Regarding the popular myth that Hitler used gun control to gain power and keep it

Just yesterday, I told you HERE about a pro-gun Web site that warns its friends not to use bogus quotations to support their cause.

That same Web site also WARNS AGAINST peddling the utter falsehood that Adolf Hitler used gun control to come to power in Germany and to maintain his grip on that country:

A commonly heard argument against gun control is that the National Socialists of Germany (the Nazis) used it in their ascent to and maintenance of power. A corollary argument is sometimes made that had the Jews (and presumably the other targeted groups) been armed, they could have fought off Nazi tyranny. This tract seeks to counter these misassumptions about Nazi gun control.

Gun control, the Law on Firearms and Ammunition, was introduced to Germany in 1928 under the Weimar regime (there was no Right to Arms in the Constitution of 1919) in large part to disarm the nascent private armies, e.g. the Nazi SA (aka “the brownshirts”). The Weimar government was attempting to bring some stability to German society and politics (a classic “law and order” position). Violent extremist movements (of both the Left and Right) were actively attacking the young, and very fragile, democratic state. A government that cannot maintain some degree of public order cannot sustain its legitimacy. Nor was the German citizenry well grounded in Constitutional, republican government (as was evidenced in their choices at the ballot box). Gun control was not initiated at the behest or on behalf of the Nazis – it was in fact designed to keep them, or others of the same ilk, from executing a revolution against the lawful government. In the strictest sense, the law succeeded – the Nazis did not stage an armed coup.


The only feasible argument that gun control favored the Nazis would be that the 1928 law deprived private armies of a means to defeat them. The basic flaw with this argument is that the Nazis did not seize power by force of arms, but through their success at the ballot box (and the political cunning of Hitler himself). Secondary considerations that arise are that gun ownership was not that widespread to begin with, and, even imagining such ubiquity the German people, Jews in particular, were not predisposed to violent resistance to their government.

The Third Reich did not need gun control (in 1938 or at any time thereafter) to maintain their power. The success of Nazi programs (restoring the economy, dispelling socio-political chaos) and the misappropriation of justice by the apparatus of terror (the Gestapo) assured the compliance of the German people. Arguing otherwise assumes a resistance to Nazi rule that did not exist. Further, supposing the existence of an armed resistance also requires the acceptance that the German people would have rallied to the rebellion. This argument requires a total suspension of disbelief given everything we know about 1930s Germany.



  1. Here is another popular gun control myth dispelled.


    In Sunday’s New York Times, Elisabeth Rosenthal claimed, as the title of her article put it, “More Guns = More Killing.” She based this on evidence that would never be permitted in any other context at the Times: (1) anecdotal observations; and (2) bald assertions of an activist, blandly repeated with absolutely no independent fact-checking by the Times.

    There is an academic, peer-reviewed, long-term study of the effect of various public policies on public, multiple shootings in all 50 states over a 20-year period performed by renowned economists at the University of Chicago and Yale, William Landes and John Lott. It concluded that the only policy to reduce the incidence of, and casualties from, mass shootings are concealed-carry laws. The Times will never mention this study.

    Instead, Rosenthal’s column proclaimed that armed guards do not reduce crime because: “I recently visited some Latin American countries … where guards with guns grace every office lobby, storefront, ATM, restaurant and gas station. It has not made those countries safer or saner.”

    So there you have it: The cock crowed, then the sun came up. Therefore, the cock’s crowing caused the sun to come up. Rosenthal went to Harvard Medical School.

    Here’s a tip: High-crime areas are often bristling with bulletproof glass, heavy-duty locks, gated windows and armed guards. The bulletproof glass doesn’t cause the crime; it’s a response to crime. On Rosenthal’s logic, hospitals kill people because more people die in hospitals than outside of them.

    (In any event, the Lott-Landes study didn’t recommend armed guards, but armed citizens.)

