Previous Post
Next Post

Screen Shot 2013-04-06 at 9.12.03 AM

“Since the gang rape and murder of a Delhi student last December there are reports of an upsurge in the number of women applying for gun licences,” Alice Arnold at breathlessly reports. “Many of the applicants are professional women who want to take responsibility for their own safety because the police have failed to protect them.” Good news, right? Defenseless women tool-up, evil men put their tools away and/or face the consequences. Ms. Arnold’s on board with armed self-defense for women because A) it works and B) she’s writes for the The Telegraph (the UK’s only conservative newspaper). If only . . .

“Is arming yourself against rape a realistic and viable defence?” Ms. Arnold wonders, momentarily entertaining the idea that a woman facing a rapist or rapists would be better off with a firearm than not. And then it’s gone . . .

. . . research suggests that this is not the case. Women are more likely to be on the receiving end than pulling the trigger and the presence of a gun increases the chances of homicide. In the US every time a woman used a handgun to kill a stranger in self defence, over 300 other women were murdered with a handgun. The fact is a gun is far more likely to be used against the woman than used for her protection.

Ms. Arnold’a assertion—that the number of women gunned down by men is greater than the number of women who gun down a stranger in self-defense—singularly, spectacularly fails to consider the number of women who successfully defend themselves with a gun without firing a shot.

It’s such a glaring omission one wonders if it’s intentional (perish the thought). Equally, her “fact” excludes the number of women who shoot and kill someone they know in self-defense—a far more likely scenario than encountering a random rapist or roving rapist gang.

Ms. Arnold’s opening salvo also ignores a fundamental issue raised by women carrying guns in general and Indian women buying guns in specific: deterrence. How many potential rapists are or will be deterred by the possibility of encountering an armed woman?

Here’s another one: how many of those 300 women had access to a firearm? How many of them would not have been murdered if they’d had a gun?

It is also the case that forcible rape rates are highest in gun friendly states. You are seven times more likely to meet a rape victim in North Dakota, which has relatively relaxed gun laws, than in New York where guns are heavily restricted.‘s 2009 stats confirm a higher rate of forcible rape in Nebraska than New York (35.5 per 100k vs. 13.2 per 100k). And yet correlation doesn’t equal causation—especially when there are so many unknown variables.

How many Nebraska women carry guns? How many of the rape victims carried a gun? What are the rape reporting rates in the two states?

Never mind. Tell you what: let’s drop stats and get the heart of her argument, as Ms. Arnold does when she’s exhausted her dubious data dump.

So let’s imagine you have kitted yourself out with your pink handgun, matching shoes and handbag. Would you actually be able to fire it? Apparently it’s not that easy. You need a day’s course at least in order to be able to handle it and fire with any degree of accuracy. Even then, to have a chance of hitting your target you need to be at very close range…a matter of a couple of yards.

I don’t mean to be facetious but the very idea of carrying a gun terrifies me. I would not feel safer with a lethal weapon on my person. I would feel scared. Scared that that gun would be used against me. Scared that it might go off accidentally. Scared that any violence might be escalated because of its presence.

And there you have it: insight into the mind of a gun grabber. At the end of the proverbial English day, facts have nothing to do with it. It’s all about feelings. Specifically, the feelings of a writer wants to disarm civilians because she’s uncomfortable with guns.

Not to put too fine a point on it, Ms. Arnold’s a hoplophobe. She was never really interested in forming a rational, coherent argument for keeping guns out of the hands of women who fear for their safety. She started with the idea that guns are scary bad and then built a case, a house of cards if you will, around her own ignorance, fear and prejudice.

The problem in India will not be solved by women arming themselves. Yes some women have successfully defended themselves using firearms, but weapons are more likely to provide an illusion of security than the reality of it. Indeed carrying a weapon and falsely ‘feeling’ safe may put women in more danger than before.

What needs to happen is a change of attitude to the crime and change of culture. The hideous and tragic case in Delhi highlighted that fact. In too many cases of sexual crimes against women, it is bizarrely and wrongly women who are asked to change their behaviour. It is suggested we dress more modestly, avoid certain areas or behave more demurely. Let’s not add ‘carry a gun’ to that list.

