Ron Paul on Gun Control

In his latest essay Ron Paul addresses the issue of gun control. When the government makes guns illegal, only criminals – and the government itself – will own firearms. The result is less freedom and less safety for everyone else, i.e. law-abiding citizens.

Gun Control: Protecting Terrorists and Despots

by Ron Paul

Tragically, over the Thanksgiving holiday, the world was reminded how evil and cruel people can be. According to emerging accounts of the events in India, about a dozen well-armed and devastatingly well-trained terrorists laid siege on the city of Mumbai, killing almost two hundred people, and terrorizing thousands.

Regardless of the reasons, the indiscriminate shooting on masses of unarmed and defenseless people is chilling and reprehensible. How were these terrorists able to continue so long, relatively unchallenged, killing so many?

India’s gun laws are her business, of course. However, once the shock of these events and the initial reaction of fear passes, Americans should take away a valuable lesson about real homeland security and gun control from this tragedy.

Gun control advocates tell us that removing guns from society makes us safer. If that were the case why do the worst shootings happen in gun free zones, like schools? And while accidents do happen, aggressive, terroristic shootings like this are unheard of at gun and knife shows, or military bases. It bears repeating that an armed society truly is a polite society.

The fact is that firearm technology exists. It cannot be uninvented. As long as there is metalworking and welding capability, it matters not what gun laws are imposed upon law-abiding people. Those that wish to have guns, and disregard the law, will have guns. Gun control makes violence safer and more effective for the aggressive, whether the aggressor is a terrorist or a government.

History shows us that another tragedy of gun laws is genocide. Hitler, for example, knew well that in order to enact his “final solution,” disarmament was a necessary precursor. While it is not always the case that an unarmed populace WILL be killed by their government, if a government is going to kill its own people, it MUST disarm them first so they cannot fight back. Disarmament must happen at a time when overall trust in government is high, and under the guise of safety for the people, or perhaps the children. Knowing that any government, no matter how idealistically started, can become despotic, the Founding Fathers enabled the future freedom of Americans by enacting the second amendment.

In our own country, we should be ever vigilant against any attempts to disarm the people, especially in this economic downturn. I expect violent crime to rise sharply in the coming days, and as states and municipalities are even more financially strained, the police will be even less able or willing to respond to crime. In many areas, local police could become more and more absorbed with revenue generating activities, like minor traffic violations and the asset forfeiture opportunities of non-violent drug offenses. Your safety has always, ultimately been your own responsibility, but never more so than now. People have a natural right to defend themselves. Governments that take that away from their people should be highly suspect.


  • shamus84

    Such an interesting debate. I’ve only recently begun to pay attention to this and find that I’m blown away by the “fear” machine used by the anti-gun establishment. I don’t know about Sweden, but how about what’s happened in Australia? They took away the legal guns, and, hmm, crime rates, particularly w/weapons, has increased. And their politicians are baffled? Really?

    The 2nd amendment is all about being prepared to defend it when the government tries to take it away. I was not a gun owner until a few months ago, but, believe me, I’m going to play catch-up as fast as I can, simply because this society is not safe. No one has the right to tell me how to ensure my safety unless I infringe on the rights of others. If I’m carrying a gun on me, how have I infringed on the rights of others? Now, if I wave it in the air and start threatening people, you have a point. If, however, I’m simply carrying it in a concealed manner and never have to use it, whose rights have I violated?

    Besides, guns are cool… 😉

    • Tony

      Why do you say that since Australia enacted tough gun, laws that Australia has increased crime rates. The murder rate has droped, arm robbery has drop since 1996, and most other crimes has stayed around the same level. The only crimes that have significantly increased lately is assaults and that is not because of the gun laws, the increase in physical assaults has happen only in the last few years. And since stricter gun laws, there have been no more massacres like Port Arthur and Hoddle street.

      I don’t know where you got the idea that Australia is more violent place to live since strict gun laws, but I get the feeling that its the misinformation that Charlton Heston and the NRA used to support their case against tougher gun laws in the U.S. It is obscene that they would use a tragedy in Australia to further their own ends.

      Australia is not a country living in fear since very stict gun laws 1996. I know, I live in Australia.

