Robert Ronnow
                                                                                              Communicating the Bird

                                          A Gun in Every Home

Two fine films: The Lost City and Blood Diamond.
I joined Blood Diamond during a village massacre
and said to my wife A gun in every home.
Those devils would think twice
before razing the village and seizing the boys.

A well-regulated militia.
The local militia the most interesting moment
in a strong film with motive (economic, emotional), action (chases, fights) and a sexy,
     sexless love story.
Use of violence by the local militia for a limited purpose: protect the community, the young
from the janjaweed. The crop from the weed.
Limited scope and defensive posture
but armed and coordinated, cooperative, the men (and the women) side by side.
Warriors at the gate, you will not run, you will not bargain.
Just violence = limited scope, defensive posture.

Great music. Cuba, Africa.
The Lost City, when the communists tell the club owner under threat of violence
No saxophones in the band. The saxophone!
Invented by a Belgian – Look what the Belgians are doing in the Congo!
When the state's violence is turned against the citizenry
for non-violent acts.

This quiet neighborhood, July,
undergirded by violence, force. That's a given –
any farmer, custodian, EMT will tell you that.
Without just violence
Gandhi's scope, and King's, might be vanishingly limited,
negligible (but not non-existent)?
                                                  Regarding King
the matter is simple – he was non-violent but dependent upon
federal force to counter the South's violence.
No doubt without the larger force, the non-violent would be overwhelmed by southern
Here, non-violence was a tactic, not an ethic.
Gandhi, however, had no violent partner to protect him from the British. Or did he?
1. There was the potential violence of the population, which Gandhi restrained but could
    release which the British feared, and
2. It was the restrained (limited scope) violence of the British that allowed Gandhi to exist
    rather than be extinguished – this restraint was a (British) cultural imperative (limited
    scope) as well as emanating from Britain's view of India as a protectorate and valued
    citizen of the United Kingdom (defensive posture).

What about violence or threat of violence to compel compliance with community
as in mortgage foreclosure, driving without license, drug possession.
Perhaps it is necessary violence to maintain orderly commerce, the common space, and
     preempt bad behaviors associated with otherwise neutral, private acts.
The defensive posture is the common good; the limited scope is forgoing deadly force.
But the citizen, too, must maintain a disciplined, armed non-violence,
in case the state (the janjaweed) engages in an unjust, autoimmune violence.
Hence, a gun in every home.

Copyright 2012 by Robert Ronnow.