...a country successfully fought a tyrannical government with violence? Does anyone know? It came up in conversation recently, and the only example we could even think of was the American Revolution. And even that started non-violently (The Boston Massacre) which outraged the colonies, and led to us getting a lot of international support due to the brutality of it. International supports that we needed, otherwise we may still be British to this day.
But seriously, think about it. What have been the most successful protests in recent memory? The civil rights movement? We still see Martin Luther King and his fellow protestors referenced to this day. They had dogs unleashed on them, they were beaten with billy clubs, and they were sprayed with fire hoses. They didn't fight back. They took it, stood their ground, and the police came out being the villains. No one argues won that MLK ultimately won that conflict. There are dozens of examples of the peaceful approach historically being successful.
Or how about more recently? We have probably the best example of the 2 ways to protest going on as we speak: Egypt and Syria. Anyone remember those police officers firing into the crowd of protestors in Egypt? They gunned down hundreds of unarmed civilians. What happened? The person who gave the orders to fire was arrested, tried, and is now in prison. The protestors have international support due to the outrage from the world who heard about it. Most importantly, there has not been civil war, yet we are seeing significant progress. Now look at Syria. The protestors shot back. Now we have something like 50,000 civilians dead, the "rebels" are scattered, and the government now has reason to be ruthlessly brutal with their population.
So, with the primary argument being that we need the exact same weapons the military has to protect ourselves from a potentially tyrannical government, is that really pragmatic? Even if we went to war with a dictator in 20 years, history shows that by shooting back, not only does the uprising almost always get put down, but history shows them as the wrong party in the conflict. So, again I ask, does anyone have any examples of violent rebellions successfully removing a tyrant...?