Pardon the Interruption While We Feed the Troll(s) – Part 1


 I know that conventional internet wisdom says “don’t feed the trolls,” but sometimes ya just gotta. And – like him or not – mikeb isn’t really a troll. He just believes that the natural, fundamental, and inalienable human, individual, civil, and Constitutional right to keep and bear arms should be reserved for only some people. Commenting on my essay about Mike Meckler and his unlawful arrest at La Guardia airport, mike said…

Oh, so he was wrongly arrested for being a gun owner. Just like so often happens to you poor persecuted and misunderstood guys.

Well I’m glad mike is finally starting to see that gun owners are indeed frequently misunderstood. In support of this thesis, all one really needs to do is listen to some comments from the antis:

Daily KOS – Gun owners have low self-esteem:

People own guns because they desperately want to feel important and powerful. There’s always the joke that gun owners are compensating for a small penis and there’s a bit of truth to that. They are compensating for something; they’re compensating for a low self-esteem.

As I approach 50, I have to say that my self-esteem issues are pretty well behind me. I have the respect of my family and friends and the love and respect of my wife. I can look back and see my modest contribution to the cause of civil (gun) rights. When I am carrying I do not “feel important and powerful” I mostly feel relaxed and calm.

The KOS article is correct in one respect: I am compensating for something. I am compensating for being almost 50, having a bad back and a bum shoulder (courtesy of my Naval service) and having had open heart surgery (and ongoing heart problems) which make me very vulnerable to physical attack. I’m also compensating for my wife who is 5’2″ with a bad back and almost blind in one eye. As for my penis, it works for me and whether or not it works for my wife (which really is none of your business) I still have ten fingers, a mouth, a tongue and some toys.

Crooks & Liars – Gun owners are paranoid:

Before Election Day, the NRA was doing what it always does: Raising the specter of the liberal bogeyman — you know, the Incipient Dictator Who Wants To Take Your Guns Away — in the person of Barack Obama. See, for instance, this ad. [Which you can't actually see because it is a bad link]

So it shouldn’t really be a big surprise that, after the election, one of the only segments of the retail economy that did well was in guns.

I actually addressed the “Why Are You Gun Nuts So Paranoid About Obama” accusation in this piece at TTAG, but I will reiterate briefly.

Obama had a long history of antipathy to gun owners’ rights in the Illinois legislature and continued that antipathy upon his elevation to the U.S. Senate. Once he became President there were further indications; the DoD’s change in once-fired brass policy, the reversal of a decision to import 800k historically important weapons from South Korea, the push to ratify C.I.F.T.A., the CDC ignoring restrictions on anti-gun research under the guise of “health problems”, Fast & Furious and the 90% lie . . . etc., etc..

Michael Moore – Gun owners are racist (video segment)

Mr. Moore claims that gun owners are racist because when we see ourselves defending against a home invasion, we don’t see “freckle-faced Jimmy from down the street,” which is true. I don’t expect my neighbor from down the street to be a home invader. When I picture home invaders I see Joshua Komisarjevsky and Steven Hayes of the Connecticut home invasion/rapes/arson/murders.

As for fearing/hating people of color, I could quote Gunny Hartman from Full Metal Jacket about hating everyone. But while amusing, that is simply not true. As a libertarian, I try very hard to see people not ethnicity or skin color and to judge individuals based on their actions not the actions of others who may look like them.

The Propaganda Professor – Gun owners are racist and unrealistic about self-defense.

Now this one may actually require an in-depth dissection:

They seem to be arriving in the Inbox more frequently these days, those reports of incidents in which a law-abiding citizen thwarts the intents of evildoers thanks to being armed. Passed on by one of the gun addicts we all know in an effort to rationalize their habit, these anecdotes are often accompanied by dubious statistics about how often this sort of thing occurs, and often by comments that defy all reason for anyone except a gun addict.

“n the first place, most of these incidents are bogus …

The Prof then goes on to give one example of a bogus self-defense story. Well I’ll see his bogus story and raise him 75 real ones from just the last 4 months:

• Robbery: Two charged with manslaughter after victim shoots their accomplices, police say (AK)
• Woman attacked by multiple dogs saved by Good Samaritans (AZ)
• Merrimack woman with gun thwarts home invasion (NH)
• Home invasion leads to melee, death (OR)
• Man shot after he follows another man home (TX)
• Homeowner Holds Suspect at Gunpoint (NC)
• Washington homeowner shoots intruder (WA)
• Homeowner Shoots Would-Be Robber (TN)
• Video: Storeowner shoots would-be robber (CT)
• Bad Law Enforcement Advice of the Day: Colorado Springs Edition (CO)
• Police: Phoenix mom kills backyard intruder (AZ)
• Retired Officer Fires Fatal Shot During Break-In (MI)
• MPD Says Burglar Shot and Wounded Friday (MS)
• Deputies: Suspect shot dead in home invasion (CA)
• After Bark Alerts Wife, Husband Kills Thanksgiving Intruder (PA)
• Second Man Arrested In Deadly Home Invasion (CO)
• Local resident captures midnight burglar (OK)
• Police: Stabbing at Saginaw Township apartment in self defense; man charged with torture of girlfriend (MI)
• Homeowner steps up: shoots suspected burglar in the back (TX)
• Homeowner wounds alleged burglar; Deputies: No charges expected in the shooting (LA)
• Police say 10-year-old boy fought off mother’s attacker with BB gun (WA)
• Virginia Avenue Shooting (NY)
• Store clerk shoots, kills robbery suspect (OH)
• Homeowner foils NW Harris County break-in (TX)
• Police identify man shot during attempted robbery (IN)
• Self-defense: Teen hunter kills mountain lion (NE)
• Victim Wounds Suspected Robber (TN)
• The 2nd Amendment in action (GA)
• Retired SBPD officer shoots suspect during attempted armed robbery (IN)
• Pub Employee Wounds Would-be Robber (OR)
• Mom with Ohio concealed handgun license fires gun to ward off sex offender’s violent attack (OH)
• Burglar avoids being shot while robbing SI mansion formerly owned by mobster (NY)
• Police: Man shot dead in Antioch threatened homeowner with knife (CA)
• Memphis pizza delivery guy shoots would-be robber (TN)
• 2 arrested for armed robbery at Max Muscle store (CA)
• Oakland Non-Occupant: I Rack, They Ran (CA)
• Shots Ring Out After Man Finds Intruder In Home (WV)
• Armed man tells Minneapolis police: I shot robber (MN)
• Redding Woman Kills Intruder (CA)
• Alleged burglar shot by Boone Co. resident charged (AR)
• Columbia County burglar flees in the face of gunfire (FL)
• Suspected burglar shot, killed in Cascade Valley (WA)
• Clerk in Fla. kills would be robber, saves baby (FL)
• Homeowner shoots, kills teen suspect in home invasion (TX)
• Burglary suspect picks the wrong home for break-in attempt (OR)
• Man Killed With Arrow In Stonycreek Township (PA)
• Ex-Boyfriend Shot During Alleged Home Invasion (WV)
• Cincy store clerk distracts armed robber long enough to pull own gun and shoot (OH)
• Shooter may have been acting in self-defense (AL)
• Man killed in Bay Point home threatened family with a screwdriver, authorities say (CA)
• Harrisonburg Police Make Arrest in Weekend Shooting Incident (VA)
• Elderly ND man hold intruder at bay with handgun (ND)
• Retired Police Officer Shoots and Kills Suspect in Attempted Robbery (NY)
• Woman says she’s alive because she bought a gun rather than counting on a protection order to stop her violent ex (OH)
• Another burglar shot inside a home (MO)
• Woman says she killed estranged boyfriend in self-defense (OH)
• Early Morning Shooting Leaves One Dead (OH)
• Police: Man Tries to Rob Bar, Then Gets Stabbed (TX)
• Dayton store clerk pulls concealed handgun on armed robber (video story)(OH)
• S.F. woman stabs home intruder to death (CA)
• Intruders shoot man; girlfriend fires back (OR)
• Employee with knife runs off would-be robber (OR)
• Grizzly bear kills hunter near Boundary County (ID)
• Homeowner: Shooting was self-defense after finding girlfriend with other man (TN)
• Irresponsible Gun Owner of the Day: Monica Rodriguez (TX)
• Homeowner shoots burglar (MO)
• Rogers County Homeowner Fed Up, Shoots Repeat Intruder In Leg (OK)
• Cleveland: Homeowner shoots, kills suspected burglar (OH)
• Man allegedly shoots would-be burglar (CA)
• Turnabout is fair (gun)play (PA)
• Woman Says Deadly Shooting Was Self-Defense (CA)
• Man pulls 90-year-old woman from alligator’s jaws (FL)
• Women took action against would-be assailants in separate incidents (MI)
• 70-year-old Detroit woman shoots at intruders (MI)
• Man who shot ex-wife slain by stepson in self-defense (FL)