    Rosenthal also produces a demonstrably false statistic about Australia’s gun laws, as if it’s a fact that has been carefully vetted by the Newspaper of Record, throwing in the true source only at the tail-end of the paragraph:

    “After a gruesome mass murder in 1996 provoked public outrage, Australia enacted stricter gun laws, including a 28-day waiting period before purchase and a ban on semiautomatic weapons. … Since, rates of both homicide and suicide have dropped 50 percent …,” said Ms. Peters, who lobbied for the legislation.”

    “Ms. Peters” is Rebecca Peters, a George Soros-funded, Australian anti-gun activist so extreme that she had to resign from the International Action Network on Small Arms so as not to discredit the U.N.-recognized organization — which isn’t easy to further discredit.

    Could the Times’ public editor weigh in on whether unsubstantiated quotes from radical activists are now considered full and complete evidence at the Times?


    While it’s true that Australia has had no more mass shootings since its gun ban, neither has New Zealand, despite continuing to be massively armed.

    The only thing Australia’s strict gun control laws has clearly accomplished is increasing the amount of violent crime committed with guns immediately after the ban took effect. Of course, Times reporters don’t have to worry about violent muggings, rapes and robberies because they live in doorman buildings.

    For those who can’t afford fancy doorman buildings, bad journalism kills.

  2. “I was just thinking that it is and should be to others, highly disturbing that our leaders believe it is a moral imperative to control our access to firearms, thereby decreasing acts of violence with firearms, but it isn’t morally imperative to address the growing sub culture of sex and violence.
    So it stands to reason that the immorality of guns is simply the ownership of them
    not the violence they can cause in the wrong hands.
    What’s the immoral aspect of all this? it seems it’s gun ownership
    or the ability to obtain guns
    not the increasingly detached and violent people roaming the streets.”

    From an anonymous source

  3. New Zealand gun law is classified as restrictive meaning greater regulation is used to determine who may possess a gun based upon criminal, mental, addictive or domestic violence history. Licensing authorities are also required to interview or advise family, spouse or next of kin and the right to private gun ownership is not guaranteed by law. Not sure the NRA would endorse such restrictions even though it appears to be working rather well in NZ between gun owners and law enforcement.

  4. pat
    i would succest you read the constitution of the united states as it was written. the right to bare arns was protected so if and when it became necessary to overthrow a government of tyrany the people could defend themselves.
    id also recommend that you come out of denile and watch the “end game”. your normaly on track but your off on this one.

  5. Can this be true? And they claim gun owners are paranoid.
    “When Sen. Barack Obama (D-Ill.) was seeking state office a dozen years ago, he took unabashedly liberal positions: flatly opposed to capital punishment, in support of a federal single-payer health plan, against any restrictions on abortion, and in support of state laws to ban the manufacture, sale and even possession of handguns.”

  6. Don,

    You need to reread the 2nd amendment.

    “A well regulated militia being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed.”

    It was for militia duty and protecting the nation. Anything about protecting yourself from the governement or tyranny of the government is made up nonsense. In fact, THAT would be a crime.


    As a doctor, you know about this I am sure: “In 2004, the National Academy of Sciences conducted a review of current research and data on firearms and violent crime, including Lott’s work, and found “no credible evidence that the passage of right-to-carry laws decreases or increases violent crime.”

    How come you didn’t mention that in your writings above?

  7. APersonConcerned

    you should take a look at what the Supreme Court of the United States says about the 2nd amendment.

    Supreme Court heard District of Columbia v. Heller, 554 US ___ (2008), a case that alleged Washington, DC, gun control laws were unconstitutional. The Supreme Court held that the Second Amendment of the Constitution protects Americans’ right to bear arms as an individual liberty not specifically limited to the militia, and that the District of Columbia’s requirement that guns within the home be unloaded, disassembled and locked were unconstitutional.

    Or maybe you think that the SCOTUS Justices are spewing nonsense and you are the one who has interpreted the constitution correctly?????

