Gun control: "insufficient evidence to determine effectiveness" sez CDC

The article in question.

I’m not putting this in great debates 'cuz I want opinions on this. I (and several other pro-gunners on the board) have been critical of many gun control laws for a long time mostly because their proponents cannot offer evidence that the law would do any good.

Basically, the article states that the CDC “doesn’t know”… admittedly, it reads like an Onion article. BUT, what I’m wondering… should we enact legislation if we have no idea how that legislation will impact the population? Is it a good precedent to adopt a “try anything and see what works” attitude with our laws? Or should we rather require that a proposal provide evidence that it addresses a problem?

Frankly, I think that if the government can’t determine if a law is effective, that law should be rescinded until it can make the determination. The burden of effectiveness is on the lawmaker, after all… what point is there in creating useless legislation? And how come gun owners need to justify keeping their guns when lawmakers don’t need to justify taking them away?

I did find one really hilarious thing in the article:

Typical denial on his part…

From the perspective of someone who opposes legislation restricting firearms availability but who is also not about to run out and join the NRA:

I think gun-control laws are a typical representation of the INCORRECT way our government/society has chosen to deal with violent crime/drugs/crime in general. It’s just a band-aid on a spurting arterial gash. If guns are outlawed, people who want/need to kill will use something else.

I’ve never known a firearm to jump up and kill someone without a human compelling it to do so. Same thing with syringes loaded with heroin. Likewise I’ve never known a TV set to hand a little kid a book of matches and tell him to burn up his home. I’ve never known a car to snatch a child, strap it in a kid seat and roll up the windows so the kid bakes to death.

The simple truth is that people do not always behave responsibly or with the welfare of others in the forefront of their minds. Gun control is simply not the big issue that everyone wants it to be. The real issue (barring any Illuminati involvement) is the lack of responsibility we as a society feel for one another. Our lack of community. What the French would call a certain, “I don’t know what.”

But the truth is that it’s easier to try & pass legislation and look like you tried to solve society’s problem than it is to look that same society in the face and say, “You’re the problem. You don’t pay attention to your neighbors and pressure them to behave. You see your friend thedrug head but don’t intervene. If you want a better life, make one for yourself, stop voting for someone to leislate one for you.”

But that’s just my humble opinion.

IMO, Gun Control laws are an emotional reaction to a poorly understood issue, and are, at the very least, poorly thought out and enacted based upon the shakiest justification.

Not that will change the minds of people who are emotionally invested in their points of view. On either side of the arguement.

the thing that strikes me is trying to read between the lines to figure out what the goal of the legislation is.

So gun murders are at a historic low, but total murders are actually up from last year. This is a good thing? So the point of the law is not actually to make Canadians safer, but just to make sure they die by beating and stabbing instead of by bullet? Alrighty, then…

All this agreement is dull… where are the fanatical anti-gun people when you need one? :slight_smile:

The goals of anti-gun legislation (as with any anti-weapon or anti-self-defense legislation) are:

PR for politicians (“I’m doing something about crime! I don’t know WHAT… but I’m doing SOMETHING!”)

Increasing the public’s feeling of dependence on government agencies, thus justifying ever-greater budgets and job security for those IN said agencies

Making life easier for those agencies by removing confusing issues like “reasonable force” and “justifiable homicide”, and replacing them with simple, binary rules such as “Armed = criminal”.

Enhancing a slave mentality that will make it a lot easier to take away the public’s OTHER rights, by whatever means, whenever the opportunity arises.

Reducing the public’s ability to effectively riot, revolt, or otherwise resist the will of their masters.

Making lots of irrational people feel better
(“I’m scared of guns, so let’s destroy them all! I’m scared of knives, too! And karate! And those little cans of stinging spray! And leather jackets! And black people! And…”)

Finally, as Heinlein put it: “There’s just something in human nature that wants to make EVERYTHING either mandatory or forbidden.”

This is the problem I have with pro-gun types: they’ll sit around and agree with each other, even while some of them are saying pathetic bullshit like this.

Regardless of the question of whether gun laws do any good or not:

  1. People aren’t angels. We’re a mixture of good stuff and nasty stuff. (I know I am, and I’m guessing you aren’t that much more saintly than me.)

What guns do, quite simply, is magnify the ability of a person to do nasty stuff, by enabling him/her to kill or maim someone from a distance. Right now we’re noting the one-year anniversary of Muhammad and Malvo’s rampage through the DC area. Maybe they could have left a similar trail of violence without guns, but it would have taken a lot more work on their part.

No, firearms never jumped up and bit anyone without a human being involved, but so what?

  1. Now, those comparisons with TVs and car seats: what’s up with that? An occasional parent goofs and leaves his/her kid to cook in a car. I’m not worried about a car jumping up and frying my kid, if I ever have one, because that will be under my control. Someone with a gun won’t be.

Stuff like this is always around in abundance when I come into a gun thread, which is one reason why I’ve pretty much stopped bothering. Pro-gun circle-jerkers can’t be bothered with shooting down their own bad arguments. They’re kinda like fundie Christians this way. “Oh, they’ve banned our kids from praying in the schools!” “Guns don’t kill; people do.”

I’ll let you go back to lying to each other.

The problem is that, all too often, the human in question tends to be somewhere between 3 and 10 years old, and he ends up shooting a few siblings and playmates.

Also, I get very tired of the “well, cars kill people, too, but nobody’s suggesting that we ban cars” type of argument. This is a fundamentally bogus comparison. Cars have a beneficial function, i.e., transportation; unfortunately, an occasional side effect is that they crash into things and people, and people get hurt or killed. We should try to improve them, to make them safer. Handguns, on the other hand, have only one function: to kill people. They’re not useful for any other purpose. If we improve handguns, that would mean that they’d simply be more effective at snuffing out lives.