The Prof also mentions “dubious statistics” without actually citing any, so I’m left to guess which defensive gun use statistics he finds dubious. My guess is (drum roll please) the classic 2.5 million DGUs a year. Now the Prof may find this number “dubious”, but it is based on a study by Dr. Gary Kleck (a source that even the Brady Campaign admits is authoritative) and Marc Gertz which is cited in “A Call For A Truce In The DGU War” found in the fall 1995 issue of The Journal of Criminal Law and Criminology.

If you are unwilling to accept this number, let’s look at the same article where research by Philip J. Cook & Jens Ludwig (hardly raving gun nuts) shows 1.46 million DGUs per year. The Prof may be “dubious” about these numbers because of the National Crime Victimization Surveys results which typically show less than 100,000 DGUs per year, but the above linked article addresses the methodological flaws in the NCVS calculations (briefly, there are no direct questions about DGUs, merely indirect ones).

Let’s look a little more closely at those DGUs. According to Gun Facts, ver. 6.0, 15.6% of people who used guns defensively stated that they “almost certainly” would have been killed had they not used their weapon. Now this may seem high, but remember that most states require that you be in reasonable fear of death or great bodily harm, without the ability to safely retreat, before you can lawfully use deadly force in self-defense.

For the sake of argument, though, let’s say that 9 out of 10 of these people are mistaken, so only 1.56% of DGUs actually save someone’s life. Now let’s apply that to the annual number of DGUs. Even if we go with the lower number of 1.46 million, that still gives us more than 22,000 lives saved each year.

Now let’s look at the number of firearm homicides each year. According to the CDC’s WISQARS fatal injury reports, between 1999 and 2007 we averaged 11,792 homicides committed with firearms annually. In other words, going with the more pessimistic number of DGUs and discounting 9 out of 10 reports that a DGU saved a life we still find that guns “save” almost twice as many lives as they” take” each year.

Now let’s take a look at some of the Prof’s specific points which he makes in response to “gun addicts’” e-mails regarding DGUs:

2. ‘This [a criminal assault in Philadelphia] proves that gun control doesn’t work.’

How so? Firearm regulation, more pejoratively known as ‘gun control’, is not a single measure but a wide variety of measures, some more effective than others. The fact that one teenage hoodlum was able to get his hands on a weapon hardly proves that nobody else has ever been prevented from doing so.

Except that the antis claim that their anti-gun laws will prevent dangerous weapons from getting in the hands of dangerous people. And then when the laws don’t work they say we need to make them stricter or close some loophole or another. As for trying to prove the negative that criminals have been prevented from getting a gun because of “firearm regulation“, let’s ask the FBI. According to CalGunLaws.com:

Ed Davis, an FBI Criminal Investigative Instructor, … told the International Association of Chiefs of Police that none of these criminals who attacked police officers was ‘hindered by any law – federal, state or local – that has ever been established to prevent gun ownership. They just laughed at gun laws.’

As for the Prof’s statement that some gun-control measures are more effective than others, let’s look at the CDC’s 10/2003 report “First Reports Evaluating the Effectiveness of Strategies for Preventing Violence: Firearms Laws”, which found:

In summary, the Task Force found insufficient evidence to determine the effectiveness of any of the firearms laws reviewed for preventing violence.

Parenthetically, I must admit that I do have one serious quibble with one of the CDC report’s intermediate conclusions. They dismissed the Lott-Mustard study and follow-ups on the efficacy of ‘shall-issue’ laws reducing crime and because the results were “conceptually implausible” which, as far as I can tell, means the Task Force didn’t bother to look at the data or methodologies because they could not wrap their brains around the study’s conclusion that “more guns = less crime”.

Regardless, we have two government agencies (one with a history of anti-gun “research”) stating that “firearm regulationdoesn’t work. You read that correctly. Finally, if you want an even more authoritative source let’s go to mafia underboss Sammy “the Bull” Gravano. In a 9/1999 interview with Vanity Fair magazine Mr. Gravano stated:

Gun control? It’s the best thing you can do for crooks and gangsters. I want you to have nothing. If I’m a bad guy, I’m always gonna have a gun. Safety locks? You pull the trigger with a lock on, and I’ll pull the trigger. We’ll see who wins.

On to the Professor’s next point:

3. ‘This [criminal assault in Philadelphia] proves that it’s stupid to outlaw guns.’

It may make a strong case that it’s unwise to do so in some communities, but every community is different. However, the comment is mostly irrelevant. It’s not very common for a community to ban guns altogether (and it wasn’t common even before the ‘conservative’ Supreme Court rewrote the Second Amendment). That’s not what ‘gun control’ is all about: it’s about keeping guns away from people like the teen hoodlums rather than people like the Temple student. Many advocates of ‘gun control’ are themselves gun owners.

