Gun Owners Need to Read This
I’ve been debating this issue for years on the Internet. Usually I’m outnumbered. Every one of my comments is meet with a dozen defenders of semi automatic weapons, large clips, and sales without background checks. I explain to them that I own guns, have a carry permit, and support the Second Amendment. They don’t believe me. Like, I can’t be for better guns laws and be a gun owner at the same time. I sincerely believe improved gun laws will occur when gun owners get on the band wagon and make it happen.
I ask, “Why does anyone need a semi-automatic weapon and large capacity clip?” They answer for protection, “I don’t want to be outgunned by someone breaking into my home.” When I reply there is no record of a home invasions by people with semiautomatic weapons, they finally blurt out what’s really bothering them. They claim “Obama will soon be sending government forces in black helicopters to confiscate my weapons. They will do, it over my dead body.” Presumably, over their families dead bodies as well.
Their other arguments go like this. “I use semiautomatic weapons for sport shooting and recreation.” To this argument I ask, why do you need large capacity clips. Their answer, “I enjoy firing automatic and semi-automatic rounds.” And they add, “It is my Constitutional right. If I let Obama take my weapons away, I will lose all my rights.” At this point reason quickly leaves the debate and emotion enters. There is no sense continuing the debate. “Beliefs arrived at without reason cannot be changed by reason.”, a wise person once said.
I still occasionally reply to outrageous claims by gun owners, hoping to find someone who will respond to reason and facts. What I get are insults and personal attacks on my sanity and intelligence.
The March-April issue of Mother Jones had a great article by Dave Gilson that I recommend you read. Hits and Myths. Ten pro-gun claims that don’t stand up to fact checking. The following is a brief summary of that article.
Myth 1) They are coming for your guns. – Fact: Gun owners don’t have to worry about being outgunned because 80 million gun owners already have more guns than Feds and cops by a factor of 79 to 1, and even greater if you just count semi-automatic weapons.
Myth 2) Guns don’t kill people, people kill people. – Fact: States with the highest gun murder rate have the highest gun ownership.
Myth 3) An armed society is a polite society. – Fact: Drivers who carry guns are more likely to make obscene gestures and aggressively follow offending drivers. Those who carry guns are more likely to be arrested for threatening someone.
Myth 4) Good guys with guns can stop bad guys with guns. Fact: Armed citizens have never stopped mass shootings. Trained police have difficulty knowing when to shoot and not shoot. Untrained civilians would be a menace to society.
Myth 5) Guns in the home make the home safer. Fact: For every time guns are used for home defense, there are 7 gun assaults or murders, 11 suicide attempts, and 4 accidents. Unlocked guns are found in 43% of homes with children. 1/3 of children who find a gun pull its trigger.
Myth 6) Carrying a gun makes you safer. Fact: 10 times as many gun carriers were killed in arguments than by civilians using guns trying to stop a crime.
Myth 7) Guns protect women and make them safer. Fact: 6 times more women were shot by husbands and partners than were shot by strangers. The number of women killed by abusers increased 10 times if the abuser had a gun.
Myth 8) Violent video games are to blame for gun violence. Fact: Japanese buy more violent video games than the USA but had only 11 gun deaths compared to over 11,000 in the USA.
Myth 9) More Americans are becoming gun owners. Fact: Fewer homes have guns today (45%) than ten years ago, (50%.) 80% of gun owners are males averaging almost 8 guns apiece.
Myth 10) Enforcing current gun laws will solve the problem of gun violence. Fact: 40% of gun sales had no background checks on buyers. 40% of criminals got their guns this way. 62% of on line gun sellers were willing to sell guns when buyers admitted they could not pass a background check. 20% of licensed gun dealers were willing to sell guns to illegal buyers.
Now for some startling facts about gun owners:
30% have an unfavorable opinion of the NRA.
45% say they support an assault weapon bane.
55% say they support bane on high capacity clips.
67% say they support background checks for ammo buyers.
74% of NRA members say they support background checks for all gun buyers.
5% of gun owners belong to the NRA.
The NRA has between 4.2 and 2 million members.
Again, let me give credit to an excellent article in Mother Jones magazine by Dave Gilson.
Sadly, NRA members and Republican politicians have allowed themselves to be used by the organization so they can continue to make money at the expense of public safety. The fact that Obama and the Democrats are overwhelmingly for better gun laws and restrictions makes the NRA pitch that much easier. It should not and does not have to be that way. Come on NRA membership, revolt against those who mislead you.