Over millennia Jews have been attacked by Egyptians, Amalekites, Philistines and Haman, who arranged a single day in which they all were to be killed and got the king’s blessing for his plan. They have been assaulted, accosted and oppressed by the Greeks, Romans, Persians, Byzantines and Ottomans. Their annihilation has been orchestrated by Germany and the USSR.
But they survive and thrive, and Rabbi Dovid Bendory, rabbinic director of Jews for the Preservation of Firearms Ownership, and Alan Korwin of GunLaws.com explain in a new report that it’s because some portion of the group, even if small, has been willing to resist force with force.
“Within the Jewish community there exists a thin but powerful stream of thought, held by some Jews, who advocate for the fundamental human right to protect one’s self, one’s loved ones, the community and the fruits of one’s labor,” the report says. “As King Solomon said, ‘There is a time for war, and a time for peace’ (Ecclesiastes 3:8).”
But with the ardent opposition to gun ownership and Second Amendment rights embedded so deeply in many contemporary Jewish communities, the authors of the new white paper, “Why Jews Hate Guns,” are asking just who will save the Jews the next time.
“It’s no secret that one of the largest blocs of people pressing for so-called gun control in America is the Jewish community,” Bendory said. “This confounds many observers,” who, he said, could expect Jews to be prepared to defend their families and communities, as the Bible instructs.
“The most vigorous anti-gun-rights leaders in Congress are Jewish,” noted co-author Korwin, the publisher at Bloomfield Press and a gun law expert.
He cited Democratic Sens. Charles Schumer, Barbara Boxer, Diane Feinstein, Frank Lautenberg and Carl Levin, and Rep. Barney Frank, among others, as opponents of personal firearms and their ownership.
Boxer, for example, wants “large” ammunition clips banned and to “federalize” permits regarding concealed weapons. And Schumer has proposed banning people from having a gun if they only are accused of violating a law.
His “Fix Gun Checks Act of 2011” would define those legally prohibited from owning a firearm to include anyone who’s been arrested for drug possession, even if he’s never been convicted or found guilty.
“Why so many elected Jewish leaders are enemies of the very thing that helps keep us all safe was a mystery begging to be solved,” Korwin said.
“In reaction to the Holocaust, American Jews adopted the phrase ‘Never Again!’ If actions mean anything, don’t believe it. That’s for someone else to do. How do Jews expect to put teeth behind the words ‘Never Again!’ if not with the ability to apply and project personal force when righteous – and necessary – for survival?” the study questions.
They study found 10 reasons Jews and members of Jewish organizations utilize to explain why they “hate guns and fear gun ownership.”
The first is “a desire fore utopian moral purity.”
Devin Sper, author of “The Future of Israel,” supported by exhaustive research on the history of the Jewish people, “has found that Jews are wont to seek ‘utopian moral purity,’ and in doing so they reject use of force,” the report says.
But Bendory and Korwin explain: “By its very nature force corrupts and polarizes. With power and force come allies and adversaries. Taking sides, even righteous sides, conflicts with utopian egalitarianism. As the phrases indicate, these utopian ideals are unattainable.”
And there is precedent for taking an action that would be considered violent, they report.
“Sper documents the fact that the main Jewish texts, the Torah and Hebrew Scripture, are sometimes violent texts that exhort followers to take up arms in many contexts, and tell stories of vast militia and armed actions by the Jewish tribes,” the report says.
It cites the confrontation between the biblical Haman, who wanted all Jews killed, and Esther, the Jewish queen who wanted to protect her people.
“See … Esther 8:15-9:18, where Jews obliterate their enemies; and when asked what to do the next day, Esther says more of the same,” the report says.
Following on the list was “a disproportional incidence of hoplophibia, an irrational morbid fear of guns.”
Sarah Thompson, in her essay “Raging Against Self-Defense,” explains that those individuals “often use the psychological defense mechanism of projection for deal with their fear.”
“Unable or unsure of their ability to control their own internal conflicts, they project their conflicts onto people around them. They fear losing control, going berserk, shooting people around them or shooting themselves in a mad, chaotic expression of rage. It’s only natural for them to then assume that anyone else with a gun could or would do the same,” the report states.
“This explains at last the perpetual hysteria that proclaims, every time a 2nd Amendment infringement is lifted: we will suffer shootouts at stop lights, slow waiters murdered on the spot, or Dodge City bloodshed as a result. Every new carry-permit law, the repeal of the National Parks possession ban, the expired Clinton-era rifle bans, lifted restrictions for adult gun carry on campuses – all were met with the same barrage of irrational fears. It is a knee-jerk mantra loudly shouted and then brazenly promoted by an unethical media every time.”
