It is true that gun ‘control’ laws are not about controlling guns, but rather about ‘who’ controls them. Many people scoff at that assertion, but history never lies.
The historical record provides compelling evidence that racism underlies gun control laws — and not in any subtle way. Throughout much of American history, gun control was openly stated as a method for keeping blacks and Hispanics “in their place”.
Starting in 1751, the French Black Code required Louisiana colonists to stop any blacks, and if necessary, beat “any black carrying any potential weapon, such as a cane.” If a black refused to stop on demand, and was on horseback, the colonist was authorized to “shoot to kill.”
In the Haitian Revolution of the 1790s, the slave population successfully threw off their French masters, but the Revolution degenerated into a race war, aggravating existing fears in the French Louisiana colony, and among whites in the slave states of the United States.
When the first U. S. official arrived in New Orleans in 1803 to take charge of this new American possession, the planters sought to have the existing free black militia disarmed, and otherwise exclude “free blacks from positions in which they were required to bear arms.”
In the first North American English colonies, then the states of the new republic, remained in dread fear of armed blacks, for slave revolts against slave owners often degenerated into less selective forms of racial warfare. The perception that free blacks were sympathetic to the plight of their enslaved brothers, and the dangerous example that “a Negro could be free” also caused the slave states to pass laws designed to disarm all blacks, both slave and free.
In Maryland, these prohibitions went so far as to prohibit free blacks from owning dogs without a license, and authorizing any white to kill an unlicensed dog owned by a free black, for fear that blacks would use dogs as weapons. Mississippi went further, and prohibited any ownership of a dog by a black person.
In fact, in the aftermath of Turner’s Rebellion, the discovery that a free black family possessed lead shot for use as scale weights, without powder or weapon in which to fire it, was considered sufficient reason for a frenzied mob to discuss summary execution of the owner.
The analogy to the current hysteria where mere possession of ammunition in some states without a firearms license may lead to jail time should be obvious.
The North Carolina Supreme Court made one of those decisions whose full significance would not appear until after the Civil War and passage of the Fourteenth Amendment. An 1840 statute provided:
That if any free negro, mulatto, or free person of color, shall wear or carry about his or her person, or keep in his or her house, any shot gun, musket, rifle, pistol, sword, dagger or bowie-knife, unless he or she shall have obtained a license therefore from the Court of Pleas and Quarter Sessions of his or her county, within one year preceding the wearing, keeping or carrying therefore, he or she shall be guilty of a misdemeanor, and may be indicted therefore.
The end of slavery in 1865 did not eliminate the problems of racist gun control laws; the various Black Codes adopted after the Civil War required blacks to obtain a license before carrying or possessing firearms or Bowie knives.
These restrictive gun laws played a part in the efforts of the Republicans to get the Fourteenth Amendment ratified, because it was difficult for night riders to generate the correct level of terror in a victim who was returning fire.
Today is not 1893, and when proponents of restrictive gun control insist that their motivations are color-blind, there is a possibility that they are telling the truth.
Gun control advocates today are not so foolish as to openly promote racist laws. One concern is that the motivations for disarming blacks in the past are really not so different from the motivations for disarming law-abiding citizens today.
Historically the official rhetoric in support of such laws was that “they” were too violent, too untrustworthy, to be allowed weapons. Today, the same elitist rhetoric regards law-abiding Americans in the same way, as child-like creatures in need of guidance from the government.
Today, the forces that push for gun control seem to be heavily allied with political factions that are committed to dramatic increases in control over the economic and personal liberty of those they seek to rule.
For as I stated at the beginning, gun control around the world, in history and currently right here in Virginia, is not about controlling guns, but rather controlling the people.
And Concealed Carry Permits, restrictions on where one can carry, what firearm they can carry and what firearms they can own are all infringements on that basic right.
History should be a mirror to understand the root cause of the current gun grabbing efforts of politicians. We clearly can see their motivation is far from their public statements.
A free and independent people must always be armed, to prevent government control over every aspect of their life, liberty and property.
History confirms that.