Constitutional Emergency

Obama Playing Chicken with American Men... Obama's forceful, smug insistence on taking action in defiance of Congress

January 18, 2013

Obama Playing Chicken with American Men

By Daren  Jonescu

The  Obama administration's current warpath against so-called "gun violence" -- which  is Newspeak for non-violence committed by non-criminals with their non-illegal  private property -- is a brazen challenge to America's manhood. The progressives  have apparently decided that this is the moment when they can play their  ultimate authoritarian hand, and let the chips fall where they may. They  believe, in other words, that this is the moment when they may be able to break  America at last, one way or another.

Through  Obama's forceful, smug insistence on taking action in defiance of Congress,  along with the aggressive urging to do so from his sycophants in the progressive elite -- from the vice president and the senate  majority leader on down -- the leftists are engaging in a game of chicken with  the American spirit that is disturbing both for its immediate intentions and for  its revelation of their thought process and game plan.

In  light of the well-known fact that their proposals and trial balloons will be  judged by millions of Americans to be an outright violation of constitutionally  protected liberties -- and liberties of the most emotionally trenchant nature,  namely those related to the very foundations of limited government -- the  progressives' deliberate projection of haste and intransigence on gun control  must not merely be taken at face value, and judged on its "merits." It must also  be interpreted -- in other words, one must ask precisely what they are  hoping to achieve by attacking the most deeply held principles of so many  Americans in such a heavy-handed fashion.

It  seems to me that there are two plausible interpretations of their open  chastisement of "all this debate" over Second Amendment concerns, i.e., their  boisterous spitting upon the U.S. Constitution.

The  first option is that they believe the citizenry of the once-freest nation on  earth will ultimately be first to flinch in this game of chicken, and back down.  This is the simplest explanation. Having tested the waters on so many fronts,  and prepared the population with generations of propaganda about the evils of  guns (and so little clarity about the meaning of limited government) from the  educational establishment and the media, the left may have determined that, for  all the tough talk, American gun owners will not, in the end, have the nerve to  stand firm against a federal order to produce their weapons for registration, to  submit their guns and themselves to a federal tracking system, or even,  eventually, to relinquish legally-purchased property that has newly been ruled  illegal.

The  second possibility is that they know the public has not been sufficiently  softened up to begin the "peaceful" disarming of America suggested by option  one, and are therefore hoping to precipitate the kind of "serious crisis" the  Obama administration has vowed never to let go to waste. This second possibility  is appearing more likely to be the administration's real intention each  day.

Consider  the extent to which the federal government has gone, during the past four years,  to brand conservatives, Christians, defenders of the Constitution, gun owners,  and in general believers in property rights, as not merely racist and stupid  (the usual mantra), but rather as angry, "bitter," and positively unhinged.  These are not mere insinuations; government representatives, spokesmen, and  apologists have been saying such things with increasing directness and frequency  since 2008. A "study" funded by DHS expressly lists people who are  "reverent of individual liberty" or "suspicious of centralized federal  authority," among the common potential terror threats (p. 9). Obama himself,  during his 2008 campaign, suggested in no uncertain terms that "clinging" to a Bible  and/or a gun -- i.e., believing in God or the right to bear arms -- is a clear  symptom of serious psychological problems, and equivalent to racism. And of  course almost every mass killing over the past couple of years has been blamed  on the Tea Party by someone in the media (see here) -- until, inevitably, the facts prove otherwise --  thereby creating the general impression that the Tea Party is a natural  repository of "people on the edge," regardless of whether they turn out to have  committed any crimes.

The  Obama team knows full well that its words and actions are causing fear, anger,  and heightened vigilance among conservatives. The spikes in gun sales, NRA  memberships, and harsh anti-government talk all over the internet are an  unmistakable sign of a population preparing for -- for something ugly. And yet  they push forward, threatening specific action and escalating the anti-gun  rhetoric with each passing day.

And  the prodding is clever. Prior to this direct assault on the right to bear arms,  the single Obama program most hated by constitutionalists was the Affordable Care Act. Now, ingeniously, the left has found a  way to bring these two great affronts to individual liberty together under one  umbrella. A major focus of Obama's executive actions on gun violence is the promotion of ObamaCare's  mental health provisions as a suitable mechanism for dealing with preemptive  psychiatry, i.e., drugging wayward children, labeling people in their  federal government records as mentally ill, and using doctors as informants  to track guns in private homes.

