NSALM 23

The overlord is the NSA,
I shall be watched,
Thou maketh lies to Congress,Misleadeth me on quiet matters
Thou hoardeth data thy stole
NSA hideth me from my rights past
for fear’s sake.
Even though I browse through the darkest of nets,I will fear thy evil,
For thou are watching me,
Abroad or home thy staff,
they watcheth me. 

Thou prepares an exploit for me,
presenting me as enemies,
Thou decrypt my phone with toil,
Thy datacenter overflows,Surely thy malice and eyes
will follow me all of the day,
all of my life,
and I will be monitored in my house by the NSA
FOREVER 

Published in: on December 31, 2013 at 5:53 pm  Leave a Comment  

Despite headlines we’re safer than ever….

But what do the experts cite as the reason?

“shifts in the crack cocaine market, which drove many 1990s-era murders; an increase in the number of offenders behind bars; the country’s aging population; and more sophisticated policing for the declines”

Pretty much the kitchen sink and everything but the increase in firearm ownership and carry permits. Just saying…

http://www.cnn.com/2013/08/23/justice/random-killings/index.html?hpt=hp_t2

***

PAGunBlog.com also mentioned that the CDC’s report on guns for President Obama is done. Don’t expect the President to mention it much though. The result basically is that there was a ration of of 1:1.6+ ration of gun crimes vs guns used in self-defense.

I am pretty sure to quote ol’ Ben Kenobi “These are not the statistics the President was looking for.”

http://www.pagunblog.com/2013/08/22/the-science-is-in/

Published in: on August 23, 2013 at 3:43 pm  Leave a Comment  
Tags: , ,

SWB – Science while Black

“Science while Black” ??? 

Apparently a student who was otherwise in good standing did a little science experiment. It went boom (more of a “pop” actually).  She has since been expelled, is facing felony charges (and the potential loss of her 2nd Amendment rights), and now will have to get her diploma through an expulsion program.

While perhaps it was a breach of wisdom. It seems our zero tolerance policies have left our societ a bunch of blithering idiots. How many of us didn’t use the school field for a few experiments of our own? How many launched model rockets in their school playground fields?

http://blogs.miaminewtimes.com/riptide/2013/04/florida_teen_girl_charged_with.php

Police incident report http://blogs.miaminewtimes.com/riptide/2013/05/florida_school_responds_to_cri.php?page=2

While I’m not sure how much race actually played in this, I will say that it is often the case that minorities do get less “benefit of the doubt”. And I do wonder if the skin tone had been different, would she merely be facing a 1-2 day suspension or reprimand. Not felony charges?

It’d be different if the student had shown persistent signs of being a trouble maker. And this came off malicious. But the feedback from even the principal was that this was not the case.  How many of us nerds did something in our high school days that pushed boundaries a little. Isn’t that part of “nerd culture”.

***

I did find it interesting how many comments on Slashdot mentioned doing the same experiment in school. With many mentioning their professors actually did this experiment in class.

Yes, curiousity can kill the cat. There should be some chastisement.  But does everything have to be a felony these days?

Note, this experiment from what I can tell is not really what I’d consider an “explosive device” and with a good lawyer, could probably get that charge dropped. It’s mostly a pressure in a bottle experiment. Not too different from dropping in a bunch of dry ice and sealing a water bottle. And watching as the dry ice sublimes into gas and increases pressure until the bottle ruptures. (The result being a slightly more intense version of jumping on and popping a juice box.)

Published in: on May 2, 2013 at 9:30 am  Leave a Comment  
Tags: ,

Tragedy, not far from my old home…CT

Dear readers,

I have held off writing about the Newtown shooting for a variety of reasons. First off, as a former Connecticut resident, it hits close to home.  I did not know any of the victims, but I may eventually discover a friend or family member may have. Second, emotions are high, and we need some time to reflect and to heal. 

Remember, when you want to have a reasonable discussion, and make rational decisions, you do NOT do that when your emotions are high.  However, I do have some thoughts I want to share:

To Teachers, who are wondering “what can I do to help make my kids safe?”

