An Open Letter to Progressive Gun Owners
Ladd Everitt

I’m sorry, Ladd, but you are about 99% full of crap. You have drank the Kool-Aid of the anti-gun-rights camp even when you acknowledge for yourself that progressives/leftists are a growing segment of the gun owning population. That’s the one thing you got right. Where you go wrong begins early: you assume that we buy guns out of fear. In most cases, you’re flat out wrong.

More often it’s about pragmatism. Do you buy a fire extinguisher out of fear that your house is going to burn down, or is it a response to a legitimate threat? After all, fires DO happen! Having a smoke detector and extinguisher are considered sane, rational and even smart precautions. Yet do you know that, statistically, you are more apt to be murdered in a violent attack than you are to be killed in a structural house fire?

Then you cite dubious “research” that cannot possibly be true. This is demonstrably evident because there are now more guns in private hands in the U.S. than there are people, and fully one-third of the population owns at least one gun. If the probabilities your so-called “research” states are true, why is the number of shootings going down while the number of guns sold sets new records? How is this not a blood bath of epic, even apocalyptic, proportions?

It is, of course, due to bad interpretation of often good data. What we DO have is a problem with suicide and violent crime. What nothing shows is any causal relationship with guns. Other research shows that, when a gun is not available, a suicidal person will simply choose another method, and efficacy is within a couple of percentage points; a statistical dead heat. Gun-free Japan has a per-capita suicide rate far in excess of ours. Tightly gun-controlled France is also higher.

Lastly, you make all sorts of baseless claims against the NRA. While they do indeed support more right-wing candidates, their reasoning is simple: there are more gun rights supporters among the right. They have a long history of supporting candidates of both parties who support gun rights, such as Michigan’s John Dingell, one of the longest serving Democrats in history.

Calling them “racist” and “homophobic” is utter slander, and you omit the name of the actual “gun lobby,” the NSSF. The NRA is a gun RIGHTS lobby, whereas the NSSF goes to bat for gun and firearms accessory manufacturers in DC. The bulk of NRA funding comes from member dues, not gun sales. Yes, the industry is symbiotic, and they do facilitate donations, but those are all voluntary. Forgive the image, but nobody is holding a gun to anyone’s head: we support the NRA because they support our rights to keep and bear arms. It’s that simple.