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tv   Soho Forum Debate - Guns Self- Defense  CSPAN  November 25, 2018 6:32pm-8:01pm EST

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>> he spent a lot of time with aaron burr, hamilton's murderer. there were even rumors persist and throughout the life of martin van buren and so persistent they were in a novel that martin van buren may have been the illegitimate son of aaron burr. no one will ever know, but people -- quincy adams once wrote in his diary that martin van buren looks a lot like ehrenberg -- aaron burr. he's always trying to organize factions and get southerners and northerners in political alliances together. at 8:00r: tonight eastern on c-span's q and day. -- q&a. on gunsoho form debate
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laws in self-defense. topics include arming school officials, printing 3-d guns, and large magazine bands. this is one hour 25 minutes. down. this and announce the main event. defend the resolution we have, we have gary. please come to the stage. [applause] taking the negative on the resolution, we have paul. please come to the state. [applause] -- stage. [applause] please close the voting. thank you. we have closed the voting on the initial vote.
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now, you may defend the resolution about guns. please come to the podium. jeanne -- u, jean. i'm glad the voting was done before you got a good look at me. the proposition has two points. i only want to make two points. if you banned guns it will primarily affect non-criminals. that is the noncontroversial part of what i have to say. secondly, there is a harm in taking guns away from good guys is where the controversy airs in. all, let's define what we mean by a prohibitionist gun-control law. by definition, it means you are trying to take guns away from everyone.
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it legally speaking, it applies to everyone equally. criminals and non-criminals alike. in practice, that is not going to be the case. may have been a little over the top when they said when guns are outlawed, only outlaws will have guns, but a more modern way of phrasing the same idea is if you tell everybody they can't have guns, the people likeliest to obey the law that says you cannot have guns are the law-abiding. industry by definition. it is not a controversial point. what that implies is you will proportionately reduce the share of non-criminals who have guns was only involvement in crime would be as victims. then it would be the proportional drop in gun ownership among criminals . it is just because the compliance with the law will be higher among non-criminals been
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-- than criminals. that means gun uses by non-criminals will be affected. you will reduce defensive uses of guns by noncriminal victims than you will reduce criminal uses by offenders because of who it is who will obey the laws. if you are pro-control, and you favor banning guns you don't , really care about taking guns away from non-criminals. you figure, at worst, a few hunters will not shoot bambi, big deal. there is no serious harm. until you take into account self-defense with a gun. for years, the myth was that it is crazy to defend yourself with a gun because the criminal will only take it away and use it against you. that is mythical. when pressed for examples of that happening, advocates of gun prohibition came up empty.
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it does not happen. i systematically looked into it using the national crime victimization survey data, a huge scale national survey done by the census bureau asking people about crime victimization experiences. nobody has that experience. people use guns for self protection, have basically one resolve. they come out ok. the back i does not take your gun away from them and they do not get injured or lose property. so where did this notion that self-defense with a gun is a bad thing come about? people would be able to cite examples where somebody used a gun defensively and was injured. only, here is a detail they left out. they got injured first and out of desperation, used a gun for protection. that can hardly be use of the
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gun that caused them to get hurt. because they got hurt first. for a long time, the surveying did not get at the detail of sequence. it turns out virtually nobody , who uses a gun for self protection is subsequently hurt. likewise, virtually nobody loses property. in short, self-defense with a gun is almost perfectly affected -- effective and relative to other forms of self protection, it is more effective. that is to say anything else you could do, running away, yelling for help, fighting without a weapon, calling the police. you name it, anything else or , doing nothing. it does not work as well. mean it is, i usually just threatening with a gun. it rarely involves shooting and when it does, it is often shooting in the air, a warning
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shot. it hardly ever involves a good shooting and wounding the bad guy. so threatening a criminal with a gun is almost always effective. the evidence is overwhelming. there is really no serious dispute about that. where the dispute came about is how often does this happen? maybe it is effective, but who cares? it practically never happens. crime victims almost never have the chance to use a gun for self protection. in a place like new york city, that is true. if you're not carrying a gun or do not have a gun, you cannot use a gun for any purpose. in the rest of the world or united states, people are armed to the teeth. it used to be a point of propaganda that we had too many guns and there were more guns than people. that was not true 30 or 40 years