Now normally I wouldn’t bother addressing such an obvious straw-man, but there are a couple of things in the Prof’s reply that merit refutation. He says that “the ‘conservative’ Supreme Court rewrote the Second Amendment” which is false on its face. Perhaps he meant they interpreted it in a way he didn’t like. Like so many of his arguments, though, this one does not stand up to even cursory examination.

If you don’t bother to actually read the Court’s decision in District of Columbia v. Heller it’s easy to believe the media myth that the Court ruled 5 – 4 that the Second Amendment protects an individual right. If, however, you do read the decision (specifically Justice Stevens’ dissent, with which Justices Souter, Ginsburg, and Breyer all concurred) you will discover that the “ruling” was 9 – 0 in favor of the individual rights argument. The opening paragraph of the dissent states it quite clearly:

The question presented by this case is not whether the Second Amendment protects a ‘collective right’ or an ‘individual right.’ Surely it protects a right that can be enforced by individuals. But a conclusion that the Second Amendment protects an individual right does not tell us anything about the scope of that right.

Briefly, they held that while the Second Amendment protects (not grants, protects) an individual right, the District’s complete ban on handguns and operable long guns did not infringe on that right. Now tell me who was trying to rewrite the Amendment.

As for the Prof’s statement that “[m]any advocates of ‘gun control’ are themselves gun owners” this is true. But most of that group isn’t really paying attention to the issue. I don’t blame them for that…dealing with our civil rights takes a lot of time, even if you limit your focus to specific areas like illegal searches or gun rights. The fact is, however, that they have no idea what the policies they are supporting actually entail.

One gun control policy that has recently been in the news is the supposed gun-show loophole. Illegal Mayors Against Guns crows that 85% of gun owners favor closing the “loophole”. Or maybe it’s 77% or 81% or 83%. Let’s agree that three-quarters of gun owners favor “closing the loophole.”

But how many of those gun owners are aware that (depending on which proposed bill you read) “closing the loophole” means they could go to prison for five years for letting a buddy shoot their gun at the range? Or that “closing the loophole” means gun show organizers and promoters could go to prison for two years if a single person at one of their shows hands a weapon to someone to look at?

There’s another factor at work here and that is most gun owners don’t believe stricter gun laws will affect them. For years the antis have been pushing the meme that their proposals “won’t affect law-abiding gun owners” and that only criminals need to worry about this or that new proposal. Unfortunately when the formerly “law-abiding” gun owner is bitten on his unsuspecting ass by an obscure regulation he didn’t even know existed it’s too late to change his mind about supporting these “common-sense, reasonable” mala prohibita laws.

Indeed there was a woman in Chicago a few years back (can’t find the link, sorry) who was some sort of wheel in the state Million Murdering Mothers or Brady Campaign to End Gun Ownership. Cops searched her house looking for a cousin (or maybe nephew) and found a “sawed-off” shotgun with an obliterated serial number. She was then arrested and charged with several felonies which left her absolutely gobsmacked.

In an interview after she got out on bail, she can be heard plaintively crying “But I didn’t do anything!” I guess she never realized the possible effects of the laws she’d been pushing, nor the fact that most of these laws are mala prohibita edicts and don’t require any sort of actus reus or even mens rea.

4. ‘This proves that more people should have guns.’

Seriously? You honestly believe that the Philadelphia episode would have turned out better if all three of the teens had opened fire instead of just one?

The Prof’s dismissal is essentially another straw-man. We’ve already established that criminals can get guns without any problems, so the fact that only one was armed in the Philly incident just shows that they didn’t think they were going to need more guns, otherwise they would have had them. And yes, I will concede that if more law-abiding people had guns, criminals might arm themselves more heavily. But I think it far more likely that the smart ones would quit being criminals and the dumb ones would be dead.

5. ‘Okay, but it proves that at least more law-abiding citizen should own guns.’

Ah, the classic John Wayne wet dream. Bad guy pulls his gun, good guy pulls his gun, and bang! good guy gets the drop on him, and rides off into the sunset.  The real world, however, isn’t nearly so pat.

The day after the shootout in Philly, a man rushed into a Nevada restaurant blazing away with an AK47, killing 3 people before turning the gun on himself. Two of the dead were National Guard members – meaning that they themselves were trained in the use of weapons. They probably weren’t armed at the time, but suppose they had been. Do you really believe that they would have taken note of what was happening, and looked up from their waffles and chat in time to prevent the shooter from doing his damage? Possibly, but not bloody likely.

Still, let’s indulge the fantasy. Imagine that the gun addict’s vision of Utopia had come to pass, and EVERYONE in the IHOP was packing heat. Imagine 50 diners slapping leather and opening fire from 50 directions. Imagine a dozen or two dozen bodies on the floor instead of 4. Do you truly consider that a preferred alternative?

John Wayne wet dream? Seriously? The Prof believes we think this way? The sad thing is that he probably does. And I say that because it’s not the first time I’ve run into this mindset from an anti.

The Prof also appears to be ignorant of the fact that in more than 80% of successful DGUs, the criminal threatened or used force first, so yes, gun owners obviously can and do “get the drop” on bad guys. But in more than 90% of DGUs there is no shooting of the bad guy involved. According to Dr. Kleck’s Targeting Guns, in less than 8% of DGUs is the attacker wounded and in less than 0.1% is the attacker killed (by the way, many of these facts and figures come by way of Gun Facts version 6.0).

In addition, very rarely does someone take another’s life and just “ride off into the sunset.” The emotional and legal problems that follow even the most well-justified of self-defense killings are well documented.

Next, the Professor invokes the Nevada IHOP shooting, asking:

Do you really believe that [the customers] would have taken note of what was happening, and looked up from their waffles and chat in time to prevent the shooter from doing his damage? Possibly, but not bloody likely.

It might surprise people to find out that I agree completely here. In this instance, the shooter came in already firing and shot for eight seconds before killing himself. Unless someone saw the shooter coming up to the front door, it is indeed not bloody likely that anyone could have reacted in time to stop the shooter.

But what about, say, the VA Tech massacre which took almost 10 minutes to unfold? If we “indulge the fantasy” of everyone being armed, how many lives could have been spared? Even if no one in Room 206 got the shooter[1], if everyone in Room 207 (according to this report, the second room the shooter entered) had been carrying weapons, surely the shooter would have been dropped the second he came in the door.

Or how about the massacre at Columbine? You can watch the security videos of the killers just strolling around taking pot-shots at people hiding under whatever inadequate cover was available. How many lives could have been saved if teacher Patti Nielson had been armed, so when she first saw the shooters outside she could have shot them? Or when the shooters walked past the desk she was hiding under in the library to fire out the windows she could have shot them in the back?

How about the Pearl, MS high school shooting? How many lives could have been saved if Joel Myrick hadn’t had to run three-quarters of a mile to his car to get his gun? How many lives were saved when he stopped the shooter from driving to the Junior High for another shooting spree?

