God and guns are what our country was founded upon. Any new student of the Revolutionary period quickly learns that. They are what keep us strong, or what should keep us strong. They are there for our defense.
God and guns were so important to our founders that they established our protection to exercise them in the first two amendments to our Constitution – the uninhibited and unrestricted freedom to choose our own religion and bear our own firearms.
But, more and more, these pillars of American life and liberty are being attacked and abandoned, not only out of sheer bias but ignorance of our founders, the Revolutionary period and our Constitution. Instead, these pivotal American rights have become the brunt end of cultural jokes and are often regarded as biased lifestyle components of “rednecks” and rural citizens.
For example, gone but not forgotten is even President Obama’s partiality on the campaign trail in April 2008. You might recall, at a private California fundraiser, when he addressed the economic hardships of those in Pennsylvania, he quipped: “You go into some of these small towns in Pennsylvania, and like a lot of small towns in the Midwest, the jobs have been gone now for 25 years and nothing’s replaced them. … And it’s not surprising then they get bitter, they cling to guns or religion … as a way to explain their frustrations.”
Presently, with the Supreme Court back in session, and new justice Sonia Sotomayor’s narrow view of the Second Amendment, gun rights are back again on the docket. Two weeks ago, concerning a case out of Chicago, the justices agreed to rule on whether the Second Amendment gives Americans a constitutional right to keep and bear arms that is enforceable against local and state gun laws.
And with two more justices likely on the edge of retirement, the more than 90 million firearm bearers in this country have a right to be concerned. No wonder some are calling the gun issue the new abortion.
The indifference, lack of education about and passion for all of our Bill of Rights gravely concerns me. And while there is nothing funny about it, it is one of many reasons why roughly one-fifth of the 101 short stories are “freedom” entries in my new book, “The Official Chuck Norris Fact Book,” a fun yet inspirational and educational book in which I share my 101 favorite Chuck Norris facts – embedded within five core values: freedom, family, faith, fitness and fight. (Released on Nov. 1, it is now available for pre-order via Amazon for less than $8, and proceeds from which go to help KickStartKids).
Last column, I gave a sneak peek and example of a “Fight” entry, in which I discussed my struggle with a snake on “Walker, Texas Ranger.” This column I’d like to share an entry from my “Freedom” code. Each of the 101 entries in the book is divided into four sections: my favorite official fact, a related short story (“Let’s Be Honest”), a classic or contemporary corresponding quote (“They said it”) and my principle for life (“Chuck’s Code”), which are represented by the five “Fs” or my core values. (Next week’s example will be on “Faith” in “God and guns, Part 2.”)
Here’s “Freedom” entry No. 49 on the Second Amendment:
Official Chuck Norris Fact No. 49:
“Chuck Norris sleeps with a pillow under his gun.”
Let’s be honest …
This past year I shot (no pun intended) an NRA public service announcement [now on YouTube] in which I shared my conviction about self-defense: “If some thug breaks into my home, I could use my roundhouse kick. But I prefer he look down the barrel of my gun.”
The reason I was so adamant in that PSA is because there has been some movement in our country to get away from our Second Amendment rights. Last year, the Supreme Court even wrangled over the question, should the government allow private citizens or only public servants (“state militias”) “to keep and bear arms”?
Is someone joking? Could the 27 words of the Second Amendment be any clearer? “A well regulated militia being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms, shall not be infringed” (emphasis added).
Just because Washington, D.C., had a pistol problem (with its ban on handguns from 1976 to 2008, during which time the murder rate actually increased), the court [or government] shouldn’t penalize the rest of the country by resetting national precedent based upon a biased constitutional interpretation. The Bill of Rights either encompasses the privileges of every citizen in every amendment or none at all.
In the early days of our country, many states had gun laws that aligned with the constitutional standard. As Chief Justice John Roberts asked, “If it is limited to state militias, why would they say ‘the right of the people’? … What is reasonable about a total ban on possession?”
Thomas Jefferson similarly wrote near the end of his life in 1823, “On every question of construction [of the Constitution], carry ourselves back to the time when the Constitution was adopted, recollect the spirit manifested in the debates, and instead of trying what meaning may be squeezed out of the text, or invented against it, conform to the probable one in which it was passed.”
They said it …
“Let your gun therefore be the constant companion of your walks.”
Thomas Jefferson, in a letter to his nephew Peter Carr.
Chuck’s Code (Freedom)
The right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed.
Performing on my friend Mike Huckabee’s Fox show this past weekend, Lynyrd Skynyrd, the legendary southern band that produced hits like “Sweet Home Alabama” and “Freebird,” put it well in their new song (and album with the same title), “God and Guns”:
God and guns
Keep us strong
That’s what this country
Was founded on
Well we might as well give up and run
If we let them take our God and guns