feelings vs facts
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Facts to a gun control advocate are like garlic to a vampire.

The fastest way I refute the central premise of gun control mythology today in a debate of the issue with someone who has little to no math background: I point out that in Wyoming, we can buy a gun, buy the ammo, conceal it on our person and walk out of the store onto the street. We can do that with no waiting periods, no CCW license, no nothing. Literally cash-n-carry. Done deal.

If the anti-gunners’ premise were true, then we should be awash with crime and death. I find this most effective with people who are ignorant of Wyoming’s gun laws (or Vermont’s, or a dozen other places). Tell them what the laws are in these places, and you destroy the gun banners’ credibility.

Once you break the gun-banners’ appeal to emotion, and you get someone to see that their emotions are leading their rational thinking astray, then you pivot and point out that the gun-banners are deliberately using appeals to emotion and illogic to sucker people into giving up their rights.

This gets many people mad. Now you’ve accomplished two things: First, you opened their minds – you’ve removed the emotional block against them hearing your argument (and when people are reacting emotionally, they will not hear math and stats). Second, you’ve informed a person that they’re being deliberately manipulated – that the gun-banners thought these people are stupid and easily mislead. People don’t like that.

It is only at this point, if they still have the time to listen to me, that I start going into statistics about what happens to crime rates, and what happened in the past with crime rates when CCW was largely banned in the US, etc, etc.

You must defeat the emotional manipulation first. Once you’ve done that, now you have a fertile field in which to start planting statistically relevant studies. Do not overlook or pooh-pooh efforts to defeat the emotional appeals of the gun-banners. These efforts are every bit as necessary as statistically valid studies of what actually are contributing factors to crime/homicide/suicide/etc.

– Dyspeptic Gunsmith in a comment yesterday

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  1. Point of clarification:
    Vermont(sadly)had a RINO governor named Scott(same as the Floridiot RINO Governor) that shafted gun owners concurrent with the Floridiot. In Vermont’s case,it was magazine limits. They may have tipped their version of NICS(similar to the NH Gunline at NHSP Dept of Safety) towards seeking active denial on transfers .
    I am uncertain of how enforcement has gone,but it’s worth noting: There’s no ” safe states ” from the anti-2A crowd. There’s only states that they’ve targeted but not yet tipped completely. Don’t get complacent.

  2. Wyoming? Is that not the definition of rural? The lowest population state in the union. Don’t you still have NICS? But lets keep up this argument

    Please explain the disparity of Alaska then?

    Perhaps gun laws are passed because of crime?

    Wyoming suicides per 100,000 people: 26.9

      • Not so much, but if you are going to argue the ‘pro’ gun side, try and use better arguments. This whole less gun laws equals less gun deaths can be easily countered if you try and pick out “statistics”.

        • Aren’t you the same guy that defended Hillary’s compromise of classified materiel because you claimed she really didn’t intend to compromise the material therefor there was no crime. Yeah…. your the one. So come on. Tell us again how the it’s OK for the Secretary of State to operate a private server for her in house email system in order to avoid accountability and to send classified information without using proper procedures. Oh and while you’re at it could you explain for us once more how it’s OK to remove classification markings from classified documents if you don’t know what they mean. And how it’s OK to store those documents on media and computers that aren’t owned by or certified by the government. And after you get done spreading your bullshit once more on TTAG, just go away cause we don’t need leftist traitors, liars or their sycophantic enablers and their shills.

        • I think that most anyone how has been on TAG knows I am not a leftist.

          “And after you get done spreading your bullshit once more on TTAG, just go away cause we don’t need leftist traitors, liars or their sycophantic enablers and their shills.”

          Just as bad as the ‘statist’ Agree with me or you are a trader? Too bad your not Chinese, your would fit right in.

        • Use better arguments, like your pointing out suicide stats that are pretty much irrelevant because there are so many other ways to commit suicide? Heck, your useless stat didn’t even specify the method of suicide.

        • It’s not that less gun laws mean less crime, but rather that more gun laws definitely does not mean less crime.
          Laws should be enacted for a reason. If the stated reason is false (the law doesn’t do what it’s intended to do), then the law is bad, and definitely should not only be repealed, but not repeated, ever. Anywhere.

        • Gun friendly Montana has the highest gun suicide rate in the nation for five years running. And top three in the nation for decades before that.

          Good thing successful suicide is not a crime or Montana’s jails would be packed of dead people.

        • “Laws should be enacted for a reason. If the stated reason is false (the law doesn’t do what it’s intended to do), then the law is bad, and definitely should not only be repealed, but not repeated, ever. Anywhere.”

          OK, lets look at another law that never really works and in FACT resulted in deaths

          Under age drinking. And it was really bad when we had non-uniformed laws. Think on it a bit.

          Most crime guns are really just straw purchases, and a lot of gangs are NOT located in just one state. And it is almost IMPOSSIBLE to bust a dirty FFL unless they are flat out stupid


        • sweet fuck man everyone is misconstruing this whole article statement and everyone like it. Let me summarize: the availability of guns and violent crime have ZERO CORRELATION.

          don’t get stuck on this “but but but its rural more cows than people its nothing like Atlanchimore so the comparison isn’t right” and on. That’s actually the point, the presence of guns has no bearing on the levels of crime. Crime in those metropolitan areas are actually probably related to some other social ills that tend to be egregious in large cities, although there are plenty of big cities with low per capita crime and rural areas with high per capita crime. All this still leads back to guns and crime having zero correlation.

