JS-Kit/Echo comments for article at http://smallestminority.blogspot.com/2007/09/latest-news-from-petri-dish.html (14 comments)

  Tentative mapping of comments to original article, corrections solicited.

jsid-1188967646-579641  Sarah at Wed, 05 Sep 2007 04:47:26 +0000

“This means we can actually take that gun out of circulation and stop it from doing harm,” she said.

This sums up the hoplophobe position right here. The guns do the harm, not the people wielding them.

jsid-1189000661-579654  Kevin Baker at Wed, 05 Sep 2007 13:57:41 +0000


From the appeal to SCOTUS:

"Absent review by this Court, the District of Columbia — a densely populated urban locality where the violence caused by handguns is well documented — will be unable to enforce a law that its elected officials have sensibly concluded saves lives."

Yes, this illustrates the mindset completely. People aren't the problem, it's all those self-willed handguns.

Oh, and "sensibly concluded saves lives"? Fenty wrote in yesterday's WaPo op-ed that the law has saved "countless lives." Well, I guess if you can't count any, then the number is "countless."

How. In. The. Hell can any honest person conclude that D.C.'s gun ban has saved any lives when D.C. has had one of the highest homicide rates in the nation? It's mind-boggling.

jsid-1189002574-579656  DJ at Wed, 05 Sep 2007 14:29:34 +0000

"How. In. The. Hell can any honest person conclude that D.C.'s gun ban has saved any lives when D.C. has had one of the highest homicide rates in the nation? It's mind-boggling."

It's called "The Big Lie". As a technique, it's more than mind-boggling, it's effective, too.

jsid-1189008345-579660  OtherWhiteMatt at Wed, 05 Sep 2007 16:05:45 +0000

That's a staggering, staggering increase. The facts are staring these people in the face. Sometimes I wonder how they can ignore these facts. But since I'm dating one, I can understand it much better. I've only now starting to convince my girlfriend she is wrong on guns. Its not about facts, its all about emotions. "Guns are scary, and they need to be banned. I'm terrified of them." If they would only think instead of going on abject fear, they would realize the foolishness of their position.

jsid-1189011330-579665  DJ at Wed, 05 Sep 2007 16:55:30 +0000

"If they would only think instead of ..."

... describes the root cause of most of the ills that mankind faces. Justice Learned Hand stated it perfectly:

"We shall succeed only so far as we continue that most distasteful of all activity, the intolerable labor of thought."

jsid-1189015744-579667  theirritablearchitect at Wed, 05 Sep 2007 18:09:04 +0000

This kind of cover-up, of course, makes their arguments based on statistics so much more "reliable".

As anyone knows, when control the information, you control the peasants.

It's all quite disgusting, to say the least, but thanks for covering this bit, Mr.Baker. Dragging this rotting corpse out into the sunlight and letting it get its dose of disinfectant is the ONLY way to win this war.

jsid-1189021675-579676  Sarah at Wed, 05 Sep 2007 19:47:55 +0000

Oh, and "sensibly concluded saves lives"? Fenty wrote in yesterday's WaPo op-ed that the law has saved "countless lives."

Well, it's probably saved the lives of countless murderers all over D.C. One can only imagine how much more dangerous it would be if they had to ply their trade without guns.

jsid-1189021769-579677  Sarah at Wed, 05 Sep 2007 19:49:29 +0000

...or if their victims had guns.

jsid-1189023024-579680  Bob R at Wed, 05 Sep 2007 20:10:24 +0000

"How. In. The. Hell can any honest person conclude that D.C.'s gun ban has saved any lives when D.C. has had one of the highest homicide rates in the nation? It's mind-boggling."

I am rather surprised that you would make such an error in logic. D.C.'s high homicide rate does _not_, by itself, in any way say _anything_ about the efficacy of the handgun ban; it is certainly possible that the rate would be much higher if handguns were not banned. I suspect most who favor the ban believe that to be the case; I also think they are wrong -- and that it is irrelevant to the issue at hand.

Predictions on the effect of removing the ban, with or without restrictions on carry, on the homicide rate is subject to great uncertainty. It would seem to be greatly dependent on who is doing the killing and who is doing the dying. If the killer already expects the victim to be armed then not much changes. If the killer previously expected the victim to be unarmed but now thinks it likely the victim will be armed it might go down; then again it might go up because someone is killed who previously would only be robbed/assaulted/whatever.

But none of that matters: the homicide rate is not relevant to the issue. Self defense, and possessing the tools for the same, is a right. The ability to resist tyranny is a right. I, for one, am willing to risk being the victim of a common criminal with a gun where I have a chance to defend myself (with a gun). I hope never to see the day where I have _no_ chance of defending myself from a criminal government (as opposed to the _small_ chance available now).

jsid-1189026912-579685  Kevin Baker at Wed, 05 Sep 2007 21:15:12 +0000

Bob, I understand your point, and I agree with it - HOWEVER:

When you compare the homicide rate of Alexandria VA, which is adjacent to D.C. to D.C.'s rate, it becomes quite apparent what a disarmed victim pool does to crime rates in general, and homicide rates in particular. D.C. is a criminal haven.

Would overturning the D.C. gun ban reduce the homicide rate in D.C.? Honestly, I doubt it. At least not significantly nor rapidly. The toothpaste is out of the tube already on that one. BUT I doubt severely that it will result in an increase either. Criminals know how to do the simple math of risk. Most won't risk getting ventilated unless they have to. They'll just change the kind of crime they do.

jsid-1189291021-579896  DJ at Sat, 08 Sep 2007 22:37:01 +0000

Hey, Kevin, go see http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/comment/columnists/guest_contributors/article2409817.ece

It appeared in the The Times, of all places!

Here's a sample:

"Virginia Tech reinforced the lesson that gun controls are obeyed only by the law-abiding."

I know it's hard to believe, but there it is in black and white.

jsid-1189465719-580030  Kevin Baker at Mon, 10 Sep 2007 23:08:39 +0000

I did. I also left them two comments, neither of which have appeared after two days.

jsid-1189510187-580059  45govt at Tue, 11 Sep 2007 11:29:47 +0000

I left a comment also on the day of publication which didn't appear. Perhaps the Times felt that publishing the article was quite enough of a dose of realism for one day!

jsid-1190230632-580868  Ronald M. Wilson at Wed, 19 Sep 2007 19:37:12 +0000

The U.K. suffers from the same Three Horsemen that we have in Canada - scare mongers, propaganda and ignorance. When in doubt the government relies on the Mark Twain statement, "there are lies, damned lies and statistics." Gun control is obviously a topic with such political cache that any lie to support it is justifiable. Then they wonder why many feel the word politician is a synonym for crook!

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