  8. APersonConcerned: Another thing about the Heller case is that Justice Antonin Scalia wrote this in his decision:

    “Like most rights, the Second Amendment right is not unlimited. It is not a right to keep and carry any weapon whatsoever in any manner whatsoever and for whatever purpose…

    “The Court’s opinion should not be taken to cast doubt on longstanding prohibitions on the possession of firearms by felons and the mentally ill, or laws forbidding the carrying of firearms in sensitive places such as schools and government buildings, or laws imposing conditions and qualifications on the commercial sale of arms…

    “[A previous ruling] holding that the sorts of weapons protected are those “in common use at the time” finds support in the historical tradition of prohibiting the carrying of dangerous and unusual weapons.”

    Yet another thing you should bear in mind. Mr. APC, is that the Second Amendment does not give citizens the right to bear arms against their government, despite notions to the contrary among a lot of gun nuts.

  9. APersonConcerned

    Pat, You are right about the Nazi’s coming to power through the ballot box but once in power, they used the gun laws that were placed to keep the Nazi’s from forcefully overthrowing the party in power to their advantage.

    The laws adopted by the Weimar Republic intended to disarm Nazis and Communists were sufficiently discretionary that the Nazis managed to use them against their enemies once they were in power.” In other words, they didn’t need to pass additional laws. The Nazis did pass a weapons law in 1938, but that only added restrictions to the previous law, especially for Jews and other “non-citizens.”


  10. APersonConcerned

    Pat, so your interpretation of the Constitution is that it was written to protect the government and not protect the people?

  11. APersonConcerned: It was written for both purposes, but it was not written to give people the right to bear arms against their government. And no court has ever said it was.

    Read this: http://blogs.e-rockford.com/applesauce/2013/01/10/when-are-paranoid-gun-owners-going-to-take-up-arms-against-the-government/

  12. APersonConcerned

    I, and many others, have always been under the impression that the constitution setup a federal government that could be controlled by the people of the states. Not a document that is setup to protect a federal government from the people of the states that it governs. It is a document that provides certain powers to the federal government in order to form a more perfect union than what the Articles of Confederation had been able to do. The bill of rights pointed out individual rights not already deemed inalienable to the people and the states and limited the powers that the government would have over individuals and the states.

    The second amendment, stating that “A well regulated militia being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed.” clearly says that the security of the free state, which is comprised of the people who wrote the constitution and the bill of rights, was to be protected by the people of the states who were not to be disarmed. A free state, meaning just that, free to maintain control over federal government.

  13. Fine, thenI concede that the militia thing is a historical remnant if that is how the SCOTUS interprets it. Also no, I do not consider myself a better expert than the justices. I will leave that to the right screaming about the ACA and still to this day…abortion. I still don’t see anything about taking arms against government tyranny, as Pat also eluded to.

  14. APersonConcerned

    I did not see any response or denial that there was gun control in Germany, instituted by the Nazi party with the 1938 German Weapons Act which rebuts your article so I will go ahead and assume that you know you now know your were wrong about Hitler implementing gun control over the Jewish people and other enemies of the Nazi party which lead to the Holocaust.

    It doesn’t much matter if any Jewish people were predisposed to owning any firearms before Hitler gained control. He implemented laws that made eased the disarmament of them regardless if they actually owned them. He did it to facilitate control over them and lead them to their death.

    The following is an excerpt from the source listed below.

    The 1938 German Weapons Act, the precursor of the current weapons law, superseded the 1928 law. As under the 1928 law, citizens were required to have a permit to carry a firearm and a separate permit to acquire a firearm. Furthermore, the law restricted ownership of firearms to “…persons whose trustworthiness is not in question and who can show a need for a (gun) permit.” Under the new law:

    Gun restriction laws applied only to handguns, not to long guns or ammunition. Writes Prof. Bernard Harcourt of the University of Chicago, “The 1938 revisions completely deregulated the acquisition and transfer of rifles and shotguns, as well as ammunition.”[4]
    The groups of people who were exempt from the acquisition permit requirement expanded. Holders of annual hunting permits, government workers, and NSDAP party members were no longer subject to gun ownership restrictions. Prior to the 1938 law, only officials of the central government, the states, and employees of the German Reichsbahn Railways were exempted.[5]
    The age at which persons could own guns was lowered from 20 to 18.[5]
    The firearms carry permit was valid for three years instead of one year.[5]
    Jews were forbidden from the manufacturing or dealing of firearms and ammunition.[6]

    Under both the 1928 and 1938 acts, gun manufacturers and dealers were required to maintain records with information about who purchased guns and the guns’ serial numbers. These records were to be delivered to a police authority for inspection at the end of each year.

