I have a lot of opinions. The problem is, I can’t remember the facts to back them up. For example: gun ownership. I believe individuals have the right to own guns to protect themselves. Why do I believe this? Let me put it this way. We immunize our children against terrible diseases. We do it despite information about possible serious side effects. We do it even though most of these diseases are extremely rare today. We do it because not to immunize our children leaves a chance that they could end up dead. Gun ownership is the same. While the threat is rare (not as rare recently), not to own one could leave us or our loved one’s dead.
These, however, are not facts. They are opinion. The internet is full of information for and against gun control, but where does one look for impartial facts about this topic? Finding a credible site, with comprehensive information about guns, was easier than I thought it would be: justfacts.com
Check it out to see if you agree that Just Facts is an impartial source for information which includes many important subjects, one of which is gun control. The topic of gun control covers everything from: crime and self-defense using a firearm, to differing opinions concerning the constitution and the meaning of the Second Amendment. I have used some information from Just Facts to support my position.
Here we go. One area anti-gun supporters like to talk about is the need for better background checks. The following chart, from Just Facts, summarizes the issues that are covered in background checks. While no system is perfect, this seems through.
Another area of concern, especially when tragedy strikes, is for more strict gun control laws. It is my belief that these laws restrict law abiding citizens, but have little effect on criminals. Just Facts includes information, while somewhat dated, that illustrates this point:
* A 2004 study of state prisoners who possessed guns during crimes for which they were jailed found that the guns were obtained from the following sources:
- 0% through an illegal/street source
- 4% through family or friends
- 3% at a retail store
- 6% at a pawnshop
- 8% at a gun show
- 6% at a flea market.
This shows us that gun laws had no effect on the purchase of 77.4% of the guns purchased by prisoners, yet it effects the ability of 100% of law-abiding gun purchasers to protect themselves and their families.
Now, let’s look at some statistics that show the positive effect of owning a firearm.
* A 1982 survey of male felons in 11 state prisons dispersed across the U.S. found:
- 34% had been “scared off, shot at, wounded, or captured by an armed victim.”
- 40% had decided not to commit a crime because they “knew or believed that the victim was carrying a gun.”
- 69% personally knew other criminals who had been “scared off, shot at, wounded, or captured by an armed victim.”
Gun ownership, or the belief that a potential victim owned a gun, prevented a significant percentage of crimes. Isn’t this why we immunize our children; to “scare off” disease?
I have a lot of opinions. Owning a gun to protect my family, my children from a violent disaster is as important as protecting my children from long dead, but deadly, disease. Ultimately, however, I believe the best answer, the only true answer, is a revival of faith. Those who believe in God know what I am talking about. Those who do not, don’t worry, my prayers for you won’t hurt.