Refuting Anti-Gun Control Arguments

© Josh Sager – January 2012

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The recent rash of mass shootings in the United States is simply part of a long-term trend of gun violence unique to our country. The Sandy Hook school shooting is tragic—it caused the death of 20 children—but the true tragedy is that such a shooting is only the tip of the iceberg of our country’s gun problem.

According to FBI statistics, 46,313 Americans were murdered with firearms during the time period of 2007 to 2011. To put this death-toll into perspective, this translates to an average of 9,263 murders per year, or 25 murders per day. When we look at this average death toll in relation to the Sandy Hook Shooting—a nationally shocking tragedy—we see that a Sandy Hook sized tragedy happens every day, yet nobody covers it.

No other developed country on earth has as lax gun laws or more weapons than the United States. The easy access to weapons and the ineffective methods of tracking weapons to make sure that they don’t fall into the wrong hands facilitate violent and unstable people in the United States getting weapons with which to kill people.

Currently, there are 88 guns for every 100 people living in the United States (not even counting the illegal weapons which our government couldn’t account for). With so many weapons and so few controls on who can own the weapons, there is simply no realistic way to keep these guns from falling into the hands of violent criminals and disturbed people.

In the aftermath of the Sandy Hook shooting, many politicians have begun to pivot towards the idea that gun control needs to be strengthened—this effort is being led by Democrats, but even many Republicans have begun to buck their longstanding deference to the NRA and gun lobbyists. This conversation is long overdue, and will hopefully result in some sane gun regulations being enacted.

Despite the terrible death toll due to gun violence in our country and the recent mass-shootings, there is still a wide contingent within our country who oppose any form of gun control. These people use a multitude of arguments in order to attempt to fight any gun regulations. In the following section, I will name and quickly debunk 15 of the most common gun enthusiast arguments.

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1.   “The 2nd Amendment guarantees the right to bear arms, thus gun control measures are unconstitutional.”

Those who make this argument are misinformed as to the original intent of the 2nd Amendment and have either been tricked by the modern gun lobby’s marketing or are actively perverting its meaning.

First, here is the text of the 2nd Amendment:

“A well regulated militia being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed.”

Gun enthusiasts and gun lobbyists love to cite the 2nd amendment to the constitution as the catch-all defense to their right to carry any weapon that they can get their hands on (ex. assault rifles). In order to do this, these gun owners/sellers have hopelessly perverted the original intent of the 2nd Amendment and have expanded its guarantee of the right to “keep and bear arms” far beyond its original bounds.

From its passage and until the late 20th century, the 2nd Amendment to the constitution was interpreted to protect the rights of states to maintain militias and for militiamen to sustain arsenals. In the early years of our country, there was no standing federal army (the founders were afraid of a national standing army consolidating power) and the states were expected to sustain a state militia in order to contribute to the national defense; this expectation necessitated protections for militias that would facilitate militiamen keeping weapons for their service.

The 2nd amendment was predicated upon the maintenance of state militias—something that has become irrelevant in the face of our federal armed services—and is not something that should have allowed individuals to claim the right to own weapons. State militias had the right to bear arms, but individual, unattached Americans had no such right—this distinction in the difference between the 2ndAmendment being a collective right or an individual right.

Chief Supreme Court Justice Warren Burger—a Republican—said the following about the proposal that the 2nd Amendment is aimed at protecting every American’s right to own guns:

“…one of the greatest pieces of fraud, I repeat the word ‘fraud,’ on the American public by special interest groups that I’ve ever seen in my life time. The real purpose of the Second Amendment was to ensure that state armies—the militias—would be maintained for the defense of the state. The very language of the Second Amendment refutes any argument that it was intended to guarantee every citizen an unfettered right to any kind of weapon he or she desires.”

As Justice Burger said in no uncertain terms, before gun lobbyists and activists began campaigning to change the understanding of the 2nd Amendment in the late 20th century, nobody considered it to be an individual right. Unfortunately, a decades-long concerted effort by gun lobbyists and big money conservatives has successfully shifted the meaning of the 2nd Amendment so that it can be used to justify letting anybody own any weapon that they choose.

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In 2008, the right wing contingent on the most recent Supreme Court (the same people who said that corporations are people) decided to throw away centuries of juris prudence and extend the 2ndAmendment as an individual protection for gun owners’ right to bear arms. During the case, United States v. Emerson, the Supreme Court decided that the 2nd Amendment is not a collective protection for gun ownership in militias, but rather a protection for individuals to own and operate weapons. This decision flies in the face of centuries of settled law and, like Citizens United v. FEC is just another case where right wing extremist wearing robes have perverted our country’s longstanding understanding of our laws.

Despite the changed definition of the 2nd Amendment, reasonable gun control regulations are not unconstitutional on their face; the 2nd Amendment may now be interpreted as an individual right, but this does not mean that it is unlimited.

Many restriction on who can own firearms (ex. state laws barring felons from owning guns), where guns can be carried (ex. no-gun zones) and which guns are legal (ex. the assault weapons ban) have been held as constitutional. What gun control proponents (people who care more about children being killed then their ability to buy 4 assault rifles in one day) suggest is not a blanket ban on guns, but an expansion of the already constitutional limits that exist. It may not be constitutional for the government to put a blanket ban on weapons, but it is certainly proper for it to enact strong restrictions which keep dangerous weapons out of the hands of people who cannot responsibly operate them.

Even in its perverted form, the 2nd Amendment is not the perfect defense for gun ownership and is not an impediment for gun control regulation. After all, if the 2nd Amendment were absolute, imprisoned criminals would have the constitutionally protected right to carry a missile launcher with them while in the prison; using it to hurt people or damage property would be a crime, but carrying it would be a simple exercise of constitutional rights. In this direction, madness and mass killings wait for our society.

The next time a gun enthusiast proposes that the 2nd Amendment gives them the absolute right to bear any arms that they wish, pose the previous situation to them and ask them to reconcile their interpretation of the Amendment with realistic laws. What you will get as an answer will be a contorted explanation on how criminal conduct negates the 2nd Amendment rights (absolute rights don’t work like that—case in point: the 1st Amendment) and how it is not sane or safe for criminals to have access to weapons while in prison. To be fair, they are half correct that such a gun policy is neither sane nor safe in our prisons, but, then again, neither is their proposed gun control regime on general society.

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2.   “Guns are a right in our country so that we can rise up against a tyrannical government.”

A favorite among weekend warriors and doomsday “preppers”, this argument is both deluded and illustrative of a dangerous mindset..

Put plainly, if somebody believes that they are going to practice violent “self-defense” against the American government if it tries to infringe on their rights, they are simply deluded. The United States government is the most powerful entity on the planet; they don’t just have guns, but also tanks, jets, satellites, and nuclear weapons. The sheer monopoly of military force held by the government is an insurmountable obstacle to any attempt by individuals to “pursue 2nd Amendment remedies” to tyranny. Any attempt by fringe individuals to utilize their guns to beat back the federal government will fail and will only result in the deaths of those who try to rebel.

In situations like Ruby Ridge, we have seen that even well-armed private militias have no chance against the force of the federal government and any belief to the contrary is just not realistic. The most likely outcome of such an attempted rebellion would be a short-term campaign of domestic terrorism, followed by a massive federal crackdown—the militia would take down some federal forces and some civilians on the way down, but they would inevitably be killed or captured.

The only real way to prevent our government from becoming tyrannical is through the ballot box, not the scope of a rifle. Our founding fathers understood this and, as I previously explained, it is the gun enthusiasts who have perverted the 2nd Amendment to justify their fantasies of rebellion.

Those who support this argument are simply not rational and any attempt to convince them that their guns will not protect them when the black helicopters start landing will likely land on deaf ears. That said, it is important to make sure that people know that guns are not an acceptable vehicle for their dislike of certain policies of their government and that it is completely out of bounds for them to want to take up arms against their duly elected government. In the unlikely event of an autocratic regime somehow taking over our country, this may change but, barring such an extreme event, these people are simply deluded.

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3.   “Guns don’t kill people; people kill people” or “ Limiting guns will only lead to violent people simply using other methods of killing large numbers of people”

While it is true that guns are simply tools and have no ability to harm anybody on their own, the assertion that they have no part in the perpetration of violence is absurd.

If properly motivated, somebody can kill their enemy with a pair of nail-clippers, but this is irrelevant to the greater regulatory scheme. Just because there are other ways for people to kill one another, it doesn’t mean that it isn’t in the public interest to restrict the most common way people currently kill each other.

Guns give people a quick, easy, cheap, and relatively detached (compared to stabbings/beatings) method of killing people—even large numbers of people. By making killing easy, guns directly contribute to the thought process that must go into a killing and facilitate even higher body counts. Without guns, people would still kill others, but it would be far more difficult to accrue high body counts.

There is a good reason why guns have become the mass murderer’s weapon of choice; they are simply the most efficient way of getting the job done. Weapons other than guns can be used to kill large numbers of people, but none are as easy to obtain or use as guns:

  • Bombs may be lethal to large numbers of people, but they take expertise to build and are very risky for an amateur to handle (just look at the number of people who manage to mangle themselves playing with fireworks).
  • Knives are lethal in the right hands, but they can only kill one person at a time and have no ability to kill at a distance.
  • Cars can been used to kill people but they are far too large and unwieldy to replace guns (you can’t exactly put one in your backpack to sneak into a school).

A tool may simply be a shortcut to a desired result, but it isn’t fair to say that the tool has no part in achieving a result. A man with a hammer and a man with a gun could kill an identical number of people, but the gun certainly makes it more likely that the person will succeed, faster in their killing spree, and more likely to kill their specific targets.

Guns don’t kill people; people kill people. However, people with guns can easily and quickly kill a lot of people, while those who don’t have guns, cannot. In a country flooded with guns, the mass murderer (or simply the person who wishes to kill one person) is able to obtain their weapon easily and without much risk. Gun control laws may not be perfect, but they are a start on a long road towards a safer America

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 4.   “Violence isn’t due to guns; it is due to culture and violence in the media/entertainment industry.”

While it sounds like a logical argument to assert that increased violence in games and culture could lead to increased violence in real life, this relationship has simply not been borne out in reality. Numerous studies, over many years, refute the idea that video games and movies are the cause of violence in society and the assertion that this correlation exists is simply incorrect.

The idea that gun violence is caused by media/video game brainwashing is a convenient solution for society and, most of all, for the gun enthusiast crowd. Society would much rather believe that violence is caused by external factors and that, if only we can remove violent video games, movies, and song lyrics, we can solve our society’s violence problems. If violent media can be blamed for gun violence, then we don’t have to deal with the complex web of psychological and societal issues that lead us to be violent. Those who love guns are particularly willing to fall into this solution, as it absolves them of having to deal with the gun problems within society and lets them blame gun violence on things which they don’t care about.

If you would refer to the below graph, you will see that the United States remains the gun violence outlier when we look at a comparison between video game consumption and gun crime.

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Put plainly, our country consumes the very same video games which are distributed across much of the developed world—there isn’t a subset of violent “American” video games and sterilized “foreign” video games—yet it has far higher levels of gun violence than any other country. When we look at the evidence, the assertion that video games correlate with gun violence, simply is not supported by the evidence and is not a valid argument.

If you want further information about the lack of a statistical correlation between gun violence and video games, you can refer to the book “Grand Theft Childhood” by Cheryl Olsen and Lawrence Kutler—two Harvard Medical school professors.

Violent video games are a fact of life across the developed world and the idea that we will change the levels of violence within our society by altering our media consumption will only lead us to focusing on the wrong thing. If we are side-tracked in pursuing videogame and movie violence, we will likely miss the very simple solution to our real-life violence problem: our country is flooded with guns and it is very easy for violent people to gain access to weaponry.

Whenever somebody attempts to utilize this argument, the supporters of gun control should simply reject their argument on its face; direct these people to the studies that have debunked this correlation and refuse to engage in non-factual speculation. An argument not based upon the evidence will inevitably be flawed and it is not worth wasting time arguing over specious correlations.

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5.   “Instead of attacking guns, what we really need is to register the mentally ill”

Gun activists and groups have attempted to throw the mentally ill under the bus in the hope that blame can be deflected away from their precious guns. In order to do this, these people have asserted that it is the mentally ill who are responsible for violence, not the weapons, and that simply registering the mentally ill will stop gun violence.

