Gun control is dumb (not politics)

As promised, I’m not doing politics again on this blog. I’m not making a moral choice or contemplate about uncertain social engineering methods. However the gun control morons are here again after the Las Vegas shooting and I want to do my part in putting an end to that logical nonsense.

They say that without guns there would be much less gun violence and much less deadly violence in general, since guns make it much easier to kill people than knives and bats. This part is true. In my country, Hungary, it’s very-very hard to get guns and the homicide rate is 1.48 deaths per 100K people per year while 4.88 in the USA. Only 9% of the homicides are done by guns (Hungarian source), almost two times more people are killed with bare hands and 6 times more with knives.

Well, the numbers show that gun control works then? No! It shows that total collection of guns works. Since the communists collected all the guns and hiding guns led to serious time in jail, it’s virtually impossible for a common citizen or a common criminal to get guns so they can’t commit gun violence. So the data proves that if one could collect all the guns in the USA, gun violence would nearly disappear and all homicides would drop. But that’s not what the gun control morons suggest. Mostly, because it’s impossible to do it without a civil war, considering how important guns are to many American people. Also, it’s practically impossible since hiding a small handgun is easy.

Due to the impossibility of collecting all guns, the gun control morons suggest a “smaller step”: collecting/banning some guns and accessories (magazines, suppressors, full auto converters). After all, a small step in the right direction makes the things better, right? Wrong! The criminal gun violence rate depends on two factors:

  1. guns in the hand of criminals (the harder it’s to get guns, the less criminals will have it)
  2. no guns in the hand of the target or heroic bystanders (the harder it’s to get guns, the less lawful people will have it)

Mathematically Crime = Pcriminal*(1-Pcitizen) + Pcriminal*Pcitizen/2, the first tag means armed criminal met unarmed citizen, the second is armed criminal met armed citizen and won the 50-50 firefight. (very rudimentary model, but will do)

Please note that even in totally gun-free Hungary, there is gun homicide, no matter how low the rate is. If someone really want something, he can get it. He can smuggle, he can make a deal with foreign actors, he can manufacture it himself or go to a WWII battlefield with a metal detector. This is an evidence to an obvious fact: if getting guns is difficult, criminals will more likely have guns than lawful citizens. So let’s draw two arbitrary graphs about gun ownership between good citizens and criminals vs gun control:
guns

As mentioned, the criminals reach full gun ownership early, as they really want guns. Most citizens at that difficulty level say “I won’t bother”. This creates a maximum at the criminal gun violence rate: before that the criminals are not fully armed, after that the citizens are more likely armed.

Hungary is clearly down on the left, enjoying low gun violence. The USA is way over the maximum, which means that decreasing gun availability (more gun control) would increase criminal gun violence rate: the criminals would still be armed and their targets would not be.

Saying “collect all guns at the penalty of years in prison” is a political choice that one can make. Once the costs are paid (including killing those who really mean “from my cold dead hand” and searching every place), the USA would be less violent without doubt. As I’ve said, deciding this is political, moral choice. But saying “let’s increase gun control” is just stupid: it would just make things worse. The only logical alternative of “collect all guns” is “more guns, more training and designing every event assuming that armed criminals or irresponsible guys can be around”.

Author: Gevlon

My blog: https://greedygoblinblog.wordpress.com/

22 thoughts on “Gun control is dumb (not politics)”

  1. I know this will read very insensitive, however I will say it clearly. The price of freedoms is acts like this. I use a very specific term here “like” on purpose. How many guns did timothy McVeigh have? How many guns did the highjackers have, and other “unreported” terrorist attacks through the history of the US (yes I consider several “accidents” at or around munitions to most likely be terrorist or enemy attacks). The real problem, is this simple yet true sentence, “those that sacrifice freedom in the name of safety neither deserve or get either”. I can tell you the federal building in Kansas City was a very safe building metal detectors, security guards and the whole show. It was so safe that people didn’t even bother to worry about any “possible” threat…..

    One last thing: You can’t stop crazy unless you are lucky or they make a mistake.

