Sunday, July 27, 2014


The following is a comment that appeared on a local blog that deserves to be rebutted as often as possible. So let me start the rebuttal (I will leave plenty to be said for those who want to leave comments on either side).

The following comment was posted Sunday and is in reference to the “Open Carry” march in Liberty Saturday. One of the reasons I find this important for me to comment on is that my first impression of the way this group has presented this issue in recent months was not favorable to the marchers. But it was a lack of information and an assumption that nothing could be said that could justify marching with weapons like like-minded people have done across the state. With no further introduction, here is the comment: 

“I noticed the flags they carried, which I think is telling in the chapter's ideals, which were some what aggressive, "Come and take it" and I think one was "Don't tread on me", I may be mistaken on that one, but I noticed the only U.S. flag I saw being carried was by a young boy at the rear of the marchers around five or six years old. The absence of the American flag carried in prominence told me of the chapter's opinion of the government. They protest their rights under the Constitution but neglect to show respect for the flag that is symbolic of that very Constitution. These people are misguided in their concept of what it means to be an U.S. citizen.” 

But nothing this commentator wrties could be farther from the truth! In addition to the American flag that was carried, the marchers carried one of the most patriotic flags in our country’s history and one of the most patriotic flags in Texas history. The Gadsden flag, the one is a with a yellow field depicting a rattlesnake coiled and ready to strike, harkens all the way back to Ben Franklin’s drawing that is inscribed, “Join or Die”. That drawing depicts the American colonies as a snake cut in sections and was a dramatic way to gain attention to the idea that colonists better unify and fight or they would lose their liberty. Positioned below the rattlesnake on the Gadsen flag are the words "Don't Tread on Me". The flag is as patriotic as it gets when youn take pride in the American Revolution that was taking place as it waived in battle after battle in our war against England and later was used by the Continental Marines as an early motto flag. 

And of course, the other flag memorializes the brave hearts that fought for Texas independence and, more particularly, Alcalde Pontoon and the courageous citizens of Gonzalez in 1835.

Indicating these people are not patriotic is a mistake. I have had occasion to visit with some of these people. Two preachers and one very capable head of a political group that has many political stances like Texas Republicans. They may disagree with you on the role of guns in American society. They may disagree with you on what the Constitution means, but their dominant motivation is the defense of our freedom. Their vigilance is admirable. Their willingness to spend a great deal of time and money and all the time know that most people’s first impression is that they are a bunch of nuts, reminds me of reading about the days when Samuel Adams did much the same thing.

I find every side of most every issue in politics has a strong opinion based on their version of history. As a history teacher, I would say people in this group are way above average in their knowledge and their pride in American history and the Constitution. I can tell the commentator has a very high opinion of their grasp of history too.  The only problem with that is I am also amazed at how perverted or selective almost everyone’s view of history is. It is as if we all agree the textbooks have mistakes in them (which they definitely do), but we are nowhere close to agreeing with what the mistakes are. So when I read a comment like this one, I immediately think person would have great difficulty arguing his side using the Constitution if a debate with one of the marchers was organized.

If Texans study what it is these marchers dramatically draw attention to, many will agree. Some may disagree, but still accept the marchers as well intended. And then there will be ….. of course those who would increase restrictions on gun ownership that would use the first impressions to turn people off and hope the marchers’ intentions are disregarded.


B Smith said...

I thank you for your objective take on the motives of Open Carry Liberty County. When the rights of one citizen or a group of citizens is in jeopardy, We ALL are at risk of losing our freedoms. I would like to compare one of our Constitutionally enumerated rights to another.

If the Freedom of Speech is no longer free, we will be controlled by those that will limit what we may say, to whom, and where we may speak. This happens daily, a good example was the" free speech zones" that government officials set up as the only place where you could speak openly. This is unacceptable in this country!

If we citizens do not make a stand to let others know that we know our rights, and are willing to vote for those that recognize that, we will regain our control of our government that is for the people, and by the people!

Anonymous said...

Long live the second amendment! These people who carry guns openly are nothing but a bunch of self centered attention starved fruit cakes. These people, they DO NOT represent the second amendment or true gun rights.