Not only is the argument that the mentally ill should be blamed for gun violence wrong, it is highly immoral and illustrative of just how desperate gun enthusiasts are becoming. Many gun enthusiasts have begun suggesting a national registry of the mentally ill so that these people can be watched more carefully and those not on the list can remain free to awn weapons. A registry of the mentally ill violates virtually every privacy statute on the books (ex. HIPPAA) and could easily result in a “blacklist” similar to the ones that ruined people under accusations of communist sympathies.

In addition to being immoral, such a database would likely have terrible unintended consequences. The fear of being labeled as mentally ill and put on a list would lead to fewer people seeking help for mental illnesses and risking placement on the list. Such a situation would lead to more people walking around with untreated, undiagnosed, and undisclosed illnesses; these people would not be on the list and would be able to buy guns. Eventually, the untreated illnesses of these individuals could cause them to break and start utilizing the weapons that they were able to obtain while pretending to be sane.

While it is undeniable that some mentally ill individuals will always become violent and commit crimes, this does not mean that the solution is to victimize all mentally ill people for the sake of gun owners. If we can remove the ability of the seriously mentally ill to easily obtain guns (ex. requiring psychiatric testing before any gun permitting or purchase is allowed), we should do so, but this attempt cannot trample on the rights of the innocent.

It is a terrible irony that the very same gun enthusiasts—many of whom see gun registration to be in infringement on personal liberty and fear an oppressive federal government—wish to impose what they fear onto others. Mandating the registration of the mentally ill while prohibiting the registration of dangerous weapons is simply hypocritical and indicative of a person who is willing to sacrifice the freedom of others to gain a little more personal convenience. Such arguments are not serious and should not be considered a rational alternative to gun control.

If strong gun control legislation is passed, the severely mentally ill will be unable to obtain weapons with which to commit violence. By attacking gun violence from the weapons side, massacres can be prevented and the rights of the mentally ill can be maintained.

Final Note: Just because the registration of the mentally ill is a bad idea, this by no way means that our current mental health system is adequate. The mental health system in our country is woefully underfunded and often does little more than warehouse people who have been neglected to the point where their illness leads them to criminal behavior. We should look at fixing the mental health system in the United States in conjunction with implementing gun control, but we should not place the blame for the gun death epidemic in our country on those who were unfortunate enough to be born with mental problems.

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6.   “If everybody were armed, we would all be safer”

This argument promotes the micro-equivalent of mutually assured destruction (two armed and rational actors not engaging in conflict because it would destroy both) to justify higher levels of gun ownership, but it fails to work out when applied to reality.

Statistics show that guns do not make people safer, thus this pro-gun argument is demonstrably untrue on its face. Higher levels of gun ownership do not produce a safer society and often lead to a higher numbers of deaths due to gun violence.

According to the Violence Policy Center’s analysis, states with higher per capita gun ownerships have far higher levels of gun homicide—there are 3 to 5 gun deaths per 100,000 in the bottom five gun ownership states, while there are 17 to 20 gun deaths per 100,000 in the top five gun ownership states. These statistics provide a great deal of evidence that gun ownership levels in a state correlate with gun deaths, and prove that the gun lobby’s argument of universal gun ownership is simply a fantasy.

To further drive the statistics that guns don’t make us safer home, we can simply look at the research surrounding household safety and gun ownership. In houses with firearms present, the average homicide rate is 3 times higher than in houses without guns and the suicide rate is between 3 and 5 times higher. Gun accidents due to improper storage or use of firearms claim the lives of hundreds of children a year. In households with firearms, domestic violence is both more prevalent than in houses without weapons, and has a much higher likelihood of resulting in violent deaths. In all possible rubrics—self-defense, accidents and suicide—gun ownership is detrimental to the safety of those who live in a gun-owner’s household; this is not to say that there are not cases of people defending their homes with their guns, but it is undeniable that gun ownership opens people up to numerous other risks.

In addition to the statistical evidence supporting the fact that more guns don’t make us safer, we can simply look at the mechanics of a shooting. Shootings are chaotic and, if everybody has a gun, there is a very real potential for a crossfire—nobody would know who the original shooter was, thus everybody would shoot at everybody else. In this crossfire, bullets would likely hit civilians (imagine a room filled with a crowd and three people shooting at each other) and the casualty count would increase. Once the police arrive, it would be difficult to determine who the original shooter was, and it is also likely that the police may end up shooting the people who didn’t start the gunfight.

In response to the “everybody should be armed” argument, people should simply ask the gun activist whether or not they support Iran getting a nuclear weapon. By the logic that the gun activist applies, everybody is safer when everybody is armed, and this would translate to support for Iranian weapons; in reality, these people almost always say that Iran isn’t a rational actor and that giving them a nuke endangers everybody around them. When they say this, you should simply tell them that not every gun owner is rational and that unrestricted gun ownership is the micro-equivalent to letting every country have nukes.

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7.   “Gun laws don’t work because they make it so only criminals have guns.”

This argument is probably the best one in the arsenal of the gun enthusiast, but it too, is not really a good reason to obstruct gun control. If laws are irrelevant because criminals will simply ignore them, then there is no purpose for any laws and no potential for a safe society.

Ultimately, simple gun laws will not prevent all gun deaths, but they will gradually reduce gun violence. Gun laws will reduce the amount of guns to be sold and will help prevent them from being sold to criminals and the mentally ill. As guns are harder to obtain legally and illegal guns become harder to come by (when more guns are confiscated by the police or are used in murders and disposed of then are put onto the street), it will become harder for criminals to find access to clean guns.

Restricting guns may not immediately stop hardened criminals from obtaining weapons, but it would help stop insane and violent people from getting them easily. Mentally ill shooters that kill large numbers of random people are often disturbed loners who would have a difficult time obtaining a gun if not for legal channels—this isn’t to say that they wouldn’t eventually find a way, but it would make it more difficult.

We see that gun restrictions do work in the rest of the world, despite the catch 22 surrounding criminals and gun ownership (only law-abiding citizens follow gun laws). In Europe and much of Asia, the per capita murder rates are far lower than the United States and this is, in part, due to the fact that they have fewer guns. Crime still occurs, and murders still happen, but it is harder to do massive harm to large numbers of people when guns are less common.

By restricting guns, forcing gun registration, and punishing illegal guns harshly, the total number of guns on our streets will eventually decrease. As it gets more risky to buy or sell guns, people will have a harder time getting their hands on them and overall gun-homicide deaths will decrease.

It is completely unrealistic to hope that there will one day be no gun crime, but this does not mean that we should sit idle as an average of 25 fellow Americans are gunned down each day. Stronger gun laws may not prevent all shootings, but it is virtually inarguable that such laws would not reduce the number of gun crimes in the long term.

Put plainly, our current gun laws don’t just let law-abiding citizens defend themselves, but also facilitate criminals getting the weapons which are being used to justify weapon ownership—in this, the gun industry is essentially dealing to both sides of the criminal conflict. Until sane gun laws are enacted, this small-scale domestic arms race will simply continue and will fuel and ever expanding body count.

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8.   “Mass shootings only happen in places where there are no guns allowed.”

Put plainly, this argument is just not supported by the evidence; there are numerous examples of shootings happening in locations with other armed individuals.

In Columbine High School, there was an armed guard. A full tactical team was dispatched and on site during the Virginia Tech Massacre. Adam Lanza’s (the Sandy Hook shooter) mother had numerous guns in her house when she became the first victim of the Sandy Hook shooting spree. In addition to these few examples of situations where mass-shootings happened in areas with guns, we have the perfect refutation of this ideal: the Fort Hood shooting.

During the Fort Hood shooting, a disturbed army psychiatrist, Major Hasan, entered the base and opened fire on other soldiers. There were 43 people injured in this shooting, 13 of whom died, making it one of the most deadly shooting in modern years. As Fort Hood is a military base, nobody can argue that there were no guns present (eventually, the DOD police on site took the shooter down and he was captured), but the fact remains that numerous people were still shot. As he worked on the military base, Hasan clearly knew that there were armed personnel on site, yet he decided to stage his shooting anyway—his desire to kill outweighed his desire to live.

An armed guard in a potential shooting location may cause the shooter to change their plan, but it will likely not deter them from committing the crime. Most mass-shooters either “go down in a blaze of glory” or die of self-inflicted wounds, thus it is evident that they will not be deterred by the thought of somebody shooting back. If they know that they may face armed resistance, they may take out the armed guard first (via surprise attack), or may simply avoid being stopped by the guard before they start shooting (as happened in Columbine).

Logically speaking, if somebody goes to a shooting with overwhelming force and an expectation that they will die, then the potential that they will meet a guard with a pistol simply lacks a significant deterrent effect. Somebody with this level of focus on their lethal goal and lack of concern for their own future will conduct their shooting regardless of the potential risk to themselves and will simply try to kill as many people as possible before they are killed.

In the past, even the most extreme gun-enthusiasts have acknowledged this point and have supported the very gun-free zones which they now deride. The following quote was from Wayne LaPierre—the very same man who made the wildly controversial statement for the NRA after Sandy Hook—during his speech after the Columbine shooting:

“First, we believe in absolutely gun-free, zero-tolerance, totally safe schools. That means no guns in America’s schools, period … with the rare exception of law enforcement officers or trained security personnel.”

In the quote above, you hear the NRA proclaim its support for gun-free zones while, in modern quotes, you hear them deride the policy as the cause of massacres. Put plainly, those who support the new gun-enthusiast line that shootings only happen in places without guns are not even as attached to reality as previous gun extremists. Massacres happen where the targets of mass-shooters congregate (schools, government buildings, workplaces, etc.) and the potential for people in those locations to be armed is simply not a deterrent to these shooters.

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9.    “The only way to stop a bad guy with a gun is with a good guy with a gun.”

Those who utilize this argument fail to recognize that reality is not like the choreographed action sequences in movies and that a good guy with a gun is simply not the best solution. In all likelihood, a public shootout between multiple armed parties will result in their deaths, along with the potential for massive collateral.

In contradiction to the idea the only way to stop a shooter is a random citizen taking the law into their own hands, there are two critical alternatives to this paradigm:

First of all, gun control can help stop the bad guy from ever getting a gun, thus rendering the discussion about stopping the shooter moot. If gun laws prevent shooters from gaining access to weapons, there will never be any risk to the public of a shooting and there will be no need to contemplate public shootouts. Ultimately, this solution is the most efficient and reliable method of stopping gun violence.

Secondly, we already have those “good guys with guns” to protect us—these people are called police officers. Unlike random people with guns, police officers have received training and institutional support that allows them to be more efficient and safe in their handling of dangerous situations. In the worst case scenario, a tactical response team (ex. SWAT) can come in and help resolve even the most dangerous situations. Even if a “good guy with a gun” is the solution to a violent situation, then there is no reason why this person should be an untrained vigilante rather than a law enforcement professional.

To drive this point home, I will give you a real life example: Imagine a situation where a psychopath enters a school and starts shooting kids with an assault rifle. In response to this threat, a teacher pulls out his assault rifle (legally bought and licensed) and begins shooting at the school shooter. It is certainly possible that this teacher gets a lucky shot (assuming that the shooter isn’t wearing body armor) and kills the shooter quickly, but a likely result of this situation would be a mass-shootout in the school. Two shooters unloading assault weapons on each other could result in a crossfire of hundreds of bullets and would potentially result in many more deaths than the original shooter would be able to do alone.

To further compound the problems with the suggestion that a shootout is the answer, imagine the potential for harm if there are more than two shooters. In a situation where multiple shooters are attacking each other, there is a high likelihood that people will not know who the original shooter is and who the “good Samaritan” is; such a situation would result in everybody shooting at everybody else and the innocents being caught in between multiple armed parties.

In the very same school shooting situation described above, imagine that multiple teachers have guns and start using them to “defend themselves”. Three or four people shooting at each other (there is no way for them to know whether or not the other teachers were the original shooter or not; perhaps the teacher is a workplace shooter) could unleash massive damage on the school and could kill dozens of people with stray bullets alone.

Unlike in gun-enthusiasts’’ fantasies of vigilantism, the bullets that come out of a good guy’s gun cause the exact same harm as the bullets that come out of the bad guy’s gun. This fact leads the argument that “a good guy with a gun to be the best solution to a bad guy with a gun” to be simply not a viable alternative to other, less dangerous, policies.