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  2. Where in that model is room for police/armed citizens shooting other armed citizens in an active shooter scenario? Because it is surely > 0 and can only possibly increase the more prevalent that guns are.

    That said, this country did nothing but threw up its collective hands after someone walked into a school and murdered twenty (20!) 1st-graders about 5 years ago. Any possible sanity on the subject of guns was irrevocably lost that day, IMO.

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  3. It’s neither.
    What works is population homogeneity. Hungary is pretty much over 90% Hungarian in every county (Um… what do you call population regions there?)

    Where I live in the US, we have over 95% population homogeneity, and even after compensating for low population, the murder rate here is under 1 per 1ooK. Guns? We ALL have guns. 300 miles north east of here? In Saint Louis? Not so much. They are experiencing a murder rate of 60 per 100K this year. Ouch.

    The math is tragic, but not complicated.

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  4. Your model appears to be incorrect in that it only addresses one-one-one encounters between an armed criminal and a citizen / victim. It doesn’t consider other gun-related deaths which make up a large proportion of the total:
    1. Mass shootings, like the Las Vegas one – armed citizens almost never stop a mass shooter, it’s almost always the police. Therefore having more armed citizens doesn’t help, and only makes the situation worse when a citizen unexpectedly turns in to a shooter, by making it easier for them to obtain guns.
    2. Domestic violence – “I didn’t mean to kill my wife, I just got so mad and there was a gun in my bedroom…”
    3. Accidental shootings – “I didn’t mean to shoot my brother, I was just playing with Dad’s gun I found, and I didn’t know he was behind the tree I shot at…”

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  5. In Russian we have the term “fronderstvo” (will use pretend-english verb “fronding”). This term basically shows a claim to power and societal change that originates from people who don’t have sufficient backing or legitimacy and are trying to do way too little for the stated goals.
    Just as you described, proper gun control is total gun control. Done properly, it is the best way, but if you don’t do it properly, then it is better to not do it at all.
    However, these situations are exactly the kind of situations where fronding can get you good local political benefits. You can align yourself with some idea of a better future while getting in situational good graces of those who would prefer an improper realization for their own ends.
    Gun control can be dumb on a level of a nation (an inherently social level), but for a single asocial rational politician it is often the best move.

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  6. @Provi Miner: I have to disagree. There are many free countries without guns. I actually consider my own, Hungary more free than the USA, because we are not bound by a 200+ years old document or 9 judges placed there for a lifetime. If tomorrow I’d have the idea to force everyone wear pink ballet dancer skirts an could collect 200K signatures to initiate a referendum AND 50% of the citizens vote for it, than within one year from my original idea, “we the people” implement this new law and people all wear pink ballet dancer skirts. Good luck with that in the USA. … On the second thought, maybe that’s why the US citizens need guns, because otherwise they would be totally oppressed by nonelected lawyers.

    @Azuriel: not zero, but also you should consider when an active shooter doesn’t happen because the would-be shooter afraid of being retaliated.

    @Smokeman: homogenity helps avoiding conflicts. But conflicts will happen and guns still play a part, so these are unrelated issues. Hungary has the same amount of gypsy population (around 10%) as the USA has blacks and they are equally overrepresented in prison population and often show up in the news performing violence with knives, bats and fists. But I can’t remember guns and the murder rate is still low, because most knife attack victims live. Some of course not.

    Assaults reported to police in Hungary is 127/100K, 240 in the USA. That’s 1.9x difference, while homicide rate is 3.2x higher. So an assault in the USA is nearly twice as likely to end in death as in Hungary and indeed guns are to blame.

    @Rohan:
    1: mass shootings if stopped are not mass and don’t get much attention. Remember when the 3 soldiers on vacation stopped that ISIS terrorist on the train. Or the Antioch, Tennessee church shooter was stopped by a citizen after 1 death, despite he clearly meant to kill everyone.

    2: people with domestic abuse record are already banned from having guns but it doesn’t mean anything if they can get one easily . While I agree that this is a serious problem, it’s again just an argument for total gun collection, not “gun control”, which is in effect and failed.

    3: no contest, but such events are acceptably low.

    @Maxim: great point. I never considered that politicians can demand gun control just for points, while knowing it’s stupid. I always think too highly of them.

