I spend a fair bit of time looking at what I call anti-gun studies. For them to be labeled as such, they not just have to have a finding that somehow works against the Second Amendment, but for there to also be some degree of shenanigans in how the data was obtained or presented.
A simple finding that is inconvenient doesn’t make a study anti-gun. True science involves going where the facts may lead, even if you don’t like the direction that happens to take. I can accept that sometimes, the answer isn’t what I’d like for it to be.
Instead, there needs to be more, such as a blatant attempt to try and manipulate the data.
Over at the Daily Caller, there’s an interesting post looking at just this kind of thing.
An ABC News/ Washington Post survey released on April 28th has several interesting findings, but the takeaways aren’t limited to specific datapoints. The survey, the results, and the media coverage demonstrate that so-called “gun violence” prevention is “just” – spoiler alert – gun control and that the duplicitous efforts to advance gun control efforts have not worked.
Let’s first examine the methodology and the findings at face value. The survey of 1,007 adults was run April 18-21, 2021, in English and Spanish targeting both landline and cell phone respondents. The major finding from the survey is that 50% of adults think enacting laws to reduce gun violence should be a higher priority than protecting the right to own guns, which came in at 43%. The percentage claiming enacting laws to reduce gun violence should be a higher priority fell seven percentage points from April 2018, a survey run shortly after the attack on a Parkland, Florida high school. The gap between the two opinions is the narrowest it has been since October 2015. The two charts below show the same data. The chart on the left is from The Washington Post, who paid for the poll along with ABC News, and the chart on the right is from Langer Research Associates, who conducted the survey. Notice anything missing in the chart on the left?
[Charts redacted since we don’t have permission to post them]
The Washington Post deleted the data labels for the October 2015 results that showed 47% wanted to prioritize protecting the right to own guns and 46% prioritized enacting new laws. We don’t know why, but we could make an educated guess. Probably for the same reason that “enacting new laws” is a vibrant blue line while “protecting right to own guns” is a dull gray. These are the games gun controllers play. We know they regularly combine homicides with suicides so they can talk about a much bigger number of deaths from “gun violence” while ignoring the very real differences between the two. We know they celebrate outlandish research that even an undergraduate student wouldn’t turn in for credit. For generations, gun controllers have presented themselves as gun owners who only want what they refer to as “common sense” solutions. Never you mind that the solutions they propose are acknowledged as unable to prevent whatever tragedy they’re trying to exploit.
Over and over again, we’ve seen “studies” presented which raise serious questions. Many of these studies prey on people’s poor understanding of American gun laws. Just today I saw someone on social media trying to claim how America is awash in a sea of automatic weapons. They didn’t mean semi-automatics, either. No, they meant machine guns.
Of course, those are heavily restricted and rare to boot. There’s absolutely no “awash” about their prevalence.
But, based on the media’s reports and calling AR-15s “weapons of war,” it’s not difficult to believe many people are just misinformed about firearms and what’s actually legal in this country.
As such, even some studies conducted in good faith may present similar findings. Then, even if they’re reported in good faith, without these shenanigans, the studies will look like actual anti-gun studies. In fact, though, all they do is track people’s lack of understanding.
That’s why it’s so important to remember that we don’t yield our rights due to public opinion. I don’t care what the mob has to say.
I especially don’t value what the mob has to say when you’ve got the media playing games like this.