How about the Appalachia Law School shootings? How many lives could have been saved if Officer Gross and Deputy Bridges hadn’t had to run to their cars to get their weapons? How many lives were saved by their capture of the shooter?

An even better question would be, how many lives could be spared if spree shooters knew that most anyone anywhere could be carrying a weapon? Surprisingly enough, that is a question we can answer. As Dr. John Lott points out here, with the exception of the Tucson shooting in January of 2011, “all the public shootings in which more than three people have been killed have occurred in places where civilians may not legally bring guns.” All but one.

This is not a phenomenon limited to the United States, as Dr. Lott points out here, mass casualty shootings have occurred in the United Kingdom, France, Germany, Switzerland, Norway and Australia, all in locations where guns were “banned”.

So, to address the Prof’s final sentence of Point 5, yes I would prefer the alternative of “a dozen or two bodies on the floor”[2] at an IHOP to the scores of people who die in “gun free zones” every year.

The Professor sums up:

There is no quick and easy solution to the problem of gun violence, particularly after so many years of Americans falsely believing they have a constitutional right to be armed. Even gun addicts themselves have been known to point this out – you may have seen, for example, bumper stickers that say ‘Gun Control – A Simple Solution for Simple Minds’. But there is nothing simple or simpleminded about ‘gun control’, which does not profess to be a magic bullet, as it were. What IS simpleminded and naive is the assumption that the problem will just take care of itself if we do nothing.

Well the Prof is starting off with a bad assumption so no wonder it leads him astray. There is no such thing as “gun violence.” There are people who do violent things with guns, but they also do violent things with knives, rocks, pointy sticks and fists.

Antis (not the Prof, I’m speaking more generally here) often bring up the firearm murder rates in other countries, pointing out how low they are compared to ours. What you won’t hear from them, however, is a comparison of non-firearm homicide rates or a comparison of overall violent crime rates. This is because between 1999 and 2007 (I wish the CDC would update their bloody tables, they’ve been stuck at 2007 for, like, three years now) the U.S. had a firearm homicide rate of 4.02 per 100,000 and a non-firearm homicide rate of 2.12.

In 1999/2000, the U.K had a firearm homicide rate of 0.12 and a non-firearm homicide rate of 1.33. So if evil guns cause all these homicides why is our non-firearm homicide rate so much higher than in the U.K.? Furthermore, if all our guns cause all this violent crime, why is it that, according to the Daily Mail, our overall violent crime rate is less than half of Canada’s and less than a quarter of the U.K.’s rate?

In fact, the overall violent crime rate in the U.S. is less than the U.K., Austria, South Africa, Sweden, Belgium, Canada, Finland, the Netherlands, Luxemburg and France. Are they serious? Luxemburg and Belgium have more violent crime than the U.S.? Perhaps there are more complicated socio-economic factors at work than the simplistic guns = bad; no guns = good!

Still with me? Good. Stay tuned because tomorrow I’ll present my “quick and easy” solutions to the gun violence problem. Won’t even charge the Bradys or MAIG for my time. Promise.

[1] I refuse to use the name of any mass shooter if at all possible. They want notoriety? I say let them rot in obscurity.

[2] Not that I actually consider that a realistic possibility, I’m just going along for arguments’ sake.

avatar

About Bruce W. Krafft

I am a bit of a Johnny-come-lately to the civil rights (firearms flavor) movement, having not really gotten involved until after I hit 40. I am not really a "gun guy"; I can generally hit what I aim at, but I'm not a competitive shooter. I enjoy the craftsmanship of a fine pistol or rifle, but I am not particularly knowledgeable about firearms in general nor am I a Glock guy, or 1911 guy, I'm just a guy. What I am is passionate about civil rights, especially those of the firearm flavor.

73 Responses to Pardon the Interruption While We Feed the Troll(s) – Part 1

  1. avatarMike says:

    Nice to see a rebuttal based on solid facts and arguments rather than ad hominem or straw man attacks. When antis talk about gun nuts’ penises or gun nuts talks about anti’s irrational fears, it just lowers the debate altogether.

    I grew up in a “common sense” gun control household, and eventually became convinced that “common sense” was all nonsense through articles like these. The pro gun faction just has a better argument, and we should continue letting that argument and these figures speak for themselves. Excellent article.

  2. avatarRalph says:

    Another great article, but Bruce lost all his credibility at “mikeb really isn’t a troll.” Right. Sure. Now try to convince me that Papa Smurf’s ass really isn’t blue.

    • I’ll bet Ralph didn’t read any more of that “great article” than I did.

      Bruce, buddy, chop it down a bit. I’m sure I’m not the only one who finds the prolixity of your posts challenging to say the least.

      I would like to comment on one little thing though, one which appears in the early paragraphs of the opus, and that is your health. You’re not yet 50 and have undergone open-heart surgery? Is that partly related to your eating habits? Was there some excess smoking and drinking in there too? Have you slacked off on the exercise over these last couple decades?

      Sorry for getting so personal, but don’t you think those are more important factors in your survival than the guns? Isn’t it a mistake to neglect the one and focus so excessively on the other?

      • avatarAK says:

        Chop it down a bit? I guess the only thing worse than being proven wrong is being proven wrong A LOT. Eh Mike?

      • avatardan says:

        you and others on your blog talk about how you would be better off running away from trouble than defending yourself. well with the OP’s description of his health he may have an issue doing that which is where he is going with that.

        one of the modern needs for fire arms is that we recognize that not all people are physically the same and as such the right to self defense is universal and as such tools such as guns can help individuals reduce the impact of their physical limitations.

      • avatartdiinva says:

        Mike:Your personal comments about Bruce have reached a new low. Remember Jim Fixx, the guy who made marathoning popular? He died of a heart attack at age 52. You know why? Because he had a congenital heart problem. How do you know that Bruce’s heart problem isn’t genetic or ois caused by his service related injuries that might prevent him from being fit. I think you owe him an apology.

        All you lefties (and you have called yourself one) use your smugish self righteousness to cover your intrinsic moral terpitude [and your small, non functioning male members].

      • avatarRyan says:

        Fascinating that you don’t address any of the author’s points, Mike.

        Instead you make a snarky comment implying that the Author’s attempt to refute the statements made by anti-gun Liberals in detail has put you to sleep. While I understand that the cognitive and detailed approach that the author has taken with this argument is unfamiliar to you and your ilk, this IS the proper way to persuade intelligent human beings.

        Secondly, your thinly veiled attempt to put the Author on the defensive by focusing on the man’s personal health won’t fool anyone around here. It will no doubt earn you some points with you and your confederates, but it earns you nothing here other than well-deserved mockery.

        If you disagree with the author’s points, then lay out your argument in an equally detailed and well reasoned fashion.

        Or hell, just keep doing what you’re doing and expose yourself as a member in a long line of faux-intellectuals that comprise the American Left.

