The Right To Bear Arms Is Still a Check on Tyranny

Ukrainians have taken to the streets with arms to defend their country and their freedom.


HD Download

Ukrainians have taken to the streets with arms to defend their country and their freedom. They've prepared Molotov cocktails as makeshift bombs.

The threat of tyranny isn't only present in the third world. In the United States, critics of the Second Amendment have claimed that in modern warfare, small-time weapons are useless as a check on the power of standing armies.

"Well, the tree of liberty has not been watered with the blood of patriots," President Joe Biden said in remarks delivered at the White House on June 23, 2021. "What's happened is that there have never been, if you want to, think you need to have weapons to take on the government, you need F-15s and maybe some nuclear weapons."

But now Biden is sending small arms to "Ukraine's front-line defenders," and it turns out that weapons of all sorts can help fight off even a nuclear power.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy tweeted he'll give weapons "to anyone who wants to defend the country." Ukraine is the only European nation where firearms are not regulated by statute. Even in peacetime, Ukrainians were allowed to carry non–fully automatic rifles and shotguns as long as they were stored when not in use.

"And folks, ban assault weapons with high-capacity magazines that hold up to a hundred rounds," Biden said at his 2022 State of the Union address. "You think the deer are wearing Kevlar vests?"

No, but unfortunately, hunting isn't the only purpose of a gun. The horrific war in Ukraine reminds us that the right to bear arms is still a check on tyranny.

Written and narrated by Noor Greene; edited by Jim Epstein; audio mix by Ian Keyser

Music: Waltzing in the Rye, Kai Engel, CC BY-NC 4.0

Photos: Andriy Andriyenko/ZUMAPRESS/Newscom; Mirrorpix / MEGA / Newscom/ASLON2/Newscom; Andriy Andriyenko / SOPA Images//Newscom; Pavlo Gonchar/ZUMAPRESS/Newscom; Pavlo Gonchar/ZUMAPRESS/Newscom; Andriy Andriyenko / SOPA Images//Newscom; John Middlebrook/Cal Sport Media/Newscom; Igor Golovniov / SOPA Images/Sip/Newscom; EyePress/Newscom; Serhiihudakukrinform/ZUMAPRESS/Newscom; Serhiihudakukrinform/ZUMAPRESS/Newscom