Message to Pat Leahy: There is No State, and It Has No Rights

Not that I make it my business to contact politicians at all, but I happen to be a member of an excellent organization called Gun Owners of America (which, yes, does lobby governments as opposed to an equally superb organixation, Jews for the Preservation of Firearms Ownership, which does not), and GOA was recently pushing legislation in Congress to provide for nationwide concealed carry reciprocity. That is, so long as one is in compliance with the firearms “laws” of one’s “state” of residence (don’t worry, I’m getting to those quotation marks), then one would be able to carry concealed in every other government jurisdiction without interference. This would even apply to residents of (like myself) Vermont, or Alaska, in which no license or permit is required from government to exercise this most basic provision of self-defense. All well and good.

Predictably, the measure didn’t pass – though not by as wide of a margin as one might’ve prognosticated. One of those spoilers was Vermont’s very own Senator Patrick Leahy. Thus it was that I received a letter through the U.S. government postal monopoly. Here, in part, is what Leahy had to say:

“I ultimately decided to vote against the nationwide concealed carry reciprocity amendment because I believe that the Federal Government should not be dictating local policy to the states. I would similarly oppose any effort by Congress to limit state laws authorizing citizens to carry concealed firearms or to enter into reciprocity agreements with other states. Many states already do a commendable job in providing reciprocity with their sister states, and I believe the states are in the best position to make these determinations. No state is exactly the same and when the Federal Government forces policy of such a local nature on state governments, we unduly ignore a state’s right to govern its people.”

I want to stop right there. Let’s go back to those quotation marks I was talking about, and let’s examine just how very big the problem we’re dealing with here is. Whether we’re talking “laws” or “policy,” all we’re talking about are the opinions of politicians backed up by a bunch of bureaucrats’ guns. Nothing more. We’re not talking about gravity, solar radiation or the heat death of the universe. We’re talking about just a bunch of arrogant politicians and their deranged ideas. As for “state,” what is one? Can I touch it, see it, throw a rock at it? In short, it’s nothing but a fictitious concept. An ephemeral nonentity. You might as well be talking about the tooth fairy or the Great Pumpkin.

So now let’s plumb the depths of the good senator’s intellect. A great place to start is with that last statement: “…a state’s right to govern its people.”

Wow. Okay, let’s see: A fictitious concept has now in the senator’s mind been personified into actually having a right, like an actual person, to do something that no person has any legitimate “right” to do – namely, govern “its” people. He can actually admit the non-human, fictional nature of the “state” while ascribing a “right” to govern to it in the same breath.

I really enjoyed Leahy’s cameo in The Dark Knight when the late, great Heath Ledger – in the guise of the nefarious Joker – put a knife to the senator’s throat at a fundraiser put on by Bruce Wayne/Batman. I wasn’t even all that disappointed when the Joker chose not to eviscerate him. This utterly reprobate lapse of logic, however, I find not nearly as forgiveable. Particularly when you contemplate the widespread, devastating, and heinous ramifications of this kind of twisted thought. All government everywhere is predicated on this essential lie; this evil distortion of truth.

Leahy goes on in his letter: “I realize that you feel strongly about this, but I think this is an issue on which we will have to agree to disagree.”

Some truth, finally.

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