Gun or No Gun. Personal Choice Or Slave To Statistics?
This is where I double down as a devout self defense rights advocate. I hope to inform & persuade more than offend.
Mother Jones-Charts: Challenging the Myth That Guns Stop Crime —By Josh Harkinson| Fri Apr. 19, 2013 3:00 AM PDT
How many people actually used guns in self defense? Well first, we have to agree who is a decent source. Lott ain’t it. Not HCI or the NRA. How about Mother Jones? That publication did a piece designed to debunk the over the top pro gun talking point stats. Just to be clear, I see the article correctly totally debunks pro gun advocates NRA false numbers.
It contains some interesting tidbits in the charts though. First I think it throws out the “need” argument about gun ownership. How does it do that? While it of course shows the huge ratio between gun ownership and use in defense, it also makes a very telling admission or two. To me that is a huge red herring anyway. Must I establish my “need” to use any portion of the Bill Of Rights? No I do not. Not legally, not even in our culture. Thanks to criminal use of guns, the Second Amendment is treated like an unwanted stepchild by civil rights advocacy groups and many individuals. It seems to be the right that most people oppose among them all. Imagine for a brief second if you had to register every printer or blog to authorities. Right. Not gonna happen. And yet we have seen hate speech cost lives.
Personally I am encouraged by the numbers shown at Mother Jones. Defensive gun use should be a low number. Why wish for more? It’s about our own choices. Our own resources. Our own circumstances. Can we train well and store the gun right? Do we have the reflexes and eyesight required? Is a shooting range close enough to practice in? If you lack those things do not buy a gun. If you do not want a gun because you don’t like them, do not buy a gun. Simple really.
Defense is just one reason to have a gun. Sports, hunting and target shooting are all available to us just because we might want to. To call those people “gun fetishists” is an insult designed to smear the reputations of gun buyers.
The annual average of defensive gun use is well over 67,000 yes sixty seven thousand times a year. Over a third of a million people used guns in a defensive way from 2007 to 2011.
So I assert the decision to buy a gun is a personal choice. It might be a recreational or defensive intent or both. It’s wrong for gun owners to look down on people that choose not to have or that oppose guns in some reasonable fashion. But that coin has two sides. Quite often, we see people who choose not to have guns looking down at us gun owners over our choices. “Gun fetish”. “Gun nut”. Add a southern address and the snark really comes out. For some even law abiding and reasonable gun owners really get the microscope. Some express profound worry about us moderate gun owners every time we differ even a little on where to draw the regulatory line or set a sentence for gun crimes. That too is just wrong. A modicum of respect for personal choices unlike our own is what makes a diverse culture work. It also facilitates reasonable changes in gun laws like universal registration.
This Page was inspired by the discussion/debate that can be found at another recent Page.
A man used a gun to save a child. Unfortunately the guns were not registered in DC. He could have been jailed for that alone. IMO- In a more rural area less insanely anti gun he would be hailed as a hero and quietly told to register the guns or else. Perhaps they would be more strict. What would not happen is making the perfect (every gun registered etc & a flawless defensive use) the enemy of the good.