        • “Gun friendly Montana has the highest gun suicide rate in the nation for five years running. And top three in the nation for decades before that.”

          And so if we can pass laws that somehow keep that one gun out of the hands of a person thinking about committing suicide, then gun prohibition is entirely worthwhile? Got it.

        • It’s not about “gun deaths” – that’s a propaganda meme, not a category. The people are wise to the ruse of trying to inflate the numbers with suicides, and that only backfires on you. It’s about the murder rate, and that is a socioeconomic and demographics issue, not due to gun availability.

          It’s a shame we have to keep reminding people of these simple facts, even here at TTAG.

        • Binder says, “OK, lets look at another law that never really works and in FACT resulted in deaths
          Under age drinking. And it was really bad when we had non-uniformed laws. Think on it a bit.”
          I’m confused.
          Underage drinking is illegal. Is that fact somehow contributing to deaths? If so, please elaborate. We no longer have non-uniform laws; if you’re under 18, you aren’t allowed to drink.
          I have no idea how that could be construed to say what I wrote is somehow wrong. Maybe that’s not what you meant, though.

        • And…
          I said, “if you’re under 18, you aren’t allowed to drink.”
          I meant, “if you’re under 21, you aren’t allowed to drink.”
          I promise I won’t do this again. Well, hardly ever.

    • So it’s a long time back but I was wandering the back roads from Tucson to Kalispell (five week road trip there and back, good times) and on my way thru Wyoming saw something I’d only ever seen before in cartoons and such. A sign for a town with the population crossed out and a smaller number below it. And that number crossed out and an even smaller number below that. The final number was “0” and just a few boarded up buildings, hulk of a long abandoned dead car or two.

      Yup, Wyoming, there’s some big empty parts there and some are more empty than they used to be.

      • That’s what really bad weather will do. It’s either very cold or very windy or both. Looked at a fairly new house up near Cody. On the back porch was a porch light hanging by the wires. I asked the realtor about it. She smiled and said the wind. 60 mph winds were common. I have to hand it to those folks who live there, they have sand.

    • Demographics played a key re in suicide rates. Wyoming had a high Native American population and they have a high suicide rate. The state being rural has inadequate mental health services and a culture that makes people shy away from getting help. Experience shows removing guns from the equation does not change the suicide rate

        • That is neither an argument nor an explanation. Fivethirtyeight comes out of the Sabrmetrics world where all they do is crunch numbers and treat the result as an explanation as in itself. That may be appropriate for baseball but not for a complex problem like suicide rates. By the way they also say gun control doesn’t work.

        • Yeah, people commit suicide, often by eating a gun. So what? Would it make you happier if all those suicidal guys jumped in front of a truck? Suicide rates shouldn’t be even considered in gun policy discussions. When it comes to ending man’s own life, the means used are completely irrelevant.

          • “I wish we had a ignore feature.”

            Yeah, would be useful at times. Until then, look at the source and delete before reading.

      • Japan has highly restrictive gun laws, yet still has a high suicide rate. Other means than a gun are used to effect the suicide such as hanging or drug overdose. Search online for “Aokigahara” or “Suicide Forest”.

    • So what’s your solution: ban urban environments?

      Up until maybe ten years ago, the Swiss had had access to a _real_ assault rifle and ammo in every home. The access and availability was there for anyone to commit a crime with, except that there weren’t those kinds of people in Switzerland.

      You can pass whatever laws you want in response to crime, just like drug laws the criminals get the drugs… and they’ll get the guns also.

    • DG’s point was simple, and is supported by data:
      More guns to not equal more crime. More gun laws do not equal less crime.

      Regardless of rural vs. urban, the point remains. For those that insist that “guns are the problem”, the fact that there are place in the US with lots of guns, and much fewer guns laws, with much lower crime rates than areas with fewer guns and more laws, puts the “guns are the problem” notion to bed. At least for people willing to think in any logical manner.

      I’m not sure what you mean when you say “explain the disparity of Alaska then.” There is no “disparity”. . (Alaska does, by the way, have a higher percentage of urban dwelling citizens than Wyoming, as well as a higher percentage of the population living below the poverty level.) Alaska has an only slightly higher firearms ownership percentage, but a much higher murder and aggravated assault with a firearm rate. Again, in Alaska as in Wyoming, it has nothing to do with guns, as was DG’s point.

      Crime, including violent crime, especially violent crime, has everything to do with culture. It has everything to do with what ultra-local social groups reveal as acceptable behavior, given the circumstances they are in.

      • jwtaylor,

        Your comment, and another person’s comment, reminds me of the futility of reaching out to hardcore supporters of firearm bans. Hardcore gun-grabbers will say things like:

        (1) “Sure, we know the real problem is violent people, not firearms. Even so, we can reduce the lethality of those violent people when we eliminate firearms.”

