The right to keep and bear arms is a natural, civil and Constitutionally protected right. As such, it’s no more subject to the democratic process than the right not to be a slave. If 99 out of 100 American gun owners wanted to ban firearms, the remaining one percenters [sic] would still have a right to keep and bear arms. Even if owning a gun put them, their family or their neighbors at risk. In other words, the right to keep and bear arms is not subject to arguments about social utility. Gun control advocates don’t – can’t accept this, and never will. And so we get BS like this from our good friends at thetrace.org . . .
As my family and friends’ experiences — and the hard numbers — show, the rationale that owning a firearm protects a person from crime is not supported by the facts. For starters, the type of crime most vividly feared by those who keep guns at the ready in their residences is relatively rare. While estimates for the number of home invasions occurring in the United States vary, ranging from 1.6 to 3.7 million annually, the figures for the most meaningful category — burglaries resulting in homicides — are very low, with the Bureau of Justice Statistics (BJS) indicating that there are fewer than 100 of them in a given year. Instances in which someone fends off a robber are also rare. (Across all categories, there were a total of 1,600 defense gun uses recorded in 2014.) In comparison, according to the BJS, more than 200,000 firearms are stolen from household burglaries and property crimes each year.
Our man Leghorn and the great Bruce Krafft have debunked the antis’ manipulation of statistics to further their civilian disarmament agenda. And will continue to do so; if only because gun control advocates will never stop feeding the media misinformation and attempting to dupe the general public. In this case, writer Devin Hughes focuses on “the type of crime most vividly feared by those who keep gun at the ready.” According to Hughes, “burglaries resulting in homicides” are “the most meaningful category” of home invasions.
By doing so, Hughes is suggesting that other types of burglaries are less “meaningful.” That’s a patently absurd (if hidden) assertion. Using his his low estimate of home invasions (presented without citation), Hughes would have his readers believe that 1,599,900 burglaries are not worth defending by force of arms. Tell that to a woman whose home invasion led to rape. Note: “a” woman. The right to keep and bear arms is an individual right. If one woman wishes to own a gun to shoot a rapist who enters her home, she has that right.
Set aside the possibility of a home invasion leading to torture or grievous bodily harm. Set aside the psychological trauma and economic impact of a home invasion. Set aside the fact that “home invasions” are a subset of the 8.6m property crime offenses in the U.S. per year. Even if we just consider the odds of a home invader killing a resident – 1 out of 16,000 using Hughes’ low estimate of 100 homicides per 1.6m home invasions – all Americans have the right to protect themselves against homicidal home invaders with a gun or guns.
The key consideration: gun owners [rightly] view the odds of dying at the hands of a home invader to be binary. Either it happens to them or it doesn’t. No matter how remote the possibility, millions of Americans want to have a gun to defend themselves and their families. In the same way that millions of Americans have a fire extinguisher in their home to deal with the [almost exactly] equal risk of a residential fire.
Even if criminals were attracted to gun-free zones (they aren’t) and having a gun provided an advantage over other means of self-defense (it doesn’t), the evidence still overwhelmingly demonstrates that a firearm in the home — especially a handgun — dramatically increases the risk of homicide, suicide, or fatal accident. On average, a gun is far more likely to harm you or someone you love than protect you.
The only possible answer to this is … so what?
Gun owners know that a gun in the home presents risks. They balance the risk of homicide, suicide or a fatal accident against the risk of being defenseless against home invaders (plural). Just as they balance driving against the risk of themselves or family members being injured or dying in a car crash. That’s without mentioning the risk of government tyranny, or the pleasures of hunting and plinking. Or the fact that Americans don’t have to justify gun ownership to anyone.
That’s the fact of the matter, whether Mr. Hughes wishes to acknowledge it or not.