In  sum, they could not be stoking pre-revolutionary fever any more effectively  among that minority of America's citizenry that still stands by the nation as an  idea, rather than merely as a piece of geography, if they had planned  to stoke it. The only question remaining, it seems, is where all of this will  lead.

Consider  the following possibility -- common sense dictates that the progressives have  already considered it. Someday, federal officers are going to visit the home of  a man who owns a so-called "assault-style weapon." He has a family and a job. He  pays his taxes. He has no criminal  record. Not even a parking ticket. He purchased his gun legally. He uses  it for target shooting. He thinks of it as an investment in the protection of  his family and his nation, and his personal stand for constitutional  liberty.

The  federal officers are going to tell him that his weapon has been banned, that the  deadline has passed for him to turn it in at the local police station, and that  he must turn it over immediately. He is going to refuse, on the reasonable  principle that a man is not obliged to obey a law that fundamentally violates  his constitutionally protected rights. The officers, who will have been trained  to regard such "resisters" as hostile and as mentally unstable, will call in for  back-up and then give this law-abiding patriot an ultimatum: produce your banned  weapon peacefully at once, or be taken into custody on charges of illegal  possession of a firearm, and possibly subjected to psychiatric  assessment.

If  this man gives in and hands the officers his weapon, he will feel for the rest  of his life that he has been broken -- that when push came to shove, he did not  have the courage to stand up for his children's future. This, in short, is how  the federal officials who sent the officers to his door want him to feel, and  how they want everyone to feel: weak, ineffectual, emasculated, and submissive.  It is how they want you to feel when federal agents molest your wife at the  airport, and photograph your pubescent daughter in a naked scanner. It is how  they want you to feel about your "private" health records being permanently on  file with a half dozen federal agencies, to be opened at their discretion. It is  how they want you to feel about the thousand bank-breaking regulations you are  obliged to comb through and comply with in the names of "sustainability,"  "social justice," "anti-discrimination," and a dozen other fronts in the war on  self-governance.

These  indignities are meant to ease you through the process of acceptance, of  acquiescence, of relinquishing all pretences of inviolable principle in the name  of getting along.

This  scenario -- this Conrad-style moment of reckoning for a man, before himself, his  wife, and his children -- will in fact likely be played out in many variations.  Those officers might be coming for high-capacity magazines, for guns reported by  a child's playmate as unsafely stored, guns reported as unregistered, guns owned  by people with relatives who have been diagnosed as "depressed" by a doctor, and  so on. Most of the property owners in question will likely give in to the  government's demands, and many of them will do so willingly, believing it their  duty to obey the law above all else.

Those  who do not comply, on the other hand, will be a test case, at the very least.  When the government is challenging a proud man's dignity, his natural rights,  and his courage in the face of a tyrannical demand, they are daring him to  become a martyr to his cause. (See Mark Alexander's  declaration at The Patriot Post.) In the authoritarian's mind, government wins either  way. If the man gives in, subservience is reinforced. If he does not, then he  can be made an example of, to serve as a stern warning to  others.

This  is not a moment to be taken lightly. Nor is it one to be welcomed with excessive  "bring it on" bravado. America, which is emulating the rest of the West's  decline, but at double-speed in these final stages, has reached the saddest  impasse. Unlike other nations, which have passively sold off their freedom for  the false security of a smiling, cradle to grave despotism, America has seen it  coming, has resisted it with force, and is now about to be dragged off the cliff  kicking and screaming.

The  challenge facing the men of America -- not the mere "males," but the men -- is  becoming clearer, starker, and more essential every day. That minority of us in  the rest of the world who still care about freedom and modern civilization can  only watch, with concern, sadness and hope, as the U.S. federal government,  having reached its moment of final metamorphosis -- its "fundamental  transformation" -- stares its patriotic citizens in the eye and says, "I dare  you."

From  the land of rebellious individualism of intellect - the land of Madison,  Jefferson, Emerson and Melville; to the land of an almost careless abandonment  to joy -- the land of Astaire, Ellington, Gershwin and Singin' In the  Rain; to the brink of sorrow and downtroddenness, in such a short time,  historically speaking. Surely it's too soon for this glorious run to  end.

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