        (2) “Sure, we know we cannot stop a deranged spree killer from walking into a crowded venue and starting their rampage. Even so, we can reduce the lethality of their rampage and reduce collateral damage and negligent discharges from armed good people in crowded venues when we eliminate firearms.”

        (3) “Sure, violent crime rates are at their lowest rate in 50+ years. And our violent crime rate would be much, MUCH lower yet if we had eliminated firearm ownership 50 years ago.”

        These sorts of replies from hardcore gun-grabbers reveal that there is nothing any of us can say or do to win them over. As I said below, write these people off and do not waste any further time on them.

        Meanwhile, I support Dyseptic Gunsmith’s approach which I believe is an effective way to reach many (although not all) people who are currently gun-grabbers. I added below to skip any additional appeals to statistics and to, instead, invite the gun-grabber who you just reached to a gun range.

        Keep your explanation simple and effective and get the detractor to a gun range.

        • “These sorts of replies from hardcore gun-grabbers reveal that there is nothing any of us can say or do to win them over.”
          Well, you will pretty much never win them over, but you can point out the fallacy in their thinking.
          They will never be able to eliminate firearms. It’s simply not physically possible. I can take a trip to any hardware store and get the makings for a firearm. I don’t even need a 3D printer.
          There are even firearms in the hands of prisoners at maximum security prisons.
          The absolute willing ignorance of those who think they can somehow eliminate firearms is stunning.
          And I have no problem pointing out that stunning ignorance.
          Of course, it doesn’t change their minds, it only forces them to slightly modify their position, then saying they really only want to keep guns out of the hands of the wrong people. When I ask how they plan to do that when the wrong people are already banned from having guns, they tell me they don’t want to discuss it any more.
          But at least I forced them to face their willful ignorance.

      • Crime, including violent crime, especially violent crime, has everything to do with culture.

        Ding, ding, ding, ding, ding!!! We have a winner! Crime is a social problem, not a tool (weapon) problem.

        Condition people into thinking that it is okay to rob, beat, rape, and murder people and they will proceed to rob, beat, rape, and murder people.

        I certainly have the means and the ability to commit violent crime. And yet I do not commit violent crime because I cherish the inherent value and dignity of human life and abhor violent crime.

        • “Crime is a social problem”

          I was playing with numbers from various sources after Sandy Hook, and consistently got a correlation of about -0.10 between murders per 100K (y axis) and rate of privately number of private gun ownership (x-axis). That held across nations, across states (in the US) and across counties (in the US). So, slight trend toward more guns = fewer murders, but not statistically significant according to usual criteria. I didn’t do the more advanced modeling that probably gave Lott a statistically significant relationship, but it was in the same direction Lott claims.

          Played with a bunch of other numbers, and not much else seemed to be going on either, with one big exception: Population density (number of people per square km). That one correlated strongly with murder rate. So, if you live in a densely populated area, you tend to be at a much greater risk of being murdered. Not 100% clear what that means, but on the face of it it makes perfect sense. Crime is social problem for sure, but violent crime is also a social activity, and more frequent human interaction would tend to mean more opportunities for that to go horribly wrong. So if you want to stay safe, don’t avoid guns. Avoid big cities. Surprise surprise.

    • Suicides have willing victims and can’t be stopped by the removal of a single method. Suicides are also a choice and at the very least, with strangers, not really any of your business to deny. Even with people you know, it is still their right to not live if they don’t want to. Suicides also seem to correlate with altitude and isolation more than the presence of firearms. I imagioone that a better way of reducing firearm suicides, than infringing on civil rights, would be to try to let more people know what an unreliable method it is and how gruesome it is when it fails. Too many people think guns quickly and cleanly as on TV and movies.
      In my estimation murder is a different subject entirely. In 2010, the firearm murder rate per 100k in WY is .9, the 6th lowest in the country. They account for 64% of murders. DC the ultimate urban “state” has firearm murder rate of 16.5 and account for 75% of murders. What does suicide and living in an urban area have in common? I’d posit that they are both choices. I forgot where to find the numbers but I suspect the majority of a murder victims are also criminals – yet another choice.
      In Alaska the homicide rate (mostly suicides I think) has spiked in the last couple years but the numbers are so low (double digits) that variation is to be expected, no? There is also even more isolation (and alcoholism) than WY.
      Finally the rate of people US being killed by firearms who didn’t want to be us about 4.7 per 100,000 that is .0047% or about .32% over the average life span. Even that number likely is made up of more than half of people engaged in unethical and criminal activity Is that high enough to deny civil rights over? To go to war with your fellow citizens over?

      • I clearly can’t type more than a few words without committing egregious typos and it gets worse the longer I work on the comment. Damn.

      • I appreciate everything you wrote, but one small point of fact, Alaska has more people living in urban cities then Wyoming, not less.

        • I also didn’t mention that even with that .32% only a small fraction of it could be eliminated with legislation. We are talking about a vanishingly small percentage of people at that point and even that I didn’t counter weight with the lives that were preserved by firearm self defense and deterrence. I do appreciate you letting me know that I made at least some sense.

