Thread: Invincible Ignorance By Thomas Sowell

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  1. #1 Invincible Ignorance By Thomas Sowell 
    LTC Member Odysseus's Avatar
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    Thomas Sowell is a national treasure. What follows is his dissection of gun control laws, but it applies to every form of prohibition.

    December 21, 2012

    Invincible Ignorance

    By Thomas Sowell

    12/18/2012

    Must every tragic mass shooting bring out the shrill ignorance of "gun control" advocates?

    The key fallacy of so-called gun control laws is that such laws do not in fact control guns. They simply disarm law-abiding citizens, while people bent on violence find firearms readily available.

    If gun control zealots had any respect for facts, they would have discovered this long ago, because there have been too many factual studies over the years to leave any serious doubt about gun control laws being not merely futile but counterproductive.

    Places and times with the strongest gun control laws have often been places and times with high murder rates. Washington, D.C., is a classic example, but just one among many.

    When it comes to the rate of gun ownership, that is higher in rural areas than in urban areas, but the murder rate is higher in urban areas. The rate of gun ownership is higher among whites than among blacks, but the murder rate is higher among blacks. For the country as a whole, hand gun ownership doubled in the late 20th century, while the murder rate went down.

    The few counter-examples offered by gun control zealots do not stand up under scrutiny. Perhaps their strongest talking point is that Britain has stronger gun control laws than the United States and lower murder rates.

    But, if you look back through history, you will find that Britain has had a lower murder rate than the United States for more than two centuries-- and, for most of that time, the British had no more stringent gun control laws than the United States. Indeed, neither country had stringent gun control for most of that time.

    In the middle of the 20th century, you could buy a shotgun in London with no questions asked. New York, which at that time had had the stringent Sullivan Law restricting gun ownership since 1911, still had several times the gun murder rate of London, as well as several times the London murder rate with other weapons.

    Neither guns nor gun control was the reason for the difference in murder rates. People were the difference.

    Yet many of the most zealous advocates of gun control laws, on both sides of the Atlantic, have also been advocates of leniency toward criminals.

    In Britain, such people have been so successful that legal gun ownership has been reduced almost to the vanishing point, while even most convicted felons in Britain are not put behind bars. The crime rate, including the rate of crimes committed with guns, is far higher in Britain now than it was back in the days when there were few restrictions on Britons buying firearms.

    In 1954, there were only a dozen armed robberies in London but, by the 1990s-- after decades of ever tightening gun ownership restrictions-- there were more than a hundred times as many armed robberies.

    Gun control zealots' choice of Britain for comparison with the United States has been wholly tendentious, not only because it ignored the history of the two countries, but also because it ignored other countries with stronger gun control laws than the United States, such as Russia, Brazil and Mexico. All of these countries have higher murder rates than the United States.

    You could compare other sets of countries and get similar results. Gun ownership has been three times as high in Switzerland as in Germany, but the Swiss have had lower murder rates. Other countries with high rates of gun ownership and low murder rates include Israel, New Zealand, and Finland.

    Guns are not the problem. People are the problem-- including people who are determined to push gun control laws, either in ignorance of the facts or in defiance of the facts.

    There is innocent ignorance and there is invincible, dogmatic and self-righteous ignorance. Every tragic mass shooting seems to bring out examples of both among gun control advocates.

    Some years back, there was a professor whose advocacy of gun control led him to produce a "study" that became so discredited that he resigned from his university. This column predicted at the time that this discredited study would continue to be cited by gun control advocates. But I had no idea that this would happen the very next week in the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals.
    Thomas Sowell

    Thomas Sowell is a senior fellow at the Hoover Institute and author of The Housing Boom and Bust.

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    Senior Member ReinMan's Avatar
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    It would be unconstitutional to require high school students to read a daily section of the Bible, despite the good I think it would do.

    However, Thomas Sowell's essays and articles would be fine alternative, IMHO...
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    Power CUer patriot45's Avatar
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    I make it a point to read everything by Thomas Sowell and Walter Williams. They have what you call common sense! That is what libtards hate.

    : “Grow your own dope. Plant a liberal.”
    ” Obummercare, 20 percent of the time it works everytime.
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    Senior Member Janice's Avatar
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    I too follow the musings of Drs Sowell and Williams. 2 national treasures indeed that should be required reading in our wonderful govt schools of lower (or middle) and higher indoctrination.

    "Pushing back the frontiers of ignorance" as Dr Williams is fond of saying.
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    Power CUer NJCardFan's Avatar
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    You guys are leaving out that not only are these men very intelligent and conservative but they're also black. Something the left really hates.
    "Inequality is a false notion propagated by those who are made to feel guilty for what they have by those who are jealous for what they don't"-Former MTV Host Kennedy
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  6. #6  
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    Quote Originally Posted by NJCardFan View Post
    You guys are leaving out that not only are these men very intelligent and conservative but they're also black. Something the left really hates.
    Well look at that, I hadn't noticed, I was too busy oooing at his common sense.


    It will be a sad day for conservatives when thomas passes away :( why do statesmen have to be so old I don't like being a 21 year-old and seeing all the idiot liberals around me
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