The idea that carrying a gun increases a women’s situational awareness doesn’t occur to Ms. Arnold. Self-defense as self-empowerment? Her fear and political correctness ensure that the scribe can’t entertain the concept. It’s not our job to protect ourselves. Men must change. Society must change.

You might say this kind of thinking indicates a mental disorder, but I couldn’t possibly comment. Except to say you’re right.

Previous Post
Next Post


  1. In the final volley of any good spirited conversations I have had with anti gun people I know, it always comes down the the SAME EXACT issue. They are scared of having a gun around, or they do not trust themselves with a gun. They are plagued by their own insecurities.

    • ^ this. I knew someone who point blank said “I know I could never trust myself around a gun, so I really think they should be banned from civilian hands”

  2. Would not a few women shooting a few rapist change the attitude? You don’t need to kill them all, just a enough rapist such that a great many change their attitude. Perhaps I wrongly posit that a few dead men at the hands of a few determined women not willing to be raped would have a positive attitude change…no?

    • Sounds effective to me, but you know how some people disapprove of a “chilling effect” that hampers others (even rapists) from expressing themselves.

  3. From the article (and quoted above)….

    “I don’t mean to be facetious but the very idea of carrying a gun terrifies me. I would not feel safer with a lethal weapon on my person. ”

    So we should disarm ourselves because she finds guns to be icky.

    • “I don’t mean to be facetious but the very idea of carrying a gun terrifies me. I would not feel safer with a lethal weapon on my person. ”

      Then don’t carry one. But keep you paranoiac limitations to yo sef.

    • Sure. It’s a “reasonable” and “common sense” move, don’t you think? It MUST be true… surely nothing she could think could be UNTRUE! Be REASONABLE. THINK HER WAY.

      She’s a “reasonable” person with lots of “common sense”; she wouldn’t be writing in such an esteemed publication if she wasn’t. RIGHT?

  4. Quite an exhibition of schizophrenic contortion to present a theoretically failed argument for the denial of human rights. Eh what?

  5. According to the author-because 300 women get victimized with a gun for every 1 that defends herself with one is a valid reason to not carry a gun(apples and oranges). So now women are to be demonized for defending themselves…..I guess when Ms. Arnold gets approached by a rapist-she will just accept the fact that she is to be raped, after all “what needs to happen is a change of attitude to the crime…” that’s all good as each person should make their own choices. The fact that she CHOOSES to be a victim is no reason for American women not to be proactive in self-defense.

    • Being REASONABLE, with COMMON SENSE, she will use her superior mind to engage the errant knave who’s poking her, and ENJOY it. Am I thinking as correctly as she?

    • Check out how she says this: “In the US every time a woman used a handgun to kill a stranger in self defence, over 300 other women were murdered with a handgun.”

      As if it’s YOUR FAULT, as a woman, for daring to fire a gun. Every time a woman fires a gun, 300 other women die. If you didn’t insist on having a gun, the rest of us would be all right.

      Whether she meant to word it that way or whether it was a sort of Freudian slip, it’s perfect insight into the psyche of a hoplophobe.

    • I hate people that are stupid with stats. First a woman is 40times more like to be killed with a firearm if she tries to defend herself, then at hearing in Co she is 80times more likely to be killed and now it is 300times more likely (without any sourcing of course, can’t source a lie). What next, one million times? The truth according to the DoJ bureau of justices statics is people who use guns to defend themselves against violent crime are only injured in 1 out of 5 events. Those who do nothing or use another form of defense are injured in half of violent crimes. In the real world the facts show that guns are your best defense.

    • Question: did the 300 women who were victimized with a gun get victimized with their own gun? That is the only way the 300:1 statistic can be used to justify her point.

  6. The take-away:

    Liberals, the world over, don’t really mind it when women are raped. As long as no one gets shot, of course. God forbid the assailant gets his pee-pee shot off.

