Defending the 2nd Amendment

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A couple of weeks ago I volunteered to go on local radio host Dave Congalton’s show in the wake of the shootings in Alexandria, Va., and San Francisco, defending the 2nd Amendment from the inevitable calls for more (ineffectual) gun control.

You can listen to my appearance here, but William Moser wasn’t happy with my performance.

Here are a few quick facts and points that I’d like to emphasize, but didn’t really get the chance on-air.

  • Several callers claimed that firearms just aren’t used for self-defense. For some numbers, I will refer you to this Reason magazine blog post that contains the National Rifle Association promoted number—2.2-2.5 million defensive gun uses (DGUs) per year. Even the gun-controllers preferred number, 116,000 per year, is still a huge number, despite what they like to claim.
  • Two doctors called in to echo the bogus claim that a gun in the house is more likely to result in the death of the owner or a loved-one than to kill a criminal stranger. The DGU numbers above poke a huge hole in that. I also pointed out that anti-gunners try to improve their numbers with their phrasing: “kill a criminal.” Many times an evil-doer can be stopped or forced to flee by just displaying the gun. Their counting method also doesn’t include cases where the criminal is only wounded.
  • A psychologist also called in to make the laughable claim that all gun-owners have mental problems. I probably should’ve pushed back harder against this, but the claim was laughable to anyone who wasn’t already on his side and I thought that allowing him to talk more did more to hurt his side among open-minded people than slapping him down might have.

I will probably be back later in July to talk guns again with the looming deadline for making high standard capacity magazines illegal. Dave is always happy when the phone lines light up, and guns certainly seem to do it.

If you have comments, please feel free to leave them here. And if you’re ever listening when I’m on, feel free to call.

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