Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Guns Secure & Save Lives

Meet Darren Seiber. He's the author of the East Tennessean viewpoint article of 3/26/2007 entitled "Guns do not save or secure lives."
"Guns do not save or secure lives
Darren Seiber

It is often said that everything's bigger in Texas - and without the assistance of Academy Award worthy films such as "Debbie Does Dallas" - some may believe this saying to be nothing more than a myth. But for the Texans who don't quite measure up there is always another way to compensate: own a gun. Because we all know how Texans love their guns, right?"
If you couldn't be bothered to read the whole bucket of tripe, this first paragraph pretty much sums up the whole article. Throw in three or four bogus statistics from the IANSA (no I won't link to them) and toss in a blender. Voila!

I commented on the article, but I seriously don't expect it to be posted. Below is my comment back to Mr. Seiber:

"What a self serving, smug little essay. Too bad your arguments are both disingenuous and puerile. First you start off with the tired old, "He must be compensating for something" gag. Grow up. If you want to be taken seriously as a writer, leave the childish insults at the door.

There are many reasons that Americans own guns, hunting, target shooting, protection and just because they have a right to under The Bill of Rights. Rights I might add, that pre-existed the United States.

Do you have a degree in Philosophy Darren? Why your insistence that gun rights supporters have one? The facts are, it doesn't take a mental giant to understand that criminals are responsible for their crimes, not the tool they used. With your reasoning we should also ban pagers, cell phones and cars, since they are all used by criminals. While we're at it, let's ban swimming pools too since the risk of drowning in a pool is nearly 100 times higher than from a firearm-related accident for everyone, and nearly 500 times for ages 0-5.

Did you know that guns prevent an estimated 2.5 million crimes a year, or 6,849 every day. Often the gun is never fired and no blood (including the criminal’s) is shed. This includes 550 rapes, 1,100 murders, and 5,200 other violent crimes are prevented just by showing a gun. In less than 0.9% of the time is the gun ever actually fired....and since you bring up Canada, "Statistics Canada, Oct. 1, 2003" States that the firearm homicide rate in Canada is virtually unchanged from before and after gun registration.

Saying "We are wrong because guns are wrong" is like saying "I am right because I'm right." Saying so doesn't make it so Darren. The “Kellerman study” you site used three non-random counties, a limited (266) case file, began with only cases where a death was involved, and had many other statistical weaknesses. This “study” also notes that the majority (54%) of the homicides were committed without firearms, and concluded that “household use of illicit drugs and prior domestic violence increase the risk of homicide.”

The British Home Office – not a “pro-gun” organization by any means, says that you are far more likely to survive a violent assault if you defend yourself with a gun. In episodes where a robbery victim was injured, the injury/defense rates were:

Resisting with a gun 6%
Did nothing at all 25%
Resisted with a knife 40%
Non-violent resistance 45%

Also, the National Crime Victimization Survey states that when using guns in self-defense:

• 83% of robbery victims were not injured
• 88% of assault victims were not hurt
• 76% of all self-defense use of guns never involve firing a single shot

Any questions?

Based on your reasoning that the Second Amendment is no longer appropriate, I could also say that about the First Amendment. Which parts of The Bill of Rights should we keep? Using your very arguments I could also make a case (a weak one at that) that you should only be allowed to use quill pens and hand operated presses. And the internet? Fugetaboutit!

Your argument that gun owners are more likely to kill someone over an disagreement or a crying child is idiotic. Likewise, all men are not potential rapists, and all women are not potential prostitutes just because they have the required equipment. It's called "Transference" Darren, look it up. Anti-gun advocates have been crying this same old song and dance for years. Every time a state enacts a law allowing law abiding people to carry a concealed handgun, they scream that there will be blood running in the streets, that people will have shoot-outs over a stolen parking space and that fender benders will result in massacres. In fact Multiple victim public shootings drop in states that pass shall-issue CCW legislation. The anti's even admit that they were wrong, but they keep repeating it anyway. Saying something is so multiple times doesn't make it true. As a reference the Earth still isn't flat and still revolves around the Sun.

Your article is based on false assumptions derived from flawed statistics from people with an agenda . I'm sure I won't change your mind, but I would encourage you to discard the rhetoric and look at all the facts before coming to any conclusions. I would also encourage anyone reading this to do the same."