On the morality of gun ownership

My correspondents ask whether I’ve overstated the case a bit. “The heart” of what it means to be a responsible citizen or parent? Really? I can see their objection — the paragraph seems to imply that a person is not a responsible citizen or parent if they don’t own a gun. I certainly don’t think one has to own a gun to be a good citizen or parent, so perhaps I can better make my argument with a series of questions.

First — regarding citizenship — do you view yourself as merely a beneficiary of American freedoms or also a guardian of our essential liberties? The fundamental right and moral obligation of resistance to tyranny is written in many state constitutions, including Tennessee’s (where I live)