    • That nails it Don, you forgot to mention the USA federal civil rights charges if using a racial slurr against the perp though, Randy

    • They don’t mind the thought of rape because they haven’t been raped themselves.

      If they had the decency they’d attend a few support groups for rape victims and tell those victims to their face what they think of armed women before they opened their yap about it in the media.

    • Liberals, the world over, don’t really mind it when women are raped.

      Of course they do! That’s why they’re pro-choice! [/s]

  7. I like Penn and Teller’s answer to the problem. Give very woman in the nation a heater and even if half of the women give them back a rapist is still looking at a 50/50 chance of getting expired.

    I’d go so far as to give the women a pair of flat blade welders vise grips too so if the scumbag manages to live he’ll forever remember they day he tried to rape a lady and ended up with a bullet wound and crushed cojones.

  8. I hope Ms. Arnold will someday have the opportunity to explain her principled position on guns to a bad man who won’t give a sh1t how she feels about anything, including his hands around her neck.

    • She’ll probably excuse his actions as not his fault since he’s a “product of his environment” be it he’s poor, a minority or comes from an extremely broken home. She’d probably feel bad when the officer says charges will have to be filed because she’ll be destroying to life of someone who had no control of his fate.

  9. Good article, and other possible reasons for statistical disparities:

    1. Rape is an under reported crime. Women are more likely to be attacked by someone they know, such as a male friend.

    2. States like N.Dakota have high rates most likely due to

  10. Women were having a tough time in St. Louis years ago with car jackings, people were dying. In an emergency session(a real emergency) guns were allowed in cars, no more car jackings. We know what works & so do the Bradys. I get a little bit tired of being taken off the paved road & through farmer alf alfas field every time the bradys want to dis guns. There is 50 ways to leave your lover & 500 reasons a gun is bad, go figure, Randy

  11. No different than the female lawmaker (can’t remember her name) who said “the numbers are not on your side”. This is such a lame argument. I can tell you that for every person who stays dry during a rainstorm using an umbrella, 500 people get soaking wet (because they didn’t have one). Does that mean umbrellas are not useful items to carry if getting wet was really bad? That’s exactly the same mentality these idiots are using.

    • the only number that needs to be on anyone’s side is 1. As in “this 1 person is going to prevent this from happening”…………..

  12. Someone should tell her the saying, “God made
    man, but Sam Colt made them equal”; but something
    tells me she wouldn’t understand. Why strong
    women aren’t more active in shouting down the
    nincompoops like Ms. Arnold is beyond me. But I’d
    like to think that a lady would consider it lowering
    herself to outshout this moron.

  13. “I would not feel safer with a lethal weapon on my person. I would feel scared. Scared that that gun would be used against me. Scared that it might go off accidentally. Scared that any violence might be escalated because of its presence.”

    That’s because you’re retarded, but ok. i guess you SHOULDNT have a gun.

  14. ya think?! more women are killed by handguns than those who use them in self defense. could that have anything to do with the fact that being allowed to carry a gun has become so hard to do, or maybe they don’t want to because they have been told that only evil people carry guns. this is why we should never listen to the uk when it is about guns.

    • You’re generalising.
      This woman is a journalist & most assuredly NOT representative of how others here see armed womwen, or firearms in general for that matter.
      There’s a LOT of people here in the UK who support US gun owners & gun ownership.

  15. “What needs to happen is a change of attitude to the crime and change of culture.”

    To “change a culture” you must actually do something – arming a majority of women in India will do exactly that. Attitudes and social will, and indeed culture does not change on their own, they need an impetus created by an agent – in this case it was a horrible rape.

    I find it amazing that this writer is witnessing a change in culture (women arming themselves) and yet is screaming NO, WE NEED A CHANGE IN CULTURE!

    • Change the culture? Is it necessary to point out that 1) Indian culture pre-dates the western culture by more than a few centuries, 2) the incidence of violent crimes, including rape, in disarmed England is probably greater than in India, 3) there are over ONE BILLION Indians. Exactly what plan does she propose for quickly and effectively changing that culture to prevent rape?

