Think About It….. February 6, 2013
Must every tragic mass shooting bring out the shrill ignorance of “gun control” advocates?
The key fallacy of so-called gun control laws is that such laws do not in fact control guns. They simply disarm law abiding-citizens, while people bent on violence find firearms readily available. If gun control zealots, like New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg, had any respect for the facts, they would have discovered this long ago, simply because there have been too many factual studies over the years to leave any serious doubt about gun control laws being not merely futile but counterproductive.
Thomas Sowell, a senior fellow at Stanford, says that places and times with the strongest gun control laws have often been places and times with high murder rates. Washington D.C., Chicago and New York are classic examples, but just a few among many.
When it comes to the rate of gun ownership, it is higher in rural areas than in urban areas, but the murder is much higher in the urban areas. The rate of gun ownership is higher among whites than among blacks, but the murder rate is higher among blacks. For the country as a whole, hand gun ownership doubled in the late 20th century, while the murder rate went down.
The few counter-examples offered by gun control zealots do not stand up under scrutiny. Perhaps the strongest talking point is that Britain has stronger gun controls that the U.S. and lower murder rates.
But, if you look back through history, you will find that Britain has had a lower murder rate than the United States for more than two centuries—and, for most of that time, the British had no more stringent gun control laws than the U.S. Indeed, neither country had stringent gun control most of that time.
In the middle of the 20th century, you could buy a shotgun in London with no questions asked. New York, which at that time had had the stringent Sullivan Law restricting gun owner-ship since 1911, still had several times the gun murder rate of London, as well as several times the London murder rate with other weapons.
Neither guns nor gun control was the reason for the difference in murder rates. People were the difference.
In 1954, there were only a dozen armed robberies in London but, by the 1990s —after decades of ever tightening gun ownership restrictions —there were more than a hundred times as many armed robberies. You could compare other sets of countries like and get similar results. Gun ownership has been three times as high in Switzerland as in Germany, but once again the Swiss have much lower murder rates. Guns are not the problem. People are the problem —including people who are determined to push gun control laws, either in ignorance or defiance of the facts.
There is innocent ignorance and there is invincible, dogmatic and self-righteous ignorance. Every tragic mass shooting seems to bring out examples of both among gun control advocates.
Think About It! JCD 2-6-13