    • I’m sure this fact will be wasted on you, Blinder, but you may want to consider the suicide rate in Japan as context. The World Health Organization reports for year 2005 the rate in Japan was 24.9 per 100K. The *male* suicide rate in Japan for the same year was 36.8 per 100K. Perhaps you were not aware of the more or less gun-free society that exists in modern Japan. Somehow they still manage to get the job done. A bag of charcoal, a hibatchi grill, and some duct tape seems to be adequate to maintain their high suicide rate without the help from firearm technology. Or did you plan to ban *fire* as well? Let’s role back technology 800,000 years and maybe you’ll have your suicide free socialist utopia, but I doubt it.


    • “Wyoming suicides per 100,000 people: 26.9”


      What someone does with their own life is *their* business, no one elses’s.

      You want to keep people who are suffering alive against their own wishes? Free choice, my friend… 🙂

      • Yes, I was unaware suicide was now considered a crime?…

        Just a gun grabber trying to make all gun holders out to be unstable. Seems to me the ones who go forcing their agenda on Innocents with no history of such issues are the unstable ones…

        The fact is they could be surrounded by ccw’ers and never know it. They could be protesting anti gun shot right next to them, and concealing, and they’d never know it.

        Just amazes me how these people blame the tools, and not the people. Does anyone blame the nukes for the lives they took, or the govt that used them?

      • So when someone decides to jump off an overpass and the authorities have to close down the highway for half a day to clean up the mess, it shouldn’t matter to anybody else? Or if a depressive airline pilot decides to nose it into the side of a mountain and take 100 people with him, that should be no concern to anybody? Steven Paddock eventually committed suicide didn’t he? So why was the Las Vegas massacre such a big deal? Who should care about suicide, clearly not our problem.
        A firearm isn’t the driving force behind violent crime but it is what makes a violent crime a violent crime.

    • Please explain how gun control laws don’t affect suicides.




      You tell us to use better arguments. Fair enough. Before lecturing people that already know better than you, though, you are obligated to take your own advice — for once — if you don’t want your message immediately discarded.

        • “Suicide prevention is no excuse for gun control laws, period.”

          “Prevention”, “Intervention”, none of it should be encouraged or mandated. Stopping people from removing themselves from an unbearable situation is an egregious exercise of communal control over lives of individuals. “Society” has no preemptive right of first refusal over whether a person is allowed to exercise the most important of all natural laws…the right of self-determination.

          Just as the citizens have the right to throw off tyrannical government, individuals have the right to throw off what they decide is an intolerable life, a situation that for them is never to end otherwise.

      • Don’t act like you don’t immediately discard the arguments before they even happen.

        Someone who wants to kill themselves, they will do it, regardless of the weapon or method.
        If your argument was correct then then gun owners would be gathering for Mass suicide.

        Care to discuss the rate of DUI deaths? One would argue that alcohol and vehicles can be considered criminal Weapons, alone, without each other. Is anyone pushing for breathalyzers in everyone’s vehicle rather than a key to ignition? Too much privacy invasion?

        See… Your mind was made up before we started.

        • If the right to drive drunk was in the constitution, would people share the same passion for it as they do with firearms?
          Wake up. Gun legislation, for or against, is a billion dollar industry. It is lining the pockets of politicians on both sides. Each action is intended to ‘up’ the cost of the next action. If group ‘A’ paid politician ‘D’ x-amount of money to represent their cause, then group ‘B’ will have to pay politician ‘R’ a matching x-amount to offset the actions. Politicians don’t really care. As long as somebody is willing to pay them, they will continue playing the game. It is a big source of revenue for them. Every newly elected official ‘reaches out’ to the NRA hoping to get a piece of the pie. If they can’t get the NRA endorsement then they look for a ride on another wagon. If government truly wanted to end a ‘problem’ then they would, decisively, one way or another. It’s just business strategy.

          • “If government truly wanted to end a ‘problem’ …”

            Ending a problem is Kryptonite to governments; fewer problems means less need for government.

  3. I’ve been using this quiet tactic myself on some of my anti-gun colleagues. It’s a mix of logical argumentation (not quite the same as statistics), emotional discovery (you FEEL one way, but the world is actually different), and yes, some simple stats to back the other two up (this works relatively well in STEM department at a university, even though I’m not all that much into stats myself).

    One of my friends – yes, many people who disagree with me are nonetheless my friends! – has even agreed to come to the range with me this summer. Actually, he suggested the idea himself after a few conversations where his worldview didn’t quite mesh with things I was telling him. He said he wanted to try it: a willingness to experience almost anything once. Fair enough!

    Do I expect him to instantly love shooting and become a convert? No I don’t. But I do think he’ll learn that most gun owners are pretty normal people who care about safety and freedom, that guns aren’t really all that scary once you understand what they do, and that the real world of guns and gun rights is a lot more complex that the media would have you believe. Plus I think we’ll have fun.

    • That’s the problem. Most have never even shot, or needed to. They are complacent and hopeful that someone else will help them, or words on paper will stop anything bad about to happen. Plain and simple.

      Emotional. Just like the article described. They use the “have you ever had to use it” argument on people who carry daily too, expecting all of us to have been in some Afghanistan style combat in Downtown New York city and go looking for crime like some vigilante comic character. Preparedness is a thing they don’t understand, unless it involves a phone charger and access to an electrical outlet… Also, which most of them cannot manage to be prepared for… A dead phone.