  • Ken Freeman

    If you look at the demographics of Sweden you’ll understand why you have the lowest crime rate in the world. I’m jealous of you but here we have urban centers so inflamed with ‘diversity’ that it doesn’t take much to light them off. Hell, look at Iceland. The entire economy collapses overnight and not a single riot. Their demographics closely match yours. Here, you just wait until our so wonderful diverse populations hear they’re not getting their welfare checks. We’ve had cities burned and people killed over court cases. Say what you want if you want to be politically correct but that’s reality.

    Every empire eventually falls. The US has failed already. What the government might try to do next in desperation remains to be seen. But the Constitution guarantees our right to protect ourselves. Anybody who choses to entrust their safety fully to others is a sheep.

    A handgun is a tool that can be concealed that is used to kill people. That’s right, kill people. I’ve carried a pistol for over 20 years and never have had to even pull my weapon thank God. But I could and would if my own or somebody else’s life was threatened. That’s reality and sometimes it’s necessary. Those of you who wish to “live in a world without fear” have had the wool pulled over your eyes. Grow up and look around. Take some responsibility for yourself and others. The world can be a savage and violent place. It was a savage and violent place long before firearms even existed. Concealed weapons in the hands of trained law abiding people like myself make you safer. Whatever your feelings about guns might be, I would risk my own life to save yours.

    Take care and hug your families this Christmas season. This next year is going to be a rough one for everyone.

    • Sam Fisch

      “Concealed weapons in the hands of trained law abiding people like myself make you safer. Whatever your feelings about guns might be, I would risk my own life to save yours.”

      Ken Freeman, Thanks for the offer, but I don’t trust your aim. Please don’t pull out your concealed weapon near me or my children (even if you think we might be in danger).

      • derek

        say that when someone has you in their site’s.

    • 1950 US Patriot

      Also a retired l.e. and would proudly stand shoulder to shoulder with you against any attacker.
      God bless and keep you and yours safe.

  • 1951Patriot

    Again, going after law abiding citizens will NOT solve anything. It will only give criminals greater advantage. Bans on handguns and concealed weapons will only affect the law abiding. The criminal element cares less what laws exist. They don’t follow them anyway. There IS no argument for passing laws to ban guns. It is a ridiculous presumption only the irrational would promote. Criminals are the only non-governmental element who would possess weapons. How stupid is that? Too bad the concept is so difficult to grasp for some. Keep your hands off the Second Amendment!! Give up your your socialist Utopian dreams and face reality. What idiot would willingly make himself more vulnerable? Read your history. Nations became tyrannical dictatorships soon after confiscating the people’s weapons. Not in America. Thank you.

  • Sean

    If guns don’t contribute to the United States having the second highest murder rate in the world, than there is something else really messed up with our country that we wont be able to fix.. We should outlaw pistols and concealed weapons. What need do we have to hide our weapons in order to use them for self defense? A shotgun would help just as much.. So we should keep weapons off the street and out of the hands of murderers by outlawing small concealed weapons.

    • Sean

      If we outlawed handguns people would complain that the murderers already have their weapons.. Well handgun bullets would be outlawed also. Our next generation of children could live adults in a peaceful country without fear. Now thats liberty and freedom and should be mandated by the government to protect our god given rights.

    • 1950 US Patriot

      Kinda missing the major point. Gun control only controls and emasculates the innocent law abiding citizentry. Criminals don’t give a rat’s *** and will get their illegal guns anyway they can. And they will carry (and this will shock you) without obtaining a legal permit!!!
      Cops are minutes to hours away, military are days to weeks away. How long can you bleed and still survive? How about your wife and children?
      Go ahead and take all the bullets in America, guess how the illegal gun/ammo traders will supply the criminals? Very well and on time as well.
      Even without firearms, criminals will turn to knives (which they already use) or clubs. Should we get a head start and outlaw all knives (including butter knives), baseball bats, steel toed boots, broom handles (oh wait, Hitler did that and it worked quite nicely for him), etc.?
      The government is still missing the big picture. Stop targeting the innocent citizens and clamp down on the criminals. Give them a good and final reason to change their line of work.


    In my country, Sweden, the population is disarmed. We have one of the lowest crime rate in the world. Even though our government is strong in terms of state-owned companies, military and so forth. We have been netural and self-sustained for more than 200 years without being aggressive.

    I don’t believe in arming the population. It would only cause more crime and violence. Criminals are being able to have guns whenever they feel like. In America, 11,000 people get killed by shootings each year. I think it’s a bad decision for people to carry weapons in terms of being protected. The only ones who should carry weapons are the military, police and others who are able to handle guns. We live in a civilized society. There’s no chance these people would be overrun by their government.

