My Response to the Anti-Gun Article “Ready, Fire, Aim II…….” (Second Part)

Published by the Author on August 30, 2010 at 12:01 am > Pro Gun Rights Articles > My Response to the Anti-Gun Article “Ready, Fire, Aim II…….” (Second Part)

I recently responded to an anti gun article entitled “Ready, Fire, Aim…….” The author of that article published a second article, entitled “Ready, Fire, Aim II…….” This second article is not as blatantly anti-gun, but still contains an abundance of misinformation and anti-gun rhetoric.  Quotes from that article, along with my responses, can be seen below:

Are guns good or bad? Passing moral judgment on an inanimate object is a little silly. Guns are neither good nor bad, just us humans. Guns don’t leap up and shoot people, it takes a human being to do that. Ready, Fire, Aim Pt. One did generate some response from what it would seem is a sensitive subject. Owning a firearm is fine as long as you are willing to take the risks….

When I read the above quoted text, which begins the article, I had hope that the author had changed his anti-gun tune for the better.  Sadly, the remainder of the article makes clear the fact that no such change has occurred.

Fear is a very effective marketing tool. Gun purchasers buy guns out of the unrealistic fear that having a gun will save their life in a home robbery. Nothing could be further from the truth.

Here we have a generalization, followed by a (false) conclusory statement that the author has not backed with a single shred of evidence.  Instead, the statistics show that guns are successfully used in self defense about 2.5 million times each year.  Turning to real-life examples of armed self defense, there are dozens of pages of news stories that I have written about in which a law abiding citizen has successfully used a gun to stop a violent criminal (and remember, I only write about a minuscule fraction of the self defense cases that occur). Given those studies and the abundance of real-life self defense examples, I am at a loss as to how the author can claim that guns are not effective for self defense – especially when he provides absolutely no evidence to back his statement.

Having a weapon at home increases the odds by 500% that the homeowner, or a resident of that home, will be the victim of a gun related accident.

This is a variation of a popular but wholly untrue anti-gun myth.  The long since discredited myth that gun ownership is more dangerous than beneficial was started by Kellermann, in his flawed study “Protection or Peril? An Analysis of Firearms-Related Deaths in the Home.”  The proper statistic is that 65 lives are protected for every 2 lives lost, which means that gun ownership is overwhelmingly safe and beneficial, both to the individual and to society. See Dr. Suter’s paper “Guns in the Medical Literature – A Failure of Peer Review.” Journal of the Medical Association of Georgia. Published March 1994.

Consider the scenario of having a gun for home protection. Coming face to face with an intruder in your kitchen at three in the morning. (gun is in the bedroom). You then have to reach the bedroom before the burglar, unlock the pistol trigger guard, and then somehow confront the intruder. Of course the crook isn’t going to be sticking around waiting patiently while you retrieve the firearm. The burglar, who has the element of surprise could also retrieve the gun before you do. That’s not a good thing.

Here, the author assumes a scenario that is about as unreasonably and unrealistically stacked against the gun owner as possible.  Firstly, home defense guns are useless if they are encumbered with a difficult to remove trigger lock.  I don’t use trigger locks myself, and don’t recommend them to anyone.  There are much more effective ways of securing a gun – that don’t render it useless – such as carrying it on one’s person, or a quick-access gun safe.  Secondly, the author assumes that the homeowner suddenly comes “face to face” with the intruder, with no warning whatsoever.  This is also unrealistic in most cases.  Burglar alarms, dogs, or simply hearing/seeing the intruder before coming face to face make this situation unlikely.  However, even in cases where the victim is caught completely off guard, they are often able to defend themselves effectively.

There is an easy solution of course. Having a fully loaded handgun in every room, with an unlocked trigger guard ready for immediate use. That’s a real recipe for disaster, particularly if you have children at home.