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10.   “There are already over 20,000 gun regulations on the books and they don’t work.”

What the proponents of this argument fail to grasp is that 20,000 gun regulations are absolutely useless if those laws are either too weak, easy to circumvent, or just not enforced.

In reality, there aren’t actually 20,000 gun laws on the books in the United States federal and state codes; the true number is debatable (is a gun law a regulatory law, tax law, insurance law, etc.), but it is less than 1,000. The inflation of the gun law numbers in this talking point is due to its proponents estimating the number of local gun laws and adding that number onto the major state and federal codes. Despite the over-inflation in the number of gun laws estimated by gun-enthusiasts, the fact remains that there are numerous gun laws on the books in the United States—for the purposes of arguing this talking point on its ideals, I will stipulate to the fact that hundreds of gun laws are currently in existence.

Unfortunately, the gun laws on the books in the United States are often inadequate and are rife with enough loopholes to make them ineffective. A law with significant loopholes or work-arounds is functionally ineffective and the simple fact that it is on the books is irrelevant. When talking about laws, it is not the sheer number of laws that matter, but their strength comprehensive nature, and lack of loopholes.

For example: There are gun laws on the books in some states that pertain to mandatory background checks and that ban felons from owning firearms. Despite these laws, the “gun show loophole” allows people in these states to circumvent the gun laws by buying from unregistered sellers. It doesn’t matter if there are a million laws banning firearms sales to felons in states with the gun show loophole, as these felons can circumvent all of them by simply buying their weapons from gun shows.

When confronted by people who promote this argument, my basic response is to propose eliminating all of these gun laws in favor of one gun law that actually works. If a single strong and comprehensive gun law could be passed through the federal legislature, we could massively reduce the number of laws on the books while making gun laws stronger. The supremacy of federal laws over state and local laws would extend the extremely powerful federal gun law over all of the others and render them moot. As of yet, no gun enthusiast that I have talked to has accepted this suggestion, as they understand just how ridiculous their argument is.

Ultimately, those who promote this argument are just illustrating the need for federal action on the gun problem in the United States. A solution based in passing hundreds of state laws is ineffective, as many state political organizations will never pass any sane gun laws. The federal government needs to pass one or two piece of legislation regulating guns, thus consolidating sane gun laws into a federal regulatory regime; these new regulations can be extended across every state uniformly and would be able to close many of the legislative loopholes that currently facilitate the circumvention of gun regulations.

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11.   “Cities with gun control laws on the books sometimes have high levels of gun violence and this shows that gun control doesn’t work.”

It is certainly true that some of the cities with above-average gun laws suffer from high crime rates, but this has little bearing on the efficacy of local/state gun laws. Guns are often obtained in areas of the country where it is easy to buy large numbers of weapons without background checks (ex. southern states) and then transported to be sold in the areas where guns are restricted (ex. New York).

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Because our country’s gun laws vary based upon state politics, there is the potential for a few gun-friendly states to undercut the ability of all other states to control the flow of guns within their borders. States in the south typically have very lax gun laws and often allow individuals to purchase many weapons, quickly and without a background check. Once they obtain these guns through the lax laws of the southern states, individuals are able to transport them up north and sell them in cities with stronger gun laws. In northern cities that have strong gun laws (ex. New York city), guns are difficult to obtain legally (or without background check), thus trafficked guns from the south can be sold at a premium.

It is simple market pressure that causes guns to be bought in the south, where supply is readily available, and sold in northern states, where demand is higher than supply. There is a profit for gun traffickers when they bring guns into cities with strong gun controls, and there is no feasible way of stopping them once they have the weapons in their possession.

By arguing that violence in cities with strong gun control laws illustrates the ineffectiveness of gun control, gun enthusiasts are simply proving that strong gun control laws are necessary on a federal level. For as long as some states are allowed to undercut the ability of other states to enact sane gun control, there is little chance that gun violence will be controlled. Guns will continue to flood the northern cities and the pockets of the gun manufacturers/traffickers will continue to grow fatter.

12.   “Countries like Israel and Switzerland have high levels of gun ownership, but low levels of gun crime, so guns aren’t the real problem”

A favorite argument of some gun enthusiasts, the idea that outlier countries disprove the general trend of gun ownership leading to violence is an intentional attempt to confuse the issue. By naming the two examples of developed countries that defy the correlation between violence and gun ownership, gun enthusiasts try to disprove this well-established trend.

Israel and Switzerland are the two model examples of developed countries that have high levels of gun ownership, yet low levels of gun crime. Gun enthusiasts promote this break in the correlation between gun violence and gun ownership as proof that the causation is false, but there is a very simple alternative explanation: Both Israel and Switzerland have mandatory military service programs which lead almost every young adult in these countries to serve as part of their armed forces.

The near-universal military service of citizens in Israel and Switzerland leads large portions of the population to have significant weapons training. This training lasts long after the citizens of these countries leave the service and allows for the relatively-safe ownership of firearms into civilian life. Every citizen goes through a battery of testing in preparation for military service and those who are mentally unfit for service are not given the access to guns that those who have been prepared through the military are.

The examples of Israel and Switzerland do not prove that high levels of gun ownership are always safe, but rather that letting only those who have been heavily vetted by the state own weapons is not dangerous. In both of these countries, there are high levels of gun ownership, but there are also heavy controls on guns that prevent un-vetted people from obtaining them. As opposed to the United States, which has high levels of guns and low levels of gun control, these countries have high levels of both gun control and gun ownership.

The true purpose of gun control is not to remove weapons for the sake of removing weapons, but to prevent the violent among us from obtaining weapons with which to harm others. If gun control regimes can be enacted that prevent just the violent and unstable in society from getting weapons, then this has virtually the same effect as removing all weapons from society; in both cases, gun crimes drop because people who are dangerous to society are denied weapons.

In order to refute this anti-gun control argument, I argue that Israel and Switzerland have many weapons, but they also have very strong gun control laws. In both cases, every person to legally own a gun has received psychological testing and safe weapons training—two components of a strong gun control regulatory regime—and is forced to register their weapons. These laws are facilitated by the compulsory military service and function as a sorting mechanism to ensure that dangerous people don’t have easy access to weapons.

13.   “Since car accidents kill more people every year then guns, why don’t we ban cars?”

Put plainly, guns are tools that have only one real use: to kill things. They exist for the simple purpose of propelling a small projectile at high rates of speeds towards a target, with the direct goal of causing it physical trauma. Unlike many other things which may become lethal as they were not intended, guns have no alternative purpose and must be treated differently.

Cars kill many people during accidents and mechanical failures, but their actual purpose is to facilitate transportation. When used correctly, cars are simply a tool for transporting people or objects from point A to point B faster or cheaper than many other methods of transportation. It is only when cars are used incorrectly that they become dangerous to others.

With our current transportation infrastructure, cars are an integral part of how our society moves and it would be virtually impossible for us to change quickly. The deaths caused by cars are tragic, but they have no bearing on the need to regulate an entirely unrelated tool.

The key difference between guns and cars in this debate is the fact that cars have purposes other than causing harm, while guns have no such redeeming aspects. At the most charitable, guns can be described as existing to allow good people to defend themselves from bad people by threatening them with death. In the context of maintaining social order, guns do serve a purpose to allow the civil authorities to impose force on violent people (giving the police the ability to defend themselves on the job), but the idea that this force should be distrusted to everybody in society is just insane.

If cars were like guns and served no purpose but to facilitate violence, then I would support as strict regulations of them as I propose on guns. Guns have no social benefit and a removal of guns from society would not have the negative effects that a removal of cars would have. In fact, the reduction of gun availability in our society would help alleviate the epidemic of gun violence that we are living in and would save many lives.

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While on the subject of cars and guns, I would also point out that, in many cases, cars are far more regulated then guns. Gun enthusiasts may like to draw the comparison between guns and cars in support of their ability to own/operate guns without regulation, but they don’t appear to acknowledge the fact that car operation is far more regulated then gun operation. With guns, many states don’t require background checks, licensing, registration, or state-issue permits, yet they require all of the above for cars.

In order to drive a car, you must be registered, get training, have a license, get insurance, and submit to periodic inspections. If such strict regulations were imposed upon guns, there is little doubt that gun-enthusiasts would begin hyperventilating and gesticulating about an illegal overreach into their personal right to own weapons.

The next time somebody draws comparisons between the regulations on guns and cars, simply suggest that, since both have the potential to be dangerous, the regulations on cars should be translated to analogous restrictions on guns. Before anybody is able to buy a gun, they should be required to get firearms training, become certified through a state licensing process, get insurance for potential damages that their weapons may inflict, and register each and every one of their weapons with the state. Such a suggestion would likely result in a rapid backtracking by the gun-enthusiast as they try to make up reasons why guns don’t deserve to be as regulated as cars.

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14.   “Gun control was imposed by dictators like Hitler and Stalin, thus it is, by definition, bad and something that puts us on a path towards becoming an autocratic regime.”

This argument is both historically incorrect and a complete red herring.

First of all, the simple fact that a dictator—even one as evil as Hitler—supported something does not mean that the thing in question is evil. While such dictators may be guilty of terrible crimes, they may also have policies which are simply good governance. Using the bad acts of a dictator to attack a good policy that they happened to support is simply disingenuous and not a valid argument in debates over policy.

Policies should be judged independent of the people who support them and a good policy is not automatically bad because a bad person once supported it. For example: Fidel Castro, the Cuban dictator, may have committed vicious crimes against his political enemies, but he also supports universal healthcare and a strong public health system. Using Castro’s support for universal healthcare and public education to attack the programs by association is wrong and is not a real argument against the validity of those programs.

In the case of gun policy, the assertion that Hitler and other notorious dictators always supported gun control is simply not accurate. These dictators may have disarmed those who they considered enemies, but they did not propose gun control as we know it now.

In 1919, Germany banned gun ownership by individuals to accord with the post-WWI treaty of Versailles. Contrary to the anti-gun control talking point, Hitler passed a law which reduced the gun laws in Germany in 1938. This deregulation, not increase in gun controls, is the signature gun control change which gun enthusiasts have latched onto in calling Hitler anti-gun. When compared to current American gun laws, the past German laws were much stronger, thus some see Hitler a pro-gun control, but this does nothing to mitigate the fact that Hitler actually decreased gun regulation.

Hitler banned Jews, gays, and other oppressed minorities from carrying weapons, but this was part of his campaign of dehumanization, not an expression of gun control. According to his government’s perverted view, these people were not human, thus no human laws applied to them.

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15.   “Guns are part of our national heritage and restricting them is an attack on our cultural identity.”

I only have one thing to say to those who utilize this argument: Tough Shit.

While it may be true that our country has had a long history of gun ownership, hunting, and gun sportsmanship, this heritage is getting people killed today. Even if one concedes that guns have been a large component of our country’s heritage, this is irrelevant in the face of the very real harm that guns are doing today; in order to stop this harm, our culture must be updated. Our weapons technology is so great now that guns have become able to kill dozens of people in seconds—an impossibility during much of our country’s cultural history of guns.

Cultural heritage changes and, in some cases, must be forcibly changed by the government to protect the population from itself (or the extremism of certain parts within itself). Before the civil war, slavery was a part of our cultural heritage that had led to misery among many within our population. The government enforced change over a component of our country’s culture when it abolished slavery and it must do so again in the case of guns (not to conflate slavery with gun ownership; this is simply an example of the law forcing a cultural change to protect an affected group within the population).

No relic of our cultural heritage is worth the cost of nearly ten thousand lives a year and it is far past time that we update our gun laws to sane levels. If apple pie killed as many people as guns do, I would also promote changing that tradition and I have no doubt that most other Americans would agree with me.

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16.   “Guns act as an equalizer and are necessary for women to defend themselves”

While it is true that guns make size and gender largely irrelevant in a fight, it is also true that gun ownership is not a cure for violence against women. This argument is incorrect for two basic reasons: First, not only does statistical evidence show that gun ownership does not make a women any safer, but it often shows that gun ownership makes women less safe. Second, this argument assumes an exclusivity of weapon availability to women that simply does not exist.

