Monday, December 17, 2012

Why Banning Guns is a terrible response to Connecticut

I've discussed mass casualty events before and why banning guns isn't a solution.  If you're interested, do a quick search and read the posts.

I had a new thought on it, though, and decided to share.  I never want to be a victim of a mass casualty atrocity, but if I had to choose one, I'd choose a shooting.  Why?  Because you can not shoot back to stop a bomb like the ones used in the 1927 Bath School Disaster in Michigan. 

Some people have wondered why the recent Clackamas Oregon mall shooting wasn't worse.  The guy was armed for boar, so he should have killed more people.  It appears as though the very presence of potential opposition, without any shots ever being fired by a CCW holder, may have ended the atrocity. 

We don't want crazy people to start making bombs.  If I were forced to make a choice, I'd rather face a gun and I'd rather face it armed so I can help save my life and the lives of innocents around me. 

More bans won't stop people who already choose to obtain firearms (most often illegally) and then use them in a manner that is positively illegal.  Anyone who derives any sense of security from the idea of government taking away from lawful people the right and tools to defend themselves and others has some serious thinking to do on the topic.



tom said...

I'll take bombs. Probably the most important reason why mas murderers choose semi-automatic firearms as their weapon of choice is that it's easy for the shooter and difficult for law enforcement to prevent. Once someone has access to a gun and he wants to kill someone, there isn't a heck of a lot anyone can do to stop him. He might get cut short, but until he starts shooting, there's very little that can be done to prevent it.

Bombs, on the other hand, are hard. It takes a while to gather the materials and construct the device(s), and set them up and the likelihood that a would-be bomber will blow himself up in the process is pretty high. Plus, it's much more likely that the construction of the bomb will be detected.

All you have to do is imagine the difference with this recent situation in Connecticut. The shooter probably decided a few days before on what he was going to do, he sketched a simple plan in his head and did it. But as dumb as his mother apparently was, even she probably wouldn't have been dense enough not to notice if her kid was building a bomb. And in any case, he probably didn't have the patience or know-how to build such devices. Mass shooters are opportunistic and easy access to guns is an opportunity.

So as I said, I'll take the bombs.

Mark said...

You don't seem to be able to read, or you're just being dishonest. Andy was talking of "facing a gun". Which means you're at the site where everything is already prepared.

While I agree that the mother made some big mistakes, I have no idea how "dumb" she was.

tom said...

That I misread the post or am dishonest might be two options. Another option is that you didn't think this through. It's obvious that he's talking about being on the site when everything's prepared. Equally obvious is that what happens in those moments is in part determined by the weapons available to the terrorist. "We don't want crazy people to start making bombs." The clear implication is that there's no point in banning firearms, because a potential attacker will then resort to bomb-building (or the purchase of illegal firearms), which Andrew believes is more dangerous. I dispute that for the reasons I gave. I think history backs me up on this too. Granted, a competent and patient bomb-maker (like McVeigh and his buddies) can kill more people than a shooter on a rampage. But most would-be attackers aren't that competent (Klebold and Harris made use of many bombs; as far as I know all casualties were from firearms) and with the easy availability of semi-automatic weapons, they don't need to be competent.

Mark said...

Nah, clearly you *did* read the post and are simply dishonest. Pretending to be in a discussion while rejecting the premise, without explicitly doing so. In other words, not someone worth having a conversation with.

tom said...

As much as I hate to come back to this, I can't let the dishonesty charge stand. As you perceive, I have not explicitly rejected the premise. That's because I don't reject the premise. (Which I understand to be that, all other things being equal, it's better to be in a dangerous situation in which self defense is a possibility, than to be in a dangerous situation in which self defense is not a possibility.) There's a lot to talk about with that premise, but I suppose it's true, even if the set of circumstances are rather narrow. But that's not what I was disputing. I was only disputing the idea behind "we don't want crazy people to start making bombs." I dispute that because dangerous situations would be less likely to come about if crazy people had to make bombs.