If you ever call yourself a “law-abiding” gun owner, stop. It’s degrading. It insults the shooting community, and it hurts private gun ownership. Stop now and never use that phrase again.
Mindset: We Do Not Abide
“To abide” is “to bear patiently,” “to endure without yielding,” or “to accept without objection,” according to the online Merriam-Webster dictionary. Thesaurus.com suggests alternatives like “to submit, “to put up with,” “to receive,” “to take,” “to stomach,” “to swallow.”
If you like to take it, swallow and submit (outside of playtime), then perhaps you are “law abiding.” You probably also have dirty knees from all your kneeling.
Abiding is about compliance, obedience, and subservience. It’s submitting out of obligation instead of acting powerfully from choice.
Subjects and slaves abide. “Yes, Master. I abide by your laws.” Free, empowered, responsible citizens don’t abide by the law, we make the law.
We are the law.
(The theory/game of democracy says we do this when we vote.)
Political Language – Pathetic Political Tactic
Outside of gun ownership, where have you ever heard the phrase “law-abiding”? At work? Do you call yourself:
- “law-abiding” teacher
- “law-abiding” farmer
- “law-abiding” doctor
Do you call yourself:
- “law-abiding” car owner
- “law-abiding” golfer
- “law-abiding” boyfriend
The only time anyone ever uses the phrase “law-abiding” is with “gun owner.” It’s a pathetic political tactic to save your guns. Using that phrase means you’ve already lost them.
Words Create Worlds
One of the most-powerful ways we create our world is through our language and labels. Depending on the world you want to create, you’ll say “AR-15,” “patrol carbine,” “murder machine,” “target rifle,” or “safety gear.”
The mission of anti-gun activists is to use words that create a world where guns and gun owners are viewed as bad so the radicals can eliminate us. When you cave to their attacks by twisting yourself from a “gun owner” into a “law-abiding” gun owner, they own you.
Psychologically, you got on your knees to beg them to leave you alone. “I abide by all your laws. Please don’t take my guns.”
Own the Frame
Be a gun owner and a citizen, and stand the heck up. “I own guns. I am a gun owner.” Period.
Claim it. Wear it. Own it.
When to Qualify
In some contexts, a qualifier makes sense. We want to emphasize the difference between “good guys” and “bad guys.“ The point is to avoid the subservience of “abiding.” Use something strong and empowering, like:
- Honest gun owner
- Lawful gun owner
- Proud gun owner
- Responsible gun owner
- Law-demanding gun owner
- Justice-defending gun owner
- Freedom-loving gun owner
Political Action – Demanding vs. Abiding
Refusing to abide by the law doesn’t mean we disregard or disobey the law. Not at all. We demand good laws and defend justice with everything we’ve got. The key is that we don’t do it from subservience, submission and abiding. We do it from freedom, power and choice.
Think of driving. The law says you aren’t allowed to cross the yellow line. You stay on your side of the road by choice, not by obligation. It’s easy to cross the yellow line when you choose to.
Citizen vs. Victim
What happens when the yellow line shifts, and you end up on the other side of the road? That’s what happens when firearm prohibitionists get power. They turn citizens into outlaws.
Kneel Down or Stand Up?
We don’t cross the line. They move it. Subjects and slaves kneel, swallow and submit.
If that’s you, you aren’t a law-abiding gun owner. You’re a law-abiding former gun owner.