    On November 11, 1938, the Minister of the Interior, Wilhelm Frick, passed Regulations Against Jews’ Possession of Weapons. This regulation effectively deprived all Jews of the right to possess firearms or other weapons.


  15. APersonConcerned

    Please read my comment that was posted immediately before your last comment that included ” I still don’t see anything about taking arms against government tyranny, as Pat also eluded to.”

  16. shawnnews

    Anyone taking up arms against the elected government will be charged with treason. The 2a isn’t set up to protect citizens from the federal government but from invaders, marauders or any other intruders that would’ve attacked the original United States — British, Hessians, Mexicans, French colonists and other groups who occupied the same land and could’ve had a armed dispute over territory.

  17. APersonConcerned

    Read Article 8, Section 1 of the constitution. It provides the federal government with the power to raise armies and a navy to protect the people of the United States from enemies while also providing funding to do so. It also calls for the federal government to call forth militia to suppress insurrections, invasions and execute laws of the union.

    The Bill of Rights, has always been known to be a specific listing of the rights people have against the government. The basis for the bill of rights was to specifically make illegal the very things that the colonist’s had been subjected to under rule of the King. The limits are put on the government to not be able to infringe on the people’s right to bear arms.

    If they were talking about the government needing armed people for protection from other nations, do you really think they would put that in a section were they were telling the government what they could not do to a person and to basically repeat what they had already stated in the Constitution?

  18. shawnnews

    I’m sure you don’t believe your own argument that the second amendment is to preserve citizens’ rights over the government. Let’s take a look at why.
    Anytime I would break the law and the government would arrest me I would be able to say that by resisting arrest or firing at the government with weapons I was really protecting my rights against tyranny. You could apply that argument to the Black Panthers having weapons caches. You couldn’t hold Bill Ayers and the Weather Underground in any criminal responsibility because they could say they were fighting against tyranny. Any jerk with a rifle could shoot an official he didn’t like and say he was fighting against tyranny and that he was the real patriot — like Tim McVeigh or Eric Rudolph. But since the Federal government had weak army and certainly could not travel in hours to any location under attack from invaders or insurrection — or a slave revolt — states had to have the power to raise their own militias — a form of a national guard — for their own protection.

  19. shawnnews

    Let me clarify:
    In this country I think you should be able to have all the guns you want. I don’t believe banning any sort of gun is a good idea. The liberals haven’t persuaded me. But the the intent of the second amendment wasn’t protection from government tyranny — it is an indirect result.

  20. APersonConcerned


    I apologize about my earlier reference to Article 8 Section 1 of the constitution. I was distracted by the Packers-49rs game for a second and didn’t realize that I had transposed the numbers. It was supposed to read Article 1 Section 8.

    Now on to your response. I will add this and only this because we most assuredly will not be the two that finally decide what exactly was meant when the 2nd amendment was written. I will leave that decision on the definition up to some other poor soul.

    The 2nd amendment to the constitution is there exactly to preserve the right of a citizen over the federal government. The same protections lie with the rest of the bill of rights, hence the name.

    The 10th amendment further secures the rights of the states and of the people over the federal government by stating that the powers not granted to the federal government within the constitution nor prohibited by the states, are reserved to the states or to the people.

    The need for domestic tranquility, peace between the states, was already mentioned in the constitution as was the security from invasions by foreign nations, rebellions, etc. and that power was given to the federal government. The security of a free state, not the security of a free union, is the object of the 2nd amendment. The states were comprised of people who, by definition at the time, were the militia.

