Quote of the Day: Gun-Free Zones, the Key to a Functioning Democracy

“A functioning democracy cannot happen at the barrel of the gun. Let’s keep this home of democracy an accessible, safe and gun-free place.” – Rachel Carroll Rivas in Lawmaker introduces bill to let legislators carry guns in the Capitol [via missoulian.com]


  1. avatar Stu in AZ says:

    If there’s anything that history has taught us, it’s that Democracy could not thrive until we started instituting gun free zones.
    Oh wait…

    1. avatar Quasimofo says:

      Yeah, it’s blatantly clueless and emotion-driven “arguments” such as the one in the article that makes me think these people deserve to be subjects again. They clearly don’t have the capabilities for self-governance.

    2. avatar Soylent Green says:

      Right? Archaeologists were always find those “sword free zone” stone signs from back in the middle ages and earlier.

      The only safe zone would be a human free zone. You cannot manage human intent via by managing an object.

      1. avatar Mark N. says:

        Although it is only tangentially related, in Scotland in olden days it was common to require guests in one’s home to disarm before entering, leaving the guest with only a sgian duhb for eating. Relations back then could be, shall we say, testy, and attacks on hosts were common if the occasion presented itself. The origin of the four handled toasting cup was to prevent either one of the drinkers from stabbing the other in the belly during the toast. And despite all the movies, it was common for monarchs to require all but their bodyguards to be disarmed in the monarch’s presence. Last but not least, the U.S. Senate has a number of rules concerning prohibited speech (words) and the arming of Senators after one too many battles in the cloak room, usually only fisticuffs, but at least one involving edged weapons and pocket pistols. Duels of one type or another outside Senate chambers were not infrequent.

        Just sayin.’

        1. avatar Wood says:

          I wish they’d start drinking and dueling again. Go on, the lot of you, get after it!

      2. avatar BDub says:

        “The only safe zone would be a human free zone. ”

        The left is busy working on that, as we speak.

  2. avatar anarchyst says:

    We don’t live in a “democracy”. We (are supposed to) live in a Constitutional representative republic.
    Democracy is mob rule…two wolves and a sheep deciding what to have for dinner.

    1. avatar Scott C. says:

      I think you forgot the second part of that statement which fits in nicely here:

      “Democracy is 2 wolves and 1 sheep voting on what to have for dinner…
      Liberty is an armed sheep contesting the vote”

      1. avatar ActionPhysicalMan says:

        I doubt he forgot it. It just wasn’t necessary because we all know the saying, even if some of us attribute it to BF in error.

        1. avatar Jonathan - Houston says:

          I first read that quote right here on TTAG about four years ago. TTAG has first time visitors every day, so today could be anybody else’s first day running across it. For the sake of fullness of effect for that new guy, we should provide the entire quote.

          As for the original author, I’ve always seen others attribute it to Ben Franklin, but I’ve never seen anything authoritative on that point. I have seen other quotes allegedly from Founders, which we now know they never said or wrote. So who knows? If he never said it, he certainly could have. The idea is more important than than author.

        2. avatar ESKeith says:

          Just learned the saying … hadn’t seen it before and I’ve been lurking around here for 18 months or so. Learn something new (almost) every day.

        3. avatar ActionPhysicalMan says:

          I stand corrected. Except on the BF part;-) Even there, I suppose it would be hard for me to prove a negative.
          I sometimes assume everybody has been voraciously reading history and liberty oriented works for 30+ years.

        4. avatar uncommon_sense says:


          “I sometimes assume everybody has been voraciously reading history and liberty oriented works for 30+ years.”

          If only … !!!!!!!

    2. avatar Chadwick says:

      Exactly! I will also add that democracy is a room full of rapists deciding what consent is.

      1. avatar Wood says:

        Bill? Is that you?

  3. avatar RCC says:

    So is she going to get rid of armed guards and police too??

    1. avatar Gov. William J Le Petomane says:

      Well no, she doesn’t really mean ‘gun free’, she means something more like ‘peasant disarmament zone’ or something to that effect. You can’t have a gun free zone without men with guns to enforce them.

      1. avatar Sian says:

        When she says “A functioning democracy cannot happen at the barrel of the gun.” She means the guns should only be pointed at the peons.

      2. About the only way a pure democracy can work is if the majority uses force. Hence her form of democracy necessitates it to be over the barrel of a gun. Otherwise you just have voluntaryism, wich is no initiation of violence by anyone, government entities included.

