Tuesday, July 24, 2012

In response to David Frum

Just today CNN posted an article written by David Frum. He begins:
There will be no new gun laws after the Aurora shooting for the basic reason that the American people do not want them.
Over the past 20 years, support for gun control has collapsed in the United States.
 Yes and thank God for that! People have begun to realize that gun control does not work.
Three-quarters of Americans want to keep the right to own handguns, weapons whose only function is to kill human beings at close range. ... Responding to public opinion, states have loosened gun laws to allow citizens to carry weapons with them almost anywhere they go.
Yes, and what has been the result of this proliferation of handguns? I'll let Mr. Frum answer:
The overall violent crime index has tumbled by one-third since the early 1990s. The worst crimes -- murder and rape -- have declined even more. American citizens are safer today from crime than at almost any time since record-keeping began, very likely safer than at any time in the history of the country.
Soooooo, I fail to see the problem?
In the mid-2000s, when crime rates were declining fast, almost 70% of Americans wrongly said that crime rates had risen over the past year. What force on earth could convince Americans that down is up? The most powerful force of all: television.
Hey cool, I hate TV too! Hey David we should totally hang out some time. But seriously folks, turn off the dang TV. You'll thank me later.

TV news creates a false picture of a country under attack by rampaging criminals, and especially nonwhite criminals. The people who watch the most TV news, Americans older than 50, also happen to be the group most likely to own a gun.
Oh, OK. I see his point now. He's about to accuse gun owners of being old, white racists. How original.

Only one-fifth of young Americans own a gun; one-third of over-50 Americans do. Republicans are twice as likely to own a gun as Democrats. Maybe not so coincidentally, Republicans are more likely to watch the scariest news channel of them all: Fox. Whites are twice as likely to own a gun as nonwhites -- and it may also not be a coincidence that gun purchases have suddenly spiked since November 2008.
Ok, David, I take back my invitation. But Mr. Frum isn't done yet, he's about to assure us that everything is A-Okay and you can go ahead and turn in your guns to the nearest police station because you definitely don't need them.
The police can protect you, and will, and do.
FALSE. Big. Fat. Stinking. Lie. See Warren vs. DC and Castle Rock vs. Gonzales. Both cases ruled that the police are under no obligation to protect individual citizens. The police are there to deter and to arrest perpetrators after the fact, not to protect you.
And a gun in the house is not a guarantee of personal security -- it is instead a standing invitation to family tragedy.
The vast majority of gun owners are realists, we know there is no such thing as a guarantee of personal safety. We do know that a gun is the great equalizer, it enables the weak to defend against the strong, the one against the many. It levels the playing field and gives us a fighting chance to survive when the bad guys decide to come knocking. Only an improperly secured gun is a tragedy waiting to happen.
In the land of the Second Amendment, nobody will take your guns away.
Ha! Tell that to the people of New Orleans. Or have you not hear about the Great New Orleans Gun Grab? The book is worth picking up, but for those of you who don't want to read it check out some videos here.
But if you love your children, you should get rid of them voluntarily.
NO. If you love your children you teach them how to defend themselves! If you love your children you teach them gun safety so that they know that guns aren't toys, and that when they are at little billy's house and he finds his dad's gun not to play with it! If you love your children you teach them how to survive and thrive in the real world, you don't shelter them from things that are unpleasant.

Sorry David Frum, but if people follow your advice, they will get killed. Yes America is safer than ever before, we also have more armed civilians walking the streets than ever before. This is not an accident. Concealed carry makes things much more dangerous for criminals. My gun protects you, even if I've never met you, because the criminals don't know its on my hip and not yours.

Though, he still gets some points for telling you to stop watching TV.

1 comment:

  1. "handguns, weapons whose only function is to kill human beings at close range."

    False. Target shooting is with a handgun is a function, last time I checked. But let's not let facts get in the way of our crusade now, right?

    "The police can protect you, and will, and do."

    As you point out, this is actually wrong. But the truth is a little more scary than that. the job of the police is, first and foremost, to enforce the will of the government. "To protect and serve" has never been their job description. True, in general, one expects that the state is going to be using their "army" to engage in beneficial actions, but that's not a requirement. And by definition the police exist as an infringement upon liberty and justice, on the theory that these small sacrifices can prevent much larger abridgements.

    Additionally, Frum's statement itself is "you shouldn't be allowed to defend yourself because the police might do so." I don't need to spend any more time explaining why this is terribly shortsighted.