You’d think that Stephen J. Dubner would know better than to recommend the creation of another federal agency to infringe upon Americans’ natural, civil and Constitutionally protected right to keep and bear arms in the name of public safety. The Freakonomics co-inventor and former Highlights contributor should be the master of unintended consequences prognostication. He should be able to see that NFSA would make ATF meddling look like child’s play. Nope. Dubner’s naiveté knows no bounds, which is odd considering his generally pro-gun stance and firearms-related personal history . . .
You know I grew up in – I personally grew up in a gun culture. I grew up in upstate New York where most families had guns for hunting, target practice, whatever. The vast majority of people I knew never used their guns for any crime. Most laws that we make to protect people from guns are usually ignored by the criminals and obeyed by the law abiding people. And so I think that if you had better data there’d be no one more in favor of it than law abiding gun owners because they don’t want to be smeared and lumped in with the criminals who use guns. So that’s where data can be a kind of different tool in the arsenal when you’re trying to make better policy or public policy because otherwise you’re just kind of shouting at each other with your ideology rather than understanding how people actually behave.
The truth will set gun owners free! Yes, well, since when was a government agency’s primary consideration “the truth” rather than the continuation and expansion of its own power? Equally, when you’re a data collector, anything that helps you collect data is a good thing. Given the history of gun registration leading to gun confiscation leading to mass murder … wrong. In short, bad landing wrong airport, Mr. Dubner. Try again.