    So what did the states need security from if they had already assigned the basic defense of the nation and the states to the federal government? The federal government already had the power to utilize the militia. If raising a form of a national guard was the intent of the 2nd amendment, why was it stated that the government could not relieve a person of their arms instead of stating that it would need or used armed citizens?

    Were the writers of the constitution implementing a safeguard against a tyrannical government gaining control of the federal government? A tyrannical government such as Britain perhaps who confiscated weapons from the people so the could not form an uprising against British rule?

    As I said before, this is the last comment I will post on this matter as it has definitely strayed from the original subject. Pat did post a link to his earlier writing about tyranny but I feel it was nothing but attempted incitement and not really the thing any responsible writer would publish at this time in our country.

  21. http://usa-the-republic.com/jurisprudentia/firearms_1.html

    The German experience of gun prohibition in the 30’s should be a lesson for the USA.

    Another History lesson:
    Till 1939, firearms ownership was totally free in France. Till the French Socialist gouvernement has the brilliant idea to take an executive order (Décret-Loi) bypassing French Parliament to set up a gun control policy with registration. One year later the Nazi who occupied France appreciated the help the French government gave to them, they have the list of all gun onwners in France, their name and adress.
    During this area, firearms ownership of any kind was punished by death penalty…
    I never miss an opportunity to remind the French gun prohibitionnists proponents that they are now free because some people got some weapons and got into Resistance against tyranny and help preciously the Allies especially in the preparation and durint the D-day.
    No we have the exemple to how a Democracy put such a dictator like Hitler to power, people should be more appreciative for the legacy from the Founding Fathers the Constitution of the of the USA to prevent the raise of such a tyranny in the USA . Instead we have people spitting on the Constitution and defvilize it (by the way the US Constitution is the oldest one in the free world, the French First Republic Constitution voted in 1792 had fallen shortly when the charismatic Napoleon Bonaparte, became Consul or chief of the executive power , then he took the full power and crowned himself Emperor in 1799, since then France went through 4 other Republics (currently France is at her 5th Republic), several Restorations of Monarchy and another Empire with Napoleon the 3rd, not mention the Collaboration Vichy government who collaborated with the Nazi; the longevity and the stability of the Constitution of the USA and the Bill of Rights incuding the 2nd Amendment, shown that it is truly well inspired…).

  22. shawnnews

    This long wikipedia article has a few points that reinforce my view.
    Here’s Alexander Hamilton. We see here the militias were to be trained by states and directed by the Feds. Not for a safe guard for states against the feds. I suppose that if the feds had the power to call up an army, they intended it to be comprised of state militias.

    “This desirable uniformity can only be accomplished by confiding the regulation of the militia to the direction of the national authority. It is, therefore, with the most evident propriety, that the plan of the convention proposes to empower the Union “to provide for organizing, arming, and disciplining the militia, and for governing such part of them as may be employed in the service of the United States, reserving to the states respectively the appointment of the officers, and the authority of training the militia according to the discipline prescribed by congress.”[48]
    A tolerable expertness in military movements is a business that requires time and practice. It is not a day, or even a week, that will suffice for the attainment of it. To oblige the great body of the yeomanry, and of the other classes of the citizens, to be under arms for the purpose of going through military exercises and evolutions, as often as might be necessary to acquire the degree of perfection which would entitle them to the character of a well-regulated militia, would be a real grievance to the people, and a serious public inconvenience and loss.
    “If a well regulated militia be the most natural defence of a free country, it ought certainly to be under the regulation and at the disposal of that body which is constituted the guardian of the national security…confiding the regulation of the militia to the direction of the national authority…(and) reserving to the states…the authority of training the militia.” – Alexander Hamilton, Federalist 29.

    Here’s another passage from the article that shows that while anti-federalists believed that the to 2nd Amendment was a state’s safeguard against a tyrannical government, but their view was defeated by the Federalists.