      • avatarBruce W. Krafft says:

        @mikeb, yes I had a heart attack and quadruple bypass surgery when I was 38. I think it wasn’t so much the diet as the 20 years of smoking that did it, coupled with the depression, the stress of my (now ex) wife’s affair and lack of exercise. But don’t worry, it’s been 11 1/2 years since my surgery, my cardiologist is delighted with the cleanliness of my arteries, my weight is starting to come down again, my depression is well-controlled with medication and I have a new wife (who is *way* better than I deserve).

        As for “more important factors in your survival than the guns” . . . I think you just sparked an idea for my next rant. In case it fizzles the short answer is of COURSE there are many factors that are FAR more important than guns when it comes to survival. Sheesh.

        • Thanks for the explanation although none was necessary. I’m sorry for being such a smart ass. I’m glad you’ve come back from that heart problem.

        • avatarfreeport56 says:

          Mike-
          you have already proven yourself to be a failure at debate by taking the “Liberal Last Resort” argument stance. You hurl personal insults because you are unable to have a rational logical debate on the issue of Civil Rights. Yes, I said Civil Rights.

          The Bill of Rights, you remember those, are not the Rights given to us by the Founders, nor our Government. These are the Rights we are born with as human beings, given to us by G-d. They are not for Governments to take away or to give. A critical, close, and object look at the world we live in you will see it is in chaotic upheaval with more of the same on the way. Our safety is our own responsibility, not the Governments. Law Enforcement agencies throughout the S.F. Bay Area, where I live, have abdicated responding to a list of 44 crimes as they can no longer afford the manpower to do so. Who will protect us? The Government, in ways too numerous to list here; have proven they cannot. Indeed they have even willfully contributed to exacerbation of violence by conducting illegal acts of their own.

          When you post here show some respect and uphold the art of intelligent debate. I alone have 50 years experience with firearms. as with many others on this blog site, my father taught me to shoot when I was 5 years old. It has been this way in this country for over 400 years. Respect that!

        • Sorry, I don’t respect that any more than I respect someone who’s done ice skating every winter of their entire life. Why do you think you’re something special just because you’ve owned guns for 50 years?

          I don’t take the liberal last resort, I simply DISAGREE. Can you not handle that?

      • avatarGunuck says:

        Uhm, Mike? Aren’t you supposed to read an authors full argument before deciding that he’s wrong, your right? And I’m no writer or blogger, or whatever, but “go focus on your health, not guns” doesn’t really seem like an adequate, nor very polite response or counter argument to me…
        Also, I rather like Bruce’s posts. Gives me good, intelligent material to read on my lunch break:)

        • avatarBruce W. Krafft says:

          Aw, shucks!

        • I was just being a smart ass, for which I apologized to Bruce. I do suffer from something like ADD, that part is serious. I think blogging and the internet in general has made it worse. I have less patience these days for longer pieces of writing.

      • avatarRalph says:

        I’ll bet Ralph didn’t read any more of that “great article” than I did.

        I read every word, but unlike you I didn’t have to move my lips when I did.

        • avatarrightontheleftcoast says:

          Mike, its obvious to everyone here that you have some issues with reasoning and self-restraint. In the most caring way possible, please get some professional help. I think you do have something to offer, if only as an example of some of the illogical and flawed reasoning we see among many on the left, but I also see hope for converting some, in the responses, citing facts and pointing out the inconsistencies of your logic, and flawed thinking. I even hold out hope you can be persuaded, from time to time, to participate in the conversation in a more responsible and thoughtful fashion. That will encourage others to voice their concerns here, without fear of being seen as having a screw loose.

        • avatarrightontheleftcoast says:

          I guess what I am getting at is along the lines of this old saying- dunno who said it-

          Conservatives think liberals have bad ideas,
          Liberals think conservatives are bad people.

          I dont think you are a bad person, just need help reconsidering some of your ideas, and especially, how you go about expressing them.

  3. avatarGS650G says:

    I think the bigger issue isn’t should we be allowed to own a lot of guns or certain types of firearms, it’s really about guns as a tool for addressing crime that isn’t addressed any other way.
    Other countries have gone gun free and the authorities have proven themselves woefully unprepared to take up the slack.
    The anti gun ding-dongs might not even be victims of their own policies but even if they are they feel justified anyway. It’s also funny how they don’t talk about the crimes in the context of the perpetrator, it’s always the guns fault. That type of thinking doesn’t address crime, it creates problems for the rest of us.

  4. avatartdiinva says:

    The antis only want to talk about murder, accidents and suicides and not about all violent crime. They avoid talking about the uneven distribution of crime throughout the population. Undoubtedly, hindered by political correctness, antis fail to acknowledge what we all know. Crime is concentrated at a particular socio-economic nexus and the farther you get away from it both culturally and geographically crime rates decline rapidly. I have asked Mikeb to give his opinion on why crime rates in “gun free” DC are 5 times the level found across river in the gun saturated Commonwealth of Virginia and he has avoided an explanation like the plague.

    Crime has been used by Progressive Democrats as a form of social control since the 1960′s. By coddling the gangs and excusing criminal behavior they destroyed the social cohesion and economic viability of entire cities and in the process created a self perpetuating class of dependent citizens who will continue to elect welfare dispensing politicians. The conclusion is obvious — if you want to reduce the number of murders and other violent crimes then you are better off banning Democrats and not guns.

    • avatarPascal says:

      “The conclusion is obvious — if you want to reduce the number of murders and other violent crimes then you are better off banning Democrats and not guns.”

      LOL! That was an awesome conclusion!

    • “and he has avoided an explanation like the plague”

      That’s bullshit and you know it. I’ve answered that many times on many threads, and I suspect you know it. Pretending that I’m avoiding hard questions which aren’t really that hard is a good trick for those with the weak argument.

      • avatartdiinva says:

        Mike:I am disappointed in you for your apparent dishonesty because I have never seen a direct answer. So just in case I am wrong please explain this discrepency to me again.

        • avatarRuffRidr says:

          I’d like to see it as well. Please post links to your numerous discussions of the issue.

        • casual onlookers might buy that nonsense, but you guys really lack basic honesty to carry on like that.

          You’ve never read my discussing the issues, NEVER?

        • avatartdiinva says:

          Instead of playing the role of the aggrieved party why don’t you show your superiority and explain to us again why gun free DC has five times the crime rate of gun saturated Virginia?

          I have strong doubts about your sincerity.

        • avatarRuffRidr says:

          Mike,
          It’s not issues, it is one very specific issue.

          why crime rates in “gun free” DC are 5 times the level found across river in the gun saturated Commonwealth of Virginia

          And no, I’ve never seen you address this before.

        • avatarWilliam says:

          Your “indignant” replies are the only things I have read you post when pushed for an actual answer.

          I think all you have is balderdash and misdirection to direct challenges that you actually present a reasoned opinion with actual facts.

