Month: December 2012

Two numbers to consider

Posted by – December 16, 2012

I’ll keep this short, because I hate writing about politics.

  1. Total number of people murdered by firearms in 2009: 11,493 (source: CDC)
  2. Total number of people murdered by drunk drivers in 2010: 10,228 (source: CDC, again)

Alcohol kills nearly as many people in America each year as guns. Where are the cries for us to ban alcohol? How can we allow this fatal substance into the hands of the criminally irresponsible, who then use it to kill?

The answer to that is obvious to anyone who went to high school. We tried it once, and it didn’t work. People kept right on drinking, and in the end it caused a lot more harm than good. The better solution – the only solution available to us – is to teach people not to be criminally irresponsible. And the best way to do that is for two well-adjusted and loving parents to teach it to their kids.

I’m not passionate about guns. I don’t really want to own one. But I tell you this: were the law to ban the sale and possession of guns tomorrow, I would not feel any safer. I would feel a lot less safe, because now not only would good people be less able to defend themselves (and everyone around them), but we would have a repeat of prohibition on our hands. I can see nothing but bad in it.

You can’t fix society with laws. Laws need virtuous citizens in order to work. You can’t fix mental illness with laws. Mentally unstable people, and the people who love them, need help, not laws.