bottom line: Only a truly responsive democracy, broadly distributed democratic power, and broadly distributed wealth can protect us. This is why the Gini Foundation exists. If you haven't already, please watch the Gini videos and explore the Gini book and whitepaper to learn more about what Gini is doing to resolve many of these problems in our world today.

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