TO KEEP AND BEAR ARMS by Bill R. Davidson

TO KEEP AND BEAR ARMS

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KIRKUS REVIEW

Carl Bakal's The Right to Bear Arms (1966) overstated the case for strict regulation of firearms, and here comes Bill R. Davidson--writer, reporter, ex-police officer, competitive shooter, and hunter--to counter it with an even more intemperate case for the defense. Whatever sound points it makes are drowned in a morass of conservative vituperation against offensive manifestations of modern life. Davidson is contemptuous of snipers with bad aim and indeed of anyone who isn't handy with a handgun. He takes pot shots at the Kennedys and ""their sometime stooge"" Sen. Tom Dodd; the whirring computers of Robert McNamara; our ""female-dominated"" society castrating that good old-fashioned ""aggressive, seed-stock manhood""; urbanization;, university law professors; draft-dodgers; and ""high-culture white liberals with their great concern for humanity in the mass but boredom with the individual."" His praise is reserved for the military preparedness of Israel, the Army as a great racial equalizer, and the way our forefathers ""out-Indianed the Indian"" so that ""the troublemakers wished they'd started something else."" With World War III just around the corner, it's crucial to teach our young men Cowboys and Indians, but ""the Hollywood-Washington-New York news-managing, column-grinding, and belt-it-out entertainment axis pays an undue heed to gun-inept ex-scenario writers and young Senators who never heard a shot in combat."" Davidson agrees that a mild licensing plan is probably in order, but what our country really needs is good marksmanship and a civilian militia. ""How do you meet Genghis Khan halfway? You don't do it with Mace--or in a prep school gym."" A ripsnorting argument with too high a percentage of snort.

Pub Date: Nov. 14th, 1969
Publisher: Arlington House