  4. That whole hunting argument is crap on both sides. The reason you cant hunt with a 5.56 AR is to keep some idiot out there from trying to hunt deer with a .22 LR.

    • I’m not sure you understand how things work. You absolutely can hunt with a 5.56mm and a .22lr. What does your comment even mean?

      • Someone copy and pasted the whole AR-15 is so low powered that you can’t hunt with it argument and I replied before the comment was deleted by the spam filters.

        Was just replying that the caliber limits in hunting have way more to do with .22 LR and not heavy grain 5.56.

        It’s just frustrating that most “facts” that the progun side spews out relies far too much on ignorance.

        • You don’t know anymore about guns than you know about the espionage laws and the laws regarding classified government material.

        • You don’t know anymore about guns than you know about the espionage laws and the laws regarding classified government material. Leftist Troll.

        • He’s not a troll. He’s just a guy being emotionally manipulated. And expertly so. Now, prepare for an emotional outburst. Mentioning that they’re manipulated by others will normally trigger anger, exactly as DG stated above. Often including insults and profanity.

        • No, he’s a troll alright. All he comes on here for is to spew his crap and throw a bunch of chaff to confuse things. If it isn’t outright dishonesty it’s confused babble meant disrupt a meaningful dialogue. Like his crap about how it’s OK to violate the espionage laws and the laws that protect classified materiel. He outed himself as traitor, a liar, a troll and a Clinton apologist with that. He can claim otherwise but he did it. It was there for us all to see.

      • What an odd thing to say.
        Odd because it ignores so many facts that it makes you sound like you have no idea what you’re talking about.

      • “I’m not sure you understand how things work. You absolutely can hunt with a 5.56mm and a .22lr.”

        The person who doesn’t “understand how things work” is *you ‘Shiftrod’.

        Allowable hunting cartridges vary *wildly* from state-to-state. What’s good in one state may not be legal in another…

    • I know people who use AR-15’s to hunt coyotes and other varmints and yes even deer with the heavier loads. Personally I’d go a step up on deer (AR-10, better!) but hey if it’s legal in the hunting regs where you are and you can place your shots, why not?

      • I was one of those people dead set against the 223/556 for deer hunting for a long time. Then I tried shooting them with a 64gr or heavier soft point round. For the slightly built white tail deer we have here in the Texas hill country, as long as shots are kept around 100 yards or less, the results are great. I’ve cleanly killed dozens of deer now with such a load, and I don’t take head shots.

    • That’s not the case. Caliber laws vary widely throughout the states, but it certainly isn’t about limiting people from shooting deer and other “large” game with 22LRs. Those regulations exist, like in Texas, by simply limiting cartridges to “center fire rifle or pistol”. That effectively gets rid of hunting large game with 22LRs, and is the wording more than a few states use.
      Other states, such as Wyoming listed by the OP above, limit what calibers can be used on what animals. No elk hunting with a .223 in Wyoming, but pronghorn is ok with an at least 60gr bullet. That change was fairly recent, but as you can see, it includes a bullet grain limitation as well, so still not about the 22LR.

  5. “Tell them what the laws are in these places, and you destroy the gun banners’ credibility.” Credibility with whom? Others like us, who are passionate about not only our firearms, but our God-given rights or the uninterested people who make up a large majority- people who just assume the liberties we enjoy in this nation will go on forever?

    This site is a great place to sit around and postulate but other than let some of us show our intelligence, creativity, cleverness or lack thereof; it does little to affect the millions of Americans who would gain some respect for firearms if they actually exercised the right they are not using.

    I preach it ad nauseum here and elsewhere, but the key to preserving our rights- all of them, is to see that a large number of the population take part. For gun owners/enthusiasts, this means taking people who are not shooters to a range or into the back 40 and letting them experience it. Spend some of your own money and time. Take people shooting, then to lunch or grab a beer somewhere after and make shooting a social activity that’s enjoyable to be a part of.

    Concealed carry on demand opened up a lot of territory in the past decade but in reality, I doubt if even 10% of the people who are either permitted to carry or can do so via “Constitutional Carry” do so on a regular basis. Many are worried they don’t have the training, or that there is really no need, or that it’s unsafe for those around them, etc., etc. Driving a car is every bit as hazardous as carrying a loaded firearm but millions have learned to do so through familiarity and daily practice. To be fair, familiarity can also lead to negligence as well, but the vast majority of drivers, as with firearms owners are responsible, careful and observant.

    Take your work pals, church friends, neighbors, even that freak who hates guns out to the range. Let them experience it for themselves- then they can make an educated decision concerning guns and safety on their own. The banter around here and other forums is fine for us but is doing little good in preserving our sacred rights and responsibilities. Invest in your kid’s, and grandkid’s futures.

    napresto- you’re on the right track…

    • Thanks man! I love introducing people to shooting. It’s so much fun, helps me to reinforce my own understanding of safety and technique, and sometimes produces real converts. (Plus it often uses less ammo than when I just go out by myself).