It is sad that we even have to discuss such things. But as teachers you’re in a potential target zone. You and your children. Plan accordingly… the following are a few strategies. None of these are full proof. They simply provide an improved chance of survival.

  • Have a means of barricading door.  Preferably something beyond a merely locked door knob which may be forced open. My recommendation to school systems looking to implement such affordably is to drill a hole in the cement floors and cut 10″ long piece of rebar. During an emergency lock-down, teachers would be instructed to insert the steel rod in the hole. This would make it very difficult to force open a door.
     
  • Erect a bookcase in an area that can shield you and your students. While far from full proof, a large quantity of paper has been known to stop many bullets. With most handgun rounds being stopped under 8″. Even the 5.56 round used in an M16 might be stopped by 8″ of paper. If the perpetrator is unable to get into the classroom and shooting through a wall. A shelf of books may be the difference between life and death.

    The Box of Truth did some demonstrations on the effectiveness of paper.
    http://www.theboxotruth.com/docs/bot31.htm

  • Consider placement of aquariums as well. Particularly plexiglass ones (as glass will merely shatter). Water impede most rounds. And a large 55 gallon aquarium could provide an additional barrier to hide behind. A large bookshelf with a 55 gallon aquarium on the other side could provide a formidable barrier to projectiles.Box of Truth demonstrations on water
    http://www.theboxotruth.com/docs/bot13.htm
    http://www.theboxotruth.com/docs/bot19.htm
  • Keep a couple cases of paper in your room. Hand out two reams each and have your students place them over their hearts or heads. (Or their textbooks.) Yes it may seem silly. But aquarium + bookshelf + reams of paper/books over the heart or head may very well be what keeps a student alive.
     
  • If allowed, carry pepper spray. Probably not allowed most schools. Consider aerosol sprays (cleaning agents, etc).  It is a lot easier to overcome an individual who is trying to break through a classroom door immediately after they’ve been sprayed in the face. I won’t say hornet spray, but seriously…while totally illegal. I don’t think there is an American in this country who’d object to a teacher using such to keep their students safe.
     
  • Keep softball bat in a classroom cabinet/locker.
     
  • If you have fire extinguishers in your room, grab it and be ready. It’s not much, but it can be used to spray, blind and confuse an attacker.  It also works as a blunt weapon for bludgeoning.
     
  • Firehoses are fairly powerful, I wouldn’t want to face a gun wielder with one. But I would prefer to face him with a hose over nothing at all. If you can be set up around a corner, and hit in the attacler in the face it may give 2-3 of you enough time to tackle and disarm him.
     
  • I don’t think anyone would mind you praying under those circumstances.
     
  • Keep your wits, look at what tools are available to you. This last one may be the single greatest asset you have available to you. But remember, our wits function better when they’ve had time to think and plan in advance.

All of these options are poor. I admit that. But they can increase the odds of a teacher keeping their kids safe, and should be considered.  I wish no one had to think about them. But by thinking now, having a plan, you are far more likely to keep your kids safe.

We Are Losing the War on Terror

The 11th anniversary of 9-11 passed this month. It was further bittered by another attack on Americans. I did not blog about 9-11 because I am very torn with regards to it.

Essentially, 10 years later I am more sorrowful. Not as much as I was 11 years ago when 9-11 transpired just an hour or so from my home. But I will say that I am far more discouraged at the 11th anniversary than I was at the 1st anniversary.

This recent article is part of why. The article details the growing influence that Iran has in Iraq. And from a quick read you can gather fairly easily that Iraq is likely to become another Iranian puppet state like Syria and Libya.

All that money, and all those precious lives, expended on the war in Iraq – for what?

We failed to bring real stability, we failed to rebuild a thriving infrastructure like with did in Germany, Japan and Korea. And I believe in part that is due to the fact that we balked on spending $$$ to build and wound up spending even more on a prolonged conflict.

Now we read about our troops in Afghanistan going on needless patrols only to be blown to bits. Gaining no terroritory, accomplishing nothing…

I wager any Vietnam veterans reading these recent accounts of futile patrols in Afghanistan are crying. Because they know how painful it is to lose a friend, but how much more painful it is to lose that friend needlessly and without purpose.

