Muslims are a minority in the United States. Anti-Muslim sentiments are also at a high. Those two points create the perfect conditions for anti-Muslim bigots to act brave and mighty. Heinlein wrote, “An armed society is a polite society. Manners are good when one may have to back up his acts with his life.” From this one can infer that an unarmed society is an impolite society. Manners are bad when one faces no consequences for their actions.
A group of anti-Muslim bigots planned to hold a protest at a mosque in Dallas. I’m sure the participants had crusader-like visions of appearing brave and powerful compared to the infidels they planned to protest. Especially since they were brining weapons and likely assume their targets were going to be unarmed. But things didn’t turn out quite as they expected:
A few hundred South Dallas residents, mostly black, flooded Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard to oppose a planned demonstration by a mostly white group that routinely protests outside mosques.
Both sides were armed.
Dallas police stood guard on a funeral home’s roof as black counterprotesters swarmed the parking lot of Eva’s House of Bar-B-Q, vowing to defend their streets and chanting “black power.”
“This is what they fear — the black man,” said activist Olinka Green. “This is what America fears.”
The anti-mosque group showed up in camouflage, carrying guns and an American flag, FOX 4 reported. They left soon after and the protests ended without incident.
Instead of protesting an unarmed group of Muslims the protesters found themselves up against armed counterprotesters. As is usual in case when two equally armed but disagreeing groups come into contact, the conflict ended peacefully. The protesters, seeing their perceived advantage vanish, decided to withdraw rather than risk a conflict with a group that could put up an effective resistance. In effect the protesters saw that they might actually have to back up their actions with their lives and decided it would be smarter to take the polite route than to continue their impolite actions.
Time and time again history has shown us what happens when one group enjoys overwhelming force over another: genocide. I advocate that everybody wanting to bear arms do so. But I especially encourage members of oppressed groups to bear arms. The biggest enabler of oppression is force disparity. This is why oppressors always try to disarm their intended victims. After the Civil War the State passed arms control laws specifically aimed at disarmed newly freed blacks. In the aftermath of the 1857 Indian rebellion Britain passed weapon control laws aimed at disarming Indians. When the Third Reich came to power it passed laws expressly forbid Jews from owning firearms. But without force disparity oppression is much more costly to perpetrate. With the risks of oppressing a target group increased most would-be oppressors tend to keep their actions to mere words whispered behind closed doors.