Los Angeles Riots print

How Soon We Forget

Why one man and his family support the NRA and the national gun rights "lobby."


An edited version of this article was published in the California Rifle and Pistol Association's magazine, "The Firing Line" in the April, 2000, issue.  It was entitled, "How Soon We Forget...."
 My deepest respects and regards to the leadership of the CRPA for this honored opportunity to address the forum.

            Driving through the contorted city was a surreal, strange experience. The columns ofL.A. riot fire smoke rose into the air like bizarre, branchless trees, some close, some miles off in the distance. The burning buildings right next to the freeway looked like movie props, a set carefully manufactured for the filming of a typical Hollywood action movie. Maybe a war movie? An assault on an enemy city? But this was real. The cross streets that ran under the overpasses of the 110 freeway were all but abandoned, except for the lone pedestrian darting across the pavement. At some intersections, there were a lot more. Angry, looting mobs, milling in the streets. Carloads of then flying up and down the freeways, up one on-ramp, and down another, on their gleeful, destructive ways.

The 1992 Los Angeles riots.The LA Riots

            I don't know what compelled me to drive through there, but being in the area of South Central LA the day after the initial rioting began and watching it on the news, I had to see for myself what was really going on. I had picked up a load of product for the business and was at the "fork in the road." Home was East, and away from the war zone. South Central was just to the West, and South down the 110.

            My eyes darted back and forth as I sped down the freeway, a horribly fascinated observer of the unfolding chaos. I remember the little mini truck that careened past me, the bed filled up with young males intent on nothing else but their destination, whatever it was. They ignored me as they went by and disappeared down an exit.Los Angeles riot fire I was totally amazed and astonished that such a monumental, outrageously violent event could be taking place in America. And even more outrageous was the fact that I didn't see a single law-enforcement unit on the freeway, not a single uniformed officer in sight. I was totally on my own except for God above. It was a strangely isolated feeling. Amazing! The van cruised quietly along the smooth cement, one of just a few vehicles plying that particular stretch of road.

            The half hour or so that it took to pass through the area seemed to be over in a very short time, and I drove out of the war zone and back into the relative safety of the distant county. But I took with me a very sobering and realistic view of the current moral state of America that stays with me to this day. Watching the news that night, the sight of the Los Angeles police officers standing by Shooting in self defenseas a market was emptied by a gang of looters was indelibly etched in my mind. The sight of the Korean shopkeepers firing their handguns at an unseen aggressor somewhere off camera was even more so imbedded. The innocent people of LA were, like me for that half hour jaunt, completely alone, left to their own defenses as the city law enforcement agency command stood by in disastrous indecision. What a travesty.

            In the ensuing few days after the riots started, the people in my life, my friends and I, watched the bungling and incompetent politicians as they tried to deal with the situation. Some were seizing the soapbox to pump their own particular political agenda. The National Guard was finally called in and the violence ebbed. Watching it on TV in another part of the nation was one thing. Seeing it, and living through it, was a whole other matter.

             When politicians like Senator Barbara Boxer (D. CA.) and Senator Diane Feinstein (D. CA.) continue to push for more “gun control” to control the crime rate (and the L.A. riots were nothing more than a petty crime on a grand scale), I just laugh, shake my head, and send another donation to the National Rifle Association or the Institute of Legislative Action (their political action committee), or the California Rifle and Pistol Association, my states' NRA affiliate.

            After the riots subsided and the damage was being assessed, handgun sales in California soared, for obvious reasons, and my membership in the National Rifle Association became that much more justified. L.A. RiotsRegardless of the gun control laws passed and the myriad justifications set forth for their enactment, the memories and sights of the LA riots will always be with me. The sight of the police standing by, bound by politics and command indecision, undeniable evidence that truly our safety, when push comes to shove, is our own responsibility.

            And on a national level, it isn't any different. The national social fabric continues to shred and tear. After the Oklahoma City bombing of the Murrah Federal Building, it came to light,Oklahoma City bombingand the attention of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, who was really behind the planning and initiation of the whole affair. Not the militias, as they were condemned in the press, but elements of the more militant White Supremacist movement. A primary conviction of their philosophy is to engage the US government in guerrilla warfare, in the belief that it is corrupt beyond salvaging due to its passage of affirmative action statutes, and needs to be destroyed and completely rebuilt within their own parameters. It's interesting that the Federal authorities didn't pursue them more aggressively. A quote from one of their primary literary works states this:

             "One gets the impression that except the Jews, who are really burning the midnight oil in their efforts against us, the rest of the System is a bunch of clock-watchers. Thank 'equal opportunity' – and all those niggers in the FBI and Army – for that! The System has become so corrupt and mongrelized that only the Jews feel at home in it, and no one feels any loyalty toward it."

            Just a small example of the dangerous and radical philosophies that are out there, feeding on the apathy, corruption, and despair. Yet what can the government do? Nothing. It's a social and moral problem. Most of the time, the government can barely get out of its own way.

             America isn't asleep anymore, so no one can say they didn't see it coming. Everyone I talk to is aware of the ever impending chaos. Most choose to ignore what is happening, hoping maybe it will all go away. That is naive and unrealistic. The Christian Church isn’t asleep anymore, the only ones who can make an impact on the disorder, the only ones with the spiritual resources to combat the darkness. The RiotsAny person interviewed on the streets of America sees and understands what is going on, what is happening. But the answers and responses to the problems are hard pressed to find. Answers that have been available in the Bible for centuries.

            When will people finally figure it out and submit themselves to God and His principles for lawful living again? I don't know. But until something happens to stanch the encroaching lawlessness that is seeping into everyday life, an anarchy fed by the moral anarchy and rot of the citizenship of this great nation, I will be one who continues to support the gun rights organizations. It is stupid not to. One of those “gun nuts.” Oh, brother.

            Because when it does come down to it, in these times, safety and security is an illusion. The thin Blue Line of Federal, State, and Local law enforcement a tenuous strand at best, and in the light of the LA riots, so easily overwhelmed. And I refuse to let my family be left unarmed in such uncertain and perilous times because of some corrupt, goofy politician and their weird social engineering philosophies. Those same politicians will be the first ones to abandon the innocent and defenseless to the dogs in the street. And that is one of the primary reasons, I believe, the Second Amendment is in the Constitution.

            The right to self defense is a God given right. Don't let any politician steal it away from you.

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