The Liberal, gun grabbing society that we live in today shudders at the idea of guns in our communities. The idea of having even more guns among the peasants is absolutely abhorrent to the average big city dweller/liberal. But there is a saying that “An armed society, is a polite society”. On it’s face that seems to be fairly logical. When one ponders the concept, within seconds they can rationalize in their brain just how that might be true. One can easily see how “Manners are good when one may have to backup his acts with his life”. But it would require a majority of the people to carry guns.
After their initial realization in their head of how this concept might be true, today’s modern liberal would then realize that this idea flies in the face of their beliefs, and they can’t have that. They won’t stand for it. So next comes an argument such as, “Well, I suppose we should go back to the ways of the wild west with gun fights, blood in the street and near everyone carries a gun”. They think this is the ultimate bad idea that might come out of it.
Fact is, that that is not a bad idea at all. Except, the concept of what it was like in the old west has been bastardized way beyond what really went on. Sure there were bad guys, just as there are today, but there were fewer of them. And most people did not carry guns, contrary to popular belief. People who did carry guns were a curiosity much as they are today. People living in towns and cities did not need them for the most part. Travelers would come to town with a side arm but they had a need while traveling because of road agents, bandits or even Indians in the earlier days. But there were no draw down gun fights as we see in Hollywood westerns, save one famous one that involved Bill Hickok in Abilene, but that’s another story.
But even in the early days of our nation, people were generally more polite. Mainly because people had manners. That there was the possibility that the person with whom you were conversing was carrying a gun was also a part of it.
But the concept of a Polite Armed Society came from much earlier in history. More than 3,000 years ago in Mesopotamia, men carried swords and knew how to use them. People were more polite because you never knew when you might have to back up your rude insults with your life. Move forward to the middle ages and you would see knights who would carry swords and do so with a mindset of responsible weapon ownership. The knight’s sword was a symbol of his duty to protect the weaker members of society and behave chivalrously, with respect and courtesy to women, elderly and those unable to defend themselves.
The concept embraces the simple truth that people in society both then and now who would be armed carry with them a profound responsibility. A person who would carry a weapon in public recognizes that he carries a responsibility to protect himself, his family, friends and those around him from violence and criminal predation.
They also carry a responsibility to avoid confrontation. They must not allow a situation to escalate for they have the ability to stop a situation immediately with overwhelming force and potentially profound consequences. As one who carries a gun regularly, I am much more tolerant of open rudeness, more so when I am carrying a gun that when I am not. We, the armed have a responsibility to defend the unarmed. It is a responsibility we take very seriously.
So everyone around me is safer when I am armed, as would be society as a whole if an overwhelming majority of responsible Americans were armed as well. But that concept is more than what many “well meaning liberals” who would rather disarm us, could understand. It makes too much sense.
That is why An Armed Society is a Polite Society.