I guess this is an example of “critical thinking” where you come up with objections to an opposing position. That is a very small start.
You need to go further and do the analysis before you can say that there is “something wrong” with the data. You might consider, for instance, that population density is already considered and should largely account for the effects of inner cities anyway. And you don’t even mention that.
But let’s do a little analysis. The easy one to consider is New York. Let’s simplify by saying that half of the population is in the city and assume that there are no homicides in the rural areas - the cited homicide rate of 4 per 100k in the state would then come out as 8 per 100k in the city. That’s still notably less than the 14 per 100k quoted for Kentucky. If we use a population of 9 million for the city and 20 million for the State it still comes out as less than 9 per 100k. That really isn’t looking good for your argument.
Arguing that Kentucky has a higher proportion of people living in inner cities than New York State seems odd - and that is what you were saying. That it would have to be higher than the proportion in New York City is even less plausible. Never mind the fact that Alaska is even worse than Kentucky.
I’m quite definitely right that by the quoted figures the city of New York has a lower rate than the State of Kentucky, let alone Alaska. That’s simple mathematics.
Your problem is that you are no good at actual critical thinking. Which is why boasting that you are so much better than the rest of us was a very silly thing to do.
If you were you would know to dig into the figures. Do they include suicides, for instance ? Where guns are available they are often used to commit suicide, and it’s not unlikely that poor rural communities might have a high suicide rate. I won’t say that is the answer without checking it, but it seems worth checking. That is what real critical thinking involves.
In my opinion the extreme Conservatives are gearing up to destroy democracy. Elections are “tyranny” if their preferred candidates lose. That’s why they want guns, that is the reason for the hate and the lies.
Trump was clearly speaking about the Unite the Right protestors, which included White Supremacists and Nazis. Anyone involved on that side was at the least willing to ally with such people. Thatâ€™s the point of it.
Which doesnâ€™t change the point. You tried to answer a real story with a contrived hypothetical scenario.
quote: My point, which was "quite obvious" if you read it, was that any good argument has a counter-argument.
No, it certainly isnâ€™t obvious that that was your point. You know I was willing to believe you didnâ€™t read Percyâ€™s post carefully and simply assumed that he was talking hypothetically. And apologising for that mistake would have been a good response. This is just digging yourself deeper.
quote: And we can "what-if" something to death
Percyâ€™s story wasnâ€™t a â€œwhat-ifâ€.
quote: The fundamental question is should an idiot's actions get to dictate mine? The answer is no
And I am sure that many people who left guns lying around would ask the same question to justify keeping their guns.
The real question is what benefits does gun ownership offer society to offset the cost. I donâ€™t see that we lost anything worth having here.
quote: Do you honestly believe I've never heard of a story where a kid shoots himself with a gun? You're missing the entire point... which is by that fact, alone, should it dictate the fate of gun ownership. That's Percy's ENTIRE premise, is it not?
Even if it was - and it isnâ€™t - responding with a self-serving â€œhypothetical scenarioâ€ is still a lousy answer. Playing â€œwhat-ifâ€ games is no way to deal with facts.
quote: Do I need to pull up a random article of someone using a gun to kill an intruder in order to justify the logic of it?
That would be better but still poor. Percyâ€™s point is these events are inevitable given widespread gun ownership and they donâ€™t all happen to involve â€œidiotsâ€.
quote: Paul... instead of attacking the substance of an argument, you set off looking for strawmen to set on fire. Oh, its not a hypothetical, its a real story!!
But that isnâ€™t a strawman. You really did dismiss Percyâ€™s point as a â€œhypothetical scenarioâ€ which could be countered by inventing your own. That is the â€œsubstanceâ€.
quote: The underlying argument based on that story IS hypothetical. Because of this happening, that ought to happen in response.
That doesnâ€™t even make sense.
quote: Why don't you ask the military that question. A law or a fundamental right without any teeth is useless. At some point force will have to be applied some of the time. that's just the way life is.
And you still make no sense. Why would the military have any special insight ? The fact that I am living in a country with highly restrictive firearms laws and no signs of any serious ill-effects from that surely speaks louder than anything the military could say.
quote: Ah, so, if I implant a SINGLE murder story that could have been avoided if they were armed, I suddenly validate the whole premise of gun ownership based on that single example?
You really do jump to irrational conclusions. The point is that a real example is better than a purely invented one. Do you really not understand that ?
quote: But what you're suggesting is that I must now only discuss that particular case
Nope. Iâ€™m suggesting that simply inventing scenarios is not an adequate answer to a real example.
quote: Yeah, and murder is inevitable too but we still pass legislation against it... I mean, seriously... what is your point?
So legislation against wide-spread gun ownership would be a good idea ?
quote: The story is real, the moral behind it is hypothetical and debatable
You are going to have to do better than throwing the word â€œhypotheticalâ€ around without any clear point.
quote: The purpose of Percy sharing that story serves as an illustration of why people should not privately own weapons. A child can't shoot themselves without the gun, ergo if you introduce the gun you are responsible for the outcome... ergo guns should not be privately owned. How's that?
Are you suggesting that the gun owner shouldnâ€™t be held responsible? After calling him an â€œidiotâ€ ?
Percyâ€™s point is that people will make mistakes, and widespread ownership of guns means that people will make mistakes with guns. Curbing gun ownership - and public carrying of firearms - will obviously reduce the occurrence of those mistakes.
quote: You seem to believe that guns have zero utility....
No, I believe that very little utility has been lost by the restrictions we have here.
quote: Obviously guns do have a place in society, for however unfortunate that reality may be. As to your country, the one that has headlines about its "knife epidemic," only serves to prove that in the absence of guns people find other ways to kill people... which brings it all back to my central point that the true underlying issue is why people feel compelled to kill in the first place
But it also argues for restricting the more effective means of killing. The mosque shooter in New Zealand went there precisely because New Zealand has less restrictive gun laws than Australia, which nicely illustrates the point.
quote: And what point is that - that crazy people are sometimes determined to find ways of behaving like assholes?
Try reading in context. Restricting the means of killing does make it more difficult for the crazies.
quote: I live in Austin. We had a serial bomber about a year ago. He purchased perfectly legal items to construct bombs. Are you suggesting that its the fault of society or legislators for selling those items legally? My issue with many gun control proponents is that they seize upon a tragedy as an opportunity to go after the gun instead of placing the blame where it actually belongs.
I am suggesting that society weighs up the pros and cons of allowing said items to be sold. I wouldnâ€™t be surprised if the arithmetic came out rather better for those items than it does for guns.
And, in fact, we do restrict many potentially dangerous items far more now than we did when I was young.
quote: You're also blaming New Zealand law and contrasting it with Australia to make a baseless assertion that gun laws actually prevent crazy people from obtaining or using those weapons.
I never said prevent. But certainly Australian gun law was restrictive enough that the â€œcrazyâ€ person decided to go elsewhere, even though it was obviously less convenient in other ways, and Iâ€™m sure heâ€™d rather have done his murdering in Australia.
quote: Russia has some of the strictest gun laws imaginable and their rate of homicide is off the charts. French laws on gun ownership is tightly regulated, but it didn't stop terrorists wielding AK-47's on the streets of Paris.
If this New Republic article is accurate, Russians are allowed to carry rifles for â€œself defenceâ€ ! Also, the laws arenâ€™t that well enforced with about twice as many illegal guns as legal.
As for France I never said that gun laws were a panacea, and a well organised terrorist cell should be able to obtain weapons that are not that easily be available. But death from terrorist attack is hardly the only or the most important issue here.