But even if Aghanistan and Iraq are chalked in history as failures. That’s not the true proof that we lost this war. The real proof we lost the war on terror is the TSA.

Everyday thousands of Americans and their children are subjected to invasive searches and seizures. Checkpoints in which bodies are groped, fondled, and handled in ways that’d land a priest in jail. And this is tolerated…along with the trampling of numerous other civil liberties. All in the name of freedom safety. A safety most will affirm is merely theater.

Are we REALLY afraid that a passenger plane will be hijacked and used as a bomb again? I’m not. I know if anyone attempted to hijack an American passenger plane, those Americans on board would rise up and subdue their hijackers; dying if necessary, to keep us safe.

If it ever happens again, it will not be a passenger plane. Rather, it will be a cargo plane such as those used by UPS or FedEx. A plane with nothing but a 2-3 man crew to be overcomed. And even that I believe is unlikely.

Meanwhile, what scares the crap out of me is how easy it would be to sail a 25 ft boat from West Africa or Indonesia into Baltimore, NY, Miami, San Francisco or San Diego harbor and go BOOM!!!

The lack of a nuke or dirty bomb is pretty much the only thing preventing America’s enemies from accomplishing such a strategy. So while we waste billions on security theater in our airports. The real threat and danger lurks. If there is anywhere that needs money, it’s the U.S. Coast Guard and U.S. Border Patrol.

The Coast Guard with it’s aging ships is in desperate need of new tools to do their job and keep us safe. I’d argue they’re more important than the U.S. Navy at the moment. A 25 ft sailboat with a dirty bomb is a far greater threat than a surface engagement with another superpower like Russia or China.

Frankly, I would like to see Congress to authorized a new light drone carrier for the Coast Guard so they can run drones up and down the coast line monitoring for suspicious activity or radiological signals. Equip their vessels with anti-submarine warfare equipment. As recent articles have pointed to increased use of such equipment by drug cartels to smuggle contraband into our nation.

These simple actions are “no brainers”, that Congress apparently is unable to contemplate. And why I fear that one day, we may see a tragedy that makes 9-11 pale in comparison unless we wise up.

But so far, it sure looks like we’re losing the “War on Terror”. Yes, we got Saddam. Yes we got Osama bin Laden. But we’re losing Afghanistan, Iraq, and American Liberty.

***

I know that some will be offended by my accusation that we are losing the war on terror. Please, do not take that as a desire on my part to do so. But rather calling into question the failed strategies and implementations. And the fact that we are paying an exceedingly high price in liberty to gain a miniscule amount of safety.

SEMPER PARATUS

Great article on a Haitian who was rescued by the U.S. Coast Guard, now about to graduate from the U.S. Coast Guard Academy.  Going from rescuee to rescuer.  His tale almost sounds like it could be the makings of a movie.

http://news.yahoo.com/coast-guard-grad-rescued-sea-boy-162002706.html

I was in fact a cadet in the Coast Guard Academy in New London, Connecticut when the Haitian & Cuban rescue operations were taking place.  Many do not realize the labor and work that the smaller older Navy of the United States puts in every day.  Coast Guardsmen have served in all the major wars and conflicts. They also are there conducting rescues, maintaining navigable waters, and preserving the environment.

Viewing this article I am reminded of my own time aboard the Cutter Eagle, the same uniforms, hooded sweat shirts, my own climb up the mast….the adventure and pride of serving in one of the few military services in the world that actually serves saving lives not just taking them.  

Sadly, not anywhere near as glorius on the TV screen, the Coast Guard often operates on a meager budget with aging ships.  Now their role is more important than ever, protecting our coastline from terrorist threats.  If there is a place in our defense budget where we should be dumping funds, it’s the U.S.  Coast Guard.

SEMPER PARATUS

 

#nraam Thank You

Dear St. Louis,

Thank you for hosting us and providing us a place to enjoy ourselves.