          If you have some links that show otherwise, I would be surprised. So surprise me.

        • All right here goes. This may sound familiar as I go on, but bear with me.

          Washington DC has one of the worst ghettos in the country, you know that’s where the “darkies” live, as Don Zaluchi said in the Godfather. There, you’ve got heroin and crack and lots of other good stuff. You’ve got poor education and high unemployment. Some say the welfare system has exacerbated the problems. Others, the racists among us, say it’s hereditary.

          Washington DC suffers from these ills in a much bigger way than any of the North Virginia cities across the river. In fact, VA drug users come into DC to cop dope, just like NJ junkies go to Harlem.

          Now, one point of clarification must be made, the “gun free” aspect of Washington DC has nothing to do with anything. There are no border controls between the nation’s capital and gun-friendly Virgina, hell, Pennsylvania and Indiana are less than a day’s drive away, and so guns can be easily brought into DC, no problem.

          Why is there 5 times more violence? That was the question. The answer is because in Washington DC you have all the factors which go into high violence, drugs, poverty, poor education, high unemployment, overcrowding and last but not least, guns.

          Across the river you’ve got none of that except the guns.

          This of course brings me to repeat that I never claimed guns are the only problem and if we implement proper gun control, all the problems will disappear. Gun availability is only one factor, but it is a concrete factor we could do something about quickly.

          Another clarification: It’s not an either/or situation. In other words, we don’t need to focus on gun control at the expense of those other factors. The fact is we’re already working on them, however poorly, but there are programs in force to address every one of the social factors. Now we need proper gun control as well, which in spite of the mish-mash of laws we’ve enjoyed thus far, we’ve never really had.

        • avatarWilliam says:

          Mike re-read my reply – like always in my experience you skipped most of it. Let’s see some links to these supposed times you were so open with us here.

          Also, your assertions about D.C. have some info that are probably factual – but you don’t support it. Your analysis has more to do with how you feel that what the facts are. But perhaps this is a first try for you – so I want to be encouraging.

          I think a missing point in your replies in general is that you respond to facts and analysis with no supporting evidence of your own except what you expect us to take at face value. Does that unnerve you any? That you don’t have facts on your side? That you only have conjecture and emotionalism? Or are feelings proof of truth?

          Do you want to live in truth and reality? Because your replies here and your blog say that you intend to live in a fantasy world where ideology determines reality. How about letting reality drive your ideology for a change?

        • avatarthatoneguy says:

          Well, technically none of those things listed are problems, it’s people that are the problem. The common denominator is us. It is in our nature to consume things: food, water, drugs, air, and of course guns and ammo. Why not, its what we do. Liken this to a cracking dam where we are a river and regulation on our consumption is the dam. The dam starts to crack due to our need to consume, so you patch the crack. That patch doesn’t last and eventually it gets bigger and spreads out to other areas of the dam. Even though this damn is cracking and getting patched like crazy, other things start to settle right underneath that dam: lets call that the regulated society. These people are the ones living down there patching up this dam because they think it is the right thing to do. Well, eventually all of these patches are going fail and this river is going to destroy a whole bunch of shit on its way out to sea. If all was left alone and that dam was never built, the river would have ran its course natuarally and society could just live along it as they please. Will there some spillover from natural flooding every now and then, yes, but if you let a river flow it will always police itself up. Government regulation will never be able to quell our desire to consume what we want. All it will cause is a continuation of one regulation leading to another, and another, and another, until it eventually destroys society in a flood of bullshit.

        • avatartdiinva says:

          Thank you Mike:

          You are generally correct and your analysis supports my assertion about where crime occurs. So stop claiming that guns in the home are high risk for all parts of society.

          However, your impressions of Northern Virginia are faulty. While it is true that NOVA is a high income area it is not uniformly so. [I might add that DC is not uniformly poor. Northwest DC is more affluent than Arlington County or Alexandria.] We have our share of people on public assistance and illegal immigrants plus a good representation of local Latino and Asian gangs. We also have a heavy presence of MS-13 in the area. You might be surprised to know that the gang’s Mid-Atlantic operations are “reputedly” run out of Prince William County (Manassas).

          There are three reasons why NOVA is a safer place than DC. First, throughout Virginia we practice crime control, not gun control. Neither the Police nor the political establishment tolerates gang violence like they do in DC. Second, since their political futures rest on affluent bureaucrats and not the welfare class even the leftwing politicians in Arlington County and the City of Alexandria don’t cozy up to the gangs like they do in DC. And finally, yes an armed citizenry deters a lot of street crime and home break-ins. The gangs, even one as organized as MS-13, can’t take over the streets like they have in DC. Your impression that all NOVA druggies run to DC for their supplies is also a little outdated. The cultivation of hydroponic marijuana is a big deal in affluent areas like North Arlington. All the standard drugs are now plentiful in the area thanks to MS-13.

          Like all lefties you are fixated on “programs” to address the social problems. Those “programs” aren’t the solution, they are the problem. The entire purpose of these social programs is to create dependency and dysfunction in the African-American community to keep them poor, ignorant and dependent on the Democrat Party. Gang violence and crime are essential component of this strategy. Crime creates an economic wasteland, destroys the schools and prevents the kind of advancement that leads to normal family formation. (for example see: http://newsbusters.org/blogs/tom-blumer/2011/07/11/ca-36-race-ap-ignores-democrat-hahns-gang-intervention-scandal-tv-statio )

          Your importation argument is just a red herring. The bordering states of Maryland and Virginia are one handgun a month states and both are good at stopping straw purchases. Only a highly organized gang goes about importing large number of guns from Indiana, Pennsylvania or beyond. Any gang that is so will organized that they deal across state lines will have no problem finding international sources for firearms. (you know “throw in 5 Glocks with the 10 kilos of coke.”) All gun control does is disarm the honest citizen and turn the streets over to criminal elements. But of course that is exactly what you and your lefty friends want.

  5. avatarRokurota says:

    The link is dead, but here’s a discussion thread about the Million Mom Marcher: http://thefiringline.com/forums/showthread.php?t=163903

    And keep feeding the trolls. They won’t be satisfied, but others will hear the logic and join us.

  6. avatarMoonshine7102 says:

    Bruce, this is not “feeding the trolls”. This is a reasoned and dispassionate analysis of an issue. As such, brace yourself for MikeB’s ranting and raving response.

    • avatarJason says:

      Agreed. For a guy with heart problems, he’s got a lot more energy and patience than I do! Fantastic stuff here. Worth the time to write, worth the time to read.

  7. avatarJoseph says:

    I reckon one could do extensive research and spend half a life-time looking up facts and statistics to ‘prove’ either their pro or anti gun position. However, I tend to think in simple terms. How many rapes, robberies, murders, or thefts does one hear about happening at gun ranges, where everyone is armed. Humm?

  8. avatarPhilthegardner says:

    “Gun owners are racist”???? I find that difficult to swallow.

