The Real Reason We Have Firearms 
     All the pundits and talking headaches I see on TV, even the most levelheaded ones, are all missing the point of the second amendment. It is not there to protect our right to shoot Bambi (though that's an awful lot of fun). Nor is it primarily there to protect our right to ventilate burglars, though punching holes through intruders is certainly covered by it. It is there to protect our lives and our liberty by insuring that all Americans are able defend us by remaining armed. Recently there has been a series of catastophes in Europe which point up exactly why we need to remain an armed society. Bear with me and I'll take you there, but first, a little background.  
     We are in an odd position re guns in this country. The federal government, with the cooperation of many states, has violated the spirit of the 2nd amendment by creating state/federal controlled military reserves called the National Guard, and then defining them as militias, indeed, defining them as the only valid militias.  
     Any reading of how regiments were formed during the Civil War will show that both sides simply asked for volunteers, who brought their weapons from home. In the case of the South, they seldom had much in the way of uniforms. They were just citizens, ordinary citizens. That's the reason for the second amendment: to maintain an armed citizenry who can be called up at need. The original concept for this country was for very little standing army to speak of, but lots of farmers and shopkeepers with their guns; sort of a less formal version of what the Swiss have. And when citizens are armed, the writers of the constitution (Jefferson & Mason) knew, they would be difficult to tyrannize.  
     A while back there were 1.8 million Kosovar Albanians living in Kosovo mostly unmolested by their Serbian neighbors. Then the government in Serbia ordered its army and paramilitary to attack them. The Kosovar Albanians were driven out of the province by 40,000 men. That's a 25 to 1 proportion! Sure, let's discount a lot of the women and children, but even then the Kosovar men greatly outnumbered their Serbian tormenters. If the Kosovars had been armed the way Americans are armed, the Serbs could not have driven them out, killing young men and raping young women. A 16 year old Kosovar girl with a rifle might just decide to shoot a few Serbs and die in the firefight instead of allowing herself to be raped by 10 Serbian soldiers -- IF she had a rifle! A few such incidents would make the Serbs much warier about breaking into houses after women. But none of them had that option. Those people are unarmed. Instead of just bombing the snot out of Lesser Serbia we should have armed the Kosovars and sent them back into Kosovo to deal with the Serbs themselves.  
     I don't like war and killing, but when faced with aggression one has to fight back. A gun gives you a means to defend your life, your property and your body.  
     Magnify the pain of any one raped woman by the probably hundreds of thousands of women who have been raped by Serbs in Bosnia and Kosovo and you'll understand why I'm so hawkish about Serbia.  
     I even feel sorry for Serbian women. Consider it: thousands of Serbian men will come home from war in Bosnia and Kosovo with a taste for rape. What do you think they will do? How do you think they will behave at home? I expect a lot of Serbian women to be raped in the future.  
     There's a saying that a liberal is a conservative who hasn't been mugged yet -- perhaps we should update that to say that an anti-gunner is a pro 2nd Amendment partisan who hasn't been raped yet?  
     Okay I will grant you that the liberals are correct that fewer people would be shot if there were no guns in America: fewer scumbags would shoot 7-11 clerks; fewer homeowners would shoot burglars; fewer armed nutcases would be shot by nervous cops. Never mind the fact that disarming this country is probably not even possible. That isn't even the issue as I see it. We have a 2nd amendment to the constitution in order to guarantee that the American people never be disarmed and at the mercy of any government's troops -- and in extreme emergency, all citizens may be called upon to defend the country. The underlying foundation of American freedom is the fact that the government does not really have a monopoly on the use of force (unlike almost every other nation in the world, except Switzerland). In extremis, the American people can act on their own.  
     Therefore, as I see it, the real issue is: are we willing to trade safety for the potential loss of our freedom some time in the future? I say "No." Perhaps you disagree, but the constitution agrees with me and protects my right to be armed. And so long as I am a sane, non-criminal, responsible citizen the government has no right to curtail my ownership of firearms.  
     If you really wish to trade private ownership of firearms in exchange for increased safety take a long hard look at Kosovo. Because that is the sort of thing that can happen when the people are unarmed. And don't tell me it can't happen here, thugs of the BATF and FBI, America's Gestapo, are bad enough already -- check their actions at Waco and Ruby Ridge -- and they still have to worry about getting shot by citizens! Without that worry, how would they behave?