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ago. it is true now. there are over 350 million guns in private hands now. the big boost was the obama effect. barack obama made noises about gun control measures. everybody raced out and bought whatever gone they did not already own. he made jokes about it. he would say i was the biggest friends of the gun industry they ever had. what we know about how often defensive gun use occurs is the national crime victimization survey. the problem with that though is it is a nonanonymous survey done by the federal government. somebody who works for the government and is reporting to the justice department that it's -- is the law enforcement branch of the federal government is asking questions in a nonanonymous survey. not surprisingly, this tends to discourage people from reporting
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their defensive gun use. we unfortunately have to use other sources of information. there have been over 20 national surveys that have asked if people have used a gun for self protection. they use representative probability samples of the population to project as a whole how many defensive gun uses there were. the estimates range from one to 3,000,000. huge numbers. to put that in perspective, most years, there are fewer than 500,000 crimes in which the offender used a gun. there are four times as many defensive gun uses by victims as there are criminal uses by offenders. combining that with my original premise which is, if you banned guns for everybody, in theory, the way it works out is you will reduce defensive gun use more
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than you will reduce criminal uses by crime offenders. so, you have got guns used for self protection and huge numbers of times and that are used effectively to reduce injury. if you get rid of the defensive gun use, the implication is that those people who would have used a gun but now can't are more likely to be injured. -- haved therefore more more injuries, mostly nonfatal. i will reserve the rest of my time for paul. he will need it. [laughter] [applause] >> no trading. you can't pay for the minutes. you do get 15.
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gary took less than 10 but you can take your 15. mr. helmke: thank you for being here and thank you for the invitation. it has been 10 years since i debated gary. we had a three on three debate. i debated steve and a lawyer from the nra. this is my second time with jean. i debated john lodwick two and half years ago. i enjoy having the chance to discuss this issue. i come to this issue for multiple backgrounds. i was a lawyer in indiana, and mayor. i ran the police department,
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dealt with the issue of crime and defensive gun uses and criminal gun uses. as head of the police department after i left the mayor's office, i took a job as the head of the brady campaign to prevent gun violence will we lobby for common sense, what i consider common sense gun laws. now i am a professor at indiana university. i do not do research. i look at things from a policy side. gary does research and statistics that go over my head. i am always happy to debate these issues. it is a complicated proposition. gary is treating it as prohibitionists. one of the versions of a resolution was prohibition. the final one announced was laws that restrict but not prohibit gun ownership, the benefit would be more than offset by defensive -- offensive gun uses. the main issue is, are guns more of the benefit or are there more cost from guns? is our system one that puts more cost or benefit on us? our present system does not have
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-- does not prohibit guns. i do not know anybody who argues for the prohibition. with 350 million guns, it is considered a lost cause, even if we wanted to. gary talked a lot about benefits of having guns. guns can be used defensively. they can be beneficial. clearly there are costs. , before we get into the issue of how many defensive gun uses there are, doing the cost-benefit analysis let's , briefly review the costs that along with guns. in this country today, we have 2-3 accidental deaths by gun every day. two to three people are killed with a gun accidentally every day. often it is young children. the stories you read, the five-year-old will find the gun and kill the three-year-old sister. there is the teenager who does not know the gun was loaded. i had a friend who was shot in the back when another friend thought the gun was unloaded. 2-3 accidental gun deaths.
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i might mention that that is a lot more than other countries experience, in terms of accidental gun deaths. every day, there are 55 suicides by gun. a lot of people say, what does that have to do with this issue? they are not criminals, that is not accidental. suicides will happen regardless. we have more suicides by gun than any other country. when you talk to people who deal with mental health issues and suicide prevention, if someone is thinking they want to commit suicide, there is a lot of discussion that this is a cry for help, they want intervention spur of the moment. , it is different in different situations. basically almost every other way , you try to commit suicide, the success rate could be 10-20%. if you use a gun, it is 90%-95%.