    Particularly since I am neither white, Anglo-Saxon or even Protestant. Nor are any members of my immediate family (that I know of anyway – just saying Dad) And yet to list the number of guns in our collective family ownership would mean kissing the better part of the morning goodbye. If I were racist, I would be against whites, blacks, latinos, and arabs. You get my drift…

    • avatarCarlosT says:

      Some gun owners are racist, most aren’t.

      You know what you can say for sure about all gun owners? They own guns. Everything else can vary.

  9. avatarMoonshine7102 says:

    And, cue the trolls!

  10. avatarBWCustoms says:

    For as long as there are people trolling gun owners there will be gun owners trying to change their minds.

    Save yourself a headache and don’t bother.

    You are not going to magically turn on a light bulb. Best I can recommend is focus on securing our ability to own and carry firearms and leave the
    jibber-jabber to the women in the hair salon.

    I repeat – you will NOT part the red sea with these people. Leave them to their own devices!

    • I disagree:
      Ignoring the outpourings of the antis gives them free rein to spread their inaccurate & distorted views to people who might otherwise come down on the side of freedom.
      Nobody is going to change the mind of a dyed in the wool anti BUT giving rational rebuttals to each & every one of their points works against the disinterested majority voting according to the last Brady soundbite they heard.
      Stuff the antis; it’s the uninterested masses who have to hear the message that gun control breeds crime & pointing out the lies & disinformation is a damn’ good way of carrying that message.

  11. avatarChris says:

    I don’t understand the mindset of people who think they have a right to tell others what they can and cannot own.

    Maybe it’s because I’m a moral universalist, and would argue that no person has rights that are unique to them, particularly when those rights are contrary to the rights they assign to others.

    I would never attempt to tell someone else how they should live or what they should own. I don’t presume to control other people because I don’t, and logically can’t, assert ownership over other people.

    I would never be so arrogant as to advocate for laws that prevent people from owning things I don’t personally like. I wouldn’t want someone to do this to me, so why would I do it to someone else?

    Ayn Rand said it best and the question still remains unanswered, “By what right?”.

    I just don’t get it.

  12. avatarPascal says:

    Great post Bruce!

    I am qouting on an article about video games, but the same logic can apply to guns

    This is the qoute:

    “”Biology is not destiny–it’s capacity,” Oren Harman, a science historian and author, recently said. That such distinctions need to be made is a reminder of how fearfully superstitious we remain about our own thoughts and behaviors. This irrational mistrust of ourselves is self-evident when we talk about violence in video games”

    And this is the issue with the anti gun crowd – “This irrational mistrust of ourselves is self-evident when we talk about violence”. They “fear” that ANYONE with a gun is not to be trusted. Its an irrational emotional argument not a real one with facts.

    When any argument turns to name calling, it is all irrational emotion and there is nothing in the bucket anymore to talk about — so we get name calling.

    The anti-gun crowd like to believe that they can ban everything they fear by law forgetting that the bad guys do not follow the law and that laws only keep the honest people honest. As we have seen from prior posts, banning the guns in the UK only raise the number of killing using a knife, club and even strangulation — if someone is intent on taking you out, not having a gun does not seem to be a problem. Also, in our current economic mess, many places have fewer police which means less officers able to respond, it would make sense that people would have a way to defend themselves — MikeB may have been fortunate to never have been a victom, but he should not dictate how people can choose to defend themselves.

    • avatarChaz says:

      When any argument turns to name calling, it is all irrational emotion and there is nothing in the bucket anymore to talk about

      Yes and a corollary follows that when one has “nothing in the bucket” a tactic is to incite the emotions so as to obfuscate an opponents rational points.

  13. avatarAharon says:

    For years, anti-gun nuts have attempted to use shamming tactics and labeling to ostracize and stereotype gun owners. They have said that gun owners are trying to compensate for something, lack self-esteem, and are paranoid. I guess society tolerated that for a long time since historically interest in guns and most gun owners are male. As an active Men’s Rights Activist (MRA) we get the same treatment by feminists calling us misogynist, oppressors, rapists, and adult-children living in our parent’s basement when we point out the double-standards, discrimination, and misandry (male hatred) in modern western society. Now that women in ever greater numbers are owning and carrying guns it will be interesting to see how those anti-gun nuts slowly change or modify their current labeling of gun owners to different labels.

    • avatarMoonshine7102 says:

      Wouldn’t it be delicious irony if the modern gun-owning female was accused of “compensating for the lack of a penis” by the feminists?

      • Actually, we are usually accused of serious penis envy… using the gun to replace a body part we can never have.

        Makes no more sense than any of the rest of the blather, of course.

        I’ve been a gun owner for more than 30 years, and have been a certified firearms and self defense instructor for the last 6. I have already had to shoot a man to save my life, and I carry a gun everywhere, all the time… praying that I’ll never again have to use it. But if I do… I will.

  14. avatarSilver says:

    I always found it funny that super-liberal whackos like those that run/frequent the Daily KOS are in favor of strict government control, such as that surrounding guns. Isn’t is rather oxymoronic to be called a liberal and yet be for oppression? Or am I confusing traditional liberals with the modern, loathesome “progressive?”

    Or, like I suspect, is it that they’re liberal when it comes to their own rights, and are severe hypocrites when it comes to everyone else’s?

    • avatarLemming says:

      Do not confuse the “Classic Liberal” (with roots in Locke, Smith and (alas) Malthus) with the “Social Liberal” (with roots in Dickens, Holmes and John Dewey {you’ve probably never heard of him, but my High School was named for him)})

      The Classic Liberal believes that the main purpose of Government is to protect us from each other, and that the greatest good comes from the free market.

      The Social Liberal believes that a purpose of Government is to address issues of social injustice.

      So the former necessarily advocates a limited Government, whereas the latter advocates a controlling Government.

  15. Bruce, I freely admit one thing. Many of my fellow lefties and gun control supporters do go way overboard in their remarks to you guys. I oppose much of that and try not to utilize those tactics myself.

    Actually, I don’t think that exaggerated stuff is necessary. You guys offer plenty enough to argue against.

    • avatarRuffRidr says:

      “I oppose much of that and try not to utilize those tactics myself.”

      Your blog proves otherwise.

    • avatarMoonshine7102 says:

      “I oppose much of that and try not to utilize those tactics myself.”
      —–
      Bullsh!t. When’s the last time you put a muzzle on Lacy the Dog? Come to think of it, have you EVER put a muzzle on Lacy? Better put a leash on that thing before it gets you in trouble…

    • avatarBruce W. Krafft says:

      Actually, I don’t think that exaggerated stuff is necessary. You guys offer plenty enough to argue against.

      Well I should certainly hope so! I firmly believe that there is no such thing as too much liberty and have often quoted L. Neil Smith on the subject:
      If you’re not a little bit uncomfortable with your position, it isn’t radical enough. How can you be too principled? Take the most extreme position you can — you’re claiming territory you won’t have to fight for later, mostly against your ‘allies’.

