Another fish bit on my Just One Question lure–sort of.
From: “Joe Huffman”
Subject: Gun control laws will save lives
Date: Wed, 20 Feb 2008 08:46:55 -0800
Regarding your opinion piece here: http://media.www.suujournal.com/media/storage/paper951/news/2008/02/19/Opinion/OpEd-Gun.Control.Laws.Will.Save.Lives-3219311.shtml
I have just one question for you: Can you demonstrate one time or place, throughout all history, where the average person was made safer by restricting access to handheld weapons?
From: Bree Dalling
Sent: Thursday, February 21, 2008 6:35 PM
To: Joe Huffman
Subject: Re: Gun control laws will save lives
As I’ve explained before, I’m not proposing banning them, or fully restricting access to them. If you’re a law-abiding citizen, then you won’t have a problem. I’m saying put the people who aren’t so law-abiding on several lists. If something changes with their status (they receive anything higher than a class A misdemeanor, or they start having mental health issues), then require them to turn their gun in for as long as it takes for them to get it taken care of and/or whatever happens with it. Notice that every single school shooting in the past few years has been from someone who went off their medications.
I will admit, I have yet to read your blog post. I will get to it once I finish my homework. I just wished to clarify my position.
From: Joe Huffman
Sent: Thursday, February 21, 2008 7:41 PM
To: ‘Bree Dalling’
Subject: RE: Gun control laws will save lives
I don’t know the details of the “several lists” you are proposing but I expect they already exist and are enforced in the form of NICS (http://www.fbi.gov/hq/cjisd/nics.htm).
As it is currently implemented my main gripe with NICS is that it consumes money without any measurable benefits. I agree one should expect it to make people safer but no one has been able to measure an improvement. It’s kind of like expecting you will get sick less often if you wash your hands frequently. But if your water supply is contaminated with raw sewage washing your hands just doesn’t make a difference. The real problem is that restrictions on the access to firearms can be, and has been, no more successful than restriction on access to recreational drugs or alcohol during prohibition.
But it gets worse than that because the restrictions end up prevent praiseworthy use of firearms such as self-defense. If someone with criminal intent wants to obtain a weapon they will without concern they are breaking the law—after all they intent to commit some other violent crime why would they be concerned about breaking a law in regards to gaining possession of a firearm? The potential victim(s) generally obey the law and hence restrictions on firearm access hinder them from using firearms as defensive tools. Thus we find that restrictions on firearms have both a positive benefit (it makes it somewhat more difficult for potential criminal use) and a negative benefit (less access for defensive use). The net effect is that people, on the average, are never safer after the restriction was put in place than before. If you want to look at specific people such as Stalin, Hitler, other tyrants, then yes, they were made safer by restricting access to weapons by their prey, but that isn’t an accomplishment any gun control advocate can be proud of.
Do your homework and get back to me if you feel like it.
Thanks for responding.