The American Militia

A Short But Growing Essay

I have been involved in the "gun rights" movement for many years. You could say it all started when my dad taught me to shoot and bought me my first rifle at age 10. Being a good dad, an engineer and a good provider, he bought me a Belgium Browning ATD .22lr semi- auto. But that is another story.

Next I was in high school and interested in the Rifle Club and the rifle he gave me then was a Remington 521-T. I made a cartridge holder in High School wood shop class, and to get everything right I had brought a sample of .22lr cartridges and box of 50 rounds with me to get the right fit.

I kept up a casual interest in firearms for many years and was a casual observer of the news and local politics. Occasionally someone would ask about guns and I was the source of answers many times. Occasional and informal shooting range sessions filled the years. Knowledge slowly grew.

Then things started to change. People in positions of political power, but without much sense, started to try to tell the citizens what was best for them. Not that this hadnīt been going on for years, but now it was in the area of my interest, firearms. I should have been paying more attention. Each criminal tendency, acted out by a social nut-case, was attempted to be solved for all future time by legal restrictions on society. This was obviously hard on the 99.99% of gun owners who were NOT criminals. Guilt by association I guess.

The need to pay more attention was at last becoming clear. I remember U.S, History from high school and some of the things I was hearing now did not sound right. The Constitution was being warped. The need to become active was seen.

If the state wants to outlaw certain pistols, then it must be time to buy one and I now have the first of several side arms. If the state wants to ban private transfers of regulated firearms between family members; time for another purchase and now my wife has her first personal firearm. She does not have to borrow mine and hopefully she will enjoy cleaning and maintaining it as much as she seems to think I do. The state wants to require integrated trigger locks and spent shell casing "Ballistic Finger Prints"; time to buy some more before this additional burden goes into effect, so we have a His and Hers Pistol Christmas. The state begins classifying firearms as "Assault Weapons"; now I have several military pattern semi-auto rifles. The list goes on. Each snip, each cut at liberty as reflected by attempts to ban firearms causes another spurt of interest.

I have never disposed of any firearm. I have gained several by inheritance or private transfer. I have bought plenty of ammo so as to practice often and keep a ready reserve and a deep inventory. I now have enough firearms and supplies to equip a squad of riflemen. Tools, spares, ammo; the whole lot. I also have a fair bit of training including IDPA combat pistol, battle rifle, sub-machine gun , belt fed, etc.

I will never sell any firearm or equipment. It has already been passed on to others; they just do not know it yet. As I age and can no longer use the gear, I will find a younger and equally serious member to educate and equip. He will be well equipped in exchange for his pledge, shown by his actions in learning, to serve freedom.

All of us are potential militia. Over the years I have become actual militia. Am I well regulated? In the vernacular of the founding fathers I am. I have the equipment, supplies and training which gives me the ability to defend my community. I am ready to defend the free state, to answer when called upon to form up for defense. I think I may even have the proper mind set, the proper conditioning, to turn ability into action. I may be a little slow now-a-days, so I might best serve as instructor and quartermaster to those with younger backs and sharper eyes. Are there other younger backs following in my path? For their sake there better be! I have done my part and those around me have learned; I have no doubt in my wife helping and watching my back. Itīs the kids Iīm worried about.

I am active to educate others at venues like town fairs, shooting range open houses and other public events that promote the "shooting sports". Make no mistake, Sport Shooting is what the militia does to train. Basic knowledge and skill is obtained through such sport. More specific conditioning comes later to allow me to act. Others I meet and talk to are beginning along this path. I fly the flag of freedom; the US flag at my front door, the lapel pin, window decal, the NRA hat or even the "Gun Owner" stamp on my currency says who I am. The flag is seen and the stranger encountered comes into the open engaging in conversations about firearms and freedom.

I am the hunter and the trap shooter. I am the High Power and the small bore shooter. I am the Boy Scout leader and his Scouts. I am the camper and hiker and handy man too, with tools and equipment to weather the storm and then to help others after the storm. I am a member of GOA and NRA, JPFO and Second Amendment Foundation, LEAA and a half-dozen more. I am not just a joiner, I watch and learn and use all the tools offered to me by such groups as best as they are suited to the task. But, I do not blindly follow any one. Each has its good points and its bad. I use the good and at least ignore the bad. If I have advanced enough I will then work to change the bad. I am several tens of Millions of civilians who have decided to become Citizens.

A lowly civilian exists within society; he eats and sleeps, he works and plays and he obeys those who set the rules. Occasionally he votes. He is just a cog in the machine. Eventually some advance beyond such mundane life, beyond following in a rut. He wants the republic where the Citizens set the rules, or remove some rules, and therefore must learn the system and begin to control it. He studies the politics and the psychology of government. He learns the new duties that come with new power. He understands that his former voting by popularity contest was a waste. Knowing the issues now allows for an informed vote. He recognizes bad government and works with others through direct support and voting to change it. Every once in a while the fruits of his labor are seen; a politician who would attack his freedom is removed from office by just a few votes. He is happy knowing that he is now a Citizen and his band of fellow citizens made the difference, without them the vote would have gone the other way. Just as quickly he knows good government and supports it.

I am the American Militia. I know my civic duty. I am a Citizen, not just a civilian. I fight within the system and I am ready to fight the system to defend freedom. Personal Protection to me is a Personal Responsibility. Personal Protection sets the stage for protection of home, of family, of community and of country if called upon to do so. I am honest and of high integrity; I do the right thing even when no one is watching, when there is no law or threat telling me what to do. I am a product of the frontier; I ride hard, shoot straight and speak the truth. I know that such values are still important today.

I am the American Militia. I am all around you.

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Most recent revision September 2006