      I took some friends – a couple from China, of all places – to the range a year or so back. They were hooked instantly, and even took a hunting course and wanted to buy a rifle for target shooting. Since they’re here on work visas, not citizens, I’m not sure if they’ll be able to buy anything (probably not) but I’m happy to go with them to shoot any time.

      (Side note: that trip also revealed my need for an intermediate cartridge rifle, since we jumped from .22LR to .30/30, .303 British, and .308, and it was… a bit much. They did well with it though!)

      • napresto,

        My understanding is that only U.S. citizens and resident aliens can legally acquire firearms (whether as a gift or through purchasing).

        Therefore, I am pretty confident that someone who is in the United States on a work visa or student visa cannot acquire firearms.

        • Importing an already owned firearm, such as for hunting use, by a non-citizen into the US is fairly common and straightforward.

        • Since they are both here for the long term on good jobs, I wouldn’t be surprised if they do eventually gain citizenship or permanent status. In the meantime, being from China, there definitely wouldn’t be any previously owned firearms to import!

  6. Our Ric screwed us on his way out. As to our state itself. We have so many RHINOs getting anything done here is an unknown. We can thank all the NY and northeastern transplants for really screwing things up here politically.

  7. Gun control is a defense mechanism for people who don’t want to think too hard about the actual causes of crime/suicide/etc. There’s an entire political party devoted to evading these aspects of reality, ready to indulge their fantasies.

  8. Well kids I use the same sort of “argument” vis a vis ILLinois vs Indiana. The fun er gun laws are pretty good in Indiana. And ILLinois(MAINLY CHIRAQ) blames Indiana and other much lower firearm crime & murder states for their BS. Ignoring the fact that NW Indiana has quite a lot of lowlifes & poverty-but tons of legally armed folks! I don’t try to “win” against leftards anywho…

    • Illinois is now going on what, 5 years shall issue? The fact is that most of the ‘gang’ guns are straw purchases and there has been more that one case in the past of a FFL turning a blind eye to it.

      • Binder,

        And? So what.

        Houston and Chicago are metropolitan areas of similar size and population. It is even easier to purchase firearms in and around Houston and in Texas versus Illinois. And yet the violent crime rate in Houston is MUCH lower than in Chicago. This in spite of the fact that Houston has several more warm-weather months a year. (You will find that violent crime correlates quite nicely to warm-weather in the Chicago metro area.)

        This simple comparison destroys the notion that Chicago’s crime rates would be much lower if criminals in Chicago could not “acquire firearms easily from Indiana”.

        • It’s easier to legally obtain and carry a gun in Houston than in Chicago. More importantly, Houston has a higher immigrant percentage, a considerably higher poverty rate, and a higher percentage of people who do not speak English, than Chicago. And yet, according to Citydata.com, Chicago’s murder rate in 2016 (the last year with complete data for both cities) was TWICE that of Houston’s.

          Why? Because people in Houston just do not put up with that shit like people in Chicago do.

          The murder clearance rate in Houston is 60%, and that is considered so unacceptable to Harris County (where Houston is located) that state and federal resources have been requested to help with the problem.

          Chicago’s murder clearance rate is 19%, and they consistently resist help from outside entities to fix the problem.

        • jwtaylor
          You don’t have a tradition of 100 years of organized crime. But again, you can always look a NYC and all the arguments go into the trash.

        • Binder, the NYC example doubly proves the point, It’s not about guns, it’s about culture. NYC dramatically reduced there violent crime rate, and it had very little to do with any Firearms regulations. It had a lot to do with policing, and District Attorneys willing to prosecute. All of that was supported by a population eager to make a change.

        • But your first augment was that “It’s easier to legally obtain and carry a gun in Houston than in Chicago.”

          So what exactly is your point?
          If a place is draconian about guns and has a lower murder rate is not the law. But if they have open gun laws, the crime rate is lower because of the law.

          Look I’m pro gun, but if you step back and look at a lot of these arguments, you need see how they look from the non-gun person’s side.

        • That guns are easier to obtain legally in Houston than Chicago was not an argument, it was a point of fact. Don’t infer an argument on it.
          My point is simple, and I spelled it out simply several times now. Crime is not about guns or gun laws. It is about culture. It is about what people are willing to put up with.

  9. Sometimes I try factual arguments. Sometimes I try to paint them a picture. Such as the picture of the violent crime rates in this country falling dramatically over the last 20 to 30 years while gun ownership much more than doubled. With millions of those new guns being modern sporting rifles. Point is, if guns are the root cause then shouldn’t there be dead bodies piling up pretty much everywhere? We’ve gone from around 150 million guns to nearly 400 million, tens of millions are AR-15’s, and all rates of violence are down.

    Where are we hiding all these dead people? We’ve added 250 million guns since the peak of violence in this country, billions of rounds of ammunition, millions of semiautomatic sporting guns and yet the predicted mountains of bodies and rivers of blood appear to be missing?

    • Enuf,

      if guns are the root cause then shouldn’t there be dead bodies piling up pretty much everywhere? We’ve gone from around 150 million guns to nearly 400 million, tens of millions are AR-15’s, and all rates of violence are down.

      A word of caution: I have heard gun-grabbers claim that our violent crime rates would be even lower, perhaps even much lower, if we had banned firearms 30 years ago.