  16. Even if it was true that more women are shot than use a handgun in self defense what difference does that make?
    A persons right to defend themselves isn’t weighted against its effectiveness. It is a right, plain and simple. That would be a ridiculous world in which you just give up trying because it might not work. That is the attitude of an enslaved mind not of a free person.

    • “A persons right to defend themselves isn’t weighted against its effectiveness.”

      Exactly. That’s like saying you might as well get rid of the right to free speech, because people probably aren’t going to listen anyway.

    • It isn’t a right in India.

      Here, of course, the 2nd amendment guarantees the right to self-defense – thankfully.

  17. I’m not comfortable pushing my car past 55 mph, so all speed limits should be 55 mph.

    This only proves what anyone with half a brain already knows: leftists are selfish, pathetic scumbags who would sooner see others die than allow them freedom. They are the enemy of human potential and, in a world that contained justice, would be eradicated.

  18. I have said it before and I’ll say it again: Female Solipsism at work.

    Know it, understand it, embrace it – then Beat It.

  19. As a devotee of logic and reason, I have to say, that Arnold woman is bats**t crazy.

    • Nope she’s just passing everything through her “how is this about me, me, me?” filter. What comes out is offense at whatever doesn’t agree with her own personal experience and her opinion about it.

      • Hence Solipsism.. Thank you Mina, I wasn’t familiar with that term. Somehow I already understand my Mother-in-law better … 😉

        • It is pretty universal among women. Many women – the ones who think logically, use reason and can stay rational for long enough to have a substansive debate / information exchange – are not ~as~ prone to Solipsism but there is usually an element you’ll find here and there.

          OTOH Women who don’t think logically, who think with their emotions and resist reason are the Worst for displaying quintessential Female Solipsism.

          This is something that anyone fighting gun control needs to get their arms around and quickly. If we haven’t noticed there are a proponderence of women on the other side …

    • Excellent link thank you. Scroll down for very useful tips on how to communicate with this type of person.
      Another proof of the value of rational exchange of ideas here at TTAG.

  20. Useless piece of gun-grabber, spreading stupidity and brain-dead opinions instead of offering possible solutions to a very bad problem. “Change of attitude” isn’t going to happen unless the women do something about it, namely fighting back.

  21. It never ceases to amaze me the number of women that advocate laying down and taking it.

    As if rape therapy is somehow better than physical therapy for the asshole rapist she shot in the spine.

  22. So just get raped – that is what she is saying. So what if the gun the is used against you? Worrying about stats is the attitude of someone who is a victim. Laying down and taking it lets some evil person harm another human being. Dying valiantly trying to preserve dignity (even ones own) is a noble cause. Fighting and dying for intangibles is as far removed from urban leftists as calculous is to birds. So you die before being raped or you kill your potential rapist: either option beats rape by miles. And the warrior heart that trains to prevent such atrocities ups the odds that it is indeed the rapist who gets shot.

    Human beings will prey on other humans. this behavior spans across time, culture, & geography. Alice Arnold’s answer is to change the whole – as if this is changeable in any lifetime – and not “worry” about any individual women who might get raped (indeed to even stop them if they try to prevent themselves). Until then Indian women, any women, heck any person can just get raped.

    • If she allowed other women to defend themselves, she would have to face an actual decision about defending herself.

      She does not want to face that decision, so she would rather have no one able to legaly defend themselve so that she does not have to face the idea of being responsible for her own safety.

  23. Some cultures have in fact changed, and arguably for the better.
    For instance, in most regions it’s no longer a common practice to ritualistically sacrifice humans by ripping out their hearts, hurl perfectly good virgins into volcanoes, or burn witches at the stake.
    In stark contrast to the latter practice, some might be well inclined to point out that Americans have even gone so far as to having actually elected a certain number of them to prominent positions in government.

    “Personally, I fully respect and strongly support the unalienable right of all Freewomen to keep and bear arms — and under certain circumstances and with but few exceptions, most anything else they might choose to bare.”

