Facts versus feelings (pt. 1)

Recently, I was in the discussion board for my college class, when the professor of the class stated, “According to the textbook, guns do not stop crime, and can be a danger in the home. What inference can we draw from this?”

As what I would consider a serious student, I dislike being told what to think. And this is a clear example of that. The professor didn’t ask if the text was correct. She simply told us something, and asked what we could infer from it.

So I went and grabbed some numbers from the rabidly anti-gun White House ordered 2010 gun control study, conducted by the CDC. I cited off fact, after face, after fact.

Among the facts I cited, included the following:

  1. Armed citizens are far less likely to be hurt by someone attacking them.
  2. That while 300,000 crimes were committed with guns in 2008, between 1 and 3 million defensive uses of guns stopped a crime from happening -also, in situations where a gun is used to deter a crime, only 8% of the time does the ‘victim’ or ‘defender’ actually fire the gun.
  3. Gun control policies produce ‘mixed results’ -reading further into this paragraph shows that what they meant was, they couldn’t prove harsher gun control laws has any effect on crime at all. The most they could determine was that it couldn’t prove anything one way or another.
  4. Over 61% of gun deaths between 2000-2010 were suicides -not murder, accidental, or otherwise.
  5. Some studies show that women are hurt the worst by gun control laws; these studies show that women use guns to defend themselves from sexual assault/abuse/rape/etc., approximately 200,000 times a year.
  6. States that increased their amount of concealed carry permits showed decreases in crime, including an 8.5% reduction in murder, assaults by 7%, rapes by 5%, and robberies by 3%.
  7. 3 out of 5 criminals polled agreed with the stupidly obvious point that they were far less likely to attack a person, or rob a home, if they knew the owner or victim had a gun. 57% of criminals fear running into an armed citizen more than they do the police.
  8. Despite Great Britain’s ‘wonderful’ gun control laws, they still have huge crime rates. While their gun crimes are lower (obviously), their other crime rates are through the roof. Despite having a fifth of our population, they have 6.52 million crimes a year. Compare that to our 11.8. Higher, yes. But not enough to justify that 1/5 population. All things being equal, they should be hovering around 2 million. Their murder rate is 1.2 per million people, while America is at a 4.7. They have twice as much robbery as we do, twice as much assault, and twice as much rape.

 

These were just a few of the facts I cited, referencing the study by the CDC, in shortened form. But when confronted with this information, the professor said, “Very well written, and excellent research. But in my personal experience, you are wrong.”

What, exactly, is that? How does one respond to that? I thought, as a college student, I would be dealing with adults, who could form cohesive arguments.

As a point of fact, your feelings mean nothing. My feelings mean nothing. While they may drive us, and play an impact in our lives, in the realm of debate, they mean nothing.

Intelligent debate, and discussion is based off of facts. While yes, facts and statistics and studies can all be manipulated, at least they have some basis in reality. Feelings, on the other hand, do not have any relevant point. My feelings are that people who like Ketchup on their eggs are horribly weird; doesn’t mean they are weird.

But today, all we hear is about feelings. College students demanding safe spaces, cancelled events, blockading off areas, all because someone’s speech, or beliefs disagree with theirs. We’ve raised a nation of children that can’t debate their way out of a wet paper bag with instructions. They simply assert that what they believe is true, because they believe it!

This is how toddlers argue. I want the cookie, so I should have the cookie. But you haven’t had dinner yet, honey. But Mom, I want it!

But we have college students essentially making the same argument every day on campus.

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