Statistical data about gun fatalities in the United States debunks the myth that gun ownership improves the safety of women. In every measurable rubric, gun ownership actually has a negative impact on the health and safety of women:

  1. Because of the high murder rates in the United States (a phenomena that gun availability is largely responsible for), both men and women are killed at higher rates than comparable countries.
  2. Women who live in a household with a firearm are 3.4 times more likely to be murdered then women who live in households without firearms.
  3. Domestic violence is far more likely to result in death or serious injury when guns are present in a household; abuse is likely to involve guns and it is much more likely to escalate into serious physical harm.

Any anecdotal stories aside (ex. women fending off attackers), the aggregate statistical evidence clearly shows that gun ownership does not make women safer. This argument is simply disproven by the facts and, while it may sound realistic, it is not supported by the real life data that we have available; this data is clear in that it indicates that gun ownership has detrimental effects on the safety of women in a household.

Beyond the statistical evidence, the idea that women require powerful firearms to be safe is just not logical. A lack of controls on guns may allow a woman to buy weapons for self-defense, but it also allows criminals to access said weapons—there is no exclusivity which guarantees that the women will be able to obtain a powerful weapon yet prevents the criminals from buying the very same weapons.

As gun laws are not gender-specific (that would be unconstitutional), whatever weapon that a women could obtain is also obtainable by the person who seeks to harm the women. The example of a single women with an assault rifle holding off a group of attackers that has been presented by some proponents of this argument just falls apart when one realizes that nothing prevents the attackers from coming armed with assault rifles. The lax gun laws which allow easy access to powerful weapons to women also facilitates criminals getting weapons that they would be unable to get under sane regulations.

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17.  “Background checks do not work because criminals won’t consent to them”

Criminals, by definition, don’t follow the law and tailoring the legal gun application process for the activities of those who don’t follow the law is simply foolish. People who are not allowed to buy guns certainly hate background checks, but this is because such checks limit their ability to buy guns legally.

Background checks serve to prevent those who are not allowed to buy guns—felons, the mentally ill, terrorists, etc.—from legally obtaining firearms. Without checks, there is no way to guarantee that sellers are following the law and not selling guns to people who cannot legally buy them (the sellers have a profit incentive to sell to anybody).

If criminals don’ want to consent to background checks, then they just won’t be able to buy guns legally. By closing the legal avenues that criminals have to buy guns, they will be forced to risk buying illegal weapons—a crime that the police can arrest them for.

I bet that many criminals don’t like metal detectors, theft prevention devices and the police, but this doesn’t mean that society should stop funding these things in order to appease them. Just as with other things that make criminals’ lives harder, background checks for firearm purchases should be embraced rather than rejected.

18.  “Limits on magazine size do nothing to prevent gun homicides because shooters will just bring more magazines”

Those who promote this argument are simply letting their fondness for their weapons overshadow their logical viewing of the facts.

Large ammo-feeding containers (ex. drums, clips, belts) exist because they make a weapon much more effective in a combat situation. Such containers allow large numbers of rounds to be shot, uninterrupted, and without the risk of a fumbled magazine switch. The military uses large ammo feeders for these very reasons and any assertion that the size of the magazine is irrelevant to the efficacy of the weapon is simply wrong.

It is true that many small clips can replace a larger feeding mechanism, but it is inarguable that this method of ammo supply is less efficient. Whenever a clip is empty, it must be ejected and a new one inserted before the gun is operable. This insertion usually requires two hands, necessitates a pause in shooting (even if the shooter has another loaded weapon), and has a risk of error; with every exchange, there is a possibility that the gun will jam or the shooter will fail to successfully load the clip.

Shooters are often stopped when they pause shooting in order to reload their weapon. The short pause in fire that occurs during a reload gives

If large ammo feeders are useless, then why are the gun-enthusiasts so incensed that they may no longer be allowed to own them? Gun enthusiasts understand the benefit of large ammo feeders and wish to defend them because they recognize the advantage that such feeders give.

The next time somebody argues that magazine size is irrelevant, then simply point out this logical fallacy in their argument: if the magazine is irrelevant to the weapon, then there is no reason for the gun-enthusiast to object to magazine limits. This argument’s very existence disproves its foundation. The reticence to implement such restrictions demonstrated by those who make this argument proves that their argument is not true.

19.  “It is hypocritical for politicians with children who go to schools that have armed guards to push for gun-free schools”

This argument is so absurd that even Fox News has refused to get behind it when NRA representatives have broached it during interviews. To quote Fox host Chris Wallace on this attack: “That’s ridiculous and you know it, sir.”

Wayne LaPierre and the rest of the NRA administration (not the membership, but those who control the group) have attempted to attack the “elitism” of our politicians because many politicians send their kids to schools to armed guards. Here is a link for an NRA ad containing this attack: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2bKw7ZsQgtc

It is true that many politicians send their children to schools that have armed guards, but there is a very good reason for this: the children of politicians are often the target of threats intended to compel politicians to act. Threats against the children of legislators can disrupt public policy and are a very real threat—it is this very reason why the president’s family are protected by the Secret Service at all times. As the average child is not potential leverage over somebody who is responsible for the operation of the government, there is no hypocrisy when somebody supports different levels of armed protection.

If we want to protect our children from shooters, we can either implement strong gun controls that prevent shooters from getting guns, or we can attempt to get Secret Service level protections for every American child. As is immediately apparent, the first option is possible, while the second is completely unfeasible and only serves to act as a distraction for those who would attempt to stop sane gun laws from being implemented

20.  “There are already so many guns out there that any regulations on gun sales are ineffective”

This argument is actually very strong and requires a great deal of thought on the part of the gun control advocate to refute. It is undeniable that there are too many guns already on the street and that seller-centric gun control laws are somewhat limited.

A gun, when well maintained, can last for decades and can remain a deadly threat to the public in the wrong hands. Unfortunately, decades of lax gun laws have caused our society to be flooded by weapons and, even if gun seller restrictions were to implemented, there will still be a supply of guns.

The gun control advocate’s refutation of this argument is fairly simple: Despite the number of guns in our society, this is no reason to make the situation worse than it already is. Eventually, given time and good legislation, the number of guns on the street will decrease and become manageable again, but this will not happen without controls on gun sales.

In the long term, the only way to get a handle on gun violence is to stop the sale of new guns and to let attrition gradually remove them from the market. Guns which are seized by the police should be destroyed and removed from the market permanently.

A gun which has been used in a crime is somewhat dangerous to hold, simply because it can act as an evidentiary link back to a shooting (these guns are called “hot” guns). Oftentimes, criminals will dispose of their guns due to the risk that they pose and will require new weapons. Currently, guns are so plentiful that this process of replacing hot guns is easy and cheap enough that few criminals have a hard time getting new guns. By stopping the flood of guns into our society, it will become harder to replace these guns and criminals will eventually have a hard time obtaining clean weapons. Prices for new weapons will go up and criminals will be forced to hold onto their dirty weapons (risking arrest) and spending significant funds buying a new gun.

The argument that, because there are already too many guns, we should not implement any controls on new guns is fatalistic and will only perpetuate our country’s gun problems. Unless we take the first step that is limiting the number of guns to be flooding society, there is little hope that we will ever succeed in solving our county’s problems.

21.  “We cannot rely on the police to protect us because they are underfunded and often unable to get to a crime on time”

One of the arguments that gun enthusiasts keep going back to is that they desire the ability to defend themselves against potential threats—in the case of this argument, they say that the police are unable to defend them.

It is true that the police are not able to stop all violent crime; if there is a person breaking down the door, the police will often take minutes to get there. Those who support this argument claim that order can more effectively be maintained by giving the citizen a gun with which to kill the intruder in less time than it takes for the police to arrive. These people support vigilantism over order and are hopelessly misguided.

Police forces are groups of organized and trained professionals that uphold order in society—it is their job to ensure that society does not devolve into a state where every person needs a gun. If the police lack the resources to maintain order, the proper solution is not to arm everybody, but to increase funding to the police and directing them to improve.

Supporting gun ownership out of a misplaced sense that vigilantism is the proper way to maintain social order is simply wrong and only leads to terrible miscarriages of justice. As we saw during the Trayvon Martin tragedy, such attempts at vigilantism can result in innocent people (including children) being killed out of fear.

Rather than supporting a wild-west style society, where everybody is armed and there is no real force preserving social order, we should attempt to fix our damaged police forces. To free up resources, we should end the war on drugs and increase the funding for police forces.

The terrible irony of this situation is that the very policies of easy gun access and lower funding for public services (ex. police) favored by the American right are the things that cause police forces to be inadequate. In supporting cutting funding for police officers, the right wing reduces the police’s ability to protect everybody in society; response times are increased and coverage is reduced. When combined with the many, easily accessible, firearms, this reduction in police coverage creates a dangerous situation where police are unable to protect everybody. Powerful guns have flooded our streets and criminals have the ability to meet the police with armor-piercing ammo, body armor and assault rifles. This situation is unsustainable the answer is not to make things worse by weakening gun regulation further.

If people want to live in a society where they need to rely on their own guns to protect themselves, I suggest that they move to a lawless area—perhaps an area in the Sudan or Somalia—and try it for a while before they consign us to follow them. We have a problem with crime now but, if we consign ourselves to even more gun accessibility, thing will only get worse. We progressed from the old wild-west days into a civilized nation, and it is those who support this argument who would drag us back to the day where everybody must be armed and willing to kill to survive.

627 thoughts on “Refuting Anti-Gun Control Arguments

  1. @Dave Bowen

    You do realize that gun control fanatics won’t stop with “assault weapons” don’t you? Eventually, they will come after every Dave Dunce who may only own revolvers or a lever action Henry rifle and is brainless enough to allow themselves to be deceived by them. In spite of all the publicity that mass shootings receive, they comprise only a very small percentage of total gun related deaths every year in the US. As gun ownership continues to increase, the total number of gun related deaths has been declining and more people are murdered every year with knives than all types of rifles combined.

    http://www.examiner.com/article/is-gun-violence-epidemic-a-monumental-gun-control-fraud?cid=rss

    The majority of people who support gun control are those who feel weak and alone and doubt their own ability to defend themselves and have something to prove. You need to just sell your guns (assuming of course that you aren’t lying about being a gun owner) to a real American. Could you please provide a link to a video or even just a photo of a “Beer swilling, Phil Robertson looking, camy (I believe the word you were looking for is camo) wearing, tattoo covered, Confederate flag waiving, gap toothed redneck militia member? One pot smoking, Michael Moore looking, tye dye shirt wearing, hena tattoo covered, protest sign waiving, bearded flower child does not constitute a threat to dedicated, well organized and united Second Amendment supporters.

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      • Plus the Confederate flag waving skinhead wannabe who insulted the Marines by butting that rag at the same level as the Marine Corps banner.

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    • Sounds to me like you come from a family tree with no branches. Living proof cousins should never get married See anu U F O’s today Harley?

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      • Whoa Dave, let’s not go down the stereotype war path. Not all rednecks drive 73 Chevy’s or believe in UFO’s. I’m sure that not all Native Americans are alcoholics or that they are all the product of centuries of inbreeding, that would be ridiculous to believe that. You just debunked the stereotype that Native Americans are leery of the US government. Apparently, you believe that Washington DC is full of saints and altruists. You have forgiven and forgot the slaughter of your people and how they were forced onto reservations. Here is a video of one full blooded Native American who does not share your opinion

        Have you been letting anyone else borrow your peace pipe? You better check it. After reading your posts, it would appear that someone might have put some peyote in it and didn’t tell you.

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    • sell my guns to a real American?Meaning who?A neo Nazi like you? I am a full blooded Lakota Indian,you ignorant son of an immigrant!

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    • “@Dave Bowen

      You do realize that gun control fanatics won’t stop with “assault weapons” don’t you? Eventually, they will come after every Dave Dunce who may only own revolvers or a lever action Henry rifle and is brainless enough to allow themselves to be deceived by them. In spite of all the publicity that mass shootings receive, they comprise only a very small percentage of total gun related deaths every year in the US. As gun ownership continues to increase, the total number of gun related deaths has been declining and more people are murdered every year with knives than all types of rifles combined.”

      https://yourlogicalfallacyis.com/slippery-slope

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  2. How could this have possibly happened in a country that is not the United States?

    http://www.aol.com/article/2014/07/04/france-mom-kills-kindergarten-teacher-in-class/20925337/?icid=maing-grid7%7Cmain5%7Cdl1%7Csec1_lnk3%26pLid%3D497260

    Yes, I realize that if she had a firearm the death toll could have been higher. The point I am making is that a person who is determined to kill another can always find a way and that the availability of a firearm does not actually cause the intent to commit an act of violence.

