Friday, March 22, 2013

Skewing the Statistics

Here we have a dispatch from the world of GUNS! GUNS! GUNS! A 66 year old man in Centereach, NY, on Long Island, was arrested for possessing more than 300 unlicensed guns. The gun owner had a federal license to sell firearms, which expired nine years ago. Many of the guns were loose and loaded.

Gun nuts like Mr Steiner of Centereach, illustrate recent trends in gun ownership- more guns are owned by fewer gun owners. Most people don't even own a gun, let alone many guns that would necessitate an entire rack. An article posted at Think Progress about the decline of gun ownership and, extrapolating from this, the declining power of the National Rifle Association, attracted the attention of serial dumbass and Seeker of the Holy Gree-ul Bobo Wens, who just had to post his dumbassery in the comments... here's his opener:


This is one of the most unintentionally amusing things I've read in a long while. Do you actually believe your own propaganda?

In regards to your survey data, people have become especially sensitive to the threat of gun confiscation under an Administration that created a gun-walking plot that has claimed 300+ Mexican lives in hopes of further gun control. While the number of guns sold and number of shooters continues to grow, people are far less likely to tell outsiders the number of firearms they own, or even admit they own firearms, to a survey company.

Here in the real world, every gun shop I'm in contact with has added extra sales staff. Some have opened additional locations. Walmart has re-added firearms to many of their stores to capitalize on increased demand, and are now even carrying AR-15-based "modern sporting rifles."



Of course, the plural of anecdote is data. I wonder how many loaded, unsecured guns President Obama's "jack booted thugs" will find in his double wide.

9 comments:

ifthethunderdontgetya™³²®© said...

Guns on the roof
~

mikey said...

Hmmm. I will certainly bow to no one in my loud and repeated demands for much more stringent, EFFECTED firearms regulations. The firearms policy in the United States is nothing short of insane, one of only four nations in the world with a constitutional guarantee that utterly limits the ability of federal and state governments to regulate firearms ownership and possession.

That said, the position that owning multiple firearms is somehow stupid or aberrant or indicative of some kind of mental instability or self-esteem issue is simple-minded and demonstrably false.

First of all, until we can get some kind of consensus, it IS legal to own guns - we're stuck with that, so gun owners are not by definition criminals.

Second, if you have an interest in firearms - most people who know me know I do, and always have - you would not choose to only own one or two. They are interesting mechanically, historically, ballistically and as a perfectly reasonable and challenging form of recreation. Just like anything else, from music to cars to pez dispensers, if you have an interest it is not in any way weird or even surprising that you should own more than one.

Sometimes I just have to call out this easy generalization. Our gun laws are stupid and lead to much unnecessary death and suffering. But it is the LAWS that are the problem, the ease and low cost of acquisition, particularly of handguns. It is lazy and thoughtless to take the position that means that all people who legally own firearms are in some way defective.

They are not...

Helmut Monotreme said...

It's true that in the highly charged debate about gun control it's easy to make sweeping generalizations and condemnations. I understand collecting. I have seven pairs of downhill skis. But there has to be a line between collecting and hoarding. My grandfather, the man who taught me everything I know about marksmanship, (everything you can learn in two or three afternoons of plinking at glass bottles with a .22 rifle) had several assorted rifles and shotguns. But he didn't have thirty or forty times the number of guns he could use. You could fit his entire collection in the trunk of a sedan, and he stored them in a locked closet, unloaded. We can agree that if you are big into collecting, you may accumulate a collection that seems big to people who don't share that interest, but at 300+ guns stored all over the house in a loaded state, I'm pretty sure that crosses the line into hoarding.

mikey said...

I think THAT is completely fair. I really didn't set out to defend the jackass Mr. Bastard writes about in this post, or any other jackass. Rather, I wanted to point out the tendency of people among the anti-gun left to sometimes equate gun ownership with stupidity, weakness, mental instability, bigotry or just outright evil. We're the people who are supposed to see things as they are, not through an ideological lens...

OBS said...

There are "gun nuts" -- the guy BBBB talks about. These are people that think their hoard will save them from the jack-booted UN black helicopters and blahs with Obamaphones (those are really mind control devices). Y'know, Michele Bachman and her "second amendment remedies" folks.

There are also "people nuts about guns" -- collectors like you mikey. I think what strikes some of us as odd about gun collectors is the same thing that strikes us odd about cabbage-patch-kid collectors. It's just a bit weird. Cabbage-patch-kids are weird and creepy, and a house full of them is weird and creepy. Guns are implements of death and are weird and creepy, and a house full of them is weird and creepy.

Then there are people like me that have some guns but don't necessarily care about them one way or another. We inherited them, or once lived on a farm so got a .22 rifle for plinking and shooting the occasional varmit. I'm even kind of creeped out by my own "collection" of guns. I don't have all that many -- and I didn't purchase any of them.

I think there are way more of the latter than either of the former, but that's just a guess based on my own anecdata.

mikey said...

I think that's a completely fair assessment - although it's probably true that anybody who qualifies as a "collector" (not certain that I do - given more disposable income I very well might, though) is 'weird' in some OCD havin' kinda sense.

The key is that having guns doesn't make someone a sociopathic douche. They would be a sociopathic douche under any circumstances. Guns certainly make a sociopathic douche much more dangerous, and that's the problem, but there's no value in sweeping generalizations...

M. Bouffant said...

OK, but people whose sole rationale for gun ownership is that they need guns to protect themselves from the possibility of the gov't. coming to "grab" their guns are absolute loons.

As well as people who see the Second Amendment as a 007-style licence to kill anybody who pisses them off at any time.

Aunt Snow said...

people who see the Second Amendment as a 007-style licence to kill anybody who pisses them off at any time.

Which we are seeing more and more - people who kill other people for playing loud music or asking them to leave the store with an unleashed dog, or because they mistakenly pull their car into the wrong driveway.

I've never owned a gun, but I think if I did, one would be enough. I thought it was hilarious in Sarah Palin's "reality TV show" the first thing they did when showing us these avid hunters was to go by a brand new huntin' gun. If you were a practiced hunter, wouldn't you already have a gun you like using? It's like a bicycle racer deciding to buy a brand new bike just before starting a race.

Substance McGravitas said...

Gun insurance is kind of a natural...