To all my readers, you’re why I blog, thank you for all the likes, shares and followings. I hope you’ve enjoyed our coverage.

This concludes our coverage of the 2012 NRA Annual Meeting.

Sincerely,
The N.U.G.U.N. Blog

A Real Act of Valor

Spc. Dennis Weichel, 29 of Providence, RI commits an act of selflessness and nobility to save a small Afghan child.  If we had more people in the world like this, we’d need less soldiers.

It’s a shame this is over-shadowed by the negativity of another fraudlulent soldier, not to be named, who murdered innocents.

In a month of tragedy, where we I have to see the picture of a 7 year old girl’s smil that the world will neve see. It is nice to know that elsewhere in the world, a small girl’s smile will continue to be seen because one man who showed “Greater Love”

“Greater love has no one than this, than to lay down one’s life for his friends.” [John 15:13]

And yet it is still heartbreaking. Dennis Weichel was a father of three. How does a mother tell her children that they have no daddy, because he saved a little girl halfway around the world. Will they understand?  Someday perhaps… and perhaps they’ll take solace in the fact that their daddy was a true hero.

Godspeed Dennis Weichel…

 Article
http://security.blogs.cnn.com/2012/03/28/us-soldier-dies-saving-afghan-girl/?hpt=hp_bn13

On humanity, murder, manslaughter, and unintended deaths.

Costa Concordia and the duty of Captains

I spent a good portion of my youth out on the water. I attended a special high school in which we built boats in shop class and went out rowing and sailing. Our core class curriculum including a course on Piloting and getting our Safe Boating Certificate.

I also had the opportunity to crew on board a 90 ft traditional wooden Schooner (and a 60 ft ketch). Safety of the passengers was always the foremost responsibility of the crew.

Reading about the Costa Concordia incident initially filled me with frustration and anger – and still does. For a captain and crew to abandon their passengers is a most heinous crime.

There is no doubt that Captain Schettino was craven in his duties. And sadly, this seems to be the historical case when it concerns cruise liner officers.

I myself have been a member of crew on a passenger vessel that ran aground. While our incident had very minimal risk, we’d merely run afoul on a sandy bottom and we were within a mile of a Coast Guard station. We sent our runabout to drop an anchor on the deep side and push on the shallow, winching ourselves the inch or two we need to set float again.

But I’ll never forget that day, nor how infuriated the 1st mate was at the captain. Who was foremost at fault. In thinking back to this tail, it made me reflect on the whole ordeal.

The captain who ran us aground was a nice man. He was one of our relief captains. He was easy going, very friendly and never yelled. But he was not of the same caliber as our other captains. On one occasion he left the wheel unattended to chat with a passenger. And we’ve already mentioned that he ran us aground.

Thinking back on this, caused me to reflect a little further regarding Captain Schettino. I think God was just trying to remind me of my own humanity and failures, and that he still loves me inspite of myself. And I started to mourn for Captain Schettino.

I am still affirmed in my belief that he was craven and grossly negligent. But I also pity the man. He was probably the type of Captain that just liked to have fun, who enjoyed seeing his passengers have a good time. Right now, he is enduring a nightmare of a captain’s greatest fears.

Captain Schettino is on house arrest, and hopefully also under a suicide watch. He is dealing with having lost his ship, the death of passengers, accusations of marital infidelity, and the knowledge that he was craven. That’s not an easy face to wake up to and look at in the mirror every morning. It’s one of those events where you wake up every morning hoping it was just a dream. That it was all imagined…but it wasn’t, it is real.

There is a difference between negligence and cravenness versus a “goblin” of a predator. And I think I had to remember that. I have little sympathy for the man who goes out preying on others, robbing, raping, murderering his fellow beings with deliberate and conscious thought. That is wholly evil. Where as failure is not wholly evil, if anything, it’s quite human. No, it’s far from the noble and decent aspects of humanity. But it’s not the same as the evilness of a criminal predator.

This is why in our laws we have distinctions for causing the death of another human being.