  4. avatar Shire-man says:

    All government derives its power from the gun. If anything a functional democracy or republic cannot function unless all participants are armed. Otherwise the power structure or the majority gets to steamroll the minority with impunity.

    1. avatar uncommon_sense says:

      “Otherwise the power structure or the majority gets to steamroll the minority with impunity.”

      Like we have been seeing for the last 100 or so years?

  5. avatar pwrserge says:

    Democracy cannot thrive except from the barrel of a gun. Why? Because the king doesn’t take kindly to uppity peasants who aren’t armed.

      1. avatar pwrserge says:


  6. avatar Dev says:

    I’m pretty sure there were no weapon free zones in ancient Greece. And I’m positive that the hall where the Constitutional Convention was held wasn’t a gun free zone.

    1. avatar Honzo says:

      Historically and presently, slaves have only been allowed to bear arms with the permission of their masters. A citizen did not require permission.

    2. avatar ropingdown says:

      Actually it was made illegal to carry weapons within Athens in the time of Pericles. The “Scythian Archers,” carrying bows, were the only ones permitted to carry a weapon used in war. They functioned as the police force. They are thought to have been slaves.

      1. avatar Dev says:

        Good to know! Thanks.

  7. avatar Ranger Rick says:

    Lobbyist Don Jones said: “I just imagine the chaos if someone armed with ill intent came into this room right now and five or 10 gun-carrying legislators started shooting.”

    To which my reply is: Problem solved.

    1. avatar ActionPhysicalMan says:

      It’s like he/they think it would look like an ol’
      “number six”.

      1. avatar Rincoln says:

        Just not the women folk of course.

    2. avatar Mike B in WI says:

      And my response to the lobbyist would be, ” I would rather be in a gunfight in the room than a massacre.”

  8. avatar ActionPhysicalMan says:

    But she looks so earnest!

  9. avatar Mark says:

    The honorable solution is to let everyone politicians and citizens alike carry. It works just fine here in Minnesota. The only ones who complain are those that think no one should carry.

  10. avatar Swilson says:

    So, what? She thinks that if legislators can carry in the capitol, her colleagues will forego debate and just stick a gun to her head? Sounds an awful lot like projecting to me…

    And fvck that law too by the way. If my Congressman (aka my servant) can carry in a place, I can too.

  11. avatar Omer Baker says:

    I find her thoughts hypocritical as progressives boast how great the communist leaders were/are, and a quote from one of their favorites.
    Mao Zedong: Every Communist must grasp the truth: Political power grows out of the barrel of a gun.

  12. avatar Cdotson says:

    Maybe if anti-liberty a$$hats in legislatures had a more literal reminder that “Every law is a pointed gun” they would think twice about what laws they pass.

    And WTF is wrong with her face? Is she auditioning for an ex-lax commercial?

    1. Yeah that vein in her head makes it look like shes crowning lol.

  13. avatar Scott C. says:

    I keep hearing/reading these politicians/advocates preach about easy target zones, a.k.a. gun free zones, and that no citizen should be able to carry and their reasoning behind their arguments and I think I can actually feel my IQ oozing out of my ears just by hearing and reading them. I wonder if I can file a lawsuit because I’m offended that these people are breathing the same air as me.

    1. avatar Wood says:

      Worse, they’re taking your air and turning into CO2. That’s theft! Or pollution. Or something.

  14. avatar Boba Fett says:

    “A functioning democracy cannot happen at the barrel of a gun.”

    Whoops! Since the gun was invented, literally every single government in existence “happened” at the barrel of a gun, and before that, the point of a sword. I’m sure you’re good at other things.

    1. avatar ropingdown says:

      People do seem to overlook the fact that the reason peasant when on a rampage with pitchforks is simply that they were forbidden to own swords, spears, or pikes….because weapons would make them difficult to hold in serfdom.

  15. avatar Rich K. says:

    That’s almost funny considering that Chairman Mao, hero of the liberal progressive movement, once said “political power grows out of the barrel of a gun”. Of course, that’s why they REALLY want to disarm the population – it’s all about control, rather than the guns.

  16. avatar Curtis in IL says:

    Dr. Warren: I’m sick of the tyranny, the oppression, the taxation without representation. We need a democracy!

