With all the talk of gun control going on here in the U.S., we have a perfect example of what a “gun-free” society looks like just 90 miles from our shores. Cuba’s Castro dictatorship outlawed private gun ownership and confiscated all firearms from private citizens. And for nearly six decades since, the Cuban people have not been able to defend themselves against the violent repression of a well-armed Cuban State Security apparatus.
Although Gabriella Hoffman wrote this piece for The Washington Times a couple of years ago, it is quite relevant and timely today. If indeed the Cuban people had firearms they could use to defend themselves against the the despotism of the oppressive Castro dictatorship, it is quite plausible they would be in a much better position to liberate themselves from communist tyranny.
How guns could liberate Cuba
Just the threat of resistance frightens despots
Despite the Cuban embargo being lifted in December 2014, the island nation is still ravaged by collectivist policies like gun control.
Could the presence of privately-owned firearms held by citizens help pivot Cuba towards the path to freedom? It’s very plausible.
Ever since the Castro regime violently and ruthlessly rose to power in 1959, the presence of firearms has been nonexistent. Since installing a military dictatorship, the Castro brothers have made private gun ownership impossible, subject to regulation, and punishable by law. Cubans have thus been rendered defenseless — a factor convincing many Cubans to flee the communist nation for freedom elsewhere.
Cuba’s government has deliberately created an environment where a Second Amendment can’t thrive. It has complete pull over all industries in the country, including the firearms industry. It assigns responsibilities to loyalists in Committees for the Defense of the Revolution (CDR) — thuggish neighborhood watch programs slipping into obsolescence — to enforce laws to discourage dissent, instill fear in neighbors who fail to goose-step with the regime, and provide so-called security for those who pledge to a CDR. Moreover, the government exploits disarmament policies to instill fear in people.
Despite the terror seen under the Castro regime, some Cubans have accepted the military dictatorship in place. If Cuba were to become capitalist like the United States, some suggest, changes in gun laws could be possible and therefore lead to violence.
One example of this contorted view was demonstrated on the March 20 episode of the CNN program “The Wonder List with Bill Weir” on Cuba. Host Bill Weir asked musician and rapper Daya Suarez her thoughts on the possible influx of American tourism dollars pouring in. Ms. Suarez responded by saying increased wealth would lead some Cubans to buy firearms to protect private property, therefore leading to violence — violence, she says, the military dictatorship wiped out after they rose to power.
This claim could not be more laughable.
The presence of firearms in Cuba would not be a detriment to their quest for freedom. Rather, firearms will enable Cubans to declare their freedom and not be subjected to the whims of the Castro regime.
The presence of more guns in the hands of good people will help stop guns in the hands of bad people. Much to the chagrin of the Castro regime and gun control advocates here in the United States, countries with high firearm ownership witness less overall crime than countries with low firearm ownership. Countries like the United States, Czech Republic and Switzerland encourage gun ownership in some form or fashion. (The Second Amendment arguably makes our gun laws the best in the world.) These three countries are demonstrably free, relatively safe and undoubtedly civilized. Why? Individuals in these countries believe in self-defense, self-preservation and true gun safety. Additionally, the presence of more guns has kept homicide rates down in all of these countries — a fact our opponents dismiss.
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