"Criminals and tyrants—tyrants especially—beware: Lockdown is not an option at the Stevens residence, and 911 will be dialed after the security of my home has been established."
I couldn't put it any better.
That's an excerpt from Newtown, Connecticut, resident Bill Stevens' intense testimony during a recent public hearing held by the Bipartisan Task Force on Gun Violence Prevention and Children's Safety. Watch his full testimony below.
Editor's note: If you're unable to view the video, click here.
Stevens is one of many Connecticut residents from both sides of the gun-control aisle who voiced opinions during the public hearing. He stands firm in his belief that personal protection is a personal right ... and clearly a personal responsibility.
On the flip side, there are individuals such as Marty Isaac, board president of Connecticut Against Gun Violence, who believes that we should rely on the government for protection. Isaac urged the Task Force to side with him during his testimony: "Please do the right thing. Protect us. Set the bar for the rest of the nation." And when speaking about "assault-style weapons," Isaac said this: "These dangerous weapons need to be removed from our state."
There are two sides to every debate, but I'm with Stevens—100 percent.
The public discourse surrounding firearm-related crimes is constantly clouded by factors such as the physical appearance of guns, how many rounds a magazine can hold, and other off-the-mark topics that don't hit on the core issue: Every American—and every human being for that matter—deserves the inalienable right to protect their own life or the lives of loved ones. No limitations. Don't tread on me. Plain and simple. For any government official to claim they have authority to control my right to personal protection—in any way—is audacious, appalling, tyrannical and downright heinous.
Guns are tools, and they only become weapons when pathetic souls use them to commit crimes. Sometimes crimes are extremely tragic. Sometimes they're committed with cars, baseball bats, knives, bombs or guns.
Gun legislation will only serve criminals by removing or limiting the right to personal protection from innocent, law-abiding people. Introducing new gun laws in the wake of any shooting tragedy is merely emotionally and politically reactive. It's irrational to think that any level of new firearm legislation will alter the motives or capabilities of deranged individuals. There are nearly 200 million (known) privately owned guns in the United States. Will those tools suddenly vanish from circulation or become inoperable for criminal acts at the stroke of a legislator's pen? No reasonable person should think so.
If you believe that guns are tools and you have the inalienable right to personal protection, I urge you to contact your local elected officials. Ruger has made it incredibly easy with their Protect Your Rights page. If you're unsure how to put your thoughts into words, or if you don't quite know where you stand, I encourage you to view the dozens of testimonies from Connecticut residents on the Connecticut Network website.
The battle for gun rights is happening across the entire country right now. Take note from Bill Stevens and make your voice loud and clear.