    Mr. Adams: I right there with you! Tell ya what. Let’s first get rid of all our nasty guns and cannons and such. Load ’em all onto one of Hancock’s boats and dump ’em all into Boston harbor. They’re a roadblock to a functioning democracy. Then we can get to work on throwing the tyrants out and establishing our own democratic republic here.

  17. avatar RuddJ says:

    Ultimately, all laws in a democracy — including every law that this legislator has passed during her time in office — are enforced through the threat of violence, and sometimes through actual violence, by men who carry firearms. This is something that liberals almost always fail to recognize. That tax you want on tobacco sales or sugary foods? Eventually, that law will be enforced through the threat of incarceration by a police officer carrying a gun.

  18. avatar rt66paul says:

    Democracy means that it shouldn’t matter if I am armed. You would surely be glad if it were I that took out a bad gut with a gun. Most people who carry, do so concealed. The sheep around them have no idea or should assume they are good guys until they show they are not. Off duty police usually carry as do many other good Americans.
    You should feel all the safer because of them.

  19. avatar Pete says:

    I hear Cuba is a completely gun free zone.

    1. avatar Red in CO says:

      Don’t point that out. The liberals LOVE them some Cuba (just look at how many of them praised Fidel Castro after his recent death!), because they genuinely believe Castro’s revolution was a success and turned the country into a utopia. After all, if you want something to be true REALLY BADLY, reality will magically be distorted and your (insane) opinion becomes fact.

  20. avatar Holdfast says:

    What a blithering idiot. The stupid is strong in this one.

    Ancient History- pretty much Athens was an armed camp. And so was Rome during the Republic.

    More modern day examples include

    1. Switzerland- every one and their dog is Armed, with assault rifles no less, and they have one of the oldest direct democracies on Earth. The requirement to maintain Arms has been there for the last 600 + years.

    2. Minutemen, and the Colonies.

    3. The Entire US until the 1960’s- when the Libtard’s became strong, and removed gun rights….Hmmmm corresponding to vast increases in gun violence in cities. How paradoxical that you remove the guns from the law abiding, and the criminals pray upon them.

    4. Much of Rural America still seems to function perfectly well- as does most of the US where libtards don’t inflict their stupid on the rest of us.

  21. avatar former water walker says:

    The accompanying article is hoot. The vast “hate” thought crimes is coming from the leftloons. Like this dude er gal …but we know that.

  22. avatar jamesdc95 says:

    The double speak is strong with this one

  23. avatar Bitchnuts says:

    Her email address: [email protected]

    1. avatar Bitchnuts says:

      The reporter quoting, not the person quoted.

  24. avatar pg2 says:

    Unfortunately we are now a democracy, or mob rule. Franklin knew it would be impossible to keep the bankers at bay.

    1. avatar ropingdown says:

      Franklin need not have been especially clever to reach that conclusion. At the close of the War for Independence many farmers of western Massachusetts found their paper money was no longer accepted by merchants, just as the Boston merchants found their bankers would only accept hard currency….even those bankers who spent the war in what is now Canada.

      The bankers won. Quoting from Wiki, “Shays was a farmhand from Massachusetts when the Revolution broke out; he joined the Continental Army, saw action at the Battles of Lexington and Concord, Bunker Hill and Saratoga, and was eventually wounded in action. In 1780, he resigned from the army unpaid and went home to find himself in court for nonpayment of debts.”

      The government of Massachusetts crushed Shays’ Rebellion. Farmers lost their land to bankers. Power comes from the barrel of a gun, certainly. The rulers prefer that people be conditioned to follow the laws the rulers make. The ruled prefer to ask what say the ruled had in the drafting of the law. At some point they all do a function check on their guns….

      1. avatar Pg2 says:

        The bankers always win in war. That’s the point.

  25. avatar D. in OR says:

    “Political power grows out of the barrel of a gun” — Mao Zedong

  26. avatar Barbarossa says:

    “pirates made a significant contribution to the development of American democracy in the late eighteenth century. Pirate organizations predated any modern democratic government, having originated during the Golden Age of Piracy, from the 1650s to the 1730s. As an outgrowth of a diverse society that sought to maximize efficiency, Pirates formed relatively liberal, egalitarian orders based on elected officials and mutual trust. – See more at: http://historynewsnetwork.org/article/158274#sthash.LH6O6ID0.dpuf

    1. avatar Red in CO says:

      Indeed. For all their flaws (like the whole “plunder and rape” thing), pirates had incredibly progressive democracies. Every captain was a king on his ship (as was necessary), but since it only takes a single disgruntled man to kill the captain (and on a ship, of course, there is a high degree of physical proximity), the captains had no choice but to make most decisions with direct input from the crew. Otherwise, he wouldn’t be captain for long.

