Arguments in the gun control debate

Anti-gun arguments:
Argument (A): “If it saves one life, it is worth it.”
Counter (C): False argument, the opposite is true as well. If having guns would save one life then no legislation is worth it.

A: “Increasing gun control will reduce crime.”
C: The areas with greatest gun control have highest crime rates.

A: “Europe has lower crime rates than America.”
C: In countries where guns were confiscated, crime has increased. Comparable countries have higher crimes rates than America per capita.

A: “There is no useful purpose for Assault Weapons.”
C: “Assault Weapons” are a constructed thing by anti-gunners, only the military have true assault weapons.
C: What makes an assault weapon is cosmetic, has nothing to do with the function of the firearm.
C: “Assault weapons” were successfully used to protect person and property during national emergencies such as hurricanes and riots.

A: “Banning guns will prevent mass shootings.”
C: The increase of mass shootings has not increased but has remained the same over the last 20 years, except for 2012, which is uncharacteristically high.  Media sensationalism has increased, there is something more than firearms at work.

A: “Having more guns won’t stop crime, only increase it.”
C: In mass shootings where the shooter stopped, in most cases it was by being confronted by another armed individual, and in every case confrontation ended the spree faster.

A: “Licensing will reduce gun violence and will not create a database.”
C: Localities with licensing have higher gun violence.  And databases of licensed gun owners have been made public.

A: Controlling the purchase of guns will reduce criminals having them.
C: In places where firearm controls were implemented, burglaries increased, and straw purchasing (buying a gun for someone else because they can’t) went to other locations.

A: “Gun shows increase illegal gun transfers.”
C: There is no data about that, it is based on an assumption.  However, an overwhelming number of gun shows require all purchases to be made through licensed FFL holders or by background checks done at the gun show.
C: private gun sales will always occur, regardless of gun shows.

A: “There should be background checks for firearms.”
C: There already is for most firearms. the most commonly used weapons in crimes already require background checks.

A: “40% of firearms sold did not have a background check conducted.”
C: First. the data is old: before most states stood up their background check system.
C: Second, the data includes all weapons, including weapons not required for background checks.
C: Third, the weapons not required for background checks are used in less than 1% of all gun related crime.

A: “Assault weapons are used in majority of mass shootings.”
C: False, hand guns were used in the majority, and they were also used in the most deadly.

A: “Banning high capacity magazines will reduce lethality.”
C: A magazine can be changed in under a second.
C: There are enough high capacity magazines in the market for every man, woman and child in America to acquire 6 per year, for 30 years.

A: “Assault weapons fire hundreds of rounds a minute.”
C: Real assault weapons, the military type, can only do so if hooked up to a machine that is constantly feeding rounds into it, while firing full-auto, which are not available to the public.

A: “Making more laws will make citizens safer.”
C: Laws already in place are not enforced, allowing criminals to continue to commit crimes.  IE: Mrs. Obama goes to Chicago for the funeral of a teenage girl killed.  Pres. Obama refers to her in his address for more gun control.  The shooter was out on parole, and had violated parole three times, including two for possession of an illegal gun, which were stolen.
C: Criminals are undeterred by gun laws.  Criminals by nature are undeterred by laws entirely.
C: In Richmond, Virginia, a zero tolerance policy, in conjunction with federal prosecutors enforced current laws.  Anyone caught possessing a gun illegally (a stolen gun or being a felon in possession of) in Richmond city limits received the mandatory 5 years in jail.  Violent crime plummeted.  Violent crime increased in surrounding communities that did not prosecute gun law violations.  Chicago is a good example of this.

A: “A gun is 43 times more likely to injure or kill the occupants of the home than be used in the protection of the home.”
C: The study has multiple biases and the sampling population was cherry picked to support the researchers bias.  The study was flawed, but the flaws were ignored.

A: “Gun violence should be researched like a disease.”
C: Disease is not impacted by choice, perception or proclivity.  Gun violence should be researched as a social issue.  it equates firearms to a pathogen, where gun violence requires the action of a person.

Pro-gun arguments:
A: “The 2nd amendment was upheld by the Supreme Court as protecting private ownership.”
C: The same decision also stated that it did not, however, prevent the regulation of firearms, or the elimination of certain types by congress.

A: “Creating more laws will not deter criminals.”
C: Creating more gun laws provides more opportunities for removing criminals off the street.

A: “Creating gun laws that do not affect criminals turns law abiding citizens into criminals.”
C: Most gun control legislation includes grandfather clauses that allow citizens to not be impacted.

A: “Requiring background checks does not deter illegal possession.”
C: Requiring background checks doesn’t impact a lawful owner, but does reduce the likelihood that guns won’t fall into the wrong hands.

A: “Enforcing laws on the books already will do more to reduce gun violence.”
C: But then the cost of prosecution and incarceration increases criminal behavior and makes a greater strain on the prison system and community.

A: “Banning weapons does not deter crime.”
C: Reducing the number of available weapons will eventually diminish the weapons currently out there. It is a long game.

A: “Increasing background checks will not stop criminals from acquiring weapons.”
C: But it will reduce the availability of weapons for those that can’t the ones they want.

A: “Banning private sales won’t stop private sales.”
C: It will criminalize straw purchases and will create another law for stopping illegal weapons transfers.

A: “Banning high capacity magazines will not stop mass shootings, nor reduce the lethality.”
C: Eliminating high capacity magazines, it will increase the opportunity for intervention during magazine changes or increase likelihood that a malfunction will occur, reducing lethality.

A: “ ‘Assault weapons’ are used in less than 1% of crimes.”
C: But they are used in crimes that have higher casualty rates.

A: “ ‘Assault weapons’ designation is purely cosmetic and does nothing to impact the function of the weapon.”
C: The weapons appeal to a certain mindset that would be more likely to use them in mass shootings and share characteristics of military weapons.  The military wouldn’t put things on a firearm without purpose, so it isn’t just cosmetic.

A: “Universal background checks won’t deter criminals. Especially because the government doesn’t prosecute people that try to purchase illegally already.”
C: Background checks will only prevent people who illegally attempt o purchase firearms.  Prosecution is too expensive and time consuming.

A: “Any legislation is a step in the direction to total disarmament.”
C: Regulation is not disarmament.  The 2nd Amendment allows private ownership, but not without restriction or regulation.

A: “Reducing access to firearms impacts women and minorities most.”
C: Women and minorities are not impacted by legislation, and are under representative of firearms owners already.

A: “If people were allowed to carry more often, then there would be less crime, less mass shootings.”
C: There is no evidence that would be the case.  There are more firearms in America than people, and there are more crimes.

A: “There is less crime now than there was 20 years ago, and there are more firearms.”
C: There are also more police, more intervention and more mental health action than there was 20 years ago.

Additional info:

There are additional arguments on both sides that are not listed because they are appeals to emotion or intentionalism (Dr. Nathan has a lot to offer on anti-intentionalism in legislation).  These are not all the arguments I could remember currently, but a good list. Also, I could have countered the counter argument in each point, but I think with this list you can come up with your own successfully.

My point of view:  I defer to the article I wrote on my blog discrimen.ricjacobs.org.  “A way forward on firearms.  In a nut shell, though, I believe the whole gun debate is the same argument as abortion: If you don’t want one, don’t get one, but don’t interfere in the rights of others who do want one.

Want to know the arguments for gun control? I have made an objective list, pro and con, for those wanting to understand the debate.  If you liked my Page, then you will have the link already.  If you would like to know more, go to my page and the link is there.  Please “like” it while you are there, support a brother!