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so we end up with 55 suicides per day in this country. then we have homicides. , we average 32 gun homicides per day in this country. that is a virginia tech happening every day. nobody pays attention to it unless it is a mass shooting. those 90 to 100 deaths are happening with a gun every day in this country. that is the cost of our current gun policy. for every death with a gun, there are 2-3 people injured with the gun who survive. they survived the accidental shooting or homicide attempts or suicide attempt and live with the gun injury for the rest of their lives. these are people like jim brady, who was injured in the assassination attempt on president reagan. he died a couple years ago and his death was attributed to the shooting. he lived with it every day of his life for 30 plus years.
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a woman got a bullet with her -- in her brain and tucson in -- it woman got a bullet in her brain in tucson in 2011. that has affected her. for every gunshot victim, there are families who survive, friends, coworkers who are helping to bear the costs, seeing the pain and the suffering. i remember the last night i spent with jim brady at his house. i could hear him scream every time he rolled over in bed because of injuries that happened 25 years earlier. there is continuing costs for all of us. then there are direct costs. medical costs, lost productivity. estimates go from 6 million to direct costs, most of which paid for by a taxpayer. some people go up to $1 billion in costs in terms of gun violence in the country. gun violence in this country gives us a serious cost. is this normally echo maybe this is just part of what life is like. no. children under 15 are nine times
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as likely to die of accidental shooting in this country than the rest of the developed world. that is children under 15, 9 times as likely to die in an accidental shooting here than in other civilized, developed nations. in 1992, the murder rate was five times of the other frontier countries, australia, new zealand, canada. most of the murders were gun murders. 10 times the suicide rate by gun in this country then the other 25 most developed countries. 17 times more gun homicides in this country than others. why does this country have so many more accidental deaths, suicide deaths, homicides by gun, than other countries? we have more guns per capita than anybody else. when you look at the 350 million
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guns, it makes a difference. i am not the expert, i have not done the research. but, there are people that have published their studies that show a gun in the home is 20 times more likely to be used against you and a family member and it is to protect you. often, a lot of that is the suicide, but sometimes, it is accidental shootings, picking up the gun and shooting the brother-in-law when you did not expect him. 21 times more likely to be used against you than to protect you. there have been studies to show those who carry a gun are four times more likely to get shot than those who do not carry. these are not necessarily causation things. that is why this is so tricky. people who have a gun in their home could maybe be in a more dangerous neighborhood. people who carry the gun might be in more dangerous professions. women have a risk of being a domestic homicide victim. their risk increases seven times if there is a gun in the home.
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guns make things more dangerous. there are a lot of studies out there that say the more guns you have in a house, county, state, country, the more gun violence you will have. that includes homicides, suicides, accidental shootings. there are tremendous costs to gun violence. that is something that needs to be taken into account. one thing i learned as mayor, when you are looking at crime statistics, is that there is a lot of variation. there are different reports. one of the hardest numbers to fudge our deaths. there is cost, serious cost to the current gun policy. gary argues there are benefits to having guns. sure. sometimes a good guy with a gun will stop the bad guy with a gun. sometimes jason bourne, james bond is there to stop the bad guy.
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but the statistics are all over , the place. gary's initial study on this said there were about 2.4 defensive gun uses each year in this country. there is a group called the gun violence archive that looks at every newspaper, police report they can find on a daily basis. obviously not everything gets reported. they came up with 2100 defensive gun uses in all of 2017. just a little over 2000. that is the bottom line probably, but that is looking at police reports, newspaper studies across the country to ry to find evidence there have been defensive gun uses. the crime victimization study goes to people twice a year to follow up with information. they come up with 100,000
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defensive gun uses each year. gary comes up with 2.4 million. where did that number come from? again i am not the expert. , there are arguments about false positives and how people are unwilling -- will say they have done a defensive gun use when they have not. gary argues there are false negatives. if you want those debates, there are tons of scholars that do those debates. when you read scholarly literature, they are nastier than politicians. it is amazing. there is concerns with rare events. when you are looking at something that happens only 1% or 2% of the time, it does not take too many people reporting falsely or remembering poorly to get the number up high here. -- higher. there is a problem with telescoping. yes it used to gun but that was three years ago and you are only asking about two years. the national crime victimization study tries to correct for those things by going to the same people and following up with the same questions.