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  7. Mass shootings are rarely stopped by armed citizens because they pick targets that have banned guns. Schools, malls etc.
    When it comes to mass murders, one could kill 20 first graders with a machete just as surely as with a gun.
    If every teacher was obligated by law to carry a loaded gun there would be no school shootings.

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  8. A suggestion: drop these pointless disclaimers and instead amend your “no more politics” resolution to the thing you are actually doing – writing about political topics without casting value judgments/making moral choices from a position of ignorance of the consequences of said choices. Politics is the mindkiller, but only if you spend your time passionately arguing over good/evil and which tribe should be in charge next time around. Nothing wrong with regular old analysis.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. @Gevlon
    Almost all of the mass shooters eventually turn the gun on themselves. “Retaliation” is clearly not a deterrent, as they walk into these situations fully prepared to die.

    @stawek
    When it comes to mass murders, one could kill 20 first graders with a machete just as surely as with a gun.

    Uhh… no? It would take considerably longer, and there would be more opportunity to flee. As evident by the body count of any mass stabbing compared to a similar gun incident.

    If every teacher was obligated by law to carry a loaded gun there would be no school shootings.

    That is one of the dumbest things I have ever seen asserted. Any school shooter would merely need to shoot the teacher first, and will still have free reign on the rest of the students in that classroom (and an extra gun). Meanwhile, classrooms themselves will manifestly become less safe now that there is a gun in each one, e.g. a gun that could be stolen by a student, accidentally discharged, etc. And, seriously, assuming you are out of high school, just think about all the teachers you have had from grades 1-12. Now imagine all of them armed. Do you feel safer? Even with the 60-year old English teacher that forgets her glasses on her own head?

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  10. How well does your model fit real world examples of gun controls have been enacted on armed civil populations? Did the 2006 prohibition on Israeli soldiers from taking their weapons home with them or the 2007/8 disarmament of the Swiss Militia result in an increase in gun crime? Your model would imply US states gun restrictions would be at peak homicide (since criminals would be at 100% ownership due to porous borders) yet they have lower levels of gun crime.

    Additionally, gun controls are not all or nothing in spite of how the argument is presented. Arming good guys might keep people safe but that doesn’t imply unrestricted access to weaponry is best. Anti-gun control measures mean that the police cannot pull the serial number off a gun and lookup who bought it. Anti-gun control measures bans nearly all federal research into gun violence.

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  11. las vegas hotels do have security. they have to because of the very nature of Las Vegas. they have the most security cameras of any private sector! jesus fucking crist how the fuck will they play down that part.

    how do armed citizens defend themselves in this scenario? kevlar? if several hundred meters from some hotel floor a guy stacked allegedly 40+ automatics over the course of 5 days, without anyone informing the police? no pistol can cover the distance with the needed accuracy. As far as information till now about the firearms and magazines, none can produce what we hear in live footage. besides a ton of other questions about motive, story and false information reporting.
    This to me is clearly rouge. with all the misinformation nearly everything will be unclear about this shooting. The response tho is just perfectly polarising as fuck with a clear agenda. If someone should take anything out of this, take this as a sign to arm yourself and family to the best of your ability. I don’t think there will be a civil war but with the 100y anniversary of bolshevik revolution around the corner … better safe than sorry.

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  12. An author I like used to own a gun store and is a self-described “gun nut.” He had this to say about gun control back after Sandy Hook. It’s pretty long, but I think he makes good points.

    He addresses the whole “mass shootings don’t get stopped by civilians” thing and points out just what you said above — the armed civilians stop it before it becomes mass, so it’s not reported as much. He lists a stat of average deaths of 14 when police stop one, vs 2.5 when civilians stop it, but I don’t know his source for that, though.

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  13. @stawek: arming the teachers can be a good idea if it comes with mandatory training.

    @Azuriel: “retaliation” is a bad word. “stopping is”: guy starts shooting someone shoots back and he stops shooting because he is too busy being dead

    There are dozens of teachers in a school, so they would greatly outnumber any shooter except for a terrorist platoon.