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  3. Marie – are you willfully ignorant or just naturally slow? Apparently humor at any level of complexity beyond a knock-knock joke escapes you. It’s one of the reasons it is impossible to have any type of rational, intelligent, fact-based and common-sense exchange with gun nuts. They deal with things on such a simplistic level – keep what’s “theirs” at any cost and hate others who appear to think or act differently than they do. No longer funny, just flat-out pitiable.

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  4. It never ceases to amaze me how one will always attack a person with a counter viewpoint – rather than the issue presented.

    The United States already has laws and policies in place to check the background of those buying guns. We do not need any more. If the existing laws were followed, then we would not have a problem. To continually use the argument that people do not need guns, is about as lame as it gets. If you were a student of history then you would know (beyond a shadow of a doubt) that every nation who has given up their right to defend themselves have been taken over by tyrannical governments. Do not be fooled!

    The bottom line still stands on the very merit of their argument. It is NOT guns that kill – it is people who kill. From knives, to guns, to cars, to airplanes – not one of them kills anyone unless there is a person behind them. That irrefutable! And the highest amount of people killed by people – doctors and hospitals.

    So lets use your logic and remove all these I have mentioned – you cannot have it both ways, either you remove everything that kills people or you leave the argument alone. Not so simple now – is it?

    Your whole argument stands or falls on whether or not an individual is the one holding the gun. Exercise the laws we have – enforce them and this whole discussion goes away.

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  5. Write more, thats all I have to say. Literally, it seems as though you relied on the
    video to make your point. You obviously know what youre talking about, why waste your intelligence on just posting videos to your
    weblog when you could be giving us something informative
    to read?

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  6. Show me where it says in the Second Amendment where it says you have a right to carry,for no other reason than because you feel like it,or it boosts your ego,or because you are compensating for something else. It is not in there. One tattoo covered,gap toothed,camo wearing,beer swilling,redneck with a Confederate Flag on the hood of his ’73 Chevy pick up,does not constitute a well regulated militia. I am a gun owner. I have two revolvers and a Henry repeating rifle. The only people who oppose reasonable gun safety laws are the ones who have something to hide. As for automatic weapons,if you can’t hit what you are shooting at with three bullets or less,you are too dangerous a person to own a gun of any kind,like those lunatics at Bundy ranch,who should all be jailed for illegal transport of firearms across state lines,inciting to riot,and plotting to overthrow the United States government. You know,TREASON!!

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    • Show where does it say the you can’t. The “training” thing is a modern idea…and it is not in the Constitution. I agree that we are not in the 1800 when pretty much everyone had a gun in the house and using it for hunting was a more common practice than today, but still the Constitution it’s very clear “it’s the right of the people to keep and bear arms”, doesn’t mention “with training”. I thinks is pretty simple and plain English. Then you mention “automatic weapons” again…gosh! Those are already heavily regulated? Are you sure you are a gun owner? Looks like you need some training in recognizing the different types of weapons. Treason? Well..there is a fine line there my friend..Governments can commit Treason as well. Remember..the Patriots that fought for this Country were all accused of treason against the Crown. Tyranny has no colors and is timeless..and we are reaching that point. People, with or without weapons, that are tired of the overreach of our Government and want the Constitution to be strictly enforced are not traitors, are Patriots. Is there is a place where “treason” is being committed, that’s Washington D.C.: twisting and bending the Constitution to personal needs or political winds IS treason. Stay on the facts and be objective.

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    • It isn’t as if I expected much from you, but that was just pathetic. Take your time, do some research and try again. Here’s a little video just for you.

      Could you please cite the laws that Bundy’ supporters violated in transporting their firearms? It was my understanding that most of his supporters were Nevada residents.

      P.S. What have you got against 73 Chevy’s?

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      • Nothing. It’s the rednecks who drive them,and support stand your ground laws that legalize murder just because you do not like a persons looks,what he is wearing,or what he has on his car radio. This may come as a shock,but being seen as a redneck is NOT A COMPLIMENT! Most of the Bundy unregulated militia came from elsewhere. What in hell do you mean that you did not expect much from me? Have we met? do you know me? No? Then yyou have no right to expect anything from me. Pre Judging again are we?

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    • If you don’t mind my asking, are you the original owner of your revolvers and your Henry rifle or were they handed down to you? What is your opinion of Chief Gall and Crazy Horse? Do you think that they committed treason at the Battle of the Little Bighorn or as your people call it, Lakota Victory Day or Custer’s Last Stand?

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  7. All this juvenile name calling solves nothing.So,I will ask this of any pro gun person willing to answer,without getting stupid about it. If some distraught parent or relative of a victim of Sandy Hook,Tucson,Aurora,or Virginia Tech, took an AK 47 and shot up NRA headquarters,or put one into Sean Hannitys empty head,or if Gabrielle Giffords was a Republican,you guys would be falling all over yourselves trying to get gun reform right?

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  8. You’re right and wrong. Yes their should be stricter gun laws but I am PRO GUN and people think assault rifle are the problem it’s not pistols are. Think about it.

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    • I actually agree with you–assault rifles are simply the most visually impressive problem, not the most dangerous. Pistols and concealed weapons are easily the most harmful weapons in society and most day-to-day shootings are committed by these weapons (although assault rifles are the weapon of choice for mass shootings).

      The term pro-gun is simply heuristic, thus has no definite meaning, and I would bet you that a lot of the gun nuts who comment on the internet would dispute your status as “pro-gun” if you support any reasonable regulation on pistols.

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      • We already have “reasonable regulation” on pistols. Convicted felons, illegal aliens, drug users and those diagnosed as mentally ill are not allowed to purchase or own guns legally.

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  9. I thought that if I turned up the heat and stirred the pot that you would eventually boil Dave. I knew immediately upon reading your first comment on July 2nd that you were just another clueless and naïve gun control fanatic even though you consider yourself a gun owner. Your total misinterpretation of the Second Amendment and your opinion of anyone who owns any type of gun other than revolvers or Henry rifles is just laughable and makes you sound like a fool and your second attempt on July 7th was absolutely pitiful. That’s what the hell I meant by not expecting much from you. We already have gun control it is called that National Firearms Act of 1934 and the Gun Control Act of 1968. We just need to see that all criminals who use firearms during the commission of a crime receive the most severe penalty allowed by law.

    Have we met? Do you know me? No. You have no right to assume that I am a neo-Nazi or affiliated with any militia groups. Prejudging me are you? My parents just like their parents before them and their parents before them were born here in the US. Furthermore, I served in the First Gulf War, had two uncles who served during the Vietnam War (one of which lost the use of his right arm), a third who served in Korea and a great uncle who was awarded the Navy Cross during World War II. Don’t you call me a son of anything other than a American mother and father. Here’s a video of a Chinese immigrant who is more American than you will ever be.

    I find it ironic that you own a Henry rifle. The Henry rifle was one of the favorite rifles used by the U.S Cavalry during The Great Sioux War. I’ll bet that your ancestors wish they would have had more Henry rifles on December 29, 1890. Now here we are 123 years later after the Massacre at Wounded Knee and you are criticizing law abiding gun owners for cherishing their constitutional rights and you believe that the government is not capable of tyranny? I wonder what Sitting Bull or Crazy Horse would say to you.

    P.S. Is your name really Dave Bowen? The name David is Hebrew in origin and the name Bowen is Welsh.

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    • Seriously? Is that the best you have? I know Native people named smith,black people named Wallace. what is your point? Neever let facts get in the way of a good conspiracy right? You guys are all paranoid. Plus if you liiked,I posted in this site for the first time YESTERDAY,umbnuts. I am done. You cannot argue with stupid

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      • Whatever Dave Jack or should I call you Arizona Bowen? You seriously need to just stop. I’m actually starting to feel sorry for you.

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      • So two people from different parts of the country wind up with the same color flag and it is a conspiracy? Help! Help! The liberals are stealing purple!! you’re pathetic

        Like

      • You’re not fooling anyone Dave. It isn’t just the color. Your original post on July 2nd has a unique pattern of 32 triangles and 4 squares. Not counting the 13 posts that you have made, there are 563 others on this blog. There are also other topics as well. Find just one other incident where this alleged coincidence has occurred. Really? You just happen to know Native Americans named Smith and black people named Wallace?

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    • I was asked by some of my readers to look at this list and post my refutations. My book, “Knowing Guns,” refutes them all. That’s why I wrote it. Buuuut…I’ll put the condensed version here:

      First, Sager opens with visions of Sandy Hook. This is a common tactic and/or error in thinking, since there’s little to no connection between your average American gun owner and crime/gang culture. The vast majority of guns are used for lawful purposes and never harm anyone. But once you’ve waved the bloody shirt, so to speak, you stir emotions, bypassing the more rational thought processes. This is the starting point, which should raise immediate suspicion.

      Next, FBI statistics are cited without context OR a link. Do these “murders” include self-defense by citizens and/or police? Do they include suicides? Do they include accidents? As shown in my book, the answer to all three is YES. In fact, 61% of all reported “gun deaths” are suicides. If you eliminate those, along with the other justifiable shoots, you’re left with well under 20,000. (Depending on the year, it’s less than 14K.) Not paltry, but certainly not “epidemic” or outrageous compared to life’s other hazards.)

      Predictably he then trucks out “lax gun laws.” What, I wonder, is not covered? Aren’t ALL of the crimes CRIMES? Which means that laws already COVER them! So more laws are the answer? No: this is code for “restrictions” and “bans.” They want guns impossible or extremely difficult to own for the average person, which is the case in most other countries, which is why they so often like to compare.

      1. The Second Amendment. They keep trying to rewrite history. Sorry, but the original militia WAS the free citizenry. There was supposed to be NO standing army, and even if there were, it was subservient to the civil authority. They also have the history reversed: the “collective” right interpretation is a late 20th Century invention.

      http://www.nraila.org/news-issues/articles/2008/a-(really)-brief-history-of-the-collec.aspx

      They’ll never win arguing this. The debate is over. Even most progressives acknowledge that the 2nd Amendment is an individual right, including President Obama.

      2. Tyrannical government. This is always brought up by the anti-gun-rights people to paint gun rights advocates as wild-eyed, crazed mass-murderer wannabes. The fact is that an armed citizenry WAS designed to be a “check on tyranny by the government” as stated by both Jefferson and Madison, among others. Any honest scholarship shows this to be a fact. (Look up the Penn & Teller “Bullsh*t” episode on “Gun Control.”) Whle we can say that this facet of 2A may be obsolete, we cannot totally dismiss it in the face of recent disasters that knocked out govermental services for long periods of time. We know that safety is always tenuous.

      3. Guns don’t kill people… The article states: “the assertion that [guns] have no part in the perpetration of violence is absurd.” Then they need to answer to these facts:
      a. Being the most well armed populace on the planet, why isn’t America #1 in murders?
      b. Why aren’t we even #1 in “gun murders?” (No doubt you’ll get the “any other INDUSTRIALIZED nation B.S.)
      c. Why aren’t we #1 in suicides? Why is beautiful gun-free Japan far ahead of us in suicides?
      d. How is it that, over the past 20 years, violent crime, including “gun crime” has dropped by fully half while, over the same period, the number of guns in circulation have increased from 170 million to well over 300 million? If the “guns cause crime” hypothesis is correct, how can this jarring statistic be ignored?
      e. Why did the BIGGEST mass murders in the U.S. NOT involve guns? (9/11 attackers used box cutters; Timothy McVeigh used fertilizer and fuel oil.)
      f. The trite cartoon at the end saying that guns “fire deadly projectiles at fatal velocities and if you happen to be in the flight path, you die” is wrong about 82% of the time. That is the percentage of people who are shot each year and survive the experience.
      g. Unanswered: what of the 700K to 2.5 million people SAVED each year by using their guns?

      4. No correlation between violent media/video games and murder. On this I’m in agreement. I’m of the opinion that the vast majority of our “gun crime” is due to the drug trade and criminal/gang activity, and that our own cultural violent tendencies stem from various social pressures, such as poverty, a lack of opportunities, etc. Myriad studies back this up.

