Gun Control: A Tyrant's Tool in World History

Gun Control: A Tyrant's Tool in World History

Gun control is a tool that individual tyrants and various colonial rulers the world over have used to place—and keep—entire populations in a defenseless and subjective posture. 

Three examples that clearly illustrate the truth of this are Cambodia, China, and Nazi Germany.

Cambodia became a protectorate of France in 1893. And according to the Texas Review of Law and Politics (TRLP), the French government first introduced gun control into country in 1920, when they “restricted” the carrying of firearms. In 1938 “a rigorous system of gun licensing” was also put in place. After this, the gradual but certain chipping away at gun rights continued until—by 1953—”gun possession for self-defense, target-shooting, or collecting was banned.”

France pushed gun control because they feared an uprising, especially from Communists or anti-colonial insurgencies. Therefore, just as Democrats in 19th century America took pains to keep slaves from arming themselves and rising up, so too France took pains to be sure those within their protectorate could not rise up against them. 

It is worth noting that France’s efforts to disarm the Cambodian people gained so much momentum that gun control was still in place in 1956, three years after Cambodia was granted independence. Servility ran deep. 

TRLP also shows that Mao Tse-tung used guns to take control of China in 1949. Thereafter, he “disarmed the Chinese people” yet simultaneously claimed to rule in their name. Then, with a government that was armed to the teeth versus a people who had no means for self-defense, Mao “perpetrated the largest mass murder in the history of the world, killing approximately 20 million people.”

Chinese people were denied the dignity of private gun ownership for self-defense and were then slaughtered on a grand scale.

Enter World War II Germany, and words like Nazi, Auschwitz, Dachau, and Adolf Hilter immediately stir our minds to consider the level of atrocity one tyrant can perpetrate against an unarmed people. 

Breitbart News previously reported that Stephen P. Halbrook’s Gun Control in the Third Reich shines a light on Hitler’s use of gun control against the Jewish people and other “enemies of the state.” Hitler and his party implemented gun control systematically, like France did with the Cambodians, but he did so with far greater quickness, like Mao in China. 

Hitler became Chancellor of Germany in January 1933 and immediately began pushing for total power—for complete control of every aspect of government. One part of this pursuit was ridding himself of political and state enemies, and one way to accomplish this was by disarming those who could be described as “enemies of the state” or dangers within the state.

In October 1933, bans on the possessions of firearms by “persons dangerous to security” were drafted. One month later—on November 21—a more detailed draft made clear that National Socialists would enjoy the ability to buy firearms but other persons would not. Thus there was actually a push to relax gun laws—as far they applied to National Socialists—while simultaneously tightening them as they applied to “enemies of the state” and/or “subject races.”

A memorandum accompanying the November 21 gun control draft said: “The prerequisite for any relaxation of the current firearm law, however, is that the sentencing and police authorities proceed with merciless severity against any possession of a weapon by any enemy of the people and the state.”

Halbrook shows that by 1938, Hitler discarded the generic “enemy of the state” phraseology and simply said what he really meant—Jewish people could not own or possess guns. 

On November 10, 1938, German papers carried the news: “Jews Forbidden to Possess Weapons By Order of SS Reichsfuhrer Himmler, Munich, November 10.” The news was accompanied by this warning: “Persons who, according to the Nurnberg law, are regarded as Jews, are forbidden to possess any weapon. Violators will be condemned to a concentration camp and imprisoned for a period of up to 20 years.”

On November 9, 1938, a Jewish person could lawfully possess certain weapons. On November 10, they could not, and they faced a stiff prison sentence for doing otherwise. In 1942, unarmed Jews were sent to concentration camps and shot to death, gassed to death, starved to death, and killed in other ways too horrible to fathom. 

According to the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, some “six million Jews” were killed in this fashion. And that number does not include other unarmed “enemies of the state” who were killed in horrible ways as well. 

Gun control is a tyrant’s tool. 

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