A new toy!

I just left a comment on a new gun control blog. Here is my comment to their latest post:

Baldr, I question your goal, “My goal, and the goal of Gun Control in general, is to reduce gun violence…”

Had you said, “criminal violence” then I would be with you. But the way it is worded your goal could conceivably be completely achieved (zero injuries inflicted with a firearm) yet have a murder rate that is 100 times greater than what we have now.

That is why the “gun deaths” data you presented is of almost no interest to me. I didn’t dig into it to make certain but I suspect it includes “gun deaths” that were justifiable homicide by the police and private citizens protecting innocent life. It probably also includes suicides.

It is because of these issues there is Just One Question that needs to be answered before I can see any point in having a discussion about placing restrictions on the specific enumerated right to keep and bear arms. That question is: Can you demonstrate one time or place, throughout all history, where the average person was made safer by restricting access to handheld weapons? If you can’t successfully answer that question affirmatively then I don’t see any point in having a discussion.

9 thoughts on “A new toy!

  1. It appears reasoned discourse has begun. I don’t see your comment, and most of the comments I see up there are Pro-their side and fence sitters. This doesn’t surprise me, it’s like the kid in the corner of the room with his eyes closed and ears covered going “lalalala”.

    Either that or your comment just hasn’t shown up yet.

    As for their slogan: Building healthy communities without gun violence. My personal translation: Building bigoted communities where violence abounds.

    We already know what happens when the average person has their access to firearms restricted. They’re bigoted against people who have a different philosophy towards life than them.

    B

  2. Four Comments have been posted since I submitted mine. I suspect mine will not see the light of day.

    Honesty is NOT a strong point for the anti-rights advocates…

  3. I suggested they solve all problems by passing the following law in three parts: 1) All criminals are hereafter prohibited from using illegal firearms to commit crimes, 2) Criminals may not conceal firearms on their persons by any means 3) All potential victims, places being robbed or broken into must be notified no later than two hours prior to being robbed, attacked etc. I am very serious about this, and I know it will work.

    P.S. Try this one too, http://www.commongunsense.com/ Especially funny is the photo on the my profile page, woman in the “Minnesotans against being shot” T-shirt. Ah, the land of 10,000 therapies. (I live here.)

  4. Hi, Joe. Thank you for visiting New Trajectory.

    Your comment that you typed above didn’t show up, nor did I delete it. I promise I’m not going “lalalala.” Perhaps you could re-send it?

    I agree that ending criminal violence is important, but it is a loftier and much more difficult goal than focusing on only a portion of the crimes (those committed with firearms). How would you go about fighting ALL violent crime, as you suggest I do? Do you have a suggestion?

    Your point, typed in bold, is an interesting one, and worth debate. I’ll see if I can find some information.

    Wee’rd, I already told you why your first comment was discarded. To suggest that I have a goal of promoting violence is crass and disrespectful. The only other comment deleted on that post was one with foul language.

  5. Obviously, I don’t know what Weer’d wrote, but I can imagine. I see his posts everywhere and read his blog daily.

    His comment that you retyped on your blog is something that a lot of us feel. Many of the anti-gun people will post that our death would be a good thing, especially if it was us shooting ourselves. Almost any news article will have people posting that in the comments. It is not a new thing for us but denied by many of you who refuse to see it or are just oblivious. How offensive do you think it is to us when we are labeled complicit in murders as if we pulled the trigger? How offensive is it to be sneered at with contempt, to say that we promote death?

    There is no talking to an anti because they have already started with the position that all guns are bad, there is no reason to have one, and if we could just get the ball rolling by banning a few, eventually we could get the rest of them.

    And before you say it, the biggest reason you get no help from us is because as soon as we give in to anything, you take another inch. By building the wall to “you aren’t getting anything” we save what few rights we still have left.

  6. I tried to make a comment there as well, and it might be “fence-sitting” enough that it might get posted…but I highly doubt that I’ll get a response. I especially doubt that they’ll give links to the data! In any case, I followed Joe’s example, and put my comment on my blog.

    http://epsilon-power.blogspot.com/2011/01/another-fishy-study.html

    The fact that I asked about murder rates might in and of itself cause the comment to become a victim of Reasoned DiscourseTM.

    One comment I didn’t make was this: studies are stupid, because murder rates are so tiny. This hit me a little while ago when I was looking at Vermont’s murder rates. In 2009, seven people were murdered, out of a population of about 490,000. Do you really expect me to believe that gun laws are going to change that number all that much?!?

  7. Baldr, why would fighting violent crime in general be somehow loftier a goal than fighting a much more specific subset, especially when that subset is defined arbitrarily using only the use of a specific kind of tool as a criterion?

    it’s true, eliminating all violent crime is probably impossible, whereas eliminating “gun crime” hypothetically is not (just un-invent firearms. good luck.) however, that’s hypothetical talk, and somewhat contrived.

    in real life, sometimes it’s more practical to address a more general problem, or to address a specific problem by using more general approaches. we know violent crime — even crime in general — can be fought, and reduced. crime rates vary over time, after all. we know that crime, even as complex a problem as it is, often has straightforward (if not always easily combatted) causes; poverty, marginalization, hopelessness, desperation. addiction. these can be addressed.

    (not necessarily cheaply addressed, nor necessarily by means Joe would approve of. i’m a socialist; i’d address them using expensive tax-funded social programs, myself. but that’s not my point here; i’m saying that generic problems may sometimes be dealt with even when specific problems are hard.)

    addressing just a specific instance of violent crime can very well be, in practice if not in theory, a much more contrived and less realistic a thing to do. imagine trying to prevent arson committed by people carrying zippo lighters — a very specific sub-instance of violent crime. well, you could ban zippos, that’d do it… but i bet arsonists would go on committing arson just the same, they’d simply carry bics. or matches.

    which ties in to Joe’s central point; if you reduce, even eliminate, such a very specific subclass of a problem without making any impact on the problem in general cases, you’ve wasted your effort and done no net good. i don’t care what an arsonist uses to light fire to my house, i don’t want arson to be committed at all.

    i don’t care if i’m assaulted with a gun or with a knife, i don’t want to be assaulted either way. do not merely promise that you’ll work to see to it my assaulter has to do the deed with a knife instead of with a gun — that would not do me any good. try to work, instead, to reduce violent assault no matter what weapon it’s committed by; yes, it’s a more general problem, but it’s one whose solution might be net useful to us.

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