TOM THE DANCING BUG: Thank Goodness for Goodguy-With-A-Gun!


Well, that’s the fucked up thing about stand your ground laws. Zimmerman may have been legally justified, but if Trayvon Martin had been armed and had shot Zimmerman, he would have been legally justified as well.

Stand your ground laws just encourage people to shoot first and be the last one standing. They’re not just a bad idea, they’re a step backwards: We already have self-defense laws that do a better job at what they’re intended to accomplish, without giving people license to murder.


Not hard data. Anecdotally, I see way more. The NRA has around a dozen a month they showcase. Most of the time people aren’t actually killed. Though I will acknowledge there may be more instances with “good guys with guns” screwing up that don’t make it on my radar, but I don’t think there is evidence to where one can show it is really even an issue. There is evidence actual violent crime by people meaning to do bad things clearly eclipses the amount of times good people do bad things.

Aw, sorry. Maybe when the US collapses from what ever you can get to use the “pitchfork and torch” theory of justice system.

This is less an issue of “stand your ground” and more an issue of the fact the world isn’t black and white and one can’t always be certain 100% what happened.

I also disagree of your assessment that Trayvon would have been justified, if my understanding of what happened was in fact what happened, as it appeared he was the one who engaged in violence first. But like I said, I wasn’t there, I am going to hope that the jury was correct.

I disagree they are a license to murder. But uneven application of the law is a side affect of the justice system being run by human. Indeed I am sure there are people in jail right now involved in illicit activities who ended up killing someone basically in defense. Two criminals who collide and if one didn’t kill the other, the reverse would have happened.

If you are minding your own business, and someone starts following you and behaving suspiciously, and you are unable to escape them, then yes, I do believe Florida’s law would allow you to shoot them.

And with only one living witness, as you said, we would not know what actually happened.


Well that’s exactly what fucking vigilante George Zimmerman did to Trayvon Martin. So enjoy your collapse. Enjoy being the good guy</strike through> asshole with a gun.


When one side discusses medians and the other one counterarguments with outliers, there won’t be any agreement.

If it takes the headlines, it is usually an outlier. Man bites dog and so on.

I’m having a hard time picturing a good outcome.

No, it’s time to put more pressure on elected officials. Lot’s more. Shooting a gun might seem more satisfying and faster than a week-long, round-the-clock protest outside the Governor’s mansion, but it won’t accomplish more, just lead to more death.

You’ve got to admit that the NRA isn’t exactly a reliable source here, right? And anectdotal evidence is kind of…well, not something you can rely on.

Going back to your bit on Australia, you missed the next two charts on the same page.

Chart: Trends in homicide incidents
The figure shows that although there have been fluctuations from year to year, the number of homicide incidents has shown a steady decline since the inception of the NHMP in 1989. 2006-07 saw the second-lowest number of homicide incidents in the collection period.

So, while it’s not as apparent in the graph you used, they do indeed indicate that they believe that the policy in question is resulting in a downward trend.

Meanwhile, @silkox1 posted the information in that same thread that honestly is far more damning than I would have expected consider how many other factors there are in such things.

So at least you can’t deny that firearm deaths correspond nicely to firearm availability.

Similarly, I don’t think you’re going to argue that knifings and bludgeonings ramp up proportionately to firearm deaths. Nobody argues that because it’s much harder to kill people with such weapons, especially for somebody who is untrained and especially accidentally. They also don’t factor into suicides (Gun ownership is a statistical risk factor for suicides)

So ‘ownership in which guns provide a net value to society’ is greatly reduced, (again, unless you’re going to argue the statistical correlation between availability and firearm deaths or that we’d have rampant mass-knifings and knifeacides without them). The suicide risk ALONE is enough to eliminate the value statistically (not anecdotally… but there are reasons why we don’t use anecdotes in the data biz, they mislead people)

So that leaves…what scenarios exactly? Ones where somebody used a gun to prevent an actual murder, right? Not stopping a robbery or a house break in, because people don’t break in to murder you except… (and I will allow for this)…

…there are people who are being stalked by people who are willing to murder them…so battered women and the like.

