And there you have it: gun control advocates’ logic in a nutshell: lots of guns = lots of murder. Why, it’s enough to make you want to take a selfie calling for civilian disarmament and post in on Twitter! That said, to fully embrace this anti-ballistic belief system, you need to ignore the fact that America has lots of guns and not a whole lot of murder. In fact it’s best if you ignore John Lott’s chart and base your comparison on cherry picked “developed countries” whose murder rate makes the U.S. look like The Home of the Homicidal and the Land of the Loonies. Here’s the confounding (for the antis) data . . .
Once antis ignore or avoid this inconvenient truth, they switch the “guns everywhere = murder everywhere” statement around. They ask Americans to assume that the inverse is also be true. “No guns anywhere leads to no murder anywhere.” Which is so patently absurd even gun control advocates don’t go there. Or if they do . . .
They fall back on the theory that “fewer guns everywhere leads to fewer murders everywhere.” Fewer is better! Not to belabor the point – and God knows they do – gun control advocates assert, publicly, that if gun control saves ONE life it’s worth it. But that argument ignores the fact that Americans use firearms tens of thousands (some say millions) of times to save life.
While Americans’ gun rights aren’t subject to arguments about social utility, gun ownership is a net positive for both individuals and society. That’s without considering firearms’ deterrent effect on crime. Or the inescapable fact that gun control enables government-sponsored mass murder, which is a far bigger killer than gang bangers banging, or individual armed psychos acting out, or suicides, or any of the other tragedies informing America’s firearms-related death rate.
If you really want to distill gun control advocates’ logic down to its essence, it’s this: they don’t like guns. Except in the hands of the police and the military. Maybe. Better yet, I can name that civilian disarmament gestalt in two words: guns suck. Fortunately, most Americans don’t share that opinion. And, hopefully, never will.