Yes, the existing gun control measures don’t seem to be working. So should we throw up our hands and give up? How about, instead, we ban all handguns entirely. No permits, no waiting periods, nothing - you just can’t buy one, manufacture one, sell one, or possess one.

“Then only criminals will have handguns!” Exactly. Which means that if the police catch someone with a handgun, they can lock him up immediately, instead of waiting for him to shoot someone with it before they can arrest him.

You can not put technology back in the box.

You are not advocating random checks for hand guns are you?

Check points in all buildings?

Car searches at any traffic infraction?

Cops can randomly frisk people on the street?

IMHO it sounds as if you want old ladies and physically weak people to be defenseless from bad people. Or can they have tazers?

Now where did I suggest that we should throw out the 4th Amendment along with the handguns? If a strawman is the best argument you can come up with, you lose.

People more articulate than I have already pointed out the flaws in some progun people’s logic.

In my mind the main problems with guns is that they tend to ESCALATE a situation. No matter what the situation (except perhaps when used by trained professionals in the line of duty - cops for example).

There’s a drunken brawl and two jerks are mad as hell. They may brake some furniture, possible injure one another/by standers.

But give one of those two a gun, and if he gets mad enough he is going to use it, and what could have been some broken noses, injured prides ends up as a slaughter with posisbly one of the combatants dead, or one of the bystanders dead.

a 13 year old can use a hand gun to kill many, many people.

Give that 13 year old a knife or a bat and how many can he kill before being overpowered? 1 person, maybe 2?

I’m all for banning guns. I think our country would be the safer for it.

I don;t think that is a feasible solution currently however. Maybe in the future… But for now, no way. Americans love their guns. Patheticlaly backwards? I certainly think so, but there’s no changing that.

I think gun control laws should try to:

  1. Prevent mentally unbalanced people from owning them.

  2. Prevent known fellons from owning them.

  3. Regulate their sale more strictly.

  4. Provide better education on gun safety/laws as well as educate people on how damaging they can be. (Statistics such as: a hand gun in the home being more likely to kill a loved one that an intruder, is not taught to people enough).

      • This is headed for GD, I can just see it…
  • What country would that be?
  • Assuming you live in the USA, how many guns have you ever bought? These three things are already done, practically as well as can be. Go into any gun shop, lay a fist full of bills on the counter, and tell them you want a gun but don’t want to be bothered with any paperwork.
  • Who came up with those statistics?
    –>The areas with highest firearms-per-capita are rural areas, yet most firearm crimes take place in urban areas, in particular: inner-city areas.
    –>The highest-priced firearms on average are typically owned py people in suburban areas.
    –>The highest-power on average firearms are typically owned by people in rural areas.
    –>The lowest-priced firearms are typically owned by people in urban areas, in particular, inner-city areas.
    –>The highest percentage of illegally aquired firearms are owned by people in urban areas, in particular inner-city areas.
    –>In high gun-crime areas, two other factors which typically occur are high population densities, and high amounts of government welfare.
    –>In fact, you can almost predict what social condition an area is in, just by knowing the population density and the amount of government welfare it gets: high gun crime, high drug use, high alcohol use, high out-of-wedlock birthrates, high rates of single parents, low educational levels, high unemployment and high property crimes (as well as crimes of most other types) all have a strange (?) tendency to reach great levels when you mix goverment welfare money with overcrowded people.
    –>If we were being honest with ourselves, we would also note that most gun crimes take place in places that have high levels of minorities, too–but it would be extreme to make any presumption upon that until we have eliminated all the other factors. Until the welfare money gets cut off, the central cause of the “inner-city crime” situation cannot be known.

To address the OP, if a particular specific thing (whatever it is) hasn’t been done before, it is difficult to successfully predict the results. So what if a certain law was passed that contained whatever restrictions, with a caveat: If this law doesn’t reduce A by X%, B by Y%, and C by Z% in one/two/however many years, it will be automatically repealed? Would that work? I’m not an expert at all; it’s just a thought.

Well the current laws do not seem to be working then.

They should be changed. I’m not saying current laws work. I’m saying they should strive to do what I mentioned. If current laws can’t do that, then I say change them.

Ha ha ha! “Professionals.” “Cops.” That’s a good one!

Sorry, but I know plenty of cops. I’d just as soon trust an armed lawyer, nurse or plumber in any kind of situation that requires shooting back.

My logic: as long as a “good guy” with a gun responds to the scene, who really cares if he or she is a “professional” with a real badge or not?

Defense attorney: “Your honor, my client had a right to shoot the jogger he mistook for a mugger. He’s a good guy.” Judge: “Oh … well, nobody told me. Case dismissed!”

You mean like that?

The “statistic” you quote comes from a flawed study funded by the CDC. The study was so flawed that… well, let me just quote a sentence from the linked article in the OP:

I don’t think those are the kinds of “statistics” we should be spreading.

Oh yeah. Innocent people are never shot by “professional” cops…ahem…Amadou Diallo…cough…

No, I’m thinking more along the lines of someone like Colin Ferguson who decided to target shoot on the LIRR a few years back. Had a “professional” cop taken this guy down with a bullet, he’d be hailed as a hero. I suppose even an armed, off-duty security guard would be hailed as saving countless lives, as well. But, by some twisted logic in our society, if, say, a CPA packing heat had blown Ferguson away anti-gun nuts would be shrieking about Bernie Goetz and the “danger” of the NRA.

Either way, lives are saved. That’s my point. Who cares who’s shooting back at the bad guys?

You have an interesting definition of “often”, since it only happened 111 times in the year 2000. (More than 250 million firearms in the US at last count)

Sure, handguns are never used for anything like hunting, target shooting, or, God forbid, self defense. :rolleyes: