Military Brats on Gun Policy

In 2013 US veteran, Kevin Tully, used his veteraness to protect the 2nd amendment of the US constitution against a public forum in Chicago:

“The thing I would like to ask you, sir–and I did go to war for this country… and I did go to war, whether it was for everyone to have oil in their cars, or the tanks, or whatever; I went to war for my country,  for your ability to have the first amendment, to say what you want to say, write what you want in your newspaper, have whatever opinion that you want to have […] one of those rights that I went to war over, that is inalienable, every American citizen; if this discussion was going on for first amendment rights, would you still have the same opinion, that we don’t need that anymore either?”   

The video became popular among fellow veterans,military dependents, and constitutional literalist. Now there are many arguments on the gun debate that has enough fodder to last a couple of centuries. There is one in particular that is worth examining because it pertains to the military dependent, or better known, the  military brat.

One argument that gets cast into the debate is that Americans need guns to protect themselves from the military, or else America will become Nazi-Germany when Adolf Hitler seized all of his citizens’ artillery. If that ever occurred I don’t believe military brats can aim an AR-15 at their own parents. I specifically choose an AR-15 because that’s the brat’s best chance of defending him or herself against the military.

Military brats should not support the 2nd amendment on the grounds that they want to defend themselves against the US government. Taking this ground implies that the government, which service members defended the 1st amendment for, cannot be trusted, and by extension through his or her loyalty, every serviceman and woman cannot be trusted. Holding dearly to this argument means that there is a situation when it is legally and ethically to shoot at a loved one. I don’t understand why any military dependent would support this argument.

In addition to the distrust of the federal government, citizens will not win a single battle against them. Americans are already having trouble defending themselves against militarized police officers who get their equipment at a discounted rate from the military. The military also has quality artillery, such as ballistic missiles, UH-1Y Huey helicopters, and M4-Carbines, a semi-automatic with a three-round burst; not to mention they also have nuclear arms. In what conditions do they see Americans ever winning a war against the US military? And if that’s an avenue to be more lax on gun regulation, then  prepare to own explosives, which isn’t stated in the 2nd amendment–for the constitutional literalist. I can’t imagine firing a gun or detonating explosives at our service men and women, veterans, or my father and his friends.

As a military brat myself, this argument sounds silly every time a military dependent says it. I suspect he gets his rhetoric from non-dependents, like teachers, friends and family members, but doesn’t consider all the implications embedded into it. Then again, when the end of the world comes, and citizens are pitted against the government, I won’t be surprised to see family members, friends and teachers aiming at a brat, one who isn’t fully developed in his maturation.


Cover: “Eagleland” by Tim Tang



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