      5. The mentally ill cause most crime. While I’m loathe to throw all people with mental issues under the proverbial bus, a quick survey of the highest profile mass shootings, from the Texas University Bell Tower on down to Virginia Tech, Gabby Giffords and Sandy Hook all have a common thread: the shooter had known, diagnosed mental health issues. Anti-gun-rights arguments avoid this aspect. While the vast majority of those with mental health issues are indeed benign — violent tendencies is not a component of most mental illness — those that ARE give us an avenue to explore if we’re serious about stopping violent crime. While I agree with the privacy concerns of the authors, I also feel that if a mental health professional is concerned that a patient might become violent, that s/he has an obligation to diagnose and report that patient and, at that point, gun rights could be forfeit.

      6. “Everyone should be armed.” Citing VPC statistics negates any serious objection, as they’re bogus. The “states with higher gun ownership” statistics have been debunked when the prevalence of violence is resolved down to the level of CITIES. We then find that the majority of shootings have nothing to do with the LAWS (correlation is NOT causation), but with the prevalence of gangs and the drug trade. The same is true about “guns in the home” increasing risk. This bogus statistic includes SUICIDES. Eliminate that and gun owners are SAFER than non-gun-owners. The oft-cited Kellermann Paper was debunked in spectacular fashion when he had to return a prize for his sloppily researched hit piece. (See: http://www.guncite.com/gun_control_gcdgaga.html )

      7. Gun laws don’t work. They hang their counter-argument hat on this: “…but [gun laws] will gradually reduce gun violence. Gun laws will reduce the amount of guns to be sold and will help prevent them from being sold to criminals and the mentally ill.” No empirical evidence is given to support the initial assertion, and the second sentence reveals the strategy: making guns less available to everybody so that they’ll be less available to offenders. This is akin to Michael Bloomberg wanting to outlaw big sodas because there are some fat people. Nobody is made safer by disarming the innocent, and again, I must ask: what of the tens of thousands who successfully defend themselves with guns each and every year? (A statistic that exceeds their misuse, BTW.)

      8. Mass shootings tend to happen in gun-free zones. The article states that this is “not supported by the evidence.” Yet actually LOOKING at the evidence, it turns out to be true! All schools are federal “gun-free school zones,” and they’ve become the preferred killing fields for anyone wanting to get their name immortalized by the media. Columbine, Sandy Hook, Virginia Tech, and even Fort Hood were “gun-free zones.” Logic dictates that creating a law or policy banning guns in a given zone ONLY DISARMS THOSE WHO RESPECT AND FOLLOW THE LAW. For a bad guy, it’s known as a “safe working environment.” Note, too, that the Colorado movie theater where the Batman shooting occurred had prominent “no weapons allowed” signs on the doors. They don’t work.

      9. “The only way to stop a bad guy with a gun is with a good guy with a gun.” Question: when faced with an armed attacker, what other sane, rational response IS there? They claim that “gun control” will prevent the bad guy from even getting a gun, but we know from other countries that this is not the case; the more restrictive the gun laws, the more powerful the criminals who always find ways to get guns become! The Norway (was it?) summer camp shooting is a prime example. So is the bloodbath known as Mexico, which has strict gun control and drug-cartel-fueld shooting deaths far in excess of the US.

      The also assert the police as “good guys with guns,” ignoring the fact that police usually arrive AFTER the crime. Their guns remain in their holsters while they draw chalk outlines around bodies and take witness statements. Yes, calling good guys with guns is apparently a great idea to the author, but having good guys with guns immediately on-site is somehow wrong; a delusional lapse of logic.

      10. “There are already over 20,000 gun regulations on the books and they don’t work.” To which they respond: “20,000 gun regulations are absolutely useless if those laws are either too weak, easy to circumvent, or just not enforced.” This logic begs the question: so 20,000 NEW laws would be more extra super duper enforced somehow?

      The next strategy they take is to minimize the true number of “gun laws” down to about 1,000 (without any supporting source). As a certified instructor and CCW permit holder myself, I happen to know that the laws of Michigan ALONE far exceeds 1,000! Add on federal laws and I’d say that the 20,000 estimate is conservative. Keep in mind that gun laws cover each step of the manufacturing process, the promotion, advertising, distribution, sales and records keeping process, transportation, transfer, storage, use and final disposal. Add in all the laws governing ammunition, hunting and self-defense and their estimate is laughable on its face.

      Next they cite the bogus “gun show loophole” which has been proven to be an insignificant source of “crime guns” (less than 4% of all recovered) and is an insincere way to regulate private sales, which is the TRUE bone of contention. When a proposal to open up the NICS background check system to all public sellers, as well as licensed dealers, closing off ALL private sale channels to criminals was proposed, gun control advocates shunned it, insisting instead of forcing all sales through FFL dealers, adding significant FEES to all private sales. The goal was NOT safety, but shutting out poorer gun buyers.

      11. “Cities with gun control laws on the books sometimes have high levels of gun violence and this shows that gun control doesn’t work.” The usual excuse: “it’s the NEIGHBORING cities with LAX LAWS that are the problem!” The truth: when Washington DC’s crime rate exploded despite the draconian gun control laws, they blamed Virginia’s “lax laws.” The problem with that scenario: Virginia had a much lower crime rate than DC or any other surrounding state! One might think that a source of a “disease” would be the most “infected.” The so-called “iron highway” is a criminal enterprise, unrelated to regulation. ALL gun sales in ANY state are required to do NICS checks. Legal firearms commerce should not be sacrificed due to illegal commerce. It would be akin to shutting down every Walgreen’s and legal drug stores because of the illegal drug trade.

      As we’ve also seen with the drug trade, it is futile to focus on the commodity. It is far better to address the behavior, which directly affects the demand.

      12. “Countries like Israel and Switzerland have high levels of gun ownership, but low levels of gun crime, so guns aren’t the real problem” The author concedes the first part, but attributes lower crime to “mandatory military service programs…” So if you have a highly armed population, military service somehow makes you less murder-y than a citizenry without compulsory service. (Ignoring the huge amount of suicide and domestic violence/murder among our own ex-military.) This military training, which in the minds of the author gives them life-long Jedi like powers, somehow makes THEM certified good guys and different from you and I. As a firearms instructor, I’m here to tell you that basic training/boot camp tells you ZERO about local law! That’s the easiest way to bungle your way into prison.

      13. “Since car accidents kill more people every year then guns, why don’t we ban cars?” First, it’s usually the “other side” that conjures up the car/gun comparisons. That said, statistically, card indeed kill more people than guns do. The author asserts the old canard that “guns are tools that have only one real use: to kill things.” This is funny, since I’ve used guns since I was a pre-teen, yet no one has ever died or been injured as a result. I’m not even a hunter, so aside from a field mouse and a couple of rats, nothing has been killed despite the hundreds of thousands of rounds I’ve fired in my lifetime. In fact, the NOMINAL use of guns is recreational/sporting, judged empirically by how many rounds are fired in what pursuit. So the “no alternative purpose” lie is… well… a lie. Or the limitations of an misinformed and unimaginative mind. Ironic that the author compares the intended lethality of a weapon with the unintended lethality of vehicles, completely ignoring how the latter STILL manages to kill more people per-capita! Their silly infographic shows a hunting rifle alongside an AR platform rifle, completely ignorant of the fact that the AR platform has become THE most popular hunting rifle in the world! That is because its modular design allows it to be configured for just about any purpose. It is the most commonly used rifle in sporting competitions, the most popular being “three gun,” where shooters use a pistol, shotgun and a rifle. But this author didn’t bother to check out those pesky details.

      Next, all the usual car/gun, shooter vs. driver arguments are heaped-on, ignoring the fact that registration of vehicles never prevented an accident, training and licensure does not prevent accidents or simple idiotic behavior while driving, and insuring cars saves ZERO lives, only helping people pick up the pieces AFTER the accident. Putting these requirements on gun owners will NOT impact gang members and drug dealers, who won’t buy any insurance, register their guns or get training. This is, again, another insincere attempt to make gun ownership as onerous as possible, and has nothing to do with safety. And with the death toll meted out by automobiles, they’re suggesting we do the SAME with guns?

      14. “Gun control was imposed by dictators like Hitler and Stalin, thus it is, by definition, bad and something that puts us on a path towards becoming an autocratic regime.” The next sentence: “This argument is both historically incorrect and a complete red herring,” is partly right, but misses the point. I’ve never argued this angle because of the questions revolving around the historical claims. What the point of the argument is, however, HAS been seen in many other places. Whenever a government regime decides to employ genocide, there is historical precedent that the intended group, if not the entire populace, is disarmed by law. This, too, is detailed in “Knowing Guns.”

      15. “Guns are part of our national heritage and restricting them is an attack on our cultural identity.” This is another tack I’ve never argued. That said, I would argue against any attacks on any heritage without very good reason. And again, given the vast gulf between typical American “gun culture” and crime/drug/gang culture, I don’t see hobbling the former being a productive way to thwart the latter. “[T]his heritage is getting people killed today” is complete and utter bullshit.

      “Our weapons technology is so great now that guns have become able to kill dozens of people in seconds—an impossibility during much of our country’s cultural history of guns” is another sentence written by someone completely ignorant about guns and such technology has been in use since the mid-1910s – more than 100 years.
      16. “Guns act as an equalizer and are necessary for women to defend themselves.” True. The author admits as much, but quickly goes on to say that guns are “not a cure for violence against women.” This is a red herring, since that’s not the point! As long as violence against women (or seniors, the weak, etc.) CAN happen, that is all the justification needed for civilian gun ownership. Instead of going to the Bureau of Justice Statistics or the FBI, they then go on to cite statistics by that paragon of academic virtue, the Brady Campaign. For those who don’t know, the Brady Campaign is the NRA of the anti-gun-rights side. They and the VPC love to churn out bogus “data” that supports their gun ban position. Using this, they repeat the lie that “both men and women are killed at higher rates than comparable countries” (due to guns, of course) and “women who live in a household with a firearm are 3.4 times more likely to be murdered then women who live in households without firearms,” which is suspect at best as I showed earlier.

      Of course, women have traditionally been less likely to own guns in previous years, but current trends show that this is changing. According to the NSSF (the actual “gun lobby”), purchases of guns by women is up 17% and are the fastest growing segment of the gun-buying population.

      Thirdly, they cite domestic violence as a reason why everyone should be disarmed, based, of course, on Brady statistics. They call any accounts of women successfully defending themselves as “anecdotal,” and go on to anecdotally report that guns “do not make women any safer.” Most laughably, though, is that they say that women shouldn’t try to hold off attackers with a weapon because – get this – the attackers may then use weapons! News flash: many rapes are committed each year with weapons against unarmed women. Arguing to keep them helpless is a logical disconnect even the most liberal reader would question.
      >> Insert Volk Photo

      17. “Background checks do not work because criminals won’t consent to them.” While I am not opposed to background checks as is now done via NICS and even support opening the NICS system up to all sellers, private as well as FFLs, it is a fact that criminals don’t buy guns through regular channels, so these checks primarily affect legal buyers. This negates closing off guns to the biggest offenders. Drug dealers don’t get their crystal meth through legal drug channels and gangs don’t get their guns from Bob’s Bait & Hunting Shop. And no, they aren’t going to go through any background checks. Sorry.

      18. “Limits on magazine size do nothing to prevent gun homicides because shooters will just bring more magazines.” In response, they say that those arguing this are “letting their fondness for their weapons overshadow their logical viewing of the facts.” If this is so, then to argue FOR limits, advocates must answer these questions:
      1. Why do police want to be exempt? (And if you’re for that, then why is it good for them and bad for me?)
      2. The worst school shooting in U.S. history was Virginia Tech, where the shooter brought several standard capacity magazines for his guns and simply reloaded them time and time again. How would a restriction have stopped this? (And if it wouldn’t have stopped the worst school shooting, then how would it have stopped any?)
      3. How do you account for the report by the Clinton NIJ that tracked the efficacy of the 10-round limit during now expired “Assault Weapons Ban” which, after running a full decade, concluded that there was “no measurable difference” in the number of people killed or injured in a typical shooting incident?

      The talk about “clips” (they’re called “magazines”) and jamming was again written by a gun illiterate who obviously had no first-hand knowledge of firearms. I’d say that the NIJ data supplies the empirical evidence for this claim. While 2 and 3 are adequately explained, let me expand on #1: police know what their officers need to make it home alive. They’ve got data going back decades and know what works and what does not. They know that most criminals travel in pairs if not groups. For this reason alone, they understand that a lone officer may be well outgunned before any confrontation starts! (This is even IF we could somehow reduce all magazines to some mythically “safe” limit.)