    @Dobablo: I don’t know. Maybe you should look it up and provide a valuable comment.

    @Anon: imagine that just 1/20 of the concert goers have a sidearm with 8 bullets. That’s 80000 bullets fired within 10 seconds towards the shooter. I don’t think he would keep shooting after that (along with everyone who were at the window between floors 25-40).

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  14. There were people carrying firearms at the concert. I guarantee it. Off duty police attending, some of the musicians/crew, that sort of thing. People didn’t shoot back because there was no point. Hitting a target with a hold-out pistol at 300 meters with a vertical difference of 80+meters? No way, no how.

    There were folks carrying at the 2011 mass shooting in Tucson, AZ when a congresswoman got shot in the head, too. They didn’t have a clear shot, so didn’t take it. The 4 laws of gun handling are preached in all firearms classes: 1. The Gun Is Always Loaded! 2. Never Point The Gun At Something You Are Not Prepared To Destroy! 3. Always Be Sure Of Your Target And What Is Behind It! 4. Keep Your Finger Off The Trigger Until Your Sights Are On The Target!

    Stephen Paddock planned out his attack well in advance, spending a lot of time and money, but got ‘sub-optimal’ results IMHO. If he’d taken that Cessna he owned, loaded it up with homemade napalm or explosives and flown it into the festival, the death toll would have been much higher.

    The final point is that there’s no way to confiscate all firearms in the USA. All attempts to outlaw various types have resulted in higher crime rates (and more criminals, as some of the ‘good’ citizens refuse to obey). It’s been seen that the majority of folks won’t register their firearms when required, let alone turn them in. Voluntary collections have also failed to make a difference. (Those are great opportunities for an entrepreneur with some ready cash, so I’m all for the voluntary collections to continue.) For that matter, a firearm can be improvised with a bit of knowledge and basic tools/hardware. The technology is hundreds of years old, after all.

    Americans are stuck with guns. It’s been instilled in our culture from the start.

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  15. “Well, the numbers show that gun control works then? No! It shows that total collection of guns works.”
    This is just plain wrong.
    I’ve lived in Australia for 15 of the last 20 years.
    Following our own string of loonies with powerful weapons, we enacted gun control laws and a buyback scheme to remove some of the unwanted weapons.
    Before we look at the effects, it’s good to understand what actually happened.
    It’s still very easy to buy a gun in Australia.
    Attached is the catalogue for Nioa firearms – all of this stuff is legal.
    https://www.nioa.com.au/

    Farmers, target shooters, hunters – you can own longarm guns no problem.
    I’ve got a shotty – my brother in law has around 10 at his small farm.
    I know friends who regularly go hunting for roo or pigs.

    What is illegal and punished is
    owning self-loading weapons
    Owning handguns (exemptions for target shooters and security guards, etc)
    storing guns outside of gunsafes
    Commiting crimes while armed

    Look at results:

    Between 1991 and 2001, the number of firearm-related deaths in Australia declined 47%.[40]

    In 2014, 35 people were victims of firearms homicide,[41] compared to 98 people in 1996.[42]

    Suicide deaths using firearms more than halved over the ten years, from 389 deaths in 1995, to 147 deaths in 2005.[43] This is equal to 7% of all suicides in 2005

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  16. @MrTweell: before Columbine the police protocols at hostage situations were to contain, surround and wait for SWAT, allowing the juveniles to keep killing inside the surrounding building. This was changed to “even a single officer must engage the active shooter”. Probably it’s time to change the civilian guildlines too in case of indiscriminate shooting: rain fire on the approximate direction of the assaulter, even if it endangers bystanders. If 1000 people fire pistols on him from 300 meters, he would be dead in seconds, along with a few people in nearby rooms standing at the windows instead of 60 dead, 500 wounded.

    @Buboe: all crims are in a donward trend. For example Australian rapes down from 91.6 in 2003 to 28.6 in 2010. If there are less violent assaults, less will escalate into a gun violence even if the people are equally armed.

