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Live by the sword, die by the sword. Guns are made for one reason: Killing. They do their job exceedingly well. The gun zealots often become too comfortable with their portable killing machines and sometimes leave them lying around where children can get them, or they get careless and accidentally discharge the weapon in a closed environment. This is why a household with a gun present is less safe than a household with no gun. The man of the house is three times as likely to commit suicide when a gun is present. At the end of a really, really bad day, the man with no gun goes to bed and wakes up in the morning. Way too often, the man with a gun doesn’t wake up the next morning. The gun owner’s wife is twice as likely to be a victim of domestic violence, and his kids are much more likely to be killed or injured in an accidental shooting.

Not that you’ll ever get the gun nut to believe those statistics. He’s too busy dreaming of how he’s going to save the day when the bad guy shows up. Truth is, that almost never happens because the bad guy almost always has the element of surprise in his corner. That’s why the armed guard at the Orlando nightclub was unable to prevent the worst mass shooting in American history, and why the armed cop at Columbine wasn’t able to halt that tragedy in its tracks. An armed bystander at the Gabby Giffords gathering in California where an idiot gunman opened fire came a hair’s breadth away from shooting an innocent person that he thought was the perpetrator. Thank god he didn’t fire his weapon or at least one more innocent life would have been lost that day.

There is a direct correlation that escapes many Americans: The more guns you have in a defined space, the more gun violence you have in that defined space. The correlation doesn’t speak to cause and effect. It doesn’t have to — it’s a fact that gun violence increases when the number of guns increases, without even asking why. This is not rocket science.

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