Anti-Gun Hysteria Is Hazardous to Your Health

The data prove it.

Despite their avowed faith in science and data, all too many progressives view a gun as a kind of magical, evil object. It’s a metallic voodoo doll that is best not touched, handled, or brought into polite conversation, even when it can save lives.

I remember one of the last briefings I received in my Army career. A military police major stood in front of roughly 100 soldiers and clicked through PowerPoint slides describing how service members and their families could protect themselves from terrorist violence. Slides described suggestion after suggestion as to how to conceal your identity as an American soldier and render your movements unpredictable. It was good advice, but something was missing.

At the conclusion of the briefing, I raised my hand and asked why the Pentagon wasn’t recommending that its soldiers — as a group the most highly trained warriors in the country — legally carry a personal weapon off-post. The response was instant: “Because the data indicate you’re more likely to hurt yourself than harm a criminal.” A murmur went through the room. I followed up. “Do you carry a weapon off-post?” He looked sheepish, but confessed. “Yes I do. At all times.”

I thought of that moment while reading David Montgomery’s lengthy essay in the most recent Washington Post Magazine. Montgomery’s piece is a powerful meditation on life in an era where more people and institutions than ever before must ponder how to respond to mass shootings. It walks through the emerging consensus that “run, hide, and fight” is best policy — that first you should try to escape an attacker, and, if that doesn’t work, your best and only option is to fight back.

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Gun Control & Statistics: Gun Owners Safer than Unarmed Americans | National Review