A plaque remaining from the Big Apple Night Club at West 135th Street and Seventh Avenue in Harlem.

Above, a 1934 plaque from the Big Apple Night Club at West 135th Street and Seventh Avenue in Harlem. Discarded as trash in 2006.

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Entry from February 02, 2013
“Politicians prefer unarmed peasants”

"Politicians prefer unarmed peasants” is a saying that has been printed on many gift items, such as bumper stickers, T-shirts and buttons. The saying became popular during the Lithuanian bid for independence from the Soviet Union in early 1990. The Act of the Re-Establishment of the State of Lithuania or Act of March 11 (1990) resulted in Soviet President Mikhail S. Gorbachev demanding total Lithuanian disarmament ten days later. “Politicians prefer unarmed peasants.  Ask the Lithuanians” was cited in print on April 9, 1990. “The current events in Lithuania prove the foresight of our forefathers, who well knew one thing: Tyrants prefer unarmed peasants” was cited on May 14, 1990.

‘’Politicians Prefer Unarmed Peasants” was printed on a bumper sticker by at least January 1992.


Philadelphia (PA) Inquirer
Gorbachev: Lithuanians Must Disarm
March 22, 1990|By Fen Montaigne, Inquirer Staff Writer
MOSCOW — Soviet President Mikhail S. Gorbachev yesterday ordered Lithuanians to turn in all firearms and instructed the KGB to increase security along the frontier of the rebellious Baltic republic.

The order, read last night on national television, was the first decree to be issued under the powers Gorbachev received last week as the Soviet Union’s first executive president.

Google Groups: comp.laser-printers
Clayton Cramer
4/9/90
(...)
Clayton E. Cramer {pyramid,pixar,tekbspa}!optilink!cramer
Politicians prefer unarmed peasants.  Ask the Lithuanians.

14 May 1990, Washington (DC) Times, “Lithuanian Arms Issue Has Meaning for U.S.”:
The current events in Lithuania prove the foresight of our forefathers, who well knew one thing: Tyrants prefer unarmed peasants.

5 January 1992, Wichita (KS) Eagle, “Defending right to bear bumper stickers,” pg. 3B:
‘’Politicians Prefer Unarmed Peasants,” one popular bumper sticker shouted from several parked vehicles.

Google Books
Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness
By Peggy Noonan
New York, NY: Random House
1994
Pg. 5:
I was in a taxi on the way to the airport and an old gray pickup was behind us bearing down, and as it veered off onto a toll road I saw it: POLITICIANS PREFER UNARMED PEASANTS.

30 April 2000, The Daily Times (Farmington, NM), “Letters to the Editor,” pg. D2, col. 5:
This all reminds me of a bumper sticker which I recently saw. It read, “Nine out of 10 dictators prefer unarmed peasants.”
(Letter from Thomas C. Street, Farmington—ed.)

The Pueblo Chieftain (Pueblo, CO)
CON: Gun-studded rallies very safe
Does the open display of firearms threaten danger at protest rallies?

Posted: Sunday, July 25, 2010 12:00 am
By H. STERLING BURNETT | NATIONAL CENTER FOR POLICY ANALYSIS
(...)
Perhaps, in the words of the bumper sticker, those who would ban the carrying of firearms at political rallies would ‘‘prefer unarmed peasants’’ rather than free people.

Kayleigh McEnany Presents...Real Reagan Conservative
PAUL TULLY: Liberal Leaders Prefer Unarmed Peasants
January 29, 2013
In a moment of rare candor, Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel explained that Democrats should “never let a serious crisis go to waste” and how “this is an opportunity to do things you could not do before.” Consequently, for progressive ideologues to implement the social change they so passionately desire, the first step must be – as Mr. Emanuel pointed out – to find a crisis.

Enter Newtown, Connecticut…

Posted by Barry Popik
New York CityGovernment/Law/Politics/Military • Saturday, February 02, 2013 • Permalink