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there are questions of sampling. gary's original sampling had 5000 people on it. it talked about how it over sampled males and people in the south and west because they knew they needed to do that in order to get more people in the survey. then, he adjusted for what the number was. if you make the adjustment wrong, that can throw the numbers out. i don't know all of those things. gary can answer and argue those better. but, the numbers very. -- vary. when i make policy as a mayor, i say, what are the numbers? somebody says 2000, someone says a hundred thousand, there is says 2.4 million. explain to me why there's so much discrepancy. gary's study is interesting. not only are there issues about defensive gun uses not showing up on police reports, they do not show up in hospital reports, or emergency room reports.
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gary says bad guys do not go to the hospital. maybe that takes care of it. but there are other things , there. according to the studies, when someone is confronted by a bad guy and they fire at them, they hit their target 53% of the time. 53% hit rate. that is something police officers don't -- that is something unheard of. in a shootout situation, adrenaline is flowing and they are hitting their target 53% of the time. another interesting thing in gary's thing is that 46% of defensive gun uses are by women, in the early 90's. maybe that was true but it does , not fit with the rest of the literature. women do not own or fire guns at the same rate. women are not involved in gun culture at the same rate. 46% of the defensive gun uses are women.
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the most amazing thing is gary's conclusion. based on his survey that there to --een 300 and 40,000 340,000 to 400,000 lives saved, saved from murder by defensive gun uses in one year. think of that. when you have 32 homicides a day, maybe we do 15,000 to 20,000 homicides a year. gary's good men with the guns are saving almost 400 house in -- each year. 400,000 something does not fit here. last point i want to make, even if the numbers are right or somewhere in the range between 100,000 in their study and gary's study are these , necessarily beneficial and positive gun uses? what are some of the categories uses?er defensive gun gary's original study says saying i have a gun is a
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defensive gun use. i've got a gun, do not yell at me. only one half of those people that had defensive gun use even pointed the gun at the offender. 47% said there was no threat or attack for their use. excuse me, if there is no threat or attack, how is it a defensive gun use? 52% of the offenders were unarmed. according to the survey only 18% , of the offenders had guns. something is wrong. there are arguments over whether these defensive gun uses are effective. some studies say you are just as likely to get injured with or without a gun. some say you are just as likely to get injured with a baseball bat. obviously the numbers do not add , up.
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what does add up is we have significant cost and defensive uses are questionable. i think we can find a way to say let's reduce the bad things from happening without taking the good things away. thank you. [applause] >> gary, you may go to the podium for your rebuttal. mr. kleck: first of all, we need to make clear that the term prohibition covers a lot of ground. no, of course the brady campaign, which paul used to head, is not advocating a complete ban on all firearms. that would be pointless. it is a political impossibility. however the organization has , favored a ban on handguns. in fact they did this openly , until the 70's and then covertly after.
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for example, they filed a brief on behalf of washington, d.c.'s handgun ban when it was challenged and ruled unconstitutional. they were saying we need to preserve the handgun ban. if that is not favoring banning handguns, if that is not favoring handgun prohibition i , do not know what is. that was ruled unconstitutional. you could not favor that anymore so they now favor banning assault weapons, not military weapons that fire like machine guns. they are ordinary guns owned overwhelmingly by non-criminals used for noncriminal purposes that fire one shot at a time. they favor banning those. they also favor banning magazines that hold more than 10 rounds. again, which are not used by mass killers to boost the casualty count in mass shootings. they are used almost entirely by
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non-criminals for noncriminal purposes. paul refers to the fatality rates for suicide being many times higher for a tense with guns thantempts with with other attempts. as if we ought to compare guns with the entire set of other suicide methods. as if people would be as likely to substitute the least lethal methods of suicide if they cannot get a gun and put the gun to their head and pull the trigger. that is implausible. they would then favor whatever is the next most lethal method of killing themselves, hanging. here is a little secret he did not share with you. there is no significant difference between the fatality rate of attempts by hanging and attempts by shooting. they are both about 80% fatal.
