On April 10, Breitbart News had the opportunity to talk with GOP Presidential hopeful Dr. Ben Carson about guns and gun rights, and he told us that the Second Amendment keeps the government from dominating the people.
Carson talked about the importance of the Second Amendment:
The Second Amendment is incredibly important for a couple of reasons. Number one, our Founders felt that our nation, if ever invaded by outside forces, would be much stronger if the people could help repel those forces. Number two, and perhaps even more importantly, is if the government–our own government–ever became tyrannical, and wanted to dominate the people, the Second Amendment guarantees the people the means whereby to defend themselves.
At our country’s founding, James Madison described “the advantage of being armed, which the Americans possess over the people of almost every other nation.” We mentioned this to Carson and asked him if it is still an advantage for Americans to be armed.
This question was probably answered best by Thomas Hobbes, the English philosopher who, in talking about tyranny, said that the Americans would probably never suffer from tyranny of the government because their citizens are armed. This was hundreds of years ago, and we’ve maintained that tradition, and we’ve maintained our freedom.
We also asked Carson how he responds to people who react to high profile crimes by pushing more gun laws or more gun control, and this is what he said:
My response to such people is that they can push all the gun controls they want, but the criminals aren’t going to pay any attention to it. Only the law-abiding citizens pay attention to gun control laws. All you’re doing by pushing gun control is putting the law-abiding citizen at a disadvantage, as Thomas Jefferson said.
Lastly, we asked Carson about arguments for and against certain types of firearms, particularly as those arguments hinge on legislative efforts to do away with semiautomatics or certain semiautomatics.
Carson responded by saying that, after the trauma he saw practicing medicine, he was himself unsure of the value of having semiautomatics in crowded cities. But after further consideration and “looking at the history,” he realized there was no logic or virtue in opposing one type of firearm over another.
This is what Carson told us:
The real purpose of the Second Amendment is to allow citizens to be able to protect themselves against an overly aggressive government. In order to do that, they need to have any kind of weapon that they may have, legally. And that includes semiautomatic weapons.
So, if the source that is trying to dominate you has those weapons, but you don’t have them–if all you have are pea-shooters–then your defense of yourself is not going to be very effective.
Follow AWR Hawkins on Twitter @AWRHawkins. Reach him directly at firstname.lastname@example.org.