      This is the potential danger in arguments of social utility.

  10. What is very interesting is that in New England you have a number of strict law States mixed with not strict law States and the murder rate (all weapons) is comparable from State to State regardless of the laws. It just seems as though the people in that part of the Country kill each other less than in other parts of the Country.

    • Brodirt,

      What is very interesting is that in New England you have a number of strict law States mixed with not strict law States and the murder rate (all weapons) is comparable from State to State regardless of the laws.

      I beg to differ, depending on exactly how you define New England. Vermont and Maine are almost always vying for the lowest violent crime rates in the nation. I have never heard of Massachusetts, Connecticut, or Rhode Island (and the regions of New York state that are close to Massachusetts and Connecticut) competing for the lowest crime rates in the U.S.

      If my memory of the violent crime rates is wrong, someone please correct me.

  11. This might work with a man (an actual man, not a man in name only), but not with most women or feminine men. All it’s going to do is get the anti-gunners to target Wyoming.

    Most women and feminine men are afraid of guns. Period. The idea anybody could be carrying terrifies them beyond reason. You’re not going to break this emotional conditioning with words.

    Take the anti-gunners to a gun range and teach them to shoot. This is the only thing I’ve ever witnessed that breaks that emotional conditioning. When they realize it’s just a tool, and a tool that makes them feel “empowered” to boot, then you can make the other arguments effectively.

    • Scott Free,

      I believe that both you and Dyseptic Gunsmith have valid and extremely important points.

      Above all else, keep things incredibly simple. Most people cannot keep a long and complicated argument straight.

      (1) Destroy the gun-grabber premise that “easy access to firearms” guarantees high violent crime rates as Dyseptic Gunsmith pointed out. (Compare Wyoming and Maine to California in terms of firearm laws and violent crime rates.)
      (2) Tell your conversation partner that gun-grabbers know this and have been intentionally manipulating him/her.
      (3) Remind your conversation partner that violent crime rates are at a 50+ year low even though we have about three times more firearms in circulation.
      (4) Invite your conversation partner to a shooting range!
      (5) Invoke super-human strength to remain calm, polite, and even chipper/upbeat as you share this information.

      Some hardcore supporters of firearm bans will not respond favorably to this approach. Write them off. Spend your time/effort on people who do respond favorably.

      • @Uncommon Sense,

        Close, but Scott Free’s comment should actually be combined with, barnbtw (yeah barnbtw…that one surprised me too). His comment, people don’t want to think about their own personal responsibility, coupled with the type of people, feminine men and women, need to be combined.

        The adage of sheep, wolves, and sheep dogs describes this situation well. The sheep (feminine men and women) don’t want to think about their personal safety, they merely want to FEELZ safe. Period…end story. To them sheep dogs (firearm owners) look to much like wolves with their identical sharp teeth. Never mind the sheep dogs protect the sheep, to the sheep this only reminds them of the dangerous world around them and that pops their bubble, and is therefore… “baaaa-bad”.

        For most of these feminine men and women, piercing that bubble is an existential threat that they are not going to face. They know deep down they are vulnerable. Therefore they need to maintain the illusion, and to them it is simple, I don’t have or want teeth, therefore neither should you.

  12. Detent, guns are not necessary to create that kind of havoc, gasoline, and a road flare or Molotov Cocktail thing of weapon can do more damage and if you think banning guns would stop mass shootings, well the rabbit hole is getting crowded. To paraphrase chubby Mr. Franklin, if surrender freedom for “safety” you don’t or deserve either.

  13. Lol facts. The antis are operating from emotion, racism/classism or an outright desire to control. Good luck fighting any of that with facts.

    • Hear, hear Shire-man! The fact is that the
      burden falls on those whom wish to restrict
      others people rights. They need to offer a
      clear and reasonable explanation.

      To my knowledge, Gun Haters have never been
      able to do so.

  14. Arguing about gun control with an anti-2A hater is like trying to teach a pig to sing.

    “Never try to teach a pig to sing. It wastes your time, and it annoys the pig.”

    — Robert Heinlein

  15. I appreciate this article, particularly the point of emotions vs facts, but it points out the problems with statistics. I know this because I tried to use a similar argument about gun violence but was shot down when it was pointed out that the states with the loosest gun laws tend to have the highest rates of gun deaths per capita. (And “Per Capita” is more important than total gun deaths because it takes population size into account).

    For instance, if you look at the CDC report for 2017 (https://tinyurl.com/y9h9zdr2) using Wyoming as the example in the article: Although Wyoming has a very low number of gun deaths (only 113), the per capita rate (18.8 deaths per 100,000 population) makes it the 7th deadliest state.

    – Compare that with California (with Draconian gun laws) that had a very high number of gun deaths (3,184) was the 7th safest state at 7.9 per 100,000 population.

    – New York State (with laws almost as bad as California & New Jersey) ranked 3rd safest per capita at 3.7 per 100,000 (which Gov. Cuomo loves to brag about!).

    In other words, there are a lot of pro-gun arguments to use, but I wouldn’t use this one because, as I found out, it’ll blow up in your face if challenged, and you’ll be accused of using emotion over facts!