    “The armed forces that won the American Revolution consisted of the standing Continental Army created by the Continental Congress, together with various state and regional militia units. In opposition, the British forces consisted of a mixture of the standing British Army, Loyalist Militia and Hessian mercenaries. Following the Revolution, the United States was governed by the Articles of Confederation. Federalists argued that this government had an unworkable division of power between Congress and the states, which caused military weakness, as the standing army was reduced to as few as 80 men. They considered it to be bad that there was no effective federal military crackdown to an armed tax rebellion in western Massachusetts known as Shays’ Rebellion. Anti-federalists on the other hand took the side of limited government and sympathized with the rebels, many of whom were former Revolutionary War soldiers. Subsequently, the Philadelphia Convention proposed in 1787 to grant Congress exclusive power to raise and support a standing army and navy of unlimited size. Anti-federalists objected to the shift of power from the states to the federal government, but as adoption of the Constitution became more and more likely, they shifted their strategy to establishing a bill of rights that would put some limits on federal power.”


  23. derekwilson

    Quoting your post, “Anti-federalists objected to the shift of power from the states to the federal government, but as adoption of the Constitution became more and more likely, they shifted their strategy to establishing a bill of rights that would put some limits on federal power.”
    One of these limits was NOT to infringe on the right of the people to keep and bear arms.

  24. Reverend Ken

    You should be a mussie with your expert use of taquiyya.

  25. Very interesting article.

    I cannot tell is the 2nd Amendment is about the right to an armed insurrection agaisnt the Fed… but it’s clear that its about the individual right to own and bear arms. I already quote some Constitution of States which joined the Union after the ratification of the US constitution:
    Kentucky 1792 and revision in 1799 : “That the right of the citizens to bear arms in defense of themselves and the State shall not be questionned “.
    Tennessee 1796 : ” That freemen of this State have a right to keep and to bear arms for their common defence “.
    Ohio 1802 : ” That the people have a right to bear arms for the defense of themselves and the State,… ”
    Indiana 1816 : “That the people have a right to bear arms for the defense of themselves and the State.. ”
    Mississipi 1817 : “Every citizen has the right to bear arms in defense of himself and the state.. ”
    Connecticut 1818 : “Every citizen has a right to bear arms in defense of himself and the state “.
    Maine 1819 : “Every citizen has a right to keep and bear arms for the common defence, and this right shall never be questionned”.
    Alabama 1819 : “That every citizen has a right to bear arms in defence of himself and the state “.
    Missouri 1820 : “… that their right to bear arms in defence of themselves and the State cannot be questionned “.
    As much as the Pennsylvania constitution revision in 1790 artcle IX section 21:
    “Section 21
    That the right of citizens to bear arms, in defence of themselves and the State, shall not be questioned.”.

    From all these Constitutions prior and after the ratification of the US Constitution, which explicitely say the right of “CITIZENS” and even “EVERY CITIZEN” for “the defense of THEMSELVES and the State”, it is obvious that it is a individuak right.

  26. Craig Knauss


    Yes, they definitely do say in defense of self and the State.

    However, not one says anything about defense “from” the State. This clearly contradicts the far-right claim that the 2nd is also defense “from a tyrannical state”.

  27. Ok..
    Second Amendment only says that the natural individual right of every citizen to bears arms for the defense of himself and the state should not be infringed by the Governement.

    Nervertheless the right to resist to tyranical gouvernment is written by the Founding Fathers…
    In the Declaration of Independance:
    “When in the Course of human events, it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another, and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature’s God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation.
    We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.

    That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness. Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn, that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security.”

    It was in the very core of the work of the Founding Fathers to make sure that the new USA won’t get into a new tyranny, and if it happens the Declaration of Independance reminds where is the duty of every people who cherish Liberty..

  28. John Krats

    Hitler’s gun control program worked like this:

    1. Jews were prohibited from possessing guns.

    2. Nazis were exempt from gun control laws.

    3. Everyone else was subject to gun control laws that permitted ownership.

    How did the people without guns make out under this scheme?

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