Interesting, though notably missing from the analysis is why you would need a gun at all, but that’s just my leftie bias towards objective data. For another day.

Instead, I offer another feather for your cap. After a particularly contentious internet debate, I went back through all deaths and injuries caused by long rifles that I could find, and then set those numbers against the assault weapons ban of 1994. What I found was interesting, for proponents of both sides.

For the pro-control lefties, like myself, we could see that deaths fell by more than 50%, injuries by nearly 75% — a gun ban worked, quite well. All of the scare tactics of the effect of grandfathered weapons being more available to criminals and similar arguments fall predictably flat. I don’t claim you’d get same results with a total ban just based upon that one data point, but with other examples, I think it’s likely it would be effective. (I also think it’s politically impossible — not unlikely, but impossible, and as such, spending political capital on it is especially wasteful).

And for the pro-gun righties, I found that long rifles are not the existential threat they’re made out to be. Even in years with ‘large outlier events’ (a lovely euphemism for ‘devastating mass shooting’), long rifles almost never claim more than 100 lives a year, frequently limited to a few dozen. Assuming a total ban would eliminate that number to zero (a claim even I’d never make), we could save more lives with our efforts turned to legislating that beds be no more than six inches off the ground (saving the ~400 lives lost to bed-to-floor falls) or responsible bee/wasp measures to help curtail the 60 annual deaths they bring.

I agree that there’s a massive amount of misinformation surrounding the attempts to legislate the “AR-15" and the like, and you’ve done a great job to help clear much of that up. Keep telling your friends that you are like most Americans — you want your rights preserved, while maintaining a healthy and reasonable respect for public health and it’s sometimes bothersome needs.

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Politics, philosophy, culture. Just trying to make the world a better, place. BS Finance. Follow me everywhere @MFrancisWrites. “I know that I know nothing.”

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