How large a band of the gun ownership population are these poor women? Are they being properly marketed by the NRA? Or are they not considered a profitable group? What percentage of purchases are they?

I mean…think about it. What’s really going on here?


You’ve got some great stuff in that post, but my eyes were particularly drawn to the chart showing gun ownership/deaths by states, because @Mister44 has a tendency to use data from specific neighborhoods on the south side of Chicago to show that inner-city thugs are proof it’s important to own guns for personal defense, and lo-and-behold, Illinois is in the bottom 8 out of 50. Guess we’re not so dangerous after all, huh?


It’s also interesting to note which states are above and below the trend line. Plenty of Confederates on the bad side of that divide.


I suppose that line is kind of ‘responsible gun owners’, isn’t it?

Looks like the Midwest and Northeast fare well (hunters?) while most everything south of the Mason-Dixon line (i.e. bonus racism-land) is a bit on the reckless side, eh?

1 Like

The problem comes when putting that pressure on elected officials still does nothing. Or when that week long round the clock protest does nothing but make you the butt of jokes on cable news. Or when those protesters are dispersed with tear gas and rubber bullets and nobody notices.

As they say, “Freedom is kept in four boxes: The soapbox, the ballot box, the jury box, and the ammo box”- To which I would add “in that order”. First, you speak out. Then you vote. Then you lobby and litigate to the fullest extent of the legal system. Then, and only then, when all else has failed, you take up arms.

Or, when those other measures are taken from you by violent suppression of protest, by rigged elections, by corrupted courts, then you do whatever is necessary to take those rights back. Violence is a last resort, but not an unthinkable one.


those who make peaceful revolution impossible will make violent revolution inevitable.


What about an end-around?

Use the corporate campus as a mini civilization, use ethical hiring to only invite people who are willing not to ruin other people’s days, gently fire those who don’t get the point…create a civilization of choice rather than one where every idiot’s vote counts as much as a nurse… and so on?

Then you’re competing with Wal-Mart and Unemployment for ‘citizens’, and Citizen’s United and all the laws that are currently in place that benefit corporations become advantages rather than problems.

Next: Primary Stewart/Cobert vs. Colbert/Stewart to nudge laws that benefit one’s modus oprandi, and so on.

Well, actually, you can’t say that with certainty. While that may have been what happened, it is also 100% possible Zimmerman was physically attacked first.[quote=“William_Holz, post:67, topic:71181”]
You’ve got to admit that the NRA isn’t exactly a reliable source here, right? And anectdotal evidence is kind of…well, not something you can rely on.

What I am referring to is something they put in their magazine, each with sources of the story. So yes, I think their stories are accurate. It is usually something you find on page 3 of your local paper or something. Beyond that, yes I see other examples in news sources. I would like to see someone try to collect and get at least a semi-accurate estimate of how often people use guns to stop crimes. Those of course would be the reported crimes, vs the ones not reported. I concede I don’t have hard numbers, but I do have hard numbers that “good guys with gun” aren’t really the problem in the big picture.

Availability is a factor, but I think there is a lot more going on besides just availability. Why are some of the areas in the US with tightest controls have the worst gun crime? Why is there a general down ward trend in murder and crime in the US with out sweep gun reform? While the UK and Australia and others have tighter guns restrictions now, why did their gun crime and homicide come no where near the rate of the US when the two of them had similar laws? Why are the murder rates of many poorer nations with tight gun control still so much higher than the US? That chart shows Mexico, but it is not showing a lot of other nations.

Sorry, I don’t believe in restricting other people so that some people won’t hurt themselves. Which is why I don’t think smoking, alcohol, or drugs should be illegal, even though they hurt many people (both the users and those around them.)

Many gun rights people use this as the paramount reason for having gun right. And it is a valid argument. I take it you have never been assault in real life. Trust me, it isn’t fun. I imagine even those who don’t have a gun have at least something handy they could use as a weapon should someone on try to hurt them in their home.