Third is the desire for power.
“Victimization accords moral authority and thus power to the victim. Subjugating or convincing a constituency to accept victimization cedes power to those perpetuating this harmful ruse on their peers,” the report says.
“A near-perfect parallel exists with respect to Jews. Governments are historically the greatest threat to Jews (or anyone), responsible for horrendous mass-murder campaigns and pogroms throughout history. Murder by government, democide, is by far the greatest killer of innocent human beings. People imbued with the intoxicating power of government authority exterminated 262 million people in the 20th century, according to political scientist R. J. Rummel. Murderous criminals don’t hold a candle to the deadly threat government poses to the public,” write Bendory and Korwin.
“Yet Jewish leaders … are the anti-rights leaders on the self-defense gun issue. They are the very strongest proponents of relying on government for safety and of destroying the right of the individual to keep and bear arms.”
Fourth is “delusion that if guns would just ‘go away,’ crime would end.”
The authors find, “Put down your arms in the face of a vicious enemy and you will suffer the fate of the lamb who lies down with the lion.”
The violence of today, they report, is nothing to the “incredible savagery” that took place before guns. The report cites the Isaiah prophecy envisioning the day when “they shall beat their spears into pruning hooks,” arguing it must go together with instructions from Joel to “beat your plowshares into swords, and your pruning hooks into spears.”
“Hitler, Hezbollah, Haman and the other hordes are not stopped with peace marches, protest rallies, and clever signs,” the report says. “Despots are overthrown by force or the credible threat of force. Brutal criminals bent on rape and murder … are held back either by the brutal stopping power of a well-aimed bullet or by caging them when captured.”
Other points include “self-hatred and a wish to be helpless” and the “Ostrich Syndrome,” in which people are “unwilling to face the harsh realities of life” and would “prefer to ignore guns and pretend the need for self defense will go away” the report says.
“It is irrational, yes,” it continued.
No. 7 was the idea that while Jews say they don’t like guns, they actually like guns held by what they call “proper authorities.”
“Attorney Jeff Snyder points out, in his globally famous book ‘Nation of Cowards,’ that expecting other people to risk their lives to save yours cannot be supported in a moral way.”
Another factor is the presence of a “social justice” belief that actually usurps the role of other religions, a decision that leads to the abandonment of Jewish teachings.
“Jewish law speaks [of the issue] explicity: ‘If a man comes to kill you, rise early and kill him first.'”
No. 9 is “feel-good sophistry,” which is clinging to false arguments.
An idea can be “irrational and foolish, but people are free to be irrational and foolish,” the report says.
Then there is the “abject fear” that swallows reality for some.
On taking away guns, the report says, “Such a plan would not ‘take away’ guns at all. It would merely transfer them, giving them all to government (with the stark exception of entire arsenals already thoroughly banned yet in the hands of criminals and enemies of the state.”
The answer already is there in history.
“The Torah is filled with Jews who took up arms in righteous and valiant defensive action,” the report said, citing Genesis 14:14. There it states, “When Abraham heard that his nephew Lot was taken captive, he took the 318 trained soldiers of his house and pursued the captors.
“The Bible says, ‘Thou shalt not stand idly by the blood of they neighbor.’ Not only can we defend our neighbor from attack, in Torah Law we are commanded to do so.”
Then there are the Shomrim, “The Watchful,” who pursue this course, the report says.
“Anecdotal evidence indicates that a significant percentage of discreetly armed Shomrim are present in synagogues on a regular basis. Their numbers appear to be increasing, as gun ownership, marksmanship practice, the shooting sports and gun-safety training increases nationwide across all demographics,” the report says.
“It’s time for the Shomrim to come out of the closet and teach their brethren about the cold, harsh reality of the world in which we live, and the tools that allow it to be tamed,” Bendory and Korwin conclude.
JFPO’s founding in 1989 was based on the need to educate the Jewish community about the evils imposed when they are disarmed.
“So-called ‘gun control’ is a deadly lie,” its website contends.
Its publications include fully documented reports including one on how “gun control” laws over the 20th century enabled the murders of hundreds of millions.
Korwin’s Bloomfield Press features a wide range of offerings, including a revealing report on being politically correct in the fight over gun rights.
He asks, “If a registration list makes sense for the 2nd Amendment, would it make sense for the 1st Amendment?” and “Shouldn’t we disarm the criminals first?”
Pointedly, he raises the concern of many: “Now let me see if I understand this; when you say ‘gun control,’ do you mean you want to disarm the police and armed forces? If you don’t want to disarm the police and military, you’re not really anti gun at all. You’re only anti my gun. Why is that? … You understand the social utility of guns just fine. You just want someone else to hold it for you.”