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I cannot reasonably leave the safety of my family up to the police. That would be shirking my responsibility to my family.

Taking the law into your own hands shirks your responsibility to your nation and to the rule of law itself. Your family is not above the law, nor are you.

A gun is an excellent means of defense. A criminal who knows I have a gun is less likely to bother with me, and if he insists on attacking, I can drop him.

No, it's an excellent means of *offense*; which may or may not provide a deterent effect. Note that the fear of counterattack applies regardless of choice of weapon; but that guns grant a strong advantage to the attacker. If you disagree, please tell me how to block a sniper attack from 100 yards away. I can see a guy with a knife coming at me from 100 yards away and have time to do something. Or I can hand my opponent a gun, and die by the time I notice a red dot on my head.

If he "insists on attacking", you'll be dead before you see the attack coming. Unlike a hand to hand attack, where you can get out of the way, or even bowshot, where something as soft as a table can provide cover, a gun will just kill you dead before you can counter-attack.

That's an extremely poor analogy, for one obvious reason, and one reason that should now be obvious in light of Orwell's quote.

I feel it's an extremely good analogy; your "deterent effect due to offense" is nothing more than the old "Mutually Assured Destruction" canard from the 1980s Cold War.

Firstly, weapons of mass destruction or an entirely different sort of threat. To compare them make no real sense. Why? It's exactly the same principle, on a wider scale. They're weapons that ensure that the attacker can kill multiple opponents, with a decided first strike advantage. So, too, with guns, especially guns capable of autofire.

Second, such weapons are, as Orwell said, tyrannical weapons, and guns are democratic ones.

Would you feel safer if everyone on earth had nuclear weapons, or no one had them?

In reply to Re^4: Principle of Inclusion by Anonymous Monk
in thread Principle of Inclusion by apotheon

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