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  17. @Buboe According to Gevlon’s model, Australia is on the left of the chart where gun controls work. Australian is a mostly urban country where guns are owned by farmers and rural inhabitants. The urban dwellers are not tucking their handguns away in a bedside table to anywhere near the extent of the US.
    That said the gun buy-back was a hugely successful gun control measure, greatly reducing the number and impact of mass shootings, and producing immediate results in reducing gun-related suicide by 74%. Even taking into account general reductions in violent crime the gun homicides rate fell 35-50% but the low baseline murder rate means it is nigh impossible be reach statistical significance.

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  18. @Anon: imagine that just 1/20 of the concert goers have a sidearm with 8 bullets. That’s 80000 bullets fired within 10 seconds towards the shooter. I don’t think he would keep shooting after that (along with everyone who were at the window between floors 25-40).

    Well I don’t know how powerful Hungarian handguns are …

    https://res.cloudinary.com/stephens-media/image/upload/v1507011989/web_Strip-shooting-map-Oct2-17.jpg

    1400 feet so 466,6667 yards and a more readable distance 426,72 meter
    I highly doubt anyone in that crowd could take the shot. if they all would carry a rifles, ok sure maybe. low calibre handguns I wouldn’t take the shot it would be ridiculously irresponsible to think to hit anything with accuracy on that distance.
    btw, the glass-windows are not armoured. so you have 80k bullets peppering roughly the whole facade of the hotel, hitting innocent people watching out of the hotel window. good call? Americans are gun-ho but not that gun-ho I presume.

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  19. I hope I’m the only person here who has actually shot somebody.

    Let me tell you something: I am the safest being you could know around guns. I thank God that my aim wasn’t better. Fortunately this issue was considered a gun accident, and fortunately it only resulted in a minor flesh wound.

    However, the lesson is clear for me. EVERYONE needs educated on gun safety. They also need educated on death. Death is not pretty. It’s not neat and clean like the movies depict. The act of taking life, whether that of a venomous snake or a human being is a gruesome ordeal.

    Those that can enjoy this process should probably get serious psychiatric help – and not be permitted to own weapons.

    However, removing guns will not remove violence. In fact, I have killed far more snakes with a rock than I have a bullet. You’re going to have a hard time legislating stones out of circulation.

    Don’t laugh. You think mass murder can’t be done with rocks? This is why we’re even having this debate. You clearly need educated.

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  20. However, the lesson is clear for me. EVERYONE needs educated on gun safety. They also need educated on death.

    I’m not US, so I don’t know.
    I thought that guns are like cars. you and your gun have to be registered and you have to be tested and certified to carry and use guns? I mean cars have to be registered and changed on selling a car to someone else and you have to be trained and certified to drive a car. Not that anything like this would have prevented or countered the attack in Las Vegas.

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  21. They of course do not believe in just mild regulation, they say that to incrementally move towards a total ban.

    Here’s a hidden cam video of a DNC delegate admitting the true plan.

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  22. “I’m not US, so I don’t know.
    I thought that guns are like cars. you and your gun have to be registered and you have to be tested and certified to carry and use guns?”

    You are mistaken. Driving a car is not a right. It is a privilege. One that can be easily taken from you should you prove irresponsible (Too many DWI’s, get behind on your child support payments, etc..).

    To preserve our God-given freedoms and inalienable rights, the US Constitution enumerated the right of every citizen to bear arms. The language is specific to permit a “civil populace” the means to form a civil army (militia), regulated by State governments (not Federal). Below is why we need guns in America:

    “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal; that they are endowed by their Creator with inherent and inalienable rights; that among these, are life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness; that to secure these rights, governments are instituted among men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed; that whenever any form of government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the right of the people to alter or abolish it, and to institute new government, laying its foundation on such principles, and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their safety and happiness.” –Declaration of Independence as originally written by Thomas Jefferson, 1776. ME 1:29, Papers 1:315

    How can you abolish a “destructive” government if the populace lacks the means to forcefully removing it from power? I should think the “civil war” in Syria answers this question rather well.

    This isn’t a matter of feeling good. It isn’t a simple matter of “regulating guns.” To mess with guns in America is to mess with the very founding principles of our country. I don’t mind dialogue on the topic, but one should tread with great care whenever giving opinions that change entire freedoms in a nation.

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