    Nonetheless, Americans live in another situation. 60% of the population never visit other countries. 35 million are poor, 50 million uninsured, the crime rates are at very high levels and your government is corrupt.

    Please, I would like to know if I’m wrong. I hope I am.

    • 1950 US Patriot

      At the beginning of a home invasion, you may have 10 seconds to react (usually from a sound sleep). Grab a gun and hope to live, grab the phone and die before the 911 operator answers. Don’t worry, in America, the cops will get over in 30 minutes to 2 hours, no rush! They have lots of chaulk for the body outlines!!
      I have a permit to carry, am a retired policeman and would not think of going outside any more without protection for my wife and me. I am locked and loaded 24/7. Pray constantly that I’ll never need it.
      Your society sound idillyic, but laws have to fit each individual society’s needs and problems. America, is great, proud of it and would never want to be anything else but American; but, we do have lots of criminals who just don’t care about anyone else. They will kill you for a dollar, rape your wife or daughter for fun, boredom or racial hatred, and kill you for your car just because they don’t have one.
      Your are right on about our corrupt gov. leaders; but then again, so are most of the other nations’ leadership.

  • robertj

    The gov and media work together to sell us bs. I am amazed so many buy into their lies. Gun control will never work, It will only lead to more innocent deaths. If the day comes for martial law, the confiscation of weapons will shortly follow, they will say it is for our own safety. After that you will be at the mercy of not only local predators, but also an out of control government. Who knows to what lengths they will go to totally destroy our constitution. I ask you do not give up your right to bear arms, even if it means death. Some things are worse than death!!!!!!

  • 1951Patriot

    Criminals, at least felons, are already barred from owning or even possessing a gun. That does not however, keep them from getting their hands on them. These guys don’t want guns for self defense that’s for sure but rather to give themselves an advantage for acting out their own aggressive narcissistic tendencies. As long as I can legally own and possess a gun, I can come much nearer to defending myself and family and my property in case I am ever a victim of theirs.
    The argument to make gun ownership illegal is the most ignorant lie being debated. There is no debate. You make responsible citizens vulnerable to every form of violence when you force them to relinquish their rights and means of self defense.
    When there is no police handy and a threat is eminent against family or property, I certainly want a deterrent equal to the threat at my disposal. I don’t want to entertain the idea of waiting for a police response after the fact while I stare at the pools of blood of my wife or children and wish I could have done something to prevent it. You anti-gun people can offer them a hug if you want. I don’t think that’s what they’re after and they probably will turn down your offer anyway.
    We’re a long way from considering the federal government or the forces at their disposal any sort of threat to ourselves en mass. There will be no huge bloody revolution. Their violence against citizens is more subtle and isolated. It is also protected by “laws” that fly in the face of the Constitution. You have no real defense against that unless you want a Ruby Ridge indecent happening at your own front door. But I am not nearly as concerned about defending myself against the government as I am about the lunatics that roam the streets in search of victims.
    If there ever was a revolution, I would certainly throw my support behind the ideals of liberty and individual freedom as would the majority of thinking adults. The sheeple will simply watch in horror and accept whatever unfolds, even absolute despotism if that were the outcome. They certainly wouldn’t participate because they don’t have a clue about what is really happening anyway. Those who do understand what is at stake want the Second Amendment left intact not only for individual protection against criminals but to hopefully insure that the government doesn’t get too bold.

    • 1950 US Patriot


      I sincerely wish we were neighbors!!! I’m surrounded by sheeply who want someone else to handle the emergencies, don’t bother them with details and will turn you in to save themselves without a second thought.
      Still looking for a neighborhood or community filled with patriots like us.
      God bless and good luck.

  • Obama trying to reassure Americans he “won’t disarm us”…said the spider to the fly. The government is getting very nervous about escalating gun sales since Obama and his fellow communists garnered the majority control of congress. You just watch, they are already trying to justify using military personnel for “catastrophes” and the like. I said it over a year ago that the government would have us eating dog food.

    If they come for your guns by God, give them the ammo first.

  • Gabriel

    I’m one of the last remaining employed 39 year old financial “experts” (don’t hate me!) and watching this complete collapse of our economy devolve over the past few years has been a humbling experience. For the first time I’m understanding the extent of the corruption in our government and financial systems. It’s easy now to see the control the mainstream media has over the bulk of our citizens. It’s terrifying really and blatantly obvious once you learn to see. Maybe it’s my job but I can tell you that this economy isn’t coming back for a long time, at least not as something we’d recognize.

