Starting the Debate

Recently Gun Digest the Magazine columnist Charlie Cutshaw penned a column describing what he called “the three percent solution.”

My interpretation of the column was that Cutshaw believes that in the event of a meltdown of American freedoms very few citizens would actually stand up to the government and do the right thing. The vast majority would simply endure. Cutshaw’s call to action asked readers to join with the minority. He cited examples of those who pledged to do so.

But this column has opened a great debate; one that I think plays out perfectly here and in our Internet forums where gun owners congregate to share ideas.

While some readers have asked permission to reprint the column, others hurled expletives. But screaming doesn’t make for good debate. So, I ask that you re-read Cutshaw’s column, if you can’t find your back issue, we have it posted on line at

After that, also read the letter printed below, then think about where you stand and what you would do if the unthinkable happened.

Charlie Cutshaw’s writing, “Become Part of The Three-Percent Solution,” can be best described as intemperate passion.

He tells us that he and a band of police officers reserve the right to determine what laws are unconstitutional as well as the authority to disregard such laws. He tells us that he took an oath to defend the Constitution when he joined the U.S. Army and did not take an oath to uphold the president. Does his loyalty to the Constitution extend to its provision making the president the Commander-in-Chief? While in the military did Cutshaw reserve the right to obey only those orders that enjoyed his approval?

Cutshaw offers a David Letterman style top “10 Laws We Will Not Enforce” to readers on a website. The website is supposedly supported by law enforcement officers and military personnel. Cutshaw then offers, “Obama probably knows that the majority of serving military and law enforcement personnel apparently will not enforce unconstitutional laws and edicts…”

Well, let us take a short stroll down memory lane to look at Cutshaw’s claim. During World War II tens of thousands of U.S. citizens of Japanese descent were herded into detention camps for the duration of the war by law enforcement officers and military personnel without so much as a murmur of dissent. In 1955 police officers arrested Rosa Parks for refusing to give up her seat on a city bus to a white male passenger without a murmur of dissent. Indeed, after much research, I cannot find a single police officer, of any rank, who played a prominent role in supporting the great civil rights movement of the 1950s and 1960s.

Police officers stood on the sidelines during the great civil rights struggle, and in many cases stood in the way. In 1970 members of the Ohio National Guard fired into a crowd of anti-war demonstrators killing four and wounding nine unarmed Kent State University students. Recently, F.B.I. agents conspired with federal prosecutors to deny former Senator Ted Stevens his Constitutional right to a fair trial.

Police officers do a commendable job of investigating crime and apprehending suspects often at great risk to their safety and sometimes suffering serious injury and death. Every citizen owes police officers a great debt of gratitude for their service, however, police officers do not have a history of fighting for social justice or securing the blessings of liberty. That is a job left to ordinary citizens. In the historical accounts I have read of the battles at Lexington and Concord it was not reported that constables stood next to the farmers and craftsmen when Liberty was in peril and the call went out to men of conscience to respond with their privately owned firearms.

Cutshaw and his band of police officers seem to be motivated by the realization that President Obama may soon be coming after them. That is not the type of idealism that propels a great civil rights movement. In the 1950s and 1960s people from nearly all walks of life left their homes and jobs to join in a great movement to secure the blessings of liberty for others. They, like our founding fathers, took great risks and suffered for their ideals. They were not motivated by self-interest, but by the yearning for liberty for themselves and those who were to follow.

A careful reading of Cutshaw’s writing shows it does not advance the struggle to secure the blessings of liberty nor does it make any of us safe. I take no comfort in police officers who say they will decide what laws are Constitutional and what laws they will enforce. That is not my idea of safety, liberty, or justice.

Michael Lee Kobe
Kansas City, KS

For the sake of this debate, I asked Mr. Kobe what his idea of safety, liberty or justice is. And I ask all of you the same question. Post a reasonable, rational answer on the forums, let’s carry this debate to the next level.

We have a great nation because we do not suppress any of our freedoms. Let’s keep it that way.

Good Shooting.