      Besides it makes for such lively debates!

  16. avatarJRP says:

    For part 2 I would love to see a examination of historical weapon bans and how ineffective they were. Specifically, the ban on crossbows by the Catholic Church about 1000 years ago (IIRC, it has been some time since I heard about it).The fact remains, if you could somehow manage to remove every single gun out of civilian hands throughout the US, criminals could still get them. Hell, in this day and age they could manufacture them with a CNC machine and a little know-how.

  17. avatarRokurota says:

    There is an unassailable argument against overbearing gun control and that is the Second Amendment. Even some my most liberal friends say they hate guns and think gun owners are nuts, but there’s nothing that can be done short of amending the Constitution.

    So forget all this back-and-forth over data. Even if there were 100 gun murders for every defensive gun use, there’s no getting around our rights. When juries hand down bad verdicts, you don’t hear anyone lobbying to revoke the 6th Amendment.

  18. avatarirock350 says:

    Good arguments, but all it really amounts to is copious amounts of mental masturbation.

  19. avatarChach says:

    like it or not, MikeB has made this blog better as you have written articles as direct responses from a multifaceted debater. MikeB is not a troll, he’s just not pro 2nd and I’m happy to see him strengthening our side by testing us often.

    • Thanks, Chach, but have I won anyone over?

      • avatarVA Pete says:

        Mike, I think the question is: have we won *you* over, even a little? It seems to me you spend a lot of time on this blog and can’t be blind to the facts, statistics, and evidence contain herein. Do you just ignore them outright or do they cause you to question at least some aspects of your anti-gun stance? If you are unswayed, then how do you reconcile those facts in your own mind? I seriously want to know.

      • avatarRuffRidr says:

        I think your arguments win people over all the time. Just not to the side you’d like.

  20. avatarfreeport56 says:

    How Often Are Firearms Used in Self-Defense?

    There are approximately two million defensive gun uses (DGU’s) per year by law abiding citizens. That was one of the findings in a national survey conducted by Gary Kleck, a Florida State University criminologist in 1993. Prior to Dr. Kleck’s survey, thirteen other surveys indicated a range of between 800,000 to 2.5 million DGU’s annually. However these surveys each had their flaws which prompted Dr. Kleck to conduct his own study specifically tailored to estimate the number of DGU’s annually.

    Subsequent to Kleck’s study, the Department of Justice sponsored a survey in 1994 titled, Guns in America: National Survey on Private Ownership and Use of Firearms (text, PDF). Using a smaller sample size than Kleck’s, this survey estimated 1.5 million DGU’s annually.

    There is one study, the National Crime Victimization Survey (NCVS), which in 1993, estimated 108,000 DGU’s annually. Why the huge discrepancy between this survey and fourteen others?

    http://guncite.com/gun_control_gcdguse.html

    • Perhaps the parameters of the latter survey were not conducive to gathering the desired information.
      Ask the wrong question(or right – depending on what you want the outcome to be) & the answers given can have little if any bearing on what the statistics purport to show.

  21. avatarRoadrunner says:

    Just curious, but what bad names haven’t the Bradys called gun owners? Seems like it’s everything from weak, to bully, to compensating, to racist, to bitter, to stupid, to evil, to crazy, etc., ad nauseum, ad infinitum.

    As far as winning them over, I’ve found the best way is usually inviting them out to the range. Start with an accurate, reliable, comfortable .22 that builds confidence. Then work up to some fun higher calibers. It’s possible I’ve won over a half a dozen or more gun haters, or potential ones, that way.

  22. avatarRalph says:

    I can’t wait for Farago to get back to work so that mikey can go back to being the polite troll he pretends to be, rather than the obnoxious putz he really is.

  23. avatarwry762 says:

    Am I the only one who is _really_ interested of the pic at the beginning of this post? It looks like someone’s collection – years of effort probably went into that. Details, please.

  24. avatarYooperToob says:

    http://roomfordebate.blogs.nytimes.com/tag/guns/

    The firearms reference collection at Washington Metropolitan Police Department headquarters…

  25. avatarJon says:

    Hmmm….I’m noticing a distinct lack of trigger guards in that collection, not to mention that they probably purchased or otherwise acquired more than one of those every month. Better throw the book at them!

  26. avatarJohn R Walsh says:

    Does anybody deny that throwing stones at each other is likely to result in less injury that if they all had guns?

    I would sat that today we live in a world where the old fable of the” kings clothes” is more applicable than straw men.

    I would also point out that a society that feels the need for all its citizens to be armed 24 hours a day is not a society that anybody would opt by choice to live within.

    The sooner that Americans start to realise that they are not special , not the best country in the world , not the free country that they imagine they have always been , not the most inventive or the most imaginative and they start to dump the premise that a group of elitist English radicals with ideas largely derived from English “Leveller” politics transplanted to their thirteen English colonies at a time when the population was mainly rural and only one third or less than today , has become somehow exempt from further radical and more contemporary amendments.

  27. avatarJohn R Walsh says:

    “This is not a phenomenon limited to the United States, as Dr. Lott points out here, mass casualty shootings have occurred in the United Kingdom, France, Germany, Switzerland, Norway and Australia, all in locations where guns were “banned”.

    This is nonsense! the shootings in the UK have only occurred twice in the last 100 years and by people who already had a gun license for shooting clay pigges but went off their trolleys for some reason, the last one was a cabby who had a gripe with another cabby and after shooting him tried his best not to be shot by the police.
    The dunblane killing of infants in Britain is the closest to the latest outrage in America and as stated was another legal duck shooter in his forties , so this does rather imply , does it not , that if these people had not been allowed access to guns the incidents would have been no more than a dust up with the local bobbies?

    The gun lobby argument t along with its outdated 2nd amendment backing is as crazy as MAD ( Mutually assured destruction) in Nuclear weapons and is founded on the premise that the bad guys are always going to get the guns so the good guys should have easy access to them as well.
    How can anybody with a brain think this idiocy holds water , of course what it really means is that it is the only solution in which all the gun shop owners get to stay in business selling their crap to both sides .

    I have heard one of these morons on the news in which he was ramping on about King George and that the Brits would have won if we had not all been armed , further he said the English were /have been , over the years indoctrinated into the belief that only the state should have guns and by this that all Brits are living in slavery .
    Wow, this guy is a master of History forgetting that all the colonists were BRITS at the time and most were not armed and did not take up arms until the revolution was seriously underway.
    As for British/English being slaves etc. well that’s for another discussion preferably after Britain secedes from the EU , let’s just say that murder in the UK is 100 times less over the whole nation than in Chicago alone .

    Anyway Having studied America for many years in its British American and United States Versions, I see little that will change until one day the whole senate both republican and democrat have all their kids undergo the same experience with the same tragic results

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