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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
He wrote
"More Guns, Less Crime: Understanding Crime and Gun-control Laws" (1999),
"The Bias Against Guns: Why Almost Everything You've Heard about Gun Control is Wrong" (2003),
and
"Straight Shooting: Guns, Economics, and Public Policy" (2006)

I'm going to read at least one of these books, so which is the best one? Which should I read first?
If you have read any of these books, please tell me your thoughts.

Thanks.
 

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I've only read the first two. Both are fairly dry, lots of numbers and statistics. If you are already sold on the idea that more guns leads to less crime, I'd read something else - he's just preaching to the choir and it's a pretty boring song IMO.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
GeneticsDave said:
I've only read the first two. Both are fairly dry, lots of numbers and statistics. If you are already sold on the idea that more guns leads to less crime, I'd read something else - he's just preaching to the choir and it's a pretty boring song IMO.
Thanks for the input. I think I am sold on that idea, but I can't defend it because I don't have enough knowledge to do so. I'd like to defend the idea so that I can help spread the word, and talk with friends about it, etc etc.

In my mind, I have this hypothetical 'perfect country' with the 'perfect laws'. This country is called "Eddie-topia". I wonder if it should have a law that everyone except criminals SHOULD carry, or if that would just be too much. (I guess I haven't yet decided if forcing citizens to carry guns would be too anti-freedom or not :) -- Once again, this is all in my hypothetical country called "Eddie-topia" :p
 

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No, that's cool, go check out one of his books at the library and see what you think. They were WAY too boring for me - too much statistics and not enough argument in my mind.

As far as eddie-topia, I am sure we all have a vision like this. I used to think that we should require armament of all upstanding citizens, but then as I started thinking about it more, I became more of a libertarian and realized that if I don't want people telling me what to do, I shouldn't be doing the same to them. So, what I see is allowing each upstanding citizen to decide for him/herself. Of course, the hope would be that only those who wanted to carry and learn and train would do so - but the methods and means would be less regulated than they are now (no permit required, carry as you see fit, carry/own what you want and where you want, etc.).

There are some other good books I have read if you are interested, let me know.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
well, yes, i'm definitely interested. What other books have you read about guns?

My friend recommended a book to me called "On Killing" and it's less about guns and more about the psychology of killing.
 

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GeneticsDave said:
No, that's cool, go check out one of his books at the library and see what you think. They were WAY too boring for me - too much statistics and not enough argument in my mind.
That's impossible. There's no such thing as too much statistics, and arguments are never as meaningful as hard numbers.

:D
 

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swillden said:
GeneticsDave said:
No, that's cool, go check out one of his books at the library and see what you think. They were WAY too boring for me - too much statistics and not enough argument in my mind.
That's impossible. There's no such thing as too much statistics, and arguments are never as meaningful as hard numbers.

:D
Well, I like logic more than statistics. I hate statistics. I like numbers, but not stats - I just remember obtaining a number set and working it in stats, depending on what theories (? term) you used, you could get many different conclusions. It seemed to me that stats was a way to manipulate numbers to say what you wanted, not the truth. But that's just my opinion and limited experience.
 

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eddified said:
well, yes, i'm definitely interested. What other books have you read about guns?

My friend recommended a book to me called "On Killing" and it's less about guns and more about the psychology of killing.
On Killing and On Combat are books by Lt. Col. Dave Grossman. I have read On Combat (currently on loan to jimtheguern) and thought it was excellent. His books aren't so much about tactics and skills, from what I understand, but more about how to prepare yourself mentally for combat or killing. While this may sound strange, it's a real possibility for anyone (more for LE and Military to whom the books are geared), and preparing mentally and knowing how you will feel afterward can help you to avoid many negative effects such as PTSD and insomnia.

I wholeheartedly recommend those books (I have only read On Combat).

Other recommended material/authors include(s):

The Concealed Handgun Manual: How to Choose, Carry and Shoot a Gun in Self-Defense, by Chris Bird
The Gun Digest Book of Combat Handgunnery - all editions
Armed and Female, by Paxton Quigley (great book for both sexes)
Tactical Pistol Shooting, by Erik Lawrence
The Tactical Pistol, by Gabriel Suarez
The Ultimate Sniper, by Maj. John Plaster, USAR (Retired) - My personal favorite :thumbsup:
Shooter: The Autobiography of the Top-ranked Marine Sniper, by Jack Coughlin (a book for fun, light reading)
Utah Gun Law, by attorney Mitch Vilos - a MUST READ for every Utah gun owner!
American Gunmaker: The John M. Browning Story - a must see video for every Utah gun owner (learn about Utah's own gun maker)!
Marine Sniper: 93 Confirmed Kills and Silent Warrior: The Marine Sniper's Vietnam Story Continues, by Charles Henderson - both excellent, they overlap significantly, Silent Warrior fills in some gaps that the publishers cut out of Marine Sniper (light reading)

