Second Amendment supporters maintain that an armed citizenry is necessary to prevent the national government from turning its power against its own citizens. That is, the right of the people to keep and bear arms protects us against tyranny.

Fair enough. How is that working out? Not well. The problem is that now that the specter of tyranny has arisen in our country, organizations that speak and lobby for the Second Amendment are staunchly behind the tyrant.

Is "tyrant" too strong? We have a president who seems to disdain democratic principles and regularly ignores them. He has contempt for the rule of law, the separation of powers, the role of Congress, and the integrity of the courts. He calls the free press "the enemy of the people," and labels criticism "fake news." He respects and dotes on foreign tyrants while undermining security alliances with our democratic allies. He sneers at and violates principles that define the national character we call "American" while enriching himself, his family, and his unqualified cronies at public expense.

There's more. This president seems to have done his best to sabotage the work and findings of congressional committees and investigations. He ignores subpoenas and congressional requests for information, and rules as if unconstrained by law. Most alarmingly, this president has undermined our electoral process. He seems indifferent to foreign interference in our elections while supporting gerrymandering and measures to suppress voter turnout. He has refused to allocate adequate funds to strengthen election integrity.

And who can the tyrant count among his most reliable allies? It's the very organizations that advocate for arming the citizenry against tyranny. At a recent gun-rights rally one prominent sign read: "The 2ndAmendment is not about hunting or target shooting; it's about protecting against government tyranny." OK. What about this tyrant?

Charles Gessert

Duluth