I am not sure there is a more potent or significant word in the life of our country or its people than the word Freedom… It is the who and what the United States of America is. Our country was born in it, and we stand as a great nation upon it. We are defined around the globe by this word. Many of the world’s greatest faiths are built on upon freedom, wars have been waged for it, and men and women have sacrificed and died for the meaning of this word.
Isn’t it amazing how this one word, can mean so much yet there be so many interpretations of its meaning? Perhaps we have been so ingrained with this word and the liberties it affords that many now take it and what it means for granted. We live life free, and perhaps we have been somewhat spoiled and now are unaware of what it truly means and just how precious it indeed is. So, let’s look at this word, its definition and some personal definitions of some of my favorite Second Amendment patriots.
The Merriam-Webster dictionary defines freedom as “the absence of necessity, coercion, or constraint in choice or action, liberation from slavery or restraint or from the power of another, independence, and the quality or state of being exempt or released, usually from something onerous.”
I marvel as I write this how we as Americans have “this,”. We have what is defined above in every area of our lives! Think about it. Our work, our religion, our thoughts, our voice, our movement, and the ability to protect our lives from harm. We need it as individual human beings both personally and collectively as a community.
I thought it would be interesting to ask some people that I highly respect within the Second Amendment community how they would define freedom and what freedom means to them.
Let’s start with Gabby Franco, an Olympic shooter, firearms instructor, competitive shooter, author, speaker and NRA commentator. She is also an immigrant from Venezuela, a woman who knows better than most of us what life is like without it.
“When I think about freedom, I think about my power to speak against or in favor of the government; I think about my ability to work hard to pursue my dreams. It makes me feel strong because I know I can use the necessary tools to protect my life. When I think about freedom, I think about everything I wish my fellow Venezuelans could enjoy today.
One thing is for sure; Freedom is not free and demands our eternal vigilance.”
Antonia Okafor is a passionate voice and advocate in the fight for legally armed protection on college campuses and Founder of Empowered. She is NRA commentator and women’s rights advocate. As a black, female, conservative millennial she brings an important voice to the Second Amendment conversation. She is also running for a seat on the NRA Board of Directors. She defines freedom as:
“Freedom is existing without any outside or internal hindrance to do what you want to do, be who you want to be and go where you want to go. Freedom is always sought for and yet never fully obtained because the individual ultimately both defines and creates it.”
Wayne LaPierre, NRA Executive Vice President, and CEO who has been fighting to protect our Second Amendment Rights for forty years and is one of the world’s most-recognized faces of gun rights advocacy. says:
“Freedom is never an achieved state; like electricity, we’ve got to keep generating it or the lights go out.”
Freedom, a word rich with meaning both defined by words and in the unspoken actions of our lives. We strive to achieve it and to break free from the chains of oppression. We cut the chain links that other people, governments and perhaps even our own minds place on our ankles. Each one of us must fight against those forces with everything we’ve got to be free and to stay free. For in freedom, we can be and are all we have been created to be.