Stephen Norton: Gun fantasies

May 21, 2013 

Gun fantasies

The current debate about guns in public places could use a little critical thinking. The idea that a “good guy” with a gun can shoot a “bad guy” in a restaurant, bar or school without hitting innocent people is a myth perpetuated by the gun lobby.

Data reported by the New York City Police Department showed that their officers hit their targets on average 18 percent of the time during a gun fight. For every five shots, four bullets missed the intended target. In an attempt to take down a shooter near the Empire State Building last year, nine bystanders were wounded by police.

Another myth promoted by the NRA is that a gun in the home will somehow make you safer. However, as noted in Scientific American (May 2013) “data show that a gun is 22 times more likely to be used in a criminal assault, an accidental death or injury, a suicide attempt or a homicide than it is for self defense.”

Unfortunately, our national and state GOP representatives apparently have been taken in by this “a gun will keep you safe” fantasy.

Stephen Norton, Ph.D.

Cary

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