Friday, April 27, 2007

Individual armed resistance can bring school shootings to a halt

Classically Liberal reports on multiple school shooting incidents which have been successfully stopped by private individuals with handguns--though the media has mostly failed to report that the individuals apprehending the gunmen were armed, so these examples aren't widely known.

Patri Friedman at Catallarchy observes:

Anyway, I am not claiming that any one story (or in this case, four stories) prove anything about the overall tradeoffs. But these stories are in direct contrast to explicit statements some of you have made about how you think the world works. So please realize that you were wrong, and that guns are demonstrably capable of stopping massacres short. Doesn’t mean we should have them, but it is directly relevant to yesterday’s incident. We don’t know what the distribution of death reductions would have been if the massacre hadn’t been in a gun free zone, but it surely has a non-zero mean, and quite possibly a significant one. After all, this was an extremely bad massacre, which means more people involved and more time to get armed.

But of course, probabilistic lives saved by guns are vastly less visceral than actual lives ended by them, hence much more difficult for us to view as real.

1 comment:

Ktisophilos said...

Shame that Australian Prime Minister John Howard didn't realise this simple fact before his draconian gun ban, a knee-jerk reaction to a tragic massacre.