You may have noticed by now that gun control advocates don’t exactly have the firmest grasp on the reality of gun statistics. Despite their clumsy understanding of the issues, these busybodies still manage to turn out a great deal of anti-second amendment rhetoric.
Of course, most of it revolves around nonsensical appeals to emotion. Because when they dive into the data and actually try to cite real statistics they really tend to shoot themselves on the foot.
The best examples happen when they start from assumptions and try to prove their existing beliefs with insufficiently massaged information. We happened upon a recent offering from Dr. Garen Wintemute. He wrote a column for the New England Journal of Medicine wherein he tables a two-part solution for the problem of mass shootings.
Wintemute’s solution would be composed of a system of emergency protection orders and comprehensive background checks for would-be gun buyers that would, according to him, “allow courts to have firearms removed temporarily from people who pose an imminent hazard to others or themselves but are not members of a prohibited class.”
This would be backed up with allowances for emergency protective orders that could be used to remove any and all guns from persons deemed to pose any kind of threat for any reason real or imagined.
It goes without saying that we’ve seen proposals like these before. Laws like these are deeply unconstitutional and will almost certainly not have the desired effect of reducing gun violence. First and foremost, people who own guns legally are far and away a tiny minority of people who commit crimes using guns.
What’s more, the problem of mass shootings is vastly overstated- especially in the United States which ranks 37th in the international list of countries plagued most with mass shootings.
What’s more, the emergency protective orders by which local judges can trigger a quick and extra-judicial seizure of a person’s guns have been proposed many times and have always been deemed to be unconstitutional.
And like any law aiming to curtail the access of law-abiding citizens to guns, laws like these would have no effect on the actual occurrence of gun-related crimes. We could go on to cite the reams of evidence for this- or we could just quote Wintemute himself when he refutes his own case by stating that there is, “[…] no evidence of an association between the repeal of comprehensive background check policies and firearm homicide and suicide rates in Indiana and Tennessee. […] the findings do not support a conclusion that background-check requirements are fundamentally ineffective.”
In those two sentences, he says, ‘there is no evidence that gun control laws work,’ and then goes on to say ‘that’s no reason not to have more of them.’
There is just no reconciling those two points.
We can understand that members of the left possess a worldview that makes it very difficult for them to see that the ability of law-abiding citizens to own guns has a negative effect on both crime and violence. We all have blinders that come from our worldview and belief systems. But people like Dr. Wintemute, who represent institutions of learning and at least portend to lean on scientific data, are supposed to know when their own biases threaten objectivity.
What Wintermute’s data should tell him is that he is dealing with a counterintuitive phenomenon. This would mean he recognizes that a reality is evidenced in the data that his natural instincts make it difficult for him to perceive. But instead, he charges on against all the evidence to advocate his anti-gun agenda.
He has pushed his opinion that the First Amendment rights of Americans should be curtailed, saying, ‘we found no connection between gun control laws and any reduction in gun violence,’ and therefore- “In order to understand whether comprehensive background check policies reduce firearm deaths in the United States generally, more evidence on the impact of such policies from other states is needed.”
He’s telling us that because he did not achieve the results he was looking for- we should maintain an anti-first Amendment stance as we continue to pursue the evidence he is hoping to find.
In other words, ‘Just take the guns, and we’ll get back to you on this.’
Hey lefties, here’s a tip; next time you want to deliver a skewed study on gun violence- find someone willing to cook the actual data. It isn’t as if you haven’t been doing it for years already.
~ American Gun News