Quotes

No freeman shall ever be debarred the use of arms.” — Thomas Jefferson

Who are the militia? Are they not ourselves? Is it feared, then, that we shall turn our arms each man gainst his own bosom. Congress have no power to disarm the militia. Their swords, and every other terrible implement of the soldier, are the birthright of an American…[T]he unlimited power of the sword is not in the hands of either the federal or state governments, but, where I trust in God it will ever remain, in the hands of the people.” — Tenche Cox

Besides the advantage of being armed, which the Americans possess over the people of almost every other nation, the existence of subordinate governments, to which the people are attached, and by which the militia officers are appointed, forms a barrier against the enterprises of ambition, more insurmountable than any which a simple government of any form can admit of. Notwithstanding the military establishments in the several kingdoms of Europe, which are carried as far as the public resources will bear, the governments are afraid to trust the people with arms.” — James Madison

Before a standing army can rule, the people must be disarmed; as they are in almost every kingdom in Europe. The supreme power in America cannot enforce unjust laws by the sword; because the whole body of the people are armed, and constitute a force superior to any band of regular troops that can be, on any pretence, raised in the United States. A military force, at the command of Congress, can execute no laws, but such as the people perceive to be just and constitutional; for they will possess the power, and jealousy will instantly inspire the inclination, to resist the execution of a law which appears to them unjust and oppressive.” — Noah Webster

The people are not to be disarmed of their weapons. They are left in full posession of them.” — Zachariah Johnson

And that the said Constitution be never construed to authorize Congress to infringe the just liberty of the Press, or the rights of Conscience; or to prevent the people of the United States, who are peaceable citizens, from keeping their own arms;…” — Samuel Adams

To preserve liberty, it is essential that the whole body of the people always possess arms and be taught alike, especially when young, how to use them.” — Richard Henry Lee

The constitutions of most of our States assert, that all power is inherent in the people; that they may exercise it by themselves, in all cases to which they think themselves competent, (as in electing their functionaries executive and legislative, and deciding by a jury of themselves, in all judiciary cases in which any fact is involved,) or they may act by representatives, freely and equally chosen; that it is their right and duty to be at all times armed; that they are entitled to freedom of person, freedom of religion, freedom of property, and freedom of the press.” — Thomas Jefferson

“Law enforcement agencies and personnel have no duty to protect individuals from the criminal acts of others; instead, their duty is to preserve the peace and arrest lawbreakers for the protection of the general public.” Lynch v. N.C. Department Of Justice, 376 S.E. 2nd 247 (N.C. App. 1989)

“Resistance to sudden violence, for the preservation not only of my person, my limbs, and life, but of my property, is an indisputable right of nature which I have never surrendered to the public by the compact of society, and which perhaps, I could not surrender if I would.”– John Adams – Boston Gazette, Sept. 5, 1763

“In these sentiments, Sir, I agree to this Constitution, with all its faults, — if they are such; because I think a general Government necessary for us, and there is no form of government but what may be a blessing to the people, if well administered; and I believe, farther, that this is likely to be well administered for a course of years, and can only end in despotism, as other forms have done before it, when the people shall become so corrupted as to need despotic government, being incapable of any other.” – Benjamen Franklin, Speech to the Constitutional Convention (178706-28)

They who can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety.” – Benjamin Franklin, Feb 17, 1775

“The right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed – this may be considered as the palladium of liberty. The right of self defense is the first law of nature. In most governments it has been the study of rulers to abridge this right with the narrowest limits. Where ever standing armies are kept up & the right of the people to bear arms is by any means or under any colour whatsoever prohibited, liberty, if not already annihilated is in danger of being so. In England the people have been disarmed under the specious pretext of preserving the game. By the alluring idea, the landed aristocracy have been brought to side with the Court in a measure evidently calculated to check the effect of any ferment which the measures of government may produce in the minds of the people. The Game laws are a [consolation?] for the government, a rattle for the gentry, and a rack for the nation.” – St. George Tucker

“You don’t ever want a crisis to go to waste; it’s an opportunity to do important things that you would otherwise avoid” – Rahm Emanuel, Via Jonah Goldberg

We’re going to have to take one step at a time, and the first step is necessarily — given the political realities — going to be very modest. . . . [W]e’ll have to start working again to strengthen that law, and then again to strengthen the next law, and maybe again and again. Right now, though, we’d be satisfied not with half a loaf but with a slice. Our ultimate goal — total control of handguns in the United States — is going to take time. . . . The first problem is to slow down the number of handguns being produced and sold in this country. The second problem is to get handguns registered. The final problem is to make possession of all handguns and all handgun ammunition-except for the military, police, licensed security guards, licensed sporting clubs, and licensed gun collectors-totally illegal.”

Richard Harris, A Reporter at Large: Handguns, New Yorker, July 26, 1976, at 53, 58 (quoting Pete Shields, founder of Handgun Control, Inc.) (boldface added, italics in original).

“Gun control? It’s the best thing you can do for crooks and gangsters. I want you to have nothing. If I’m a bad guy, I’m always gonna have a gun.” – Salvatore “Sammy The Bull” Gravano, mafia hit man

A strong body makes the mind strong. As to the species of exercises, I advise the gun. While this gives moderate exercise to the body, it gives boldness, enterprise and independence to the mind. Games played with the ball, and others of that nature, are too violent for the body and stamp no character on the mind. Let your gun therefore be the constant companion of your walk.” – Thomas Jefferson, Foley, ed., Encyclopedia of Thomas Jefferson, p. 318.

Today, we need a nation of Minutemen, citizens who are not only prepared to take arms, but citizens who regard the preservation of freedom as the basic purpose of their daily life and who are willing to consciously work and sacrifice for that freedom.” – John F. Kennedy

A system of licensing and registration is the perfect device to deny gun ownership to the bourgeoisie.” — Vladimir Ilyich Lenin

“Every day, 550 rapes, 1100 murders, and 5200 other violent crimes are prevented just by showing a gun; in less than 0.9% of these instances is the gun ever actually fired… and yet, a key element in American society that never goes away is gun control. Why? …because fear sells.” -Kenn Blanchard, blackmanwithagun.com

“I only wish I had had a gun rather than a camera.” – Sebastian D’Souza, a picture editor on the Mumbai Mirror who took some of the dramatic pictures of the assault on the Chhatrapati Shivaji railway station, who was angered to find India’s armed police taking cover and apparently failing to engage the gunmen.

Among the many misdeeds of British rule in India,” Mahatma Gandhi said, “history will look upon the act depriving a whole nation of arms as the blackest.

You cannot invade the mainland United States. There would be a rifle behind every blade of grass.” – WWII Japanese Naval Commander-in-Chief Isoroku Yamamoto

“The Second Amendment protects an individual right to possess a firearm unconnected with service in a militia, and to use that arm for traditionally lawful purposes, such as self-defense within the home.” Heller v. D.C. – June 26, 2008

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