  24. What’s truly a head-slapper when it comes to the anti-gun crowd is when they wail and moan that we want to “do nothing” in the face of spree shootings like Sandy Hook, yet this is EXACTLY what Alice is saying here in the face of massive RAPE! So… women should remain unarmed and helpless?

    Typical of the anti-gun press, it’s also notable that there’s no “comments” section. They want to talk AT you, not have a dialogue. No need for pesky questions, intrusive contradicting facts or stories from women who did fend off a rapist. That might gum-up their narrative!

  25. It’s worth remembering India is the also the land of Bishnu Shrestha, a former ghurka who succesfully prevented the gang rape of an 18 year old girl on a train. Using only a kukri, he succesfully fought off 40 armed bandits, killing 3 and wounding 8, even after sustaining a wound to his arm ( If one man can make such a difference, imagine what a city of trained women could accomplish.

    • Yes, but you must remember that the Ghurka are professional Bad Asses.

  26. “I don’t mean to be facetious but the very idea of carrying a gun terrifies me. I would not feel safer with a lethal weapon on my person. I would feel scared. Scared that that gun would be used against me. Scared that it might go off accidentally. Scared that any violence might be escalated because of its presence.”

    The essence of her argument right there, everything else in the article was pure, unadulterated rationalizations to justify her fears. She failed to mention her worst fear, and I know it’s there. The fear of taking another life. This is pretty normal actually. There are people that, in their minds, find taking another life so repulsive that they have to rationalize their fear to live “normal” lives. This fear extends to animals, they would never kill a chicken, but they will eat it.

    I postulate this. Change the circumstances. It’s not you who is getting raped. It’s your 12-year old daughter, and it’s happening right in front of you. Would you want to have a gun with you then?

  27. The firearm is a tool. There are dangers with using any tool if a person doesn’t know how to use that tool in a safe manner. Every safety meeting at work usually starts with how stats on accidental injuries occurred because the person became complacent and didn’t follow the safety that was taught in the past. So reoccurring safety meetings and courses are held to refresh ones mind.

    I wonder how many people are scared to death the first time they operate a forklift, chainsaw, or anything else that they don’t know anything about it’s operation?

  28. You really can’t compare the US and India anyways.

    The overwhelming majority of sexual assaults in the United States are between those who know each other. While it tends to make headlines, the stereotype of the lurker in the ski mask raping a woman they don’t know is incredibly rare.

    I don’t necessarily have a problem with the argument that a gun is not as likely to be helpful when a woman’s assailant is someone they’re intimate with, like a friend or a family member or a romantic partner. That in a domestic violence situations a gun in the home just as likely to be a liability of a benefit, since it can just as easily be used against her instead of in her defense.

    That’s not an argument against gun ownership, simply an acknowledgement that a gun is not the solution to every problem. That some problems are more complicated than others.

    Except in India roving bands of men raping women they don’t know very much IS a reality that women face every day. That’s precisely the kind of scenario where a tool like a firearm, which equalizes the disparity in strength and numbers, can be of immense benefit.

  29. “I don’t mean to be facetious but the very idea of carrying a gun terrifies me. I would not feel safer with a lethal weapon on my person. I would feel scared. Scared that that gun would be used against me. Scared that it might go off accidentally. Scared that any violence might be escalated because of its presence.”

    Or better yet… “I would not feel safer with a lethal weapon on my person so his lethal weapon could be in my person… over and over and over.”

  30. You would think Ms. Arnold might have some sympathy for minorities and victimhood, being homosexual and in a civil partnership. Some of the people over at Pink Pistols should have a word.

  31. Here’s how to change the culture of India:

    “You say that it is your custom to burn widows. Very well. We also have a custom: when men burn a woman alive, we tie a rope around their necks and we hang them. Build your funeral pyre; beside it, my carpenters will build a gallows. You may follow your custom. And then we will follow ours.”—General Sir Napier (Commander-in-Chief, India, 1849-1851)

    His actions very quickly changed the culture of India.

Comments are closed.