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he says that guns are 21 times more likely to be used against gun owners than they are against the criminal. that is not true, but it is a myth that will not die. the studies it was based on, in similar ratios, they did not count all defensive gun uses or even most of them or even more than a tiny fraction. they cover killings. how many times are civilians or the law abiding people killed and how many times are the gun owners are killed and how many criminals they killed. as if the point of having a gun for self protection is to pile up bodies on your doorstep. that is not the point. the point is to save lives, to prevent injury. and you can't count of the number of lives saved or injuries prevented, so that ratio has no relevance at all. it is basically a cost benefit ratio in which you have counted the cost and none of the benefit. the benefit is not in killing criminals. it is avoiding being killed yourself or injured yourself or losing property yourself.
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he says more guns lead to more gun homicide. well, yeah, duh, that is true. more gun homicides. you can't commit a gun homicide unless you have a gun. the issue is, do you kill more people when there are more guns? is there a higher homicide rate overall? no, there is not. all of the best methodologically soundest research finds that places with higher gun ownership rates do not have higher total homicide rates. they also don't have higher suicide rates. they just have a higher percentage of homicides and suicides involving guns. he seriously cites as evidence of how often defensive gun use occurs, the number of newspaper accounts or news accounts compiled in the gun violence archive. he said there were 2000.
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there were probably 2000 self-defensive gun uses where somebody was crazy enough to report it to the police which got reported to the local news media. but that has nothing to do with how many are committed total overall. it has nothing to do with it. because you would be crazy to either tell the police or the news media that you do not have to tell that you pulled a deadly weapon on another human being. no matter how justified you think it was and how justified it in fact was, reporting it can do absolutely no good for you. thank you. [applause] >> [inaudible] mr. epstein: is it easier to see if you stand? first -- and again, we are getting to a lot of topics here. there are a number of studies
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that show the opposite of what gary says. these are from other academics and gary gets into long arguments with his other academics who basically say that gary is not right, his methodology is not right, but actually when you look at these studies, not only do we have more homicides in this country and more gun homicides, generally, they show that our homicide rates are so much larger because of the guns. that if you take the guns out of it, we have the same level of rapes and robberies and burglaries. but we are out of whack in terms of total homicides. and that is driven by the fact that we have such high rates of gun homicide. and that is driven by the fact that we have guns. so yes, if you don't have guns, you will not have as many gun homicides. but we are so much worse than the rest of the developed world because we have so many of these guns.
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and that holds true for the accidental deaths. that holds true for gun suicide and holds true for these other things. a lot of times in suicide, people are looking for a cry for help. and maybe there are some methods like hanging that are close to guns. but most people don't go to that trouble. most people are trying pills, most people are trying knives. those are the things that end up at the 10% or 20% level. in terms of gun bans, when i was at brady, we supported washington, d.c. whenever i was asked about that, when i was mayor, i was asked about a gun ban and i said no, i do not think they are effective. if the people in washington, d.c. feel this will be effective, they should make that decision. and they made that decision in the mid-1970's. they thought surrounding states would do the same thing. they didn't. it was easy to get from maryland into d.c. and it was pretty ineffective. it did reduce the number of suicides in d.c.
