The March Philosophy Book of the Month is Final Notice by Van Fleisher. Discuss Final Notice now.

The April Philosophy Book of the Month is The Unbound Soul by Richard L. Haight. Discuss The Unbound Soul Now

The May Philosophy Book of the Month is Misreading Judas by Robert Wahler.

Gun Control Series Q1 -- Does gun ownership make the gunowner safer or less safe?

Discuss the March 2019 Philosophy Book of the Month, Final Notice by Van Fleisher.
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Because this forum is host to a potentially controversial special gun control topic series, all posts will be held for moderation to ensure each forum topic stays on-topic and to ensure the Forum Rules are strictly enforced.
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RJG
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Re: Gun Control Series Q1 -- Does gun ownership make the gunowner safer or less safe?

Post by RJG » April 4th, 2019, 7:58 am

Dai Cymru wrote:...places the gun owner in a great deal more danger, as opposed to more safety.
Is this your personal belief, or do you have stats that show this?

1. Aren't there gun owners out there that are "safer" because they own guns?
2. And aren't there also gun owners out there that are "less safe" because they own guns?
3. So then which group is "greater than" the other? Are more gunowners, "safer" or "less safe" because they own their guns?

To answer the question of "safer" or "less safe" we need to compare group 1 to group 2, but if we only know the value (statistics) of only one of these groups, then we can't logically answer the question. For any such answer would be via bad logic (irrational reasoning).

We need to know the value of both X (group 1) and Y (group 2) before claiming that one is "greater than" or "less than" the other.

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Dai Cymru
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Re: Gun Control Series Q1 -- Does gun ownership make the gunowner safer or less safe?

Post by Dai Cymru » April 4th, 2019, 12:28 pm

No Sir, I cannot substantiate my remarks, I just fid this to be a very thought provoking subject and wish to learn more.

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Re: Gun Control Series Q1 -- Does gun ownership make the gunowner safer or less safe?

Post by LuckyR » April 5th, 2019, 2:07 am

RJG wrote:
April 4th, 2019, 6:58 am
LuckyR wrote:Dude, you are now into the "broken record" zone. Either look up the stats on the "safer" half of the equation or allow the "less safe" stats that really exist, stand on their own. Your choice.
Apparently you don't read what I write. Again (dare I repeat myself), it is NOT ABOUT THE STATS per se, it is about your BAD LOGIC. The "less safe" stats "standing on their own" says NOTHING tangible, it tells us NOTHING of substance.

Claiming that X is less than Y, when one only knows the value of X, is a non-sensical claim. X by itself tells us nothing of substance. Those that make such a claim, employ BAD LOGIC.

Agreed?
Uummm... no. Your analogy is a bit off. It isn't X is less than Y. (Since in that scenario X and Y would be gun ownership and nonownership).

Rather it is: there are two opposed effects, X and Y. We know X has one effect, Y has another effect which is, for the purposes of this thread, not known. Where X is increased morbidity of gun ownership and Y is decreased morbidity of gun ownership (which, curiously you have spent no energy researching/posting on).

Please, we get what you are proposing (trust me), instead of repeating it, look into the data on increased safety through gun ownership.
"As usual... it depends."

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RJG
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Re: Gun Control Series Q1 -- Does gun ownership make the gunowner safer or less safe?

Post by RJG » April 5th, 2019, 6:54 am

LuckyR wrote:Please, we get what you are proposing (trust me), instead of repeating it, look into the data on increased safety through gun ownership.
Great. And if only you actually read what I wrote then you would have already known that I don't have a horse in this race. I'm not interested in the data or the outcome per se. I'm only interested in 'sound' logic (the 'math' of this data/outcome) and in 'fairness' of this race, which includes pointing out the 'rig' (logical flaws), by the 'riggers' of this race.

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Re: Gun Control Series Q1 -- Does gun ownership make the gunowner safer or less safe?

Post by Felix » April 5th, 2019, 9:59 am

RJG: "I'm only interested in 'sound' logic"

That's ironic since your logic has been unsound, i.e., one doesn't conduct a drug toxicity study on those who are not taking the drug or a gun ownership safety study on those who do not own a gun.
"We do not see things as they are; we see things as we are." - Anaïs Nin

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RJG
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Re: Gun Control Series Q1 -- Does gun ownership make the gunowner safer or less safe?

Post by RJG » April 5th, 2019, 1:07 pm

RJG wrote:"I'm only interested in 'sound' logic"
Felix wrote:That's ironic since your logic has been unsound, i.e., one doesn't conduct a drug toxicity study on those who are not taking the drug or a gun ownership safety study on those who do not own a gun.
Bingo! But Felix you're killing me man. :P You are absolutely right! Again, "kudos" to you for recognizing this flawed (unsound) logic. ...but now I got to take all those "kudos" back from you for falsely claiming that it was 'my' bad logic. Please re-read my words before accusing of others words.

If you were following along with this discussion, you would know that Scott and others have been pushing this flawed logic of comparing gun ownership to NON-gun ownership, as a 'valid' correlation, whereas I argued the opposite. The purpose of my drug user analogy was to specifically highlight the nonsense of this (flawed) logic. Please re-read my words again here:
RJG wrote:Question -- Does drug usage make the drug user safer or less safe?

P1. Statistics show that there are more drug related deaths (overdose, suicide, crime, etc.) with drug users than with non-drug users.
C1. Therefore, drug users are "less safe" (and NON-drug users are "safer").
C2. Therefore, banning all drug usage/users will make everyone "safer".