We firstly, look at pre-meditated murder as being the most heinous. This is an act in which one has carefully thought out with determination the taking of another’s life either with specific deliberation or with causality of action (a armed robber engages in his activities with pre-meditated knowledge that they may kill their victim, hence being armed).

Second, we view those acts of passion. The man who comes home to see his wife with another man and in a passionate rage beats the man to death. These we understand the motivation, but convict on the failure of the individual to allow human rationality to control his base animal insticts.

Next we view gross negligence. This is where one’s actions were foolish and led to the death of others. We term this manslaughter as opposed to murder. This includes drunk driving and the events surrounding Captain Schettino. Essentially, as I view it. The deaths were unintended but also avoidable. That is the defining aspect for me.

Lastly, we have two categories. The accidental death without negligence, such as a skateboarder trying to cut through traffic and being hit and killed by a driver of a car. The determination being made that the driver could not have avoided the situation by any reasonable actions of their own. And the other being a justified act of self defense, in which the individual took the life of another in order to prevent grave harm and/or death to themselves.

So while I am angry with Captain Schettino and his negligence causing the deaths of dozens of passengers. I also feel and mourn for this man who’s life is ruined and who will never be able to look into the mirror. Because this wasn’t an evil man, just a weak one.

“Christianity and Self-Defense” Guns and Faith: A Two Part Series

The following post is inspired by a recent comment, which touched upon faith and guns. Always interesting how koincidence works, as Eric Shelton of the Handgun Podcast recently was discussing this issue as well.

In fact, a large portion of this post is derived from notes written back in 2008 for a podcast that never happened. Eric Shelton, Kenn Blanchard, Mick McCart & myself had bounced around the idea of doing a show that focused on “faith and guns”.

So how do firearms & self-defense fit in within the faith of Christianity?

QUESTION I: Doesn’t the 10 Commandments say “not to kill”

Many will point out the passage in Exodus 20:13 “Thou shalt not kill.” Wouldn’t this alone preclude any role of firearms within the life of a Christian?

Of the nearly 50 uses of this word ratsach in the Bible, only five are translated “kill”, most are translated as slayer or murderer.

The word can be used for “kill”, but has a very strong connotation with “murder” and/or “manslaughter”. In the Book of Numbers, the passage describes the judgment and distinction between one who lies in wait to vs one who without deliberate malice or premeditation kills his fellow man.

For the latter, a provision is given, a city of refuge. A safe haven for which one guilty of manslaughter may remain and be safe from the “avenger of blood”. However, for one who murders, no such providence is given. It is interesting to note that there is in fact a role of the “avenger of blood”. A role which is incompatible with an interpretation of “though shalt not kill” in the broadest sense as opposed to thou shalt not murder. Furthermore, why would there be a provision of a city of refuge if any killing of a fellow man was wrong. That interpretation would condemn accidental manslaughter. If an individual dressed in black jumped in front of your car at night, you’d be condemned under such an interpretation. That is why most rabbinical scholars believe the law to be more aptly translated “thou shalt not murder”.

Furthermore, there are in fact instances in which God commanded the Israelites to kill. These included certain breaches of laws, and certain tribes. Some have struggled with understanding why God instructed the Israelites on rare occasion to wipe out their enemies, every man, woman, child, and beast. It’s a hard pill to swallow along with a belief in a loving Creator God. The understanding that I have, is that in those rare instances, it was because that particular tribe was infected with disease. And it was to ensure that the disease did not spread. Similar to having to put down a pet because of rabies or feline leukemia – it doesn’t mean you don’t love the pet. But you know they’re going to die anyways, and letting them live may harm others.

So what do we come away from this understanding?

MURDER is WRONG

Murder being an unjustified killing, by one lying in wait, with deliberation. Society was instructed to put these sort of people to death. Our society at present suffers, because we have to great a tolerance for such individuals. Even if you oppose the death penalty, all should agree that such individuals should never be released back into society to repeat their crimes.

QUESTION II: What does Scripture say about self-defense?

Exodus 22:2 “If the thief is found breaking in, and he is struck so that he dies, there shall be no guilt for his bloodshed.”