    I’d never owned a firearm of any kind until last year. I’ve since been training whenever I can with my family and friends and now we have enough arms and training to give most offenders a serious problem.

    We’re also stocking up food and other supplies for civil unrest and it just feels so surreal. I’m not a religious man at all but I still pray my children won’t have to go through what I feel is coming. I hope I’m wrong.

    The question was raised before what can a .45 and an AR-15 do against our own government as it turns against us. When the IRS comes to collect the 10 trillion dollars they just stole from my kids with the threat of imprisonment they’ll find out. This is a good article I found. It’s a little long-winded and a bit Christian oriented but sums it up nicely. Just remember it’s not the weapon, it’s the will. Never give up an inch, ever.

  • Wm

    I enjoy reading the articles at the website of The Objective Standard and realize that many CFL members would likely enjoy them as well:

    Check it out and consider their offer of a free copy.

    After all we are involved in a battle of ideas and intellectual ammunition is necessary. Let me know what you think.

  • Irvwin P. Freely

    When the crime ‘stops’, you should still keep your guns. Weapons owned by civilians are not just for protection from criminals. They, in great part, hold in check the attempts of our own goverment to overstep it’s bounds and attack it’s own citizens. Think it can’t happen here? Don’t fool yourselves. Study history closely. Be vigiliant, educated, healthy, and keep the will of the warrior spirit alive that created this country. Once that will is gone then this country too will cease to exist.

  • Rasha

    I can’t understand why people insist in bringing up issues unrelated to gun control in their arguments like civil right, women’s right to vote, etc. Stick to the topic. Gun control does not work, periiod. If it did D.C. would be the safest city in the country. It is, instead, one of the most dangerous cities in the country. Most gun crimes are committed by ILLEGALY obtained guns, not legally obtained guns. When the crime stops, I’ll give up my gun, but not before then.

  • Slimeattack

    @Irish: Check the facts: women got the right to vote due to a constitutional amendment, not due to activist judges. The civil rights movement also achieved most of its success due to laws and constitutional amendments, not judical activism (hmmm… Civil Rights Act of 1964 – was that a ruling). And while yes, limits on freedom of speech are allowed, this is very, very limited in its scope. You can say that Bush/Obama or anyone else is a cocksucker, and the government can’t punish you for it. So reasonably, criminals ought to be barred from owning weapons, but not lawful citizens who play by the rules (and yes, this includes handguns and automatic weapons).

  • michael hunt

    It baffles me how soft, pink, weak, and numb the average American sheeple has become is such a very short amount of time.

    “To say that keeping a .45 in your drawer, or an ar-15 in your gun safe is going to prevent the US Armed forces, the single most equipped fighting force ever assembled, from taking your rights is beyond laughable”

    What the Hell kind of pathetic logic is that? If it comes down to it, god forbid, at least you have a shot in doing so. Rolling over and playing the role of the willing soft pink sheeple should be unthinkable! How horrified would our founding fathers be to see what we’ve become. Educate and protect yourselves and your families as best as you can.

    How every day “BILLIONS” of dollars are STOLEN from you and your children by a government totally unconcerned with what it’s citizens want. OPEN your eyes and see how dangerous this game has become. We’re on the edge of the abyss here and people are questioning if we really need guns?

    WAKE UP!

  • emazur

    First they came for the guns, and I said nothing because I was not a gun owner.

    Then they came for the tazers, and I said nothing because I had no tazers.

    Then they came for came for my silverware:
    and I said nothing because I was still permitted chopsticks.

    Then they came for me, and by that time there was nothing left
    to defend myself with.

    -Martin Niemöller, perhaps, if he was alive today and seeing the progression of the police state.

  • Pingback: Ron Paul discusses his thoughts on Gun Control « N.U.G.U.N. - New User of GUNs()

  • Regardless of your position in this debate, the fact remains that the 2nd amendment has not been repealed. It’s sad that we have to defend our Constitution by people who want to circumvent our laws by using an activist judicial system.

    The same “smart” people who thought that our monetary system shouldn’t be based on Constitutional money got their way in 1913, and ever since the gap between rich and poor has become enormous.

    Jefferson, Franklin, etc., were a lot smarter than any of our current politicians, and to blow off some of what they say (2nd amendment) while agreeing with other parts (1st amendment) is something the unlearned do every day.