Hopefully we all see and recognize the NONSENSE here, as this "throws the baby out with the bath water". For if we ban all drug usage/users, then there will be MORE (not less!) overall deaths, and everyone will be "less safe" (NOT "safer"!). With NO drug usage, there will be no more bad drug usage, AND likewise there will be NO MORE GOOD drug usage (i.e. no more lives saved because of drugs; penicillin, etc, etc). If we wish to make societal changes based on these (non-applicable!) statistics and (unsound!) logic, then we are all DOOMED! ...we therefore need to STOP this type of irrationality (non-sensical-ness) from influencing and dictating our societal changes (imo).

But seriously Felix, I am glad that at least somebody here recognizes the unsoundness of the logic put forth by those statistics comparing gunowners to non gunowners to (invalidly) determine the safety of gun owners. ...so for that, I'll throw you a "kudo". :)

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Re: Gun Control Series Q1 -- Does gun ownership make the gunowner safer or less safe?

Post by LuckyR » April 5th, 2019, 3:32 pm

RJG wrote:
April 5th, 2019, 6:54 am
LuckyR wrote:Please, we get what you are proposing (trust me), instead of repeating it, look into the data on increased safety through gun ownership.
Great. And if only you actually read what I wrote then you would have already known that I don't have a horse in this race. I'm not interested in the data or the outcome per se. I'm only interested in 'sound' logic (the 'math' of this data/outcome) and in 'fairness' of this race, which includes pointing out the 'rig' (logical flaws), by the 'riggers' of this race.
OK, I will take you at your word. Bottom line is: any issue has an infinite number of angles from which they can be evaluated. Some angles are well researched and are very well known and appreciated, others not so much and are of more theoretical interest. Some effects are large and others are small. Everyone knows this and we all feel perfectly comfortable making practical decisions based on incomplete but partially available information.

Thus there is no reason to withhold preliminary judgement for the final fragment of difficult to find information to be found. A statistician can feel confident that with easily available research, gun owners appear to be much less safe than gun non-owners (based almost entirely on increased lethality of suicide vs non-gun methods and the issue of gun accidents). Could some currently unquantified stat be proven in the future that changes that? Certainly. Is that effect likely to fully negate what we know with certainty now? Possible but highly unlikely.

Agreed?
"As usual... it depends."

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Re: Gun Control Series Q1 -- Does gun ownership make the gunowner safer or less safe?

Post by Felix » April 5th, 2019, 8:09 pm

The question posed by Scott is on the safety/dangers of gun ownership....

In his original post, he said: "This is an important question because even if it is agreed between some people that guns should be legal regardless of any alleged danger to the gunowner, the answer to this simple statistical question can be a major factor for people to choose to own guns or not, and the morality of that choice."

It seems the only thing we can agree on is that this is not and cannot be a "simple statistical question."

"But Felix you're killing me man."

Good thing is was only a virtual gun... and you'll be happy to know it is licensed in my name.
"We do not see things as they are; we see things as we are." - Anaïs Nin

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Re: Gun Control Series Q1 -- Does gun ownership make the gunowner safer or less safe?

Post by RJG » April 6th, 2019, 7:59 am

LuckyR wrote:A statistician can feel confident that with easily available research, gun owners appear to be much less safe than gun non-owners (based almost entirely on increased lethality of suicide vs non-gun methods and the issue of gun accidents).
How does a statistician (or anyone) reach this conclusion without using 'flawed' logic?

How does one logically conclude that X is greater than Y, when only knowing X?
How does one logically conclude that apples are more "red" than "green", when only knowing the number of "red" apples?
How does one logically conclude that gun owners are more "less safe" than "safer", when only knowing the number of "less safe" gun owners?

Any conclusion of "less safe" or "safer" in this regard, is pure speculation (has no logical basis).

Felix wrote:It seems the only thing we can agree on is that this is not and cannot be a "simple statistical question."
Don't forget, we also agree that comparing the bad of gun ownership to NON-gun ownership is non-sensical.

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Re: Gun Control Series Q1 -- Does gun ownership make the gunowner safer or less safe?

Post by LuckyR » April 8th, 2019, 2:15 am

RJG wrote:
April 6th, 2019, 7:59 am
LuckyR wrote:A statistician can feel confident that with easily available research, gun owners appear to be much less safe than gun non-owners (based almost entirely on increased lethality of suicide vs non-gun methods and the issue of gun accidents).
How does a statistician (or anyone) reach this conclusion without using 'flawed' logic?

How does one logically conclude that X is greater than Y, when only knowing X?
How does one logically conclude that apples are more "red" than "green", when only knowing the number of "red" apples?
How does one logically conclude that gun owners are more "less safe" than "safer", when only knowing the number of "less safe" gun owners?

Any conclusion of "less safe" or "safer" in this regard, is pure speculation (has no logical basis).
You are misusing "conclude". A final conclusion requires all of the data, a working or preliminary conclusion can and has been made routinely every single day in all of our lives with partial information. If no one could come to a decision until all possible information was available, we'd all be unable to decide on any topic.

A lot of smokescreen, but little practical application.
"As usual... it depends."

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Re: Gun Control Series Q1 -- Does gun ownership make the gunowner safer or less safe?

Post by RJG » April 8th, 2019, 3:39 pm

LuckyR wrote:You are misusing "conclude". A final conclusion requires all of the data, a working or preliminary conclusion can and has been made routinely every single day in all of our lives with partial information. If no one could come to a decision until all possible information was available, we'd all be unable to decide on any topic.
Valid conclusions only require sound logic, ...otherwise, anyone can conclude anything.

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