The author of the article is president of the Keystone Second Amendment Association, a pro-firearms ownership organization based in Pennsylvania. (P.O. Box 361, Curwensville, PA 16833)
Transcribed to disk by Doug Burnham, NRA Life, CRPA Life and staunch pro- gun activist. Any errors in transcription are solely mine.
You have heard that the anti-gun movement is duplicating the tactics that Hitler used to disarm Germany prior to World War II, but is this true?
Handgun Control, Inc, (HCI) is waging a major propaganda war against the United States, with the help of the socialist media elite, and some powerful politicians. Their lies were once totally disregarded by most people, but today, the majority of the people seem to believe the anti- gunners. Why is this?
In 1925 Adolf Hitler wrote Mein Kampf, and gave the world an opportunity to see into his mind. Hitler wrote about the Nazi movement from its infancy, and gave us insights as to his intentions. In 1939, Mein Kampf was translated into English and distributed in America. But few people took the time to read Mein Kampf. After all, the predictions being made about Hitler's intentions were crazy, and few people could comprehend them, much less believe them.
Today we must deal with people, even fellow gun owners, who do not believe that the present gun control attempts are leading to total gun confiscation and a police state. They, like the "unbelievers" in 1939, will not take the time to research this movement. If they did, they would see that these warnings are indeed accurate and timely.
Mein Kampf contains two chapters on propaganda (War Propaganda, and Propaganda and Organization), and Hitler laid out an extensive propaganda plan in his book, a plan that would change the history of the world. From reading these two chapters, we can learn that Hitler was an expert on psychology, psychological warfare, and brainwashing. Hitler probably knew more about the human mind and behavior -- and how to control both -- than almost anyone else of his time.
I do not think that we need to argue his knowledge or success in this area. History quite clearly shows us the powerful effect that Hitler had on people and what he motivated them to do.
And today, in America, Hitler's technique are being used again, to destroy the United States and personal liberties.
The anti-gun movement's main propaganda themes seem to be that (1) guns and gun owners are the root of all evil, and (2) that they (the socialist anti-gunners) are our only hope against the spreading plague of crime. In Mein Kampf, Hitler's main propaganda themes seem to be that (1) Jews and Jewry are the root of all evil, and (2) that Hitler was Germany's best hope against the spreading communist revolution.
To understand the movements, we must understand what propaganda is. Simply put, propaganda can be outright lies, distorted facts, and/or truth, combined to change a person's thoughts on a subject.
According to Hitler, "The task of propaganda lies not in a scientific training of the individual, but rather in directing the masses towards certain facts, events, necessities, etc., the purpose being to move their importance into the masses' field of vision." (page 231)
We can see this in HCI's propaganda, as they also stick to a few main points and repeat them over and over. How many times do they draw out attention to the Hinkley shooting, the Purdy shooting, or the AK47 rifle? Rather than use many different crimes as examples of their propaganda, they concentrate on a handful of well known crimes.
Hitler believed that propaganda had to be very simple, so the average person, with a very short attention span, could understand it. He stayed away from complicated ideas and stuck to a few basic and easy to understand ideas.
Hitler said, "The more modest then, its scientific ballast is, and the more it exclusively considers the feelings of the masses, the more striking will be its success. . . This is just the art of propaganda that it, understanding the great masses' world of ideas and feelings, finds, by a correct psychological form, the way to the attentions, and further to the heart, of the great masses." (pages 232-233)
Basically, Hitler says, KEEP IT SIMPLE!
He goes on to say, "The great mass of people is not composed of diplomats or even teachers of political law, nor even of purely reasonable individuals who are able to pass judgement, but of human beings who are as undecided as they are inclined towards doubts and uncertainty." (pages 236-7)
This is quite true, as very few people have taken the time to learn how the political system and legislative process works, not to mention the U.S. Constitution, and what it means. These people are "ripe for the harvest" of a propaganda expert.
Hitler also said, "The people, in an overwhelming majority, are so feminine in their nature and attitude that their activities and thoughts are motivated less by sober consideration than by feeling and sentiment." (page 237)
Look again at the gun control battle. Are people taking the time to study the issue individually before making a decision? No, rather they see images on TV of dead bodies, body bags, pools of blood, and a gun lying next to a corpse. They see victims in pain and they see next of kin crying over lost loved ones. They allow their emotions to take over, and base their opinions on these emotions, rather than "sober consideration." Television has become the most effective brainwashing tool to turn gun control into an emotional issue. We are all human, and none of us enjoys seeing weeping relatives or crime victims lying in the street. Those among us who are strong see these images and decide to prepare to resist an attack to ourselves and our families. Those among us who are weak, succumb to the brainwashing techniques and think that guns are evil.