Other material/authors to AVOID AT ALL COSTS!!!!:

Anything with, by or related to Lenny Magill - his videos are (by and large) crap, big stinky piles of crap. The titles can be very deceptive, making you think you will learn a lot, but then you realize that Lenny knows jack... yep... crap - so how's he going to teach you anything? He has a video called "Mastering the AR-15" which goes into the take down, cleaning, assembly, and such, which is good. Then he shows you some REALLY BASIC skills (because that's all he knows) and then it's off to watch some super fast guy shoot his AR in lots of crazy positions. Of course, this guy just spends all his time talking about mods he does to the AR and how he can get into those positions. You walk away with little knowledge or skills... what a waste of time. STAY AWAY!!!!

Hope that help :D
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
swillden said:
There's no such thing as too much statistics, and arguments are never as meaningful as hard numbers.

:D
Well, I believe arguments based on reason can sometimes be more powerful than arguments based on numbers at times. I mean, there are some cases where statistics don't mean much to me. Take this hypothetical argument based on statistics:

Let's suppose X number of people die every year from gun violence, including wars. Suppose the statistics show that guns allow killers to kill many more people than they otherwise would have killed without guns. (Ie, with their evil intent still intact, how many people can a psycho on a murderous rampage kill with a knife before being stopped) I would guess in 9 cases out of 10, he would kill fewer people with a knife than with a gun. For the sake of argument, suppose that someone really could come up with statistics outlining the average number of deaths caused by murderous rampages with a knife, vs the avg number of deaths caused by murderous rampages with a gun. Then, do the same thing with knife and sword wars vs wars waged with a gun. Ie, come up with statistics of how many people die in sword wars vs how many people die in gun wars. Let's assume that the stats showed there were far less total deaths in a gun-less world.

Continuing, if we could hypothetically make it so that there were no such things as guns anymore, (and I mean, supposing we could really destroy ALL guns in the world and even somehow GUARANTEE that no guns would ever be made again), would you want to give up your guns in order to make such a world?

----

So here's an argument based on (hypothetical) statistics. Assuming the statistics are complete and true and not twisted in any way, I don't think I would buy into this argument. (But then again, there might be something to it). Would YOU buy into this argument based on statistics? The opposing argument (based on reason) would run along the lines of "well, even if such a world meant less total deaths, we still need guns because they are a great EQUALIZER. Granny can still protect her home when Mr. Criminal comes in the night with a knife."

I'm mainly just thinking out loud here.
 

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GeneticsDave said:
I hate statistics. I like numbers, but not stats - I just remember obtaining a number set and working it in stats, depending on what theories (? term) you used, you could get many different conclusions. It seemed to me that stats was a way to manipulate numbers to say what you wanted, not the truth. But that's just my opinion and limited experience.
It does seem that way at first. It takes a lot of experience and education to learn which hypothesis, distribution and approach to apply to a particular situation. There IS a right answer, however, and professionals (like Mr. Lott) don't get into disagreements over the right way to perform a given calculation. Statistics are often manipulated, but such manipulations do not stand up to expert scrutiny.

I'm no expert, personally, but I do know enough to tell correct from incorrect usage. In any case, you rarely find really bad statistics in publications by serious academics.
 

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eddified said:
So here's an argument based on (hypothetical) statistics. Assuming the statistics are complete and true and not twisted in any way, I don't think I would buy into this argument. (But then again, there might be something to it). Would YOU buy into this argument based on statistics? The opposing argument (based on reason) would run along the lines of "well, even if such a world meant less total deaths, we still need guns because they are a great EQUALIZER. Granny can still protect her home when Mr. Criminal comes in the night with a knife."
Well, I think the premise is pretty unbelievable, in multiple ways. Ignoring that, assuming it were true, assuming the stats said that eliminating all guns would substantially reduce violent death and injury, and assuming there were some way to destroy all projectile-throwing devices, ensure that none could ever be made again, and yet not hinder in any way any other part of our technological civilization, and if we ignore all non-violent uses of guns, then yes, I'd support the removal of all guns, and suggest that Granny put bars on the windows, etc.

In reality, I think the equalizing effect of guns is such that a gun-less world would be more violent, not less. I don't have any numbers to support that, of course. Reason must do where statistics cannot reach :)
 
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