Immigrants who love America for her promise of freedom and opportunity can be some of the best advocates for America’s unique political philosophy.
One such immigrant is Lily Tang Williams, now an American citizen, who was born in China’s Sichuan Province and lived her early years under the yoke of Communist oppression.
Williams managed to come to the U.S. as a graduate student in 1988 – and she came determined to stay. Besides being a wife and mother, she has been a corporate executive, entrepreneur, and political activist, eventually chairing the Libertarian Party of Colorado – which she switched to in 2008 “because she felt the Republican party was abandoning principles of liberty.”
Gun rights, constitutional freedoms, and Common Core are just some of the things Lily Tang Williams devotes her time to speaking out about. Her Facebook site is here.
On Tuesday, she posted a Facebook update that’s going viral. The gist of her message?
I am a Chinese immigrant and an American citizen by choice. I once was a slave before and I will never be one again.
I will always stand with my AR, no matter what my President signs with his pen.
In 2013, concerned about a magazine-limits law that was being pushed in Colorado, Williams published a piece at NRO, which hasn’t lost anything for being a couple of years old now. The issues never really change with the topic of “guns against tyranny.”
Williams’ perspective is well worth revisiting.
Citizens [of China] were not allowed to have any guns or they would be put into prison, or worse. Chinese people were helpless when they needed to defend themselves. I grew up with fear, like millions of other children — fear that the police would pound on our doors at night and take my loved ones away, fear that bad guys would come to rob us. Sometimes I could not sleep from hearing the screaming people outside.
There were many stories of local people defending themselves with kitchen knives and sticks. Women were even more helpless when they were attacked and raped. I was molested as a college student once while walking home at night. It was common then.
When it came to dealing with the Chinese government and police brutality, there was nothing we could do. They had guns, while law-abiding citizens did not.
Her brief for the Second Amendment could not be better stated:
I think the Founding Fathers of this country were very wise. They put that in the Constitution because they knew that a government could become either powerful or weak and that the citizens’ last defense is the ability to bear arms to protect themselves against tyranny and criminals. The guns are not just for sports, hunting, and collecting; it is our fundamental right to bear arms and use them for our self-defense.
Having previously lived under a tyranny, it seems clear to me that the U.S. government is going to try to infringe my Second Amendment right. What happened in China could happen in America. If the government can tell us what arms to bear, where to bear them, and how many shots you need to use to defend yourself, we might just become slaves. America is the land of the free and the last hope for human freedom. Do not give up. We have to be united and fight back for the sake of our children and grandchildren.
Lily Tang Williams knows first-hand the truth conveyed in one of Mao Zedong’s most famous comments, made during a speech to top members of the Chinese Communist Party in 1938 (emphasis original in the citation here):
Communists should prove themselves the most politically conscious leaders in this war. Every Communist must grasp the truth, “Political power grows out of the barrel of a gun.” Our principle is that the Party commands the gun, and the gun must never be allowed to command the Party.
We must never forget that the aim of gun restrictions, for all politicians of the radical left, is achieving a monopoly on political power.
As Williams implies, if the people are armed, “the gun” is able to command the Party. An armed people keeps the political power of the state in check.
But if the people are disarmed, there is no one to protect them from the political power of an armed state. The Party commands the gun.
There’s a little key in Williams’ 2013 NRO piece that’s worth calling out, as a tag-line here. She writes:
If the government can tell us what arms to bear, where to bear them, and how many shots you need to use to defend yourself, we might just become slaves.
In Western democratic republics, that’s always how it starts. Mild-mannered, well-intentioned governments implement “common sense” gun restrictions for your protection. I wrote in October about how it was the fussy, dithering Weimar Republic that preceded Hitler – as opposed to Hitler himself – that gave his Nazi regime the gun laws it needed to disarm the people and criminalize gun ownership. Doing the latter gave the Nazis a pretext for putting a lot of inconvenient people in prison camps.
The beauty of the “common sense gun restriction” argument is that radicals can strengthen the seeming case for it by encouraging disorder and civil violence. That’s exactly what the Nazis did in the 1920s, and the Weimar politicians reacted by tightening gun laws in the vain hope of disarming Nazi thugs.
This cycle of misguidedness would be no surprise to Lily Tang Williams, I suspect. She has seen with her own eyes why those who want to consolidate and hold political power are anxious to keep everyone else disarmed and helpless. She’s right, and Americans can get informed as well as inspired if they’ll listen to her.