" Before all else be armed."
"When you disarm the people, you commence to offend them and show that you distrust them either through cowardice or lack of confidence, and both of these opinions generate hatred."
These are not the words of the National Rifle Association's Wayne Lapierre or the late Charlton Heston. They are the words of Niccolo Machiavelli, proving that today's debate over gun control has actually been going on for centuries. Machiavelli would have been a powerful spokesman for the NRA.
Then there is the following quote from his writings which makes one question "stand your ground" laws (George Zimmerman attack of Trayvon Martin):
"Men rise from one ambition to another: first they seek to secure themselves against attack, and then they attack others."
Machiavelli's words provide food for thought about the viciousness and hypocrisy innate in man. No wonder politicians feel they are walking on eggs whenever considering gun control legislation. Machiavelli's writings speak to their dilemma and the fears they face:
"There is nothing more difficult to take in hand, more perilous to conduct, or more uncertain in its success, than to take the lead in the introduction of a new order of things."