But my main point - big picture - is you have 80 million + people armed with guns hurting no one each year. Nearly every suggested gun law I have seen would hurt them, not most criminals. Criminals - the main problem with violence and crime - generally do not go through normal channels.

I am not sure how large of a percentage women are in gun ownership. Yes the NRA actually does try to help women interested in both defense and recreational shooting, with women centered programs (i.e. women only training classes). Certainly a gun will give the average women a much more even playing field vs the average man who is armed or unarmed.

But again there are many reasons to own a gun besides defense.

1 Like

That’s not the issue. Those are ANECDOTES. We’re talking STATISTICS. Statistics are what we use because humans are stupid about anecdotes.

Besides, if I could cherry pick the data I could provide anecdotes showing that wearing a seat belt is deadly, or that drinking saves lives.

They don’t belong in the same conversation and anecdotes certainly do not deserve to be treated with the same respect as statistics.

There are always other factors. That doesn’t eliminate the fact that availiability is obviously a strong one. Your nitpicking doesn’t eliminate a strong R-Squared, it’s not in the same league. The reality is that the correlation exists and you can’t pretend it doesn’t.

How about grenades? Can we all have grenades? Nuclear weapons? Toxins? What about samples of anthrax and Ebola?

Everybody interested in a civilized society believes in some limits, you’re just not believing in a specific set of them.

Meanwhile, you’re discounting a statistically significant issue. Suicides are prevented by lack of availability of easy ways to commit it and a suicide prevented (2/3 of gun deaths) is somebody who can have an amazing life afterwards and one that happens is one that often leaves a lot of broken lives in its wake.

And don’t you dare say that easy access to things that help people commit suicide is okay because they’re suicidal or anything stupid like that. That’s getting in to personal territory and I won’t just be hitting you with statistics. That’s a bullshit argument to make.

First of all, don’t ‘take it I haven’t experienced something’ as if it’s meaningful. Been there, done that, stayed a grown up. That’s a petty argument. Lots of people have suffered far worse and still don’t feel the need to endanger others.

Which again, completely ignores the statistical component and goes back into anecdote land.

Which is, again, supporting the stupid part of our brains rather than the part that helps overcome that stupidity.

Now look, I’m not saying that guns are our primary health issue…obviously cars blow them away (among other things), but firearms are a statistically significant one that clearly parallels availability. The only problem with them is they’re treated like some sort of ‘sacred cow’ because of a selective interpretation of the 2nd amendment. This is a disease we’re not allowed to even try to cure and honestly people blindly listening to the NRA and trying to fight statistics with anecdotes and deliberately misleading graphs gets on my nerves. It’s not supposed to matter what you WANT to believe when you see the chart in the earlier post, especially when it’s about people dying.

That’s when we’re supposed to try to overcome the flaws in our brain and listen to people who are professionals at overcoming their flaws…and actuaries have risk multipliers for firearm availability and they’re better than either of us at overcoming our emotions.


I have some friends here who carry. I feel much safer with either of them around.

Anecdotally, or statistically? That sounds like another anecdote, which is exactly what I’ve been saying we shouldn’t be relying on.

Are we sure they’re not more likely during the course of their lifetimes to hurt somebody else or themselves? They’d be the exception to the rule if they were a net positive…and while it’s always possible that they’re outliers, outlier analysis doesn’t apply to entire populations. Again, that’s why we have data and analytic techniques.

I’d feel a lot safer if I could drive an M1 Abrams to work…doesn’t mean it’s a good idea for society or those around me.


Anecdotally, but in this case it is good enough for me. Statistics lie and aren’t always reliable.

Also, a single evening with a friend at a range is much more fun than all the antigunners in the world, despite the ammo cost.

They’re always more reliable than anecdotes, and we have lots of good ones here. There are also plenty that demonstrate that people overestimate their capability and underestimate the risks of their actions consistently.

Totally not the same thing as inconsistently trained people carrying weapons around civilians who aren’t and haven’t bought into the idea of civilians with guns around them. That scares a lot of people (for good reasons).

Ranges can be awesome. Heck, I’m all for stepping those up a notch.


This topic was automatically closed after 5 days. New replies are no longer allowed.