Dear Mr. Keefe,
I am writing to you in response to one of your recent works, “The Civilian Need for Military-Style Assault Weapons.”
Here’s the thing, civilians who argue for the right to own “military-style assault weapons” are not arguing that they need to own them for hunting purposes. The reason civilians need to be able to own assault weapons is to maintain the ability to prevent and/or defeat tyranny.
It was during my second deployment that the idea struck me. It doesn’t matter how many planes/boats/tanks the US has. The reason we are running the show in Iraq and Afghanistan is because we have more guns and bullets than the enemy. Before 2003, I might have had to argue my point simply on principle (still a winning argument), but after a decade of fighting men armed only with assault rifles, I can convince you with practical experience as well. How else do you explain these last ten years during which the most powerful military in the world hasn’t been able to definitively defeat men armed only with assault weapons?
Let me state the main assumption in this argument; that is, the point on which we may disagree: every government trends towards tyranny. Our founders recognized this and put a check in place in the hope that it would be enough to prevent the tyranny from occurring. That being, governments should fear (just a little) their people. The real genius, of course, is that an armed population can actually overthrow a tyrannical government, not just threaten to overthrow it.
To sum up, your cartoon totally sets up a straw man in the debate on gun policy in America. By defeating this straw man as soundly as you do, you miss your mark. Rather than offer insight on the gun-control debate in America, you do two negative things. First, you confuse a reason for assault weapon ownership that isn’t worthy of attention for one that is. Second, deliberately setting up a straw man on an issue that restricts my everyday freedom to spend my money as I please actively promotes tyranny. No thank you, Mr. Keefe.