  27. “A functioning democracy cannot happen at the barrel of the gun. Let’s keep this home of democracy an accessible, safe and gun-free place.”

    Um…how does she think taxes get collected?

  28. avatar K Maiden says:

    Image and symbolism blah blah. Control the serfs and poof, utopia. But for those pesky criminals and nut job that pray on the (disarmed) weak.

  29. avatar Jonathan - Houston says:

    You, madam, are mistaken. Think of the Second Law of Thermodynamics. Excruciatingly oversimplified, it holds that all systems tend toward entropy (think : chaos) and only the application of energy upon the system can preserve the system’s structure. This is why machines must be maintained, why bodies must be nourished, etc.

    The same holds for human systems at the societal level. These laws, customs, traditions, and values we hold are great, but they’re just ethereal notions without energy imparted to keep them in place. The rights of the Individual would surely be stomped upon and swept away to genocidal effect without the right to keep and bear arms.

    Everything we think of as “democracy”, beyond the literal meaning of the word, depends on the energy imposed on this system, or at least the potential energy that an armed citizenry holds, to keep it running. If democracy cannot survive at the barrel of a gun, it’s only because there are too few guns concentrated in too few hands. Democracy thrives under the democratization of firearms ownership.

  30. avatar cd carpeti says:

    Were it not for the guns of the Founding Fathers, there would be no democracy.

  31. avatar Bob says:

    Gun free zones are where the unicorns play. NO SUCH PLACE.

  32. avatar ButtHurtz says:

    Hahaha! Cunt says what?

  33. avatar Garrison Hall says:

    Gun-free zones symbolize a particular set of cultural values. While they are pathetically inadequate forms of protection, they are paramount representatives of social and cultural identities. The people who demand that gun-free zones be maintained, understand full-well that the warning signs are not going to protect anybody from a terrorist or spree-killer but, then, discouraging gun-armed killers isn’t their real purpose. Essentially, gun-free zones exist and are supported by people like Ms. Rivas because they provide tangible evidence of her ability to have her values displayed for all to see.

    1. avatar Red in CO says:

      That’s actually a really good point, and an aspect I hadn’t considered before, the idea that gun free zones are essentially a highly visible form of virtue signaling.

  34. avatar tjlarson2k says:

    History fail.

    America (and every single modern govt) was formed and is currently maintained at the “barrel of a gun”.

  35. avatar Brian says:

    95% of mass shootings happen in gun free zones…….think about that.

    1. Uh oh. Hope n19th didn’t see that.

  36. avatar Ebby123 says:

    Every Taxes imposed by her beloved State are taken by force at the end of a gun… but that’s none of my business.

    1. There’s a meme there with a muppet frog somewhere.

  37. avatar Ralph says:

    Somebody should inform that silly b!tch that our “democracy” would not exist without millions of smoking gun barrels.

  38. avatar BierceAmbrose says:

    “A functioning democracy cannot happen at the barrel of the gun.”

    Which is why assault is a crime, and law-abiding gun owners are no threat.

  39. avatar derfel cadarn says:

    Does anyone doubt that she would be willing to use the full force of government, and its guns, to attain this noble objective ? When the People are finally disarmed the real killing will have only just begun, look to history it happens every time.

  40. avatar adverse4 says:

    There are people that could care less about Democracy, laws or life. If one or more comes into your democratic firearm free zone, do you get to vote on who lives and who dies?

  41. avatar YAR0892 says:

    Actually, Ancient Greece was the home of Democracy. It failed. The United States has a hybrid form of government called a Democratic Republic.

    1. avatar Rich K. says:

      Exactly. If we had a true democracy, politicians could simply ignore more rural areas in the USA, because the population tends to be concentrated in the big cities. And, since most big cities tend to lean towards the left, a true democracy would pretty much insure we would turn into a socialist “paradise”. Note that it was largely due to people in the more rural parts of the country being sick of leftist policies that Trump was elected, despite Hil-LIAR-y winning the so-called “popular vote” (mainly based in big cities).

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