OK here it is: I have been carrying a deadly weapon into virtually all of the schools that I work in for the last several years.
I know, this sounds inexcusable, but there you have it. The fact is, that given my route of travel I simply do not feel safe going to and from work without it. I have grown so accustomed to having it with me that, although similar items are responsible for more unintentional deaths each year than practically anything else, I just refuse to enter most school properties without one. I have had a few of these over the years, but my current one is a 2000 Ford Focus.
What, did you think I was going to say a handgun? Nah, practically no one is in danger of being killed by me with one of those things. They’re kept either in a safe or tucked away on my person 99% of the time. Plus, unlike my Ford Focus, I have had to go through extensive training to have them with me in public.
No, my vice is hurtling my 3,000 pound killing machine full of explosive materials (usually about 10 gallons worth) down the road to work every day. It’s crazy, I drive the thing right on to school property in the sight of police, parents, and principals, but no one has ever tried to stop me! Worse, they allow kids as young as 16 to do the same thing!
Now, I have had enough experience with this instrument of death of that I am pretty hopeful that I will never kill anyone with it, but the statistics are not good. About 40,000 people die annually from driving accidents. That means 1 / 30,000 people who will die each year from automobiles. That’s 93 people per day – and they let people bring these things on to school property!
Maybe the reason these homicidal machines are being overlooked is that the media gets more interest from the comparatively rare instances where death is caused by firearms. Although about 30,000 people die annually from firearms (25% less than cars), according to the Bureau Of Justice Statistics, the majority (2/3) of these deaths are drug and suicide related. Boooooring. Once you factor in the fact that guns are used for self-defense more than 2,000,000 times a year (3-5 times the estimated number of violent crimes committed with guns), you can see why the few firearms deaths left over capture the media’s attention.
So, for example, while the 40,000 automobile deaths per year hardly cause a stir, the dozen or so students that have died in the last 5 years from school shootings make headlines. This almost sounds like a conspiracy! Although, contrary to public perception, school homicides declined after 1993, school shootings are still reported with far more gusto than the thousands of deaths caused by cars each year.
It is the same with the statistical obsession with children’s deaths caused by firearms. Far more children die each year in car accidents, bike accidents, drownings, fires, and poisonings than by firearms – but maybe these other forms of death are so common that they are considered old hat. Oddly, although the majority of the reported “12 children per day who die from gun violence” are actually young adult males who die in gang-related violence, it is only the extremely rare cases of accidental death that get mentioned.
Further, while we hear statistics quoted all the time about the deaths caused by firearms, we rarely hear about the crimes stopped because the criminal encountered an armed “victim.” The 31 states that allow citizens to carry concealed firearms have a 24 percent lower violent crime rate, a 19 percent lower murder rate and a 39 percent lower robbery rate than states that don’t. In fact, the nine states with the lowest violent crime rates are all right-to-carry states. I guess all these crime stopping stats are not interesting enough to repeat ad nauseum either.
The threat to media hype is kept at bay by liberals who gleefully ignore the facts and continue trumpeting their belief that allowing good citizens to legally carry guns somehow makes crime worse. Obvious counterexamples are plentiful – like all 50 states and many countries. For example, the highest death rate by firearm in this nation is in Washington DC – where gun laws are most tightly screwed down than anywhere else, and crimes has only gotten worse for DC residents since these strict gun laws were imposed. In both Canada and Britain, extreme gun control laws have resulted in nearly 50% of all burglaries occurring when residents are home (why not? if they are law-abiding people they won’t be armed!). Meanwhile, in the United States where many households contain guns, only 13 percent of burglaries happen when someone is at home.
But whatever. So long as I have my Ford Focus with me I will have legal recourse to deadly force anywhere I wish.