This would appear to be very straightforward. Call it God’s recognition of Castle Doctrine; now if only the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania would recognize such a fundamental truth. Defending your home is not viewed as a guilt upon the defender.

There are some other aspects to this rule depending on whether it’s day or night. Essentially, at night one could deem any such theft a threat. Where as during the day, there was some obligation as to whether the individual was indeed a threat before one could be justified in killing them.

Genesis 4:23-24 reads “Then Lamech said to his wives: “Adah and Zillah, hear my voice; Wives of Lamech, listen to my speech! For I have killed a man for wounding me, Even a young man for hurting me. If Cain shall be avenged sevenfold, Then Lamech seventy-sevenfold.” (NKJV)

Lamech was clearly not at his abode. He was out and about when he encountered a young man who wounded him. Lamech defended himself, which lead to the other man’s death. Scripture seems to make it clear that defending ones self, both in and out of the home, is not viewed as a condemnable event.

Nehemiah 4:17-18 “Those who built on the wall, and those who carried burdens, loaded themselves so that with one hand they worked at construction, and with the other held a weapon. Every one of the builders had his sword girded at his side as he built.”

QUESTION III: Can I use force to protect others?

Genesis 14:13 “And when Abram heard that his brother was taken captive, he armed his trained servants, born in his own house, three hundred and eighteen, and pursued them…”

Abraham, the gang buster. Okay, so don’t try this unless you happen to have a small private army. Abraham utilized force in order to retrieve his nephew.

1Samuel 17 “And David said unto Saul, Thy servant kept his father’s sheep, and there came a lion, and a bear, and took a lamb out of the flock….he LORD that delivered me out of the paw of the lion, and out of the paw of the bear, he will deliver me out of the hand of this Philistine. “

Why is this interesting?

Because in the Psalms David praises God for giving him the skills to do so. Psalm 144:1 reads “A Psalm of David. Blessed be the LORD my strength, which teacheth my hands to war, and my fingers to fight:”

In fact, the Bible even teaches about “reloads” in 1 Samuel 17:40 “[David] chose five smooth stones out of the brook, and put them in a shepherd’s bag”. He knew Goliath had four other brothers. He carried reloads.

QUESTION IV: But I’m a Christian. That’s all Old Testament…don’t we worship the God of the New Testament?

First off, there is a poor mis-conception in Christianity that God is somehow different. Hate to break it to you, but He is one and the same God. While certain passages may be difficult to comprehend. Realize that the Old Testament repeatedly documents mercy, forgiveness, kindness and love. Just read the Book of Jonah. In which a prophet who despises a mean neighboring nation is informed by God that he loves and cares for them. And wants to have mercy on them. And just read some of judgments in the New Testament be it from Revelation or the deaths of Anais and Saphira. God never got out of the judment business. Rather, he offered everyone a pardon if they chose to take it.

But let’s look at some of the passages in the New Testament…

The most challenging of the passages is found in Matthew chapter 5.

“You have heard that it was said, ‘Love your neighbor and hate your enemy’. But I tell you: Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you”

This is the same chapter that says “Do not resist an evil person. If someone strikes you on the right cheek, turn to him the other also.”

Let’s address that first, because that is a far easier passage to deal with. First off, the offense here is not one of mortal danger. Rather, it is one of insult. Akin to the Renaissance period where one might remove their glove and slap another man across the face.

“evil” [pone-ros] – annoyances, of a bad nature, bad in an ethical sense, evil wicked

We are instructed to offer the other cheek. And frankly, anyone who carries concealed needs to take this passage to heart. Many a man has found himself in a brawl because he chose to protect his pride and ego. Men have both died and killed for personal insult. If you choose to carry a firearm, you need to set the ego aside.

Regarding pride and insult. To be slapped across the face is not a matter of self-defense; rather it is a matter of insult. And it is wrong to kill a man for merely insulting you.

QUESTION V: Aren’t Christians opposed to the use of force?

Luke 22:36 reads “Then He said to them, “But now, he who has a money bag, let him take it, and likewise a knapsack; and he who has no sword, let him sell his garment and buy one”

Or to modernize that passage…

“But now, he who has a wallet, let him take it, and likewise a backpack; and he who has no gun, let him sell his garment and buy a Glock.”

