Indeed, the real cost is the loss of freedom to chose pretty much everything in your life. Mr. Folks:
When I lived in communist Yugoslavia, I saw firsthand what Djilas describes in The New Class. I saw sumptuous suburban enclaves where only the ruling communist elite were permitted to enter. For the elite there were special stores overflowing with luxuries, including imported goods of every kind. For the masses, there were gray apartment blocks and state stores with empty shelves. While the communist rulers traveled in black limousines, hidden from view by dark glass and drawn curtains, the masses rode to work jammed into airless trams and buses. I remember it well, because I rode with them.
Is America headed in the same direction? In our own country, Obama continues to seize control of health care, financial services, education, energy, and every other sector of the economy even as he demands higher revenues and the right to redistribute them. He does so by dividing rich and poor and by pretending that he is acting in the interests of the poor. Marshal Josip Broz Tito did the same in Yugoslavia, just as Lenin did in Russia, Mao did in China, Kim Il Sung did in North Korea, Fidel Castro did in Cuba, Hugo Chávez did in Venezuela, and every other Marxist dictator has done without exception. All of these leftists concentrated power in the state, rewarded themselves and their associates with regal powers and privileges, and stripped the masses of their freedom and economic opportunity.The Chief Justice of the Supreme Court has said it isn't his job to protect Americans from their own asinine mistakes, which upsets the whole notion of a Constitution. The Constitution takes certain rights and prerogatives of the individual off the table. These rights, are not supposed to be up for discussion. But now John Roberts says "Ain't my job." The Congress has said, in essence, that anything they can get away with is Constitutional. Meanwhile, the regime seems to be shredding the Constitution and breaking the law on an almost daily basis. It seems it is left to those who still value freedom over the promise of free stuff to save us from ourselves. For those who wonder why I have been concentrating on the gun issue of late...well...we just might need those guns, you know, "for squirrels and such.*" Or to defend ourselves from a tyrannical government bent on imposing unconstitutional governance on this land, for we will not give another inch. The last election has shaken my faith that we can even have fair elections in this country again, but I have notgiven up entirely on the electoral process.
Following on to Folks' piece, and amplifying it to a degree is William A. Levinson's piece at AT today entitled Armed Citizens are Responsible Citizens Here is Levinson's point:
This is not to say that all people in big cities are cowards. Dozens of New York's emergency responders died on 9/11 when they tried to rescue people from the Twin Towers. These were, however, what Lt. Colonel David Grossman calls society's sheep dogs: men and women who join the Armed Forces, or become police officers, paramedics, or firefighters. They perform relatively low-paying jobs that involve the protection of their societies. There are far more "sheep dogs at need" than professional sheep dogs. A sheep dog at need is somebody who is not a soldier, sailor, or emergency responder, but who will take responsibility for himself, herself, and possibly others during an emergency. This can range from returning lost property, calling the police, stopping to assist an accident victim, or even using deadly force as shown in the examples. Some people in the Twin Towers did try to help others escape.I, and many others are "sheepdogs at need," in that we are willing, and able in times of trouble to help others. But the sheep don't get to ask the sheepdogs to give up their weapons. That's not how nature works.
* The reference is to the movie "The Outlaw Josey Wales" See here for a transcript. It is a tale about the cycle of revenge and counter revenge. Eventually, the only way to live in peace is to finally let go, and get on with your life. As Josey Wales says, "I reckon so."