But what if the case is, as Milo believed, that of a fight inrnwhich one man will, if he escapes, return to kill the other? Supposernan enemy has sworn to kill you, and from his past recordrnvou know he means business. The natural response is to eliminaternthe threat before it materializes, and this con’ictionrngrows if one is staring down the barrel of a gun. My father usedrnto tell me ne’er to point a gun at anyone, because the otherrnman, who can onK assume that you intend—or at the ver leastrnare willing—to kill him, will think himself justified if he can killrnou first. Men who, like G. Gordon Liddy, are wise in the waysrnof firearms will always advise against firing warning shots orrnshooting to wound. If a man is worth shooting, he is worthrnkilling if onK’ to prevent legal complications. I once knew arngame manager on a plantation who spent several nights in thernwoods trying to catch poachers. When the county sheriffrnheard about it, he paid a visit to the game manager and toldrnhim, “If anything does happen, remember, I only want to hearrnone story.”rnIt is alwavs in the interest of a nation’s rulers—whether ancientrnRoman or modern American—to restrict the ability ofrnmen to defend themselves. That is the danger posed by thernanti-gun lobbv, not that they will take away a boy’s 410 andrndepric him of his right to shoot does, but that they will takernawav his father’s MP-4 and deprive him of his right to shootrnlooters. If a member of the Black Gangster Disciples decidesrnto take a drie o’er to my neighborhood and waste one of hisrnopjjressors, he will be long gone before the police get liere, andrnif the punk gets lucky and kills someone, the police mav be ablernto find him and the prosecutor may be able to get a conviction,rnand the judge mav even sentence him to 10 or 20 years (ofrnwhich he may do five to seven), but in the meantime, an innocentrnperson is dead.rnThe police do not exist to prevent crime but to apprehendrncriminals once a crime has been committed. Even liberalrncriminologists and sociologists are now saying, with PaulrnLavrakas, that the first line of defense is a “caring and vigilantrncitizenry,” and a realist will make sure that some of that care isrnlavished on an automatic 12-gaugc.rnIf the police cannot help us against the gangs, the’ arc evenrnmore powerless to protect us from the armed forces of the NewrnWorid Order. Bill Glinton may be calling for the creation of arnnational police force, but if he has his way he will only be amalgamatingrnthe numerous federal agencies that alreadv hac thernpower to eliminate troublesome citizens.rnOur ancestors, fearing the danger posed by future generationsrnof lobsterbacks, insisted upon the Second Amendment,rnguaranteeing all of us the right to own the same kind ofrnweapons that a would-be tyrant could use against the people,rnand although their uniforms arc not red, the ATF and FBIrnagents who attacked David Koresh and Randv Weacr haNcrncommitted atrocities never dreamed of by George Ill’s Hessianrnmercenaries. The Hessians did not murder women and children.rnThe right to bear arms strikes many Americans as a quaintrnsiir’i’al from more barbaric times, rather like dueling or trial byrncombat. But wise men know better than to surrender am right,rnno matter how apparently antiquated. In order to retaliaternagainst Massachussets for the Boston Tea Party, the British parliamentrnin 1774 passed a bill “for the improved administrationrnof justice in the Massachussets Bav Golony.” As originallyrnpassed, the bill included a provision outlawing both appeal ofrndeath and trial b combat. As Philadelphia historian HenrvrnLea tells the stor’ (in his 1870 volume Superstition and Force),rnThe learned and eloquent Dunning, afterwards LordrnAshburton, one of the leaders of the opposition, defendedrnthe ancient custom in the strongest terms: “Irnrise,” said he, “to support that great pillar of the constitution,rnthe appeal for murder; I fear there is a wish to establishrna precedent for taking it awa” in England as wellrnas in the colonies. It is called a rcmnarit of barbarismrnand gothicism. The whole of our constitution, for aughtrnI know, is gothic. . . . I wish, sir, that gentlemen wouldrnbe a little more cautious, and consider that the vokernthey are framing for the despised colonists ma” be tiedrnaround our own necks.”rnDunning (with assistance from Edmund Burke) succeededrnin having the obnoxious clause removed, and appeal for murderrnand trial bv combat were both used again in 1818 in Ashfordrn’. Thornton (as 1 recounted earlier in these pages). Thornton,rnacquitted once of the charge of murdering a young giri, wasrnto be tried again upon the appeal of the victim’s brother, butrnwhen the defendant demanded trial by combat, the case wasrndropped, and Thornton went where all bold men used to go, tornthe United States, which in those days guaranteed men thernright to bear arms in their ow n defense. Now we arc told thatrnin order to put down the drug lords and keep would-be troublemakersrnin line, we must have tough new laws restricting thernsale and possession of firearms. To prevent children fromrnshooting themselves, wc must punish negligent parents who dornnot lock up their guns. I wish that gentlemen would considerrnthat the oke we are framing for the despised underclass mavrnbe tied around our own necks. crnLIBERAL ARTSrnHYPOCRITICAL HILLARYrnHillary Rodham Clintcm has denounced “price-gouging, costshiftingrnand unconscionable profiteering” in the health care industry,rnbut she seems to have done some “unconscionablernprofiteering” of her own. According to the August issue ofrnClintojiWatch: A Special Project ofCitizem Vnitcd, a few carsrnago Mb. Clinton and licr law partners made large profits forrnthcmseKes and other inxestors off the sale of nursing homes inrnIowa and Arkansas.rnForced by reduced Medicaid pa’ments to streamline, officialsrnat Bc’cdy Enterprises, the countr ‘s largest nursing homernchain, had begun looking for buyers in the late 1980’s. BrucernWhitehead, a Texas millionaire, came forward w ith an offer tornpurchase 41 homes in Iowa and 39 m Arkansas through taxexemptrnrevenue bonds and his own non-profit companies.rnGuided b Ms. Clinton’s partner William H. Kenned III, nowrnassociate counsel to the President, WHiitehead and the bondrnunderwriters managed to clear more than $ 15 million in Iowarn(thus providing for presumably hefty legal fees). Beverly alsorntook in around SIO million from sales here. This transactionrnappears to have been legal, yet “critics. . . liave complained ofrnprofiteering,” as the Des Moines Register reported. And revelationsrnof attempted bribery on the part of Whitehead sunkrnthe deal in Arkansas, where Bcvcriy Enterprises was forced tornrcK on conventional hnancing.rnDECEMBER 1993/11rnrnrn