      Now think of this from the average citizen’s point of view: I walk the same streets that those officers patrol. I may well blunder into the same bunch of bad guys. I do not have a partner. I don’t have a walkie-talkie with help on the line in an instant. I don’t rock a bullet-proof vest, or do I have a “K-9 unit” to protect me. Now, if I’ve taken the training, paid the fees and carry a concealed weapon, is it fair – or even MORAL – to ask ME to accept a limitation that the professionals will not? It is a fact that the only thing that changes a firearm from a sporting or self-defense tool into a murder weapon is INTENT. If my intent is to go about my business unmolested and, along the way, someone (or some group) tries to kill me, then the law should be on MY side; I should be permitted all of the bullets I need to get the job done and the bad guys should be permitted NONE. Period.

      19. “It is hypocritical for politicians with children who go to schools that have armed guards to push for gun-free schools.” This is not a true argument, but pointing out the fact that politicos pushing to keep teachers and faculty charged with protecting our children disarmed and helpless while they have armed protection for THEIR children is absurd. His Majesty, former mayor Michael Bloomberg himself has an armed coterie surrounding him. Likewise, Everytown’s cray-cray harpie, Shannon Watts, appeared at a recent rally with a contingent of armed guards. Is this not the very definition of hypocrisy? At least Ghandi and Martin Luther King, Jr., lived their words. Bloomberg and Watts are two hypocrites who, like Nancy Pelosi, live by the mantra: “armed security for me, none for thee.” Our author says that armed protection for our kids is “completely unfeasible,” while President Obama signed one of his executive orders to implement exactly that.

      20. “There are already so many guns out there that any regulations on gun sales are ineffective.” Indeed, with nearly one gun for every American man, woman and child, there are certainly a whole lot of guns in circulation. The author calls this “too many” (by whose standard?), when, in fact, that number increases by some 10 million each and every year. The market, then, apparently disagrees. Note, too, that these figures only represent LEGAL sales. All criminal “underground” gun running is not a part of that equation. Nonetheless, the author plods along, suggesting that it’s no reason not to implement “gun control” to gradually bring the number down to “manageable levels,” and once again missing the point that it will NOT IMPACT CRIMINALS. Repeatedly the false correlation between guns and crime is uttered like a religious mantra. The reality here is that, when a victim dies for a lack of a gun, there were too FEW guns, and when a gang clashes with police with almost as much firepower, then and ONLY then are there too many guns, and that statement only refers to the GANG MEMBERS. There can never be “too many guns” in the hands of the law abiding, and one is too many in the hands of killers and criminals. Because gun rights ARE constitutionally guaranteed, like it or not, the trick, then, is to assure that the law abiding has unimpeded access while the criminals do not. No solution will be perfect. Sorry again.

      21. “We cannot rely on the police to protect us because they are underfunded and often unable to get to a crime on time.” This statement is backed up by none other than Detroit City’s Police Chief Craig, who was featured on the cover of the NRA’s “America’s First Freedom” magazine last May. His advocacy of Detroit residents getting trained and armed saw the biggest drop in violent and property crime in more than 30 years! In short, it works. “We’re not advocating violent,” said Craig, “We’re advocates of not being victims.”

      There is one sentence under this point that I agree with 100%: “To free up resources, we should end the war on drugs and increase the funding for police forces.” That NEVER means that no citizen ever needs a gun again, but less need for self-defense is always a good thing.

      Like

  10. You know what folk? Useless to argue with li eral gun control nuts. They think we are the nuts, while they want to control the rst of us that do not agree with them. Empty brains ..will remain empty, no matter what common sense arguments you bring to the table. The Constitution is very clear mr. Sager and your 20 points have been completely debunked before as a bunch of clueless lies. If you guys don’t like it…psck your shit and leave. Move to Europe or Australia. Until this remains the law of the land, we have that rightt and we’ll fight to ensure that that right will stay,. We fought the Nazis before..we will fight fascism (liberalism) again.

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    • They, the liberal neo Nazis, say that “confiscation” is not what they want and no one ” will take your guns away”! I guess the New York , Washington Dc, New Jersey, and other extreme gun control laws, are what they call “sensible”. Try to get a gun there. After all..what did the Nazis tell the Jews? ” you are going to take a shower”! While they were walking into the gas chambers…

      Like

    • First,nobody gave you permission to use my first name. Momma didn’t teach you manners? Second,of course there are people named Wallace who are black,and McBride,Murphy,Jones, they are not all named Travis you redneck moron. Were you born a narrow minded imbecile or is it a career goal? There are also Christians named Sarah and Jacob and Rebecca and Abraham,you know,like Lincoln? I suggest you go back to your house trailer,and push it down a hill to jump start your furnace. Wonder how brave you guys are without your little guns,or are you a typucal bully,you know a coward?

      Like

      • Well, look who decided to finally crawl back out from under his rock. What took you so long? Were you in jail again? At least you have gone back to using Dave Bowen, or is Jack your real name?

        First, I don’t need any permission to use your name when I make comments on this blog. Didn’t your foster parents teach you any common sense? Second, I know that Native Americans have just as much right to name their children anything that they want. However, Dave Bowen (there, I used it again without your permission LOL) is not a name that most people would associate with a Native American. Are your sure that you are a full blooded Lakota Indian or is this just something that your grandmother told you one day while you were visiting her in the nursing home. Perhaps she had Alzheimers and was confusing you with one of her other grandchildren that she never told anyone about.

        I am not nor have I ever been a “redneck” and have no aspirations to be one. Neither do I now or have I ever lived in a house trailer. The closest I ever came to living in a trailer was from 1989 to 1992 when I was serving in the US Navy and was stationed onboard the USS John F. Kennedy. I guess aircraft carriers can be considered mobile homes. Were you born a weak minded dullard or is that the only career path available to you? The family business perhaps?

        Finally, lets return to the main topic of this blog. Due to their power and the potential for causing death, firearms frighten many people. This is understandable, particularly for those people that have never had the privilege of being raised in a gun culture and learned from an early age to respect guns. This was not their fault. However, it is the gun control fanatics that are the cowards. Only a coward refuses to take up arms to defend themselves or their loved ones and their country and only a weak and pathetic coward attempts to compensate for their cowardice by accusing patriotic Second Amendment supporters of being the cowards.

        If you choose to reply, please be quick about it. I’m sure that there are other people there at the library in line behind you that actually need to use computer.

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      • Oh, one more thing. My guns aren’t little and I hate bullies. You know, Nazi’s, Taliban, communists, etc.

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      • Of course there are Christians named Sarah, Jacob, Rebecca and Abraham. All of those names came from Hebrew. Sarah was the wife of Abraham and Rebecca was the mother of Jacob. You know, the Bible. Exactly how will pushing a trailer down a hill jump start the furnace Dave?

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      • Dave Bowen

        I have noticed that you attempt to compare people who support the right to keep and bear arms to Nazis or neo-Nazi’s. You do realize that the Nazi’s actually favored gun control don’t you? Not for most Germans of course, just for the Jews. On July 8th, you replied to a comment that Frank had made on July 3rd by saying “talk about convoluted logic, Seig Heil to you too”. Do you know what Seig Heil means? It means “hail victory”. You basically saluted Frank and wished him luck. The United States actually had gun control before 1934. It was when the army disarmed the Native Americans.

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  11. I live in England, where there has never been a gun culture, even before bans/legislation (that is oft quoted by Americans making comparisons with other countries) even existed. Britains first gun “ban” was in 1919 when soldiers came back from WW1 and kept their weapons. The government wanted their guns back so a ban was put into place , but nothing actually changed because hardly anyone owned a gun before 1919 anyway. That is how it has always been.
    My country’s leaders have had hundreds of years to take advantage of it’s unarmed citizens and enslave it’s people. This has not happened. Break-ins (burglaries) by armed criminals are very very rare (most house breaks happen when residents are not home) and the possibility of facing a friend or relative who has, as the result of some psychotic episode, drug taking, or alchohol abuse, decided to settle an argument with a firearm, is virtually nil. I have many worries that some harm or other may come to members of my family at some time. The possibility of being shot is not one of them. Less guns = Less fear.
    As a frequent visitor to the USA it saddens me that for my friends over there, a similar situation can never be.

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    • Thank you for your input Mogga. Now that we have heard from you, lets hear from another resident of the UK. I ask that you please watch this video in its entirety before you reply, thank you.

      Were you alive in 1919? How do you know that “hardly anyone” in England owned a gun back then? For hundreds of years, your country’s leaders just simply didn’t have time to take advantage of its citizens because they were too busy oppressing people in other countries and colonies. One particular colony eventually became tired of this oppression and took up arms and did something about it on April 19, 1775. Today this now former colony is the world’s wealthiest and most powerful country and came to the aid of their former oppressors twice during the previous century as I recall.

      It is obvious that you personally do not like firearms, likely do not know many individuals that do and have never been a victim of a serious crime. We have people living in the US that are like that too. However, you must not make the mistake of assuming that people like you are
      the majority.

      http://www.thecommentator.com/article/3644/britain_wants_its_guns_back

      More importantly, you must not make the mistake of assuming that you will never be the victim of a crime. There is always someone somewhere who doesn’t have what you have and will do anything to get it from you. Less experience + less common sense = less intelligence = tragedy. If you are so saddened by our rights and freedom, then perhaps you should not visit so frequently. If you do continue to do so, please keep your opinions regarding firearms to yourself while you are on our soil.

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    • I suppose that after watching this video, you’ll probably say that assault handbags should be banned and that everyone should just have to carry everything in their pockets. At least there are still some people in the UK that have the backbone to confront criminals.

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    • The answer of a “slave”‘. Socialist Europe talking right here folks! A Nation that once was great and now just number one in Europe for crime! Besides..the UK will be just in few decades taken over by foreigners and fanatic Muslims, seen the absurd immigration policy of the UK Government. Watching Europe fall..a lesson for us Americans to learn, before it’s too late.

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  12. Latimes com/2009/jan/04/nation/na-abandoned-homes4, the unlicensed contractors roof wear it out.

    Check their licenses, bond and performance of the issue can be trained to sniff
    out cancer. Related to that question because it is to know was there open and clear.

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  13. the gun is the MOST efficient hand-held, designed-for killing device in the world…..comparing them to cars/knives/bats/POOLS makes those points look so silly—do I really need to explain why?? the 2 Amendment was written by people who thought slavery was ok and women shouldn’t vote……

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    • The Second Amendment was written by people who had JUST fought for and won their freedom and independence (and yours, assuming that you are an American citizen) from a tyrannical empire. Not all of them were southerners who owned slaves and back then (1791), there were NO countries anywhere in the world that allowed women to vote. It wasn’t until 1893 that women were first allowed to vote. That was in New Zealand by the way. The United States was not the first country to ever own slaves. Slavery existed before recorded time and even though it is outlawed, still exists today.

      http://www.theatlantic.com/international/archive/2011/06/the-country-where-slavery-is-still-normal/241148/

      You are right that firearms are the most efficient hand-held device designed for killing, just after the President of the United States’ pen and telephone. However, if you would bother to do some research, you would learn that scalpels and syringes are used to kill more people every year in the US then guns. Yes, I realize that medical instruments are designed to save lives and medical malpractice is not the same as intentional homicide. However, believing that it is silly to compare surgical equipment, cars, knives, bats and POOLS to firearms which are ALL inanimate objects is illogical and deluded. As potentially dangerous as firearms are, they are still necessary as they fulfill a need. Obviously, you have never been in a situation where you needed one and therefore have fooled yourself into believing that you will never need one. I hope that you never do, but just remember that you will never be fully prepared until you are able to face those who would do you or your loved ones harm with equal or superior means to defend yourself. Do I really need to explain why?

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      • One interesting thing about inanimate objects is how firearms (or all weapons in general) can still be useful in some cases without actually having to be used. Often, potential crime victims have merely had to just display their gun and this has been enough to cause attackers or thieves to halt and or flee or surrender. Seeing a police officer and knowing that he or she is armed can usually de-escalate a situation and restore peace without the officer’s weapon even having to be drawn. When was the last time you heard of a doctor saving a critically injured patient simply saying “get well, I have a scalpel and I know how to use it” or curing a sick patient by pointing a needle at them and scaring a disease away?.