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and there is some evidence that it reduced the number of homicides in d.c. for a period of time. if i told people that they disagreed with it they should run for mayor or city council of d.c. instead, they decided to have the court intervened and have the court involved. case, time it came to the brady took a neutral stance on the city versus mcdonald's. we felt the court's decision in the d.c. case was one where the court would not say that there would be one set of rule for d.c. and one set of rules for the rest of the country. that just did not make sense for us. we wanted to make sure that the people understood what their decision did. we are not arguing second amendment law. in the supreme court in a d.c. case, justice scalia made it very clear that the second amendment rights, like other rights, is not unlimited. you can have restrictions on who get guns, how guns sold and
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carried and stored and what kind of guns that will be available to the people. that is justice scalia -- that is what justice scalia wrote. that same language was repeated by justice alito two years later in the mcdonald case. so clearly communities and states can put restrictions on guns. and i think that is the real issue, real. what sort of things we can do to try to make it harder for dangerous people to get guns? since the last time i debated gary, we had shootings at sandy hook, shootings at tucson. we had the pulse nightclub. the nightclub shooting. we had the las vegas shooting. we had numerous church shootings. and what have we done as a country in reaction to that? nothing. nothing. we passed no national legislation. a few executive orders that president obama tried since sandy hook have been rescinded since that time. we have done nothing as a country and we have new problems here. i don't think that makes sense to me. there are things we can do. and gary admits it in some of
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his articles. background checks are not go to stop people from having good defensive gun uses. there are no -- i don't think gary showed any defensive gun uses with semi-automatic assault rifles. the ar-15's. those are not used for defensive purposes. if we have some background checks and restrictions on weapons, the gabby giffords shooter was stopped when he was going to change his magazine clip. and if he'd had a smaller magazine clip, he might not have killed that little girl. he might have shot less people. the sandy hook kids, some of them got away when he changed his high-capacity magazine. those sorts of things do make a difference. i think as a country, we should look at commonsense restrictions that make it harder for dangerous people to get guns. that stress that there are risks and responsibilities as well as rights that go along with guns and that will not take away the chance for people to have good, defensive gun uses if they need it. [applause]
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we're going to the q&a section. it is the moderator's prerogative to ask a couple of questions, but at any time, you can ask questions of each other. do either of you want to ask a question? or do you want to pass for the moment? mr. kleck: sure, i will ask a couple of questions. number one, as to the brady campaign's attitude toward washington's handgun ban, they did right -- write a brief. but did that say nothing of whether or not the brady campaign thought this was an effective way of controlling violence? is that your position now, that the brief did not advocate this would be a good idea from a standpoint of policy? mr. helmke: the brief addressed the legal issues, the second amendment issues, which is what legal briefs do, they did not discuss the policy implications of it. we indicated that we thought that the second amendment, because it had that cause that says a well-regulated militia to
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being necessary to the security of a free state, language that somehow disappears from the nra building in many of the second amendment discussions, because it dealt with a collective right somehow connected to a militia. that was the argument and the legal brief. policy arguments are made by city councils, mayors, and by congress. we were discussing the legal issues on the brief. most of the briefs i don't think i any side went into effectiveness. justice breyer in his dissent tried to look at a number of those things. there are a number of people that brought those issues up. as to the amount of gun violence in our community but the crucial decision was not a policy decision, it was what does the second amendment mean. i think the court got it wrong but they allowed for most common sense restrictions that states want to do. mr. kleck: the second question was, you say that somewhere in my article about how many defensive gun uses there were, that i said defensive gun use saved 400,000 lives.
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is this really something i said or is this something you are kind of reading into it? mr. helmke: i was reading it at 12:30 at night. mr. kleck: there you go. mr. helmke: i eventually got the page number here. on page 177 of the article published in 1995, i think it's the first main one that had your survey. when i write this late at night -- ok, on page 177, 15.7% of the respondents believed that they saved a life with their defensive gun use. and then you said that would calculate to 340,000 to 400,000 saved lives. and then you say it is impossible to know that this is true. mr. kleck: there you go. mr. helmke: well, basically you
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were saying you could not believe your own numbers. and at the end of your article, what you did is you basically said, i can't believe my respondents. let me just -- you said that even if they're not telling the truth, if only 10% are telling the truth, that would translate to 40,000 saved lives. which is more than the number of gun deaths in a year and you had a long discussion on page 177. mr. kleck: right, which included the follow-up remarks in which you sniffed out of that quote or paraphrase or whatever you call that. these are what people think. it is just their perceptions. and i stressed, you can't know that they would have saved a life. or lost a life. in short, i did not.