    • Irish

      Were it not for an “activist judicial system”, it would still be illegal in parts of this country for blacks and whites to go to school together, for interracial couples to marry, and for women to vote. When our laws circumvent basic principles of fairness and compassion, then they themselves should be circumvented.

      To blow off the 2nd amendment while adhering to the first would be ludicrous. As would giving complete free reign to either. There are limits to the rights granted by the first amendment (yelling “fire” in a movie theater for free speech, polygamy for freedom of religion, libel for freedom of press, etc.), why should there not be reasonable limits on the rights granted in the second amendment? The framers showed consistently that their fear of a tyrannical government or foreign invasion was the purpose of this amendment. If someone, anyone would be able to show how this purpose is achieved with handguns and automatic weapons, I would be more than willing to hear it.

      To say that keeping a .45 in your drawer, or an ar-15 in your gun safe is going to prevent the US Armed forces, the single most equipped fighting force ever assembled, from taking your rights is beyond laughable. To what end, then, do we allow the continued legality and existence of that kind of weaponry among our citizens?

      • William Hale

        Truth be told, I am not a gun owner, nor do I plan on becoming one. HOWEVER, the combined manpower of EVERY branch of the US military combined is around 1 Million people. The number of REGISTERED (let’s not count OUT the ones who are not registered) as owning a HANDGUN..(the one firearm that almost every state requires a registration for) is OVER 100 Million people. So, though the US Armed Forces may have superior firepower, they are outnumbered by 100 to 1. In a war of attrition the citizenry would most definitely win out.

        This is not even taking into account surveys done that show well over half the men and women enlisted in the US Armed Services would refuse a command to fire on American Citizens.

        I am personaly a pacifist, but I do know a faulty, un researched argument when I see one.

        The Fact is, while I may personaly be a pacifist, I have NO right telling anyone else they can not own a weapon to defend themself….or for ANY other reason so long as they cause no harm or injury to another person. At which point the ownership of a weapon is moot because they will have indeed committed a crime in harming another human being.

        • Christian

          Yes, while the Armed Forces IS outnumbered by gun-owners, gun-owners aren’t trained to fight. They aren’t out-fitted with superior technology. And in the event of a coup d’etat-like full-on riot, the military would have to shoot.

      • Mark Glaeser

        Just as you can’t yell “fire” in a theatre, you can’t shoot your neighbor. That’s called murder. There are already laws against murder.

        Just because I have a gun, does that mean I am a murderer? Or shall we silence your voice so you won’t yell “Fire”.

        Suppose there really is a fire? By all means yell, fire!

        Suppose I am the subject of a home invasion? By all means, shoot to kill!

      • Jason Smarcolm

        Irish wrote:

        “Were it not for an ‘activist judicial system,’ it would still be illegal in parts of this country for blacks and whites to go to school together, for interracial couples to marry, and for women to vote.”

        That’s absolute crap. You have absolutely no way to prove such nonsense. Perhaps it would have taken a longer amount of time, but what you wrote is patently false.

        “When our laws circumvent basic principles of fairness and compassion, then they themselves should be circumvented.” And there’s legal constitutional ways of doing so.

        Useless dribble.

  • Jason The Saj

    “Putting more guns out there can only result in more people getting shot.”

    First off, that is inaccurate. Second of all, I’m not concerned about whether more people get shot. Just whether the right people get shot.

    I do not car if rapists, murderers, muggers, or despots get shot. I do care about whether fathers, mothers and children, whether good citizens, whether I or those I love – get shot!

  • Dave G

    Guns aren’t the problem, it’s bullets (…and misuse by certain incautious people)

  • Spongekill

    Putting more guns out there can only result in more people getting shot.

    • Dan Beaulieu

      #1. Where did he say in the article that we should put more guns out there?

      #2. Do you think a criminal is more likely to ( A.) Pull a gun out and rob a dozen unarmed people or ( B.) Pull a gun out and rob a dozen armed people? Lets be smart now.

    • ARepentantYankeeLivingInOccupiedAlabama

      Even giving you that point (which I don’t as Dan argues about deterrent above) at least some of the people being shot will be the ones instituting the violence. “He who lives by the sword….”

    • Okay Stupid. You be the first to put a big sign on your front door which says “We do not believe in guns. NO guns in this home,” and see how long it is before you get robbed or shot by a criminal with an illegal gun!!!!