In the above statement, the author passes off another not-so-realistic scenario as though it is the only viable alternative to the unreasonable scenario he previously provided.  Essentially, the author is using the false dilemma logical fallacy to make it seem as though the only options are to lock up one’s gun so that it is useless for self defense, or at the other extreme, to have guns sitting around where children are sure to find and misuse them.  As I discussed above, the author’s first scenario is neither reasonable nor realistic.  The same holds true for this scenario, as only a criminally negligent person would leave loaded guns sitting around where small children would find and misuse them.

Carrying a gun on your belt would also be a solution, but that would be uncomfortable.

Again, we have a conclusory statement that simply cannot be valid, since each person’s definition of comfort will vary.  As someone who has a concealed carry permit and carries regularly, I don’t find it uncomfortable to wear a holstered pistol, any more than I find it uncomfortable to carry a wallet and cell phone.  The millions of Americans who carry guns lawfully (and unlawfully, too) would also seem to disagree, or at the very least find the “discomfort” to be tolerable.  Moreover, even assuming there was some discomfort associated with carrying a gun, there are many other cases where comfort yields to safety.  Wearing a seatbelt is likely not as comfortable as not wearing one, but that is not a very strong argument to forgo one’s seatbelt.  As a motorcycle rider, I find my full face helmet to be uncomfortable in the summer heat, but I never get on my motorcycle without it.  The same should hold true for self defense.

Guns are just as easy, but not as convenient to buy as cigarettes, and if you are youthful looking which I’m not, the State requires an instant background check in the form of a drivers license.

Buying a gun should be easy.  Remember, gun ownership is a fundamental constitutional right, and as a result, should not be unnecessarily or unreasonably encumbered.

Most States have a ten day ‘cooling off’ waiting period after purchasing a weapon from a gun store. Background checks are done although they do not include fingerprints and for the most part are done at the Federal level. Background checks consist of a 30 minute waiting period while the clerk checks your criminal history on-line. My girlfriend takes longer buying a pair of shoes.

Gun waiting periods, which I more fully address in this article, don’t stop violent criminals from acquiring a gun when they want one.  Instead, such restrictions just ensure that law abiding citizens are made to wait defenseless when they need a gun right away (e.g. a stalker has threatened to kill them).  Until murderers start obeying the law, which by definition will never happen, a gun waiting period law is no barrier to a murderer acquiring a gun.  Additionally, about 1/3 of American households already have a gun, making the waiting period even more meaningless.  Moreover, even if gun waiting periods did actually stop would-be killers from arming themselves, murder has been around since long before the invention of gunpowder, and those killers who cannot get a gun seem to have no problem completing their heinous crimes.

Weapons purchased at Gun Shows or from private sellers also do not require a background screening. Any bad guy who wants to buy a handgun, can go to any Gun Show here in the DC or Northern Virginia area and just pick one up. Seller is only required to keep track of who it was sold to, not their criminal history.

Blaming gun shows and the often non-existent “gun show loop hole” is a favorite tactic of those who oppose gun rights.  This anti gun tactic relies upon having an uninformed public who are willing to take such statements at face value, rather than investigating the facts.  To set the record straight, research found “no evidence that gun shows lead to substantial increases in either gun homicides or suicides. In addition, tighter regulation of gun shows does not appear to reduce the number of firearm-related deaths.”

I’m opposed to gun control, actually any control. The Second Amendment refers to the States Rights to have an armed militia. We have those already, they are National Guard and they do a good job.

Firstly, the National Guard is most certainly not the “militia” mentioned in the Second Amendment.  I won’t go into a full discussion of that here, and will instead direct readers to this article, where I address that contention in detail. Secondly, the Supreme Court has made clear in both D.C. v. Heller and McDonald v. Chicago that the Second Amendment protects an individual right to keep and bear arms – independent of any service in the militia.  As such, the author’s opinion as to what the Second Amendment protects is simply irrelevant. Finally, while the author may claim that he supports the Second Amendment, that empty statement stands in stark contrast to the anti-gun arguments that he has made throughout this and his previous article.

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