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  14. I don’t know if it’s just me or if everybody else encountering problems
    with your website. It appears like some of the text on your content are running off the
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    Like

    • The sad thing is that he survived a tragedy and instead of placing the blame on John Hinckley where it belonged, he directed his anger at the firearms industry. He could have spent the last 33 years serving as a spokesperson for worthwhile causes such as the rights of the disabled, reform of our inadequate mental health care system and longer sentences for dangerous criminals. However, he chose to attack innocent, law abiding, American gun owners. Such a waste. Today, John Hinckley is practically a free man. He receives furloughs from St. Elizabeth’s Hospital and is allowed unsupervised visits with his parents. I hope Jodie Foster owns a gun.

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  15. I’m sorry but you are wrong from the very start. The second amendment was intended to be the teeth of the American people to protect their liberty. This is not some perversion by the NRA or other gun groups. I am a liberal and don’t particularly care for the NRA. I don’t care for the NRA because they aren’t radical enough regarding this issue. The intention of the second amendment is very clear and the founders made it even more clear in their writings and correspondence. The militia as stated in the second amendment is considered to be every able bodied person, just as it was in the 18th century. The militia is the people as a whole. We as a whole are responsible for maintaining our liberty not a standing army, an organized militia such as the national guard, and certainly not the government. We are responsible, only the people can safe guard their liberty. Your use of the term “assault rifle” is also misleading anti gun propaganda. No person can own an actual military assault rifle made after 1986 for any other reason beyond demo purposes to sell to military or police. No person can own an actual military assault rifle made before 1986 without an extensive ATF background check, a class 3 license, a $200 tax, and lots of money to pay for the weapon. They are also subject to surprise inspections by the ATF. The so called “assault weapons” that progressives talk about are nothing more than scary looking semi automatic rifles. If you change the stock and a few other components they will look just like many every day hunting rifles and they function just the same, one bullet at a time. The gun control crowd is one of the most dishonest groups I have ever seen in politics. They refuse to acknowledge the countless lives that guns have saved in self defense. They focus on the tragedies and give the every day use of guns in defense of self and the public only a passing mention if any at all. Many people don’t remember the name of the Sandy Hook shooter but they know what rifle he used, a one pull one shot rifle used for target shooting, self defense,and hunting. The media tries to make these people famous and ignores the man who stopped a mall shooter with his legally concealed handgun. They also fail to realize that criminals do not follow laws or rules. Criminals couldn’t care less about your “gun free zones” only the law abiding people obey these areas which is why many of the mass shootings take place in these areas. Its because the shooter knows he won’t meet any resistance. Gun free zones create a collection of victims for those who would harm others. When they do meet resistance they tend to give up or kill themselves (the mall shooter). The only people who obey gun laws are the law abiding. Criminals ignore, if they even know about them, every law that is passed. I am a law abiding citizen. Attacking my right to bear arms and choose what I feel I need to defend myself, my friends and family, and others in danger makes myself and them more likely to be a victim. Myself and others like me who obey the law are the only ones who will comply. I can’t stress that point enough! The gun is the great equalizer. It puts the 80 year old granny on the same level as the 250 pound 18 year old man who wishes to do her harm. They repel rapists and they end shootings before they become mass shootings. The right of self defense is an inherent right that we all are born with. The 2A is there to ensure that all the other amendments in the Bill of Rights remain intact. If you don’t think it can happen here you are remarkably naive. Millions of people have thought the same thing only to find out differently. The typical response from progressives to this is that we wouldn’t stand a chance against our military. My response is, tell that to the Iraqi insurgents. Another thing, if our republic faced a threat that required the people to rise up much of the military would side with the people. The second amendment is the most unambigious amendment in the Bill of Rights. It is there for a reason and it is an individual right. Just as every other amendment that states THE RIGHT OF THE PEOPLE that progressives support is an individual right. You either support them all or you support none. The Bill of Rights stands or falls on each amendment. You may not like it but the facts about the intent are indisputable and if you support the Bill of Rights then you must support the second amendment.

    Let me stress one more time, I am a liberal on most issues. Although I don’t particularly like political labels. For all of those reading this don’t think that you have to follow the zeitgeist of American liberal thought. On this issue they are 100 percent wrong and they are determined to infringe on an enumerated right. The 2A is where their hypocrisy shines. I used to agree with them and I recently started thinking for myself instead of getting all of my 2A info from Daily Kos and Bloomberg I started reading the actual writings of the founders. My advice is for you to do the same.

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    • Tromping through the muck that has been dumped here by clueless gun control fanatics – we can’t get our public school system to teach real history and instill the values of freedom and liberty soon enough.

      Like

  16. Dave – and I must admit I find it pretty puerile and childish to criticise your name. But, I’m not surprised as many pro-gun folk do seem to resort to childish and undeveloped arguments. But I guess you get that when you threaten to take a child’s toys away. Anyway, beyond that, I want to thank you for this article – and the logic behind it. In Australia, we had a massive change in our gun laws nearly twenty years ago, and gun crime plummeted, homicides plummeted and frankly, our streets are safer. Some uninformed souls say our crime went up, but their information comes pretty much straight from Mr. La Pierre (oh God – he’s got a French surname; he’s going to make us surrender to someone! Help!), rather than the Australian Bureau of statistics or the Australian Institute of Criminology, both of whom have actual data that shows Australia is safer and less violent since we tightened up our gun laws. You can still own guns, but it has helped keep guns out of the hands of nuts. And we’ve had no mass shootings in 18 years – and a halving of gun deaths… Wow – I wonder how that happened… Oh, and Joe – my first name is of Greek origin and my surname is Irish… How does that happen? My name must be made up hehe

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    • James – Do you actually live in Australia? Do you just not ever go out in public or watch your own local news?

      “Our streets are safer?”

      Crime in Australia was already on a downward trend before the Port Arthur Massacre which would likely have continued. The 1996 National Firearms Agreement was a knee jerk reaction which accomplished nothing, but was given undue credit. It costs politicians their jobs and the Australian taxpayers a lot of money.

      Answer this question for me. Why would an Australian (assuming of course that you are not being untruthful about your nationality) give a damn about my past dialogue with Dave Bowen/Arizona Jack and come to his aid? Is it because he is allegedly a Native American and you have guilt due to Australia’s history of violence against your own indigenous people?

      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_massacres_of_Indigenous_Australians

      This is of course only just a theory. My original point was that Dave Bowen is not a name that most educated people would associate with a full blooded Native American.

      P.S. When you take away a child’s toy, they cry. When you try to take away a free mans weapons, you will be the one crying (if you live) just like King George learned the hard way in 1775.

      Like

    • Here’s the opinion of a different Australian.

      James, did you know that Australia also has an NRA? Australians still own a lot of guns in spite of your “massive change”. A mass shooting is and always has remained a possibility. You need to stop fooling yourself into believing that it was that law that is responsible for the lack of mass shootings there.

      Like

    • Pay particular attention at 2:12 James.

      Oh God! It looks like the gun owners of Australia have started to realize how much power they have. You might want to consider moving to the UK hehe.

      Like

  17. I think this is one of the most important information for me.
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    Like

  18. I’m sorry that you feel that I shouldn’t be able to own a rifle with features that resembles an assault rifle, because no matter what you do you will never prevent me or other law abiding citizen from owning one, two or even fourty

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  19. One other thing, most of what you are reading is garbage. It says that everyone on a military base is armed, but if you know anything about the military you will know that guns are strictly prohibited and most people are unarmed. It also says that during the virginia tech shooting there was a full tactical team(the police) dispatched but it also goes on to say in the very next paragraph that “you don’t need your guns, there are people that will protect you and they are the police”. Well gee, I knew you ant-gun people were illogical but to contradict yourself in less then two paragraphs, that’s flat out moronic.

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  20. Are you really asking where the second amendment states that it is our right to carry firearms? Is English your native tongue?

    As passed by Congress and stored in the National Archives the second amendment reads: “A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.”

    The definition of the word “bear” is:
    be(ə)r
    verb
    1. (of a person) carry.
    “he was bearing a tray of brimming glasses”
    synonyms: carry, bring, transport, move, convey, take, fetch, deliver, tote, lug
    “I come bearing gifts”

    2. support.
    “walls that cannot bear a stone vault”
    synonyms: support, carry, hold up, prop up
    “will it bear his weight?”

    So there you have it. In the wording of the second amendment the word “bear” means “carry”, in the context of a person, and is applied to “the people” not the state or the militia. In fact, the second amendment does not even refer to a State, as in Connecticut or California, it refers to “a free State,” which is a specific term that means a sovereign government, the U.S. in this case. The word militia is used in association to the security of “a free State,” again meaning a sovereign government, the U.S.

    The second amendment could not be clearer.
    It begins with the introductory phrase (https://owl.english.purdue.edu/owl/resource/607/03/) “A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State” and carries into the meaning of the sentence “the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.” The commas before “being” and “shall” are meant to be pauses, as was common practice at that time.

    The subject of the sentence is clearly “the people,” as is true for every other amendment the Bill of Rights, and not “a free State” or “the militia.”

    NOTE: The Constitution defines the militia as every adult male under the age of 40.

    The only people that I have seen confuse this either don’t know proper gramar or have nefarious motives.

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  21. Thank God for real patriots! Fellow conservatives, I would like to personally commend you on your comprehensive and detailed debunking of popular and illogical liberal theories in regards to the extremely heated subject of gun laws. I thank you for defending the true values and ideologies of our great nation, but also not letting southern gun owners such as myself be degraded in such a cowardly fashion by the true communists of today’s society.

    P.S.- Has anyone else noticed how quickly the liberal posts stopped after they were addressed with real, irrefutable logic? This is why you can never get into an argument with a liberal. They back out as soon as they know they have lost the discussion and enter into petty name calling, such as Dave Bowen/ Arizona Jack did.

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  22. ALOHA JOSH:….. GREAT article….. with the country moving at lightening speed toward an extremist right-wing slant, from many of the posts above, your logical arguments appear to have landed on deaf ears. twenty-one well thought-out points to discuss, yet each and every one which was made and, for the most part, they were ignored or refuted outright….. a balance is possible; however, not with people who refuse to look at reality and come to an integration of positions.

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    • Just because someone doesn’t agree with the futile argument that you are trying to make doesn’t mean that your words are falling on deaf ears niklananada. It might mean that your argument is weak or outright wrong and that the audience just simply doesn’t take you seriously because they already have the facts and you are regurgitating nonsense.

      This article was prepared shortly after the Sandy Hook shooting when every Michael Moore wannabe with a computer was attempting to capitalize on it with the encouragement of the liberal media. Mr. Sager just jumped on the wagon. However, all that this accomplished was to rally existing gun owners and to create new ones. Gun control itself is a weapon. A weapon of oppression used by tyrants and most effective on the misinformed and weak minded. Like all weapons however, it can backfire and or be used against those who attempt to wield it. At best, all that this article has achieved is to expose twenty-one fallacies that liberals attempt to perpetuate to conceal their personal fear of firearms and their ignorance for how democracy really works and provided an opportunity for rational thinkers to intervene and debunk all twenty-one of them.

      You need to accept the reality of what has transpired since December 14, 2012. New gun control legislation has failed (except for New York State), politicians who supported gun control have been voted out, previous gun restrictions have been lessened, the population of gun owners and NRA membership has surged and the firearms industry has flourished like never before with no end in sight. In spite of this, there is still a minority of people such as yourself that just can’t seem to grasp the irrefutable truth that firearms cannot pull their own triggers. It would appear that it is the gun control fanatics who need hearing aids. We already have a balance. If you don’t like guns, just shut up and don’t buy one. If you have a problem with the Constitution of the United States of America, then leave.

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  23. The issue with the Article is that there are parts which insults those who are on the right. Which is why his points are falling on deaf ears. Your goal should not be insulting your audience, it should be about making them think. As soon as the people whom you wish to persuade become insulted the rest of you message is lost and so is your argument. All your points are doing is rallying people who are already like minded. You want to persuade people to your side, not make them angry.

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  24. Paul, I halfway agree with you. Although one of the key characteristics of any good speaker/writer is to know how to get their point across without “scaring off” their audience, Mr.Sager’s article is not what angers conservatives, but rather the ideas and fallacies he perpetuates. Insults and stereotypes are minimally angering compared to fools with keyboards.

    Like

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