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that is just something you made up. mr. helmke: you said there was 2.5 million defensive gun uses. it is parroted by all sorts of politicians. they don't include the other thing that maybe these people don't really do anything with this. since half of the people are given saying they have a gun. mr. epstein: that actually segues into the question that i want to put to you guys. paul said let's assume for the moment that your two million estimate is true. ok, but, what is the nature of this defensive gun use? you then broke it down and said it is not what you and i would think of as defensive gun use. can you address that challenge? mr. kleck: no. in every case, they did something with the gun. at minimum, they threatened the offender and in a few cases, just a small percentage of the cases, maybe one in seven, they fired at the offender trying to shoot the offender. and in maybe 7% of the cases they claim to have shot the
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offender but unfortunately we never established how they knew that. they did not have a wounded person sitting on their living room floor bleeding on the carpet. they were just, in many cases, just guessing. what we knew is at minimum they threatened the offender with a gun. and it is not just saying as input of information, i have a gun. it is threatening the person. it is a difference. it is not a point of information. when you're pointing a gun at somebody who is trying to rob you or trying to attack you, it has meaning due to context. the meaning is this is a threat. i am willing to shoot you if you don't stop -- mr. helmke: that is what they think they were doing. only half of them pointed the gun. you say in your survey that you count "i have a gun" as being a defensive gun use. without even showing it. mr. kleck: it is a verbal threat. if you are trying to say they are not dramatic and they don't
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all involve attempts to physically assault the other person, absolutely, i said that from the get-go. but you seem to think there is no value in people merely threatening a defender. then it causes them to not attack them. there is value there. mr. helmke: i can see there are good defensive gun uses. your dollar estimate becomes locked into the nra in this country. it turns out that a lot of this is macho i have got a gun, get away. even though 18% of you have a gun, you better get out of there because half the respondents think they pointed a gun at a person, we are talking about something different. i mean, when i think about defensive gun use, i am thinking about someone who is got a gun, shows the gun and points the gun. maybe not necessarily points the gun, brandishing does count, but half of your people did not even point the gun at the person. i think we are living in a bit of a dream world here. and again, we're only talking
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about 222 respondents that admitted that these were the defensive gun uses. you got that down to 111 who said they pointed the gun and then down to the 40 or 30 that actually had an attack going on. we are talking about small numbers. mr. kleck: you do realize as a lawyer that if somebody verbally threatens another person with violence, that is an assault. and if it is a criminal assault, when a bad guy does a for bad purposes, why is it in your mind it is magically translated into not a real threat? not unless he actually points the gun, verbally threatening to shoot somebody, that doesn't count? mr. helmke: no, clearly that is a threat. i think we are mixing different things. people have taken your 2.4 million figure and translated it they need their ak-47 to shoot back when a gang is invading their house. to all of a sudden i saw a guy
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trespassing, get out of my backyard. my question is let's say there is half a million to one million. those are defensive gun uses that you say are legitimate. you seem to have said that you do not rule that out. but if you do not rule it out, if it is three quarters of a million and it is reasonable defensive gun uses, isn't that very considerably weighing in the balance if you believe that number? mr. helmke: i am approaching this as, yes, guns can be used for beneficial purposes. and gary has outlined some of those. also, guns can be used for very negative purposes. and i tried to outline those. i am not taking a prohibitionist approach. i am saying, let's do more background checks. let's get some of these things like some of the semi-automatic assault rifles and high-capacity magazines and treat those closer
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to how we treat machine guns and hunting rifles. let's go after gun trafficking and do some things that will make it harder for dangerous people to get guns and stress the risks and the responsibilities of gun ownership, then maybe we end up ahead. but instead, we do nothing. mr. epstein: just a final question to you, gary, is there any restriction, legal restriction on gun use that you support, any at all? mr. kleck: yeah. at least going back to the early 1990's, over a quarter of a century ago, i've advocated for what today is known as universal background checks. i am all in favor of keeping guns away from bad guys precise only -- precisely because that is not a prohibitionist measure. it is not like we are not going to let anybody criminal or noncriminal have a semi automatic weapon because a kind of looks like a machine gun. when we know perfectly well what that means is disarming on criminals. but a background check only
