Six Million Against Gun Control
Within living memory of the survivors, six million Jews, as well as millions of others, were exterminated by Nazi evil. But before Adolph Hitler and the architects of his Final Solution were able to put the plan into effect, it was first necessary to ensure that the victims were disarmed and unable to defend themselves against the Holocaust to come.
When the authorities in Weimer Germany enacted a well-meaning gun registration, it became, as the National Review put it, “a tool for evil.” Law-abiding citizens obeyed – although the criminals, Communists and Nazis committing acts of political terror did not. When Hitler came to power, he used those registration records to identify and disarm political opponents and Jews. Rights were suspended and mass seizures of guns followed.
In 1938 Hitler signed a Gun Control Act that actually became the model for the U.S. Gun Control Act of 1968. Jews were prohibited from working in the firearms industry, and ultimately were ordered to surrender their weapons or face concentration camp – and the police had records on all who had registered them. Even those who surrendered their weapons voluntarily were turned over to the Gestapo. In November 1938 came Kristallnacht, the Night of the Broken Glass; by then the Jews had been disarmed and were helpless to resist the pogrom.
Ze’ev Jabotinsky – Jewish author, soldier, and founder of the Jewish Self-Defense Organization – tried for years to warn his fellow Polish Jews of the coming storm. His call to arms was “Jewish youth, learn to shoot.” But he was dismissed by Jewish organizations as an extremist. Imagine how differently the course of history might have run had those six million Jews listened to the “extremist” and refused to allow their arms to be confiscated by the government.
Today the Anti-Defamation League claims that more weapons in the hands of Jews could not have stopped the Nazi genocide machine. “Gun control did not cause the Holocaust; Nazism and anti-Semitism did,” says the ADL. Well, of course. But gun control enabled the Nazi anti-Semites to carry out the Holocaust with virtually no resistance from the victims, who were subsequently denied the opportunity to fight back with dignity.
Our Second Amendment guarantees Americans the right to bear arms. But today, anti-gun hysteria is creating a culture of intolerance toward even safe, law-abiding gun owners, who are being harassed by such increasingly restrictive, big-government regulations (meanwhile the Department of Homeland Security mysteriously buys up literally billions of rounds of ammunition). Children are suspended from school merely for pointing their index fingers like gun barrels. Business establishments proudly proclaim themselves “gun-free zones.” Such zones are actually more dangerous, of course, because they announce to criminal elements that no one there will be able to stand up to them.
In the Aurora, Colorado massacre, for example, the shooter chose the only one of eight theaters near his home that was a gun-free zone. Had that theater permitted concealed-carry, either someone there might have been able to minimize or prevent the killings, or perhaps the shooter might have been dissuaded from carrying out the attack altogether. The same is true for every mass shooting attack in the United States – all are in gun-free zones where people are defenseless.
Protecting us from such incidents is a job for law enforcement, some say. But we cannot count on the police to protect us from violent crime, only to come along after the fact to investigate. And who will protect us against the tyranny of government itself, as in Nazi Germany, a concern that is the basis for the Second Amendment? Our first duty is to protect ourselves and our loved ones with the firearms that are our right and our best hope.
If Jabotinsky were alive today, what would he say? That it is better to have a gun and not need it than to need one but not have it. That keeping to the middle of the road only makes us vulnerable to being hit. That there is a time to lie low and a time to resist. And that the time for resistance is before it is too late. The alternative is to allow evil to prevail.
At Children of Jewish Holocaust Survivors, “never again” is not just a slogan; it is a call to action, because slogans won’t stop the next Holocaust. We are the new Holocaust resistance. We will not allow any infringement upon our Second Amendment right, nor will we abdicate our right to self-protection.
We Jews need more than the moral high ground to ensure our survival.
We are the new six million against gun control.