Why is HCI, a relatively small organization (in comparison to the large number of citizens who own firearms), so successful in their repeated attacks against us?
Hitler answers this: "When propaganda has filled a whole people with an idea, the organization, with the help of a handful of people, can draw the consequences. Propaganda and organization -- that means followers and members -- have thus a definite mutual relationship. The better propaganda has been working, the smaller may be the organization, and the greater the number of members and vice versa: the worse propaganda is, the greater must and will be the organization and the smaller the host of followers of a movement remains, the greater must be the number of members, if it still wants to count on success at all." (page 851)
Chipping Away -- From Hitler's words, and HCI's example, we can see that they will continue to chip away at our firearms freedoms. As long as the vast majority of gun owners and freedom loving Americans remain sitting on the sidelines, we can expect things to get even worse. It is insane to think that HCI will back down, or be satisfied with only the Brady Bill, they have only just begun their attack, and we have much more to come.
We can consider the leaders of the anti-gun movement (and their media elitist friends) to be experts in the art of propaganda. They most definitely know what they are doing, and they are very successful.
Hitler said, ". . . for this (propaganda) is also only a weapon, though a frightful one, in the hands of an expert." (page 230)
Frightful indeed! We can see the propaganda masters taking our freedom and our fellow citizens (the "masses") are practically begging them to do it.
HCI is known for sticking to a handful of basic lies or statements, which they repeat constantly. The result is that the average person (Hitler calls them "the masses," while Lenin called them "useful idiots") has these ideas hammered into him/her, until eventually they agree with HCI, and are won over to HCI's side.
According to Hitler, "Now the purpose of propaganda is not continually to produce interesting changes for a few blase little masters, but to convince; that means, to convince the masses. The masses, however, with their inertia, always need a certain time before they are ready even to notice a thing, and they will lend their memories only to the thousandfold repetition of the most simple ideas." (page 239)
Do you not see HCI using the same lies thousands of times, per Hitler's instructions? We are referred to as "the lunatic fringe," "gun nuts," and "bullies." The scary sounding terms they use repeatedly, such as "assault weapon," "cop killer bullet," or "Saturday Night Special" hammered into our heads as a brainwashing tool. Add to this the slogans "Has the NRA gone off the deep end?" "How many more have to die?" "If we can save just one life . . ." "We're working to keep guns out of the wrong hands" etc., and you have a very effective propaganda campaign in use. We are merely hearing slight variations of the main propaganda theme, that guns and gun owners are the root of all evil. They make sure that they stick to their main theme, as this is absolutely critical to the success of their movement.
Hitler said, "All advertising, whether it lies in the field of business or of politics, will carry success by continuity and regular uniformity of application." (page 240)
Hitler goes on to say, "The great masses' receptive ability is only very limited, their understanding small, but their forgetfulness is great. As a consequence of these facts, all effective propaganda has to limit itself only to a very few points and to use slogans until even the last man is able to imagine what is intended by such a word. As soon as one sacrifices this basic principle and tries to become versatile, the effect will fritter away, as the masses are neither able to digest the material offered nor to retain it. Thus the result is weakened and finally eliminated." (page 234)
This is true, as most people rely solely on the mass media for their news, and never take the time to see if the news reports are actually true. We tend to have very short memories as well. Can you remember what you were doing nine days ago, what the lead story was on the news three days ago, or just one or two campaign promises that George Bush has not broken?
In the beginning of the anti-gun movement, most people did not believe the anti-gun lies. They knew that all the scheming and dreaming would not eliminate crime, but rather that it would strip them of their liberties. By utilizing effective propaganda techniques, HCI has managed to change quite a few minds. This is especially evident when we look at the Brady Bill votes in the U.S. House of Representatives. A few years ago, when the House voted on the Brady Bill, it was defeated by 24 votes. This time it won by 53 votes. Why the drastic change? Simple, by not giving up on their never ending propaganda campaign, they brainwashed more people into joining their side, including many who used to be pro-gun (at least seven of those "Representatives" that voted anti-gun had received NRA PAC money for their prior support).
Hitler said, "Here, too, the enemy's war propaganda (he is referring to World War I) set a typical example. It was limited to a few points of view, calculated exclusively for the masses, and it was carried out with untiring persistency. Basic ideas and forms of execution which had once been recognized as being right were employed throughout the entire war, and never did one make even the slightest change. At the beginning it was apparently crazy in the impudence of its assertions, later it became disagreeable, and finally it was believed." (page 240)
Spreading The Idea -- Hitler goes on to say, "In every great revolutionary movement propaganda will first have to spread the idea of the movement. That means, it will untiringly try to make clear to the others the new train of thought, to draw them over to its own ground, or at least to make them doubtful of their own previous conviction." (page 852)
HCI has managed to change society's view of gun ownership. Guns used to be considered normal, healthy and in many instances, necessary. Today, more and more people believe that guns are evil, and somehow responsible for crime. This change of though did not just "happen," it was brought about by clever propaganda use.
