Re: Science Saturday: Taking the Plunge
It really does seem there are liberals who think a gun works like a talisman out of a Stephen King novel: it will summon you in the middle of the night to "shoot the dog." I think Will Wilkinson said something across those lines on a bloggingheads installment. Then I read about research suggesting that simply having a gun in a room causes people to exhibit more aggressive behavior.
I'm not sure why we can't have a reasonable discussion about reasonable controls, perhaps because it sounds all too reasonable. Why does anyone need a 30+ capacity magazine? Doesn't the NRA say that hojillians of criminals are deterred simply by flashing a firearm? So why the fuck do you need to fire that many bullets?
Let's just admit that people like guns because they're way fun. As Homer Simpson observed, "Marge, you don't understand. I felt this incredible power holding a gun. The kind of power God must feel when He's holding a gun."
As for confounding variables, the social science is always going to be ridiculously complicated. Gun control people can argue that D.C. banned guns as a reaction to rising crime (and anyone can travel down to Virginia to buy one).
Just have laws on licensing and training. If we're going to be a nation of gun owners, then why not a nation of responsible gun owners?