National Rifle Association (NRA) Executive Vice President Wayne LaPierre speaks on December 21,... <+> 2012, the one-week anniversary of the Sandy Hook Elementary School shootings in Newtvery own, Connecticut. Perhaps his facepalm is because of his incapacity to reconcile his beliefs through reality. (Image credit: AFP/Getty Imeras through

Submitting to a masochistic streak, I"ve been watching the gun control debate that has erupted considering that the slaughter of children in Newtown, CT. At first I couldn"t read anypoint, couldn"t watch, couldn"t even think around it. As a parent and a humale being, I would end up being overwhelmed with sadness. Now I"m left even more with anger. Guns claim about as many kind of Amerihave the right to lives each year as influenza, yet we have no nationwide plan to proccasion gun violence. Rather than point out the usual boring statistics explaining why poorly regulated gun ownership is insane, let"s look at one little bit question.

You are watching: If we outlaw guns only outlaws will have guns fallacy

One of the a lot of common old saws touted by the NRA is "if we outregulation firearms, just criminals will have actually firearms." I love this because it"s undeniably true, yet illustprices just how pithy phrases have the right to fool you. And it"s so chock full of logical fallacies that it"s an excellent tool to show just how to look past the display and dig up the truth.


The first difficulty via this slogan is its false assumption: tbelow isn"t a consensus in the gun control activity to "outlaw firearms." But let"s go with it anymethod. One of the best components of the phrase is the tautology: by meaning, if gun ownership is a crime, anyone who owns a gun is a criminal. I love that.

The real trouble, though, is the (cultivated?) ignorance of huguy habits. People that commit gun violence versus themselves or others, are not fundamentally various from people that don"t. They are people, some of them crazy, some of them not. Several of them are sociocourses, some sindicate impulsive. Anyone via accessibility to a firearm deserve to use it to injury, and I"m unencouraged that tbelow is a simple way to recognize who will break.

Admittedly, I"m trying to obtain you angry, Gun Guys. More, though, I desire readers to understand just how to parse language, to check out exactly how it can be provided to deceive. This is just as important for identifying quackery and also pseudoscientific research as it is in politics.

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I"m a practicing doctor specializing in interior medicine, that is, the prevention and treatment of condition in adults. Over the last few years, I have moved ameans from…

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I"m a practicing physician specializing in internal medication, that is, the prevention and also therapy of condition in adults. Over the last few years, I have moved away from teaching and also currently spend many of my time taking treatment of patients and also elevating a family members. Due to the fact that 2007, I"ve authored the White Coat Underground blog, composing around the intersection of science, medicine, and society. I"ve extended issues from medical ethics, to quackery, to gun control as it relates to public wellness. My opinions are my very own, not those of my partners or my exercise (and also most likely not my wife and also boy either). I do not give personal clinical advice to strangers on the internet, so don"t bvarious other to ask. I make a living by practicing medication. I get some compensation for my writing. I have actually no financial relationships through any kind of drug or device manufacturers. Follow me on twitter
palmd for briefer, snarkier takes on medicine and politics and at Medium for the huguy side of medicine. I have the right to be contacted at "whitecoatunderground" dotcom.