Make no mistake about it, HCI and the gun grabbing elitists want nothing short of taking all of our guns. The Brady Bill is just their first step. Sound crazy? Sure, and that is why it is working! But don't take my word for it, let's see what the anti-gunners have said about their devious plan, in their own words:
"This is the first step" -- U.S. Representative Edward Feighan, referring to the Brady Bill (which he introduced) at recent House hearings.
"We're going to have to take one step at a time, and the first step is necessarily -- given the political realities -- going to be very modest... So we'll have to start working again to strengthen that law, and then again to strengthen the next law, and maybe again and again. Right now though, we'd be satisfied not with half a loaf but with a slice. Our ultimate goal -- total control of handguns in the United States -- is going to take time... The first problem is to slow down the increasing number of handguns being produced and sold in this country. The second problem is to get handguns registered. And the final problem is to make possession of all handguns and all handgun ammunition -- except for military, policemen, licensed security guards, licensed sporting clubs, and licensed gun collectors -- totally illegal." -- Pet Shields, Chairman Emeritus, Handgun Control, Inc. (interview appearing in The New Yorker, July 26, 1976)
"This is not all we will have in future Congresses, but this is a crack in the door. There are too many handguns in the hands of citizens. The right to keep and bear arms has nothing to do with the Brady Bill." -- U.S. Representative Craig Washington, at the mark-up hearing on the Brady Bill, April 10, 1991. "Handguns should be outlawed. Our organization will probably take this stand in time but we are not anxious to rouse the opposition before we get the other legislation passed." -- Elliot Corbett, Secretary, National Council For A Responsible Firearms Policy (interview appeared in the Washington Evening Star on September 19, 1969).
"It is our aim to ban the manufacture and sale of handguns to private individuals. . .the coalition's emphasis is to keep handguns out of private possession -- where they do the most harm." Recruiting flyer currently distributed by The Coalition to Stop Gun Violence, formerly called The National Coalition to Ban Handguns.
"Yes, I'm for an outright ban (on handguns)." -- Pete Shields, Chairman emeritus, Handgun Control, Inc., during a 60 Minutes interview.
"We are at the point in time and terror where nothing short of a strong uniform policy of domestic disarmament will alleviate the danger which is crystal clear and perilously present. Let us take the guns away from the people. Exemptions should be limited to the military, the police, and those licensed for good and sufficient reasons. And I would look forward to the day when it would not be necessary for the policeman to carry a sidearm." -- Patrick V. Murphy, former New York City Police Commissioner, and now a member of Handgun Control's National Committee, during testimony to the National Association of Citizens Crime Commissions.
"My experience as a street cop suggests that most merchants should not have guns. But I feel even stronger about the average person having them...most homeowners...simply have no need to own guns." -- Joseph McNamara, HCI spokesman, and former Chief of Police of San Jose, California.
"I don't want to go for confiscation, but that is where we are going." -- Daryl Gates, Police Chief of Los Angeles, California.
"There may be other things that will happen later... It may not be the end... the bottom line is what we are seeking now is the Brady Bill." -- U.S. Representative Charles Schumer, interviewed on CNN Crossfire.
"The Brady Bill is the minimum step Congress should take...we need much stricter gun control, and eventually should bar the ownership of handguns, except in a few cases." -- U.S. Representative William Clay, quoted in the St. Louis Post Dispatch on May 6, 1991.
"It's only the first step, it's not going to be enough...we've got to go beyond that, and I hope we'll do it this session of Congress." -- U.S. Representative Edward Feighan during an interview on ABC News Nightline.
These people are quite clear as to their true intentions, that is, to totally disarm the American citizenry. Make no mistake about it, they are winning, and we are losing.
If you are not already involved in fighting to preserve our right to possess firearms, I strongly urge you to get involved. Join one or more of the national pro-gun organizations. But do not stop there. If you expect to win this war, you must be willing to stand up and get involved. The national progun groups simply are unable to hold the tide anymore. We must supplement their work with grass roots work at the local level.
Join a local pro-gun grass roots group, and if there aren't any in your area, start one of your own. Meet with politicians when they are in your area. Write letters, make phone calls, and vote. Organize people and educate the "masses."
While we may have truth on our side, the people are not listening to the truth. The believe the lies and will not take the time to find out that they are indeed lies. This will only get worse. We do not have the odds in our favor, as the anti-gun forces are well entrenched and powerfully armed. But we must resist or we will most certainly lose. Make no doubt about that. Get involved immediately!