This was an admonition directly from the mouth of Jesus, to his disciples, to take a sword. The disciples responded:

Luke 22:38 “So they said, “Lord, look, here are two swords.” And He said to them, “It is enough.” Why would he have instructed the disciples to bear swords. If he did not understand the need for self-defense.

To answer the question of What Would Jesus Do? Was Christ totally opposed to the use of force?  Would Jesus have advocated the use of force against criminals and predators?  I’ll let you decide…

John 2:14-15 “And He found in the temple those who sold oxen and sheep and doves, and the money changers doing business. When He had made a whip of cords, He drove them all out of the temple, with the sheep and the oxen, and poured out the changers’ money and overturned the tables.”

At a minimum, this is pretty de facto evidence for the use of non-lethal force.

WARNINGS & CAUTIONS ABOUT ARMS

“don’t instigate”

Matthew 26:52 “But Jesus said to him, “Put your sword in its place, for all who take the sword will perish by the sword. Or do you think that I cannot now pray to My Father, and He will provide Me with more than twelve legions of angels? But if I did, how would the Scriptures be fulfilled that describe what must happen now?”

First off, in this very passage, we receive the answer for their putting down of swords. This event was pre-destined to occur. It had to happen that way.

The second aspect “of perishing by the sword” may actually refer to that given moment being a warning to both sides not to take up arms or it would result in their deaths. Let us take a broader scope of the words as a statement that “violence begets violence”. One must take not that the situation at hand was one of Peter instigating violence. Peter initiated an attack, when his life had not been threatened. This is a very important insight. One should not go looking for trouble nor instigate violence, such will get you killed.

If you decide to walk into a gang ridden neighborhood and starting shoot drug dealers, you’re probably going to get yourself killed.

“don’t be rash, be merciful and understanding”

Proverbs 6:30 says “Men do not despise a thief, if he steal to satisfy his soul when he is hungry”, while it goes on to say that such a man is obligated to restore 7 fold. There are different types of crimes. There are those in which a man is merely a predator preying upon the weak and unsuspecting. Pure unadulterated evil. And there are those of desperation. Stealing of food to feed one’s starving family.

They are not the same soul. When I was young, some one broke into our basement and robbed us. It occurred a few weeks before Christmas. They stole nearly $200 in meat and food from our freezer. But they left my bicycle and numerous other items untouched.

Were I to catch such a criminal, I would not shoot them. I’d probably tell them to come back tomorrow, I have some work for them to do. If they come, I’ll give them some more food, and they can work off what they stole so that their conscience can be clean.

“an unarmed nation”

Judges 5:8 “They chose new gods; Then there was war in the gates; Not a shield or spear was seen among forty thousand in Israel.”

Interesting that one of the criticisms that God levied against Israel in the above passage was a failure of the people to be armed and ready to defend themselves.

America must be careful that we do not find ourselves in a situation where a firearm cannot be found amongst 40,000 people.

Final thoughts from a personal perspective. I’ve always been pro-gun, but for the longest time I did not own a firearm. I am pretty affirmed in my faith, and I saw little reason to trade my life for anothers. Especially one who I believe might really need some salvation (ie: murderer). But when I became a husband and a father the perspective changed. Now it was not just my life, but the life of my loved ones that I had need to protect. It was time for me to own a gun.

Read more about that here

*****

An Interesting Aside…two of my favorite quotes come from Ghandi. One is about christianity and the other about guns:

“I like your Christ, I do not like your Christians. Your Christians are so unlike your Christ.” – Mahatma Ghandi

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

Lastly, there is a passage in Scripture that talks about seeing wrong doing, and doing nothing about it being wrong. I can’t remember the verse reference. If anyone recalls it, please email to me. Thank you.

Here is an additional perspective on the matter. I discovered it after writing my post. But I believe the author came to similar conclusions as to myself.

Published in: on February 16, 2011 at 11:21 pm  Comments (6)  
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