True, the United States isn’t Myanmar, nor is any part of it under the thumb of something like China’s totalitarian regime. But just months ago Rep. Eric “the government has nukes” Swalwell insisted that “democracy is under assault” from departing President Donald Trump. Last year, then-presidential candidate Joe Biden insisted his opponent “further threatens the future of our democracy.” They clearly believe—with considerable evidence, though their faction shares blame—that America’s political system isn’t as secure as we like to pretend, and that it risks falling into authoritarian hands.
Just in case their fears come true, people worried that authoritarianism will come to America might want to learn from pro-democracy activists elsewhere. That requires treating efforts at civilian disarmament as even more reason to keep the tools for self-defense close to hand.