    • Don’t compare gun death rates. Compare gun murder rates, since gun-grabbers fear being murdered more than they fear suicide. CA, the gun-grabbers ideal, has over 3x the gun murder rate of lax and libertarian NH, over 3x higher than WY, higher than other lax states (ME, SD, etc.) That’s why “gun violence” stats always include suicides to pump up the numbers. People who are going to kill themselves are more likely to use a gun where readily available.


      • Better yet, compare overall murder rates. A murder victim doesn’t care what weapon is used to kill him. And only comparing gun murders leaves out murders that we’re committed with alternative weapons.

    • What the hell is “gun death”? None of my guns ever died. Suicide is a suicide, murder is a murder, no matter what tool was used committing it.

      Antis love to conflate all deaths where gun was used, even with justifiable manslaughter because it gives them exactly the kind of stats you mentioned.
      Next they will tell us there are less cases of shark attack in land locked states.

      • “Next they will tell us there are less cases of shark attack in land locked states.”

        Nah, they are going to run campaigns on the fact that more people die in auto accidents than that group of persons who do not ride in, or drive, automobiles.

  16. @BigBill
    “Well, you will pretty much never win them over, but you can point out the fallacy in their thinking.”

    Which is always great sport !! Especially if the confrontation compels them to say something really stupid in front of their peers.

  17. The author has a point. Facts do prove his position. I think anti gun people already know the facts and are deliberately lying. I do not believe that they believe their own arguments. Yes voting and stating your opinion is important because liars tend to back down once they see people will oppose them.

    Winning an argument is not the same as changing society. Winning arguments is the act defending what rights remain or are in place. It does little to restore freedoms that have been lost because people to not make arguments for more gun freedom but rather get defensive when new legislation is proposed. Gun control laws need to be abolished. The nfa act needs to be abolished.

    If using math and logic works against someone without a mathematical background then it should work doubly with someone who has one. If the person you arguing with states math and logic as something he respects and credits it as part of his identity then he is forced to respect your point of view if it is mathematically and logically sound. For him to try to negate proven facts by saying you are putting a twist on the truth is simply him lying and disregarding already agreed upon rules of logic. He can not employ fuzzy logic by refuting obvious facts and then expect to be seen credible as a data scientist.

    Public safety is not the reason for laws. Laws only exist to harass black people. White people on both sides of the gun control debate are clueless into how racist this country is. The gun debate is almost trivial compared to the amount of contempt government has for black citizens. Blacks are denied basic human rights everyday. Taking away guns is just another way of saying you are not a white person but a second class citizen.

  18. BREAKING NEWS: Seventy-Two Killed Resisting Gun Confiscation In Massachusetts.

    National Guard units seeking to confiscate a cache of recently banned assault weapons were ambushed by elements of a Para-military extremist faction. Military and law enforcement sources estimate that 72 were killed and more than 200 injured before government forces were compelled to withdraw.

    Speaking after the clash, Massachusetts Governor Thomas Gage declared that the extremist faction, which was made up of local citizens, has links to the radical right-wing tax protest movement.

    Gage blamed the extremists for recent incidents of vandalism directed against internal revenue offices. The governor, who described the group’s organizers as “criminals,” issued an executive order authorizing the summary arrest of any individual who has interfered with the government’s efforts to secure law and order.

    The military raid on the extremist arsenal followed wide-spread refusal by the local citizenry to turn over recently outlawed assault weapons.

    Gage issued a ban on military-style assault weapons and ammunition earlier in the week. This decision followed a meeting early in the month between government and military leaders at which the governor authorized the forcible confiscation of illegal arms.

    One government official, speaking on condition of anonymity, pointed out that “none of these people would have been killed had the extremists obeyed the law and turned over their weapons voluntarily.”

    Government troops initially succeeded in confiscating a large supply of outlawed weapons and ammunition. However, troops attempting to seize arms and ammunition in Lexington met with resistance from heavily-armed extremists who had been tipped off regarding the government’s plans.

    During a tense standoff in the Lexington town park, National Guard Colonel Francis Smith, commander of the government operation, ordered the armed group to surrender and return to their homes. The impasse was broken by a single shot, which was reportedly fired by one of the right-wing extremists.

    Eight civilians were killed in the ensuing exchange.

    Ironically, the local citizenry blamed government forces rather than the extremists for the civilian deaths. Before order could be restored, armed citizens from surrounding areas had descended upon the guard units. Colonel Smith, finding his forces over matched by the armed mob, ordered a retreat.

    Governor Gage has called upon citizens to support the state/national joint task force in its effort to restore law and order. The governor also demanded the surrender of those responsible for planning and leading the attack against the government troops.

    Samuel Adams, Paul Revere, and John Hancock, who have been identified as “ringleaders” of the extremist faction, remain at large.

    And this fellow Americans, is how the American Revolution began, April 19, 1775.

    And this fellow Americans, is an example of media bias. Find out the truth for yourself.

  19. Thank you Dyspeptic. I like your approach. Everyone should read Dan Wos’ excellent books, “Good Gun/Bad Guy 1&2.” They are chocked full of logical arguments to win against, and more importantly, win over anti-gunners.

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