The Observer is a student-run, daily print & online newspaper serving Notre Dame, Saint Mary's & Holy Cross. Learn about us.



My cold dead hands

Kyle Retzloff | Monday, October 4, 2010

Mr. Ryan Williams attempts to argue in his viewpoint entitled “A Safer World Without Guns” (Sept. 30) that we should have stricter gun control laws to eliminate the chances of shooting tragedies across the nation from happening. He claims that there is a causal relationship between taking automatic weapons away from the hands of citizens and a decline in gun violence. Quite simply, that is ridiculous. Removing any semblance of a threat posed to criminals by ordinary citizens will only make the problem worse by allowing the perpetrators to hold the most firepower. Outlawing automatic weapons will have little effect on the ability of criminals to obtain them on the black market. If they want a gun, they’ll get it somehow. I want to have a proportionality of force equal to any criminal I may encounter.

Mr. Williams doubts the need for an automatic weapon to accomplish the task of defending the home. What he fails to understand is that home is much more than just a physical place on a map. It is our families, our liberties and our valued American way of life that could potentially come under attack from enemies foreign and domestic. No, the founding fathers probably did not have the AK-47 in mind when writing the Constitution, but they believed that an armed populace was the best way in preventing a despotic government from taking advantage of the people. To quote George Mason, one of the Fathers of the Bill of Rights, “To disarm the people is the most effectual way to enslave them.” By not allowing citizens an available degree of weaponry also openly accessible for potential enemies, the government is essentially disarming the population. Armed citizens are absolutely a means to quell the ambitions of a tyrannical government. Perfect examples of this include Nazi Germany and Communist China, where Hitler and Mao made private weapons confiscation a top priority.

To echo the words of the late and great Charlton Heston, the only way to take personal firearms is from “my cold, dead hands.” I hope Americans never forget this.

Kyle Retzloff


Zahm Hall

Sep. 30