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prevents guns from going in the hands of people who cannot pass the background check which is convicted criminals, people with a record of mental illness, so on. alcoholics, drug addicts and so forth. so it is the non-prohibitionist character that makes it a good idea because it will only reduce bad uses of guns and it won't reduce the defensive use. mr. helmke: that is the main legislative priority the brady campaign has had over the last 10, 20, 25 years since the brady bill was passed and that is something that we can't get congress to adopt. and we need more people like gary kleck to stand up and say that makes sense. mr. epstein: do we have anybody out there with a question? take it away. >> mr. mayor, what kind of restrictions or regulations would you propose, or you think would help with the suicides or the domestic situation
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types of shootings, and what kind of data is there that would help decrease those numbers? mr. helmke: laws will not take care of all of them. or even close to these problems. it is more of the gun culture and having the idea that a gun in your home will protect you all the time and not realizing that that a gun will cause problems. i have told this story before, when i was mayor, i get a call when night, one of my police officers married to another police officer, they keep a loaded handgun on their on their nightstand because it is a dangerous world out there. they have a domestic quarrel, she is dead. that is what happens. guns just have a lot of bad consequences to them. some people propose waiting periods. that might get someone who just got a quick, all is lost and
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they need to commit suicide and it stops there, that might stop someone else. i think a lot of it deals with less stress the responsibilities and stress the risks that go with guns. instead, we have an attitude in this country that anybody should have any gun, anytime, anyplace. mr. epstein: comments from you guys? any questions? no? next question. >> i did a quick search after your comment about the number of accidental deaths per day. it turns out that in 2016 they were about 37,000 accidental deaths resulting from automobiles. i think if i do the division right, that is 100 a day. i will not ask you why you don't advocate more common sense automobile regulations. what i want to ask you is your use of anecdotes are tragic and heart wrenching. why do gun control advocates have to rely on data like that? much of which has been discredited by people like gary
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, in order to make your argument? why can't you look at the same data and make the same argument with valid, useful data? mr. helmke: let me talk about cars really quickly. because it comes up all the time. we register cars. so, we know who the owner is. we license the drivers and have tests on that. i think registering of guns and licensing of gun owners might make some sense. when we find out that someone, a driver is misusing alcohol or drugs, we take their license away from them. we test to see if they know what they're doing when they drive a car. when we find out that cars are unsafe, we require things like airbags and seatbelts. and get rid of the pintos that explode, those type things. we have done a lot to reduce car violence by looking both at people who drive cars and the cars themselves. that is a good approach to take. that is a public health approach toward things. guns, i would like to take the same approach for. let's figure out a public health
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model and figure out what we can do. part of the problem is it is tough to find good research. basically,time congress had riders on bills that made it almost impossible to convey the message that the national institutes of health could not do the research. so people had to research on their own. then the research becomes a suspect. i like to see more research done. if the data takes it someplace, let's do it. the one thing that is pretty clear is the number of deaths that are occurring. that is data that is incontrovertible and that is one of the most solid things that is not based on survey. that is what i'm relying on. i am relying on the number of people killed with guns each day and then you try to figure out where the gun came from. all that is hard to research because congress has also made it harder to trace where guns come from. you can find out where a single gun has came from but you can't get information on other guns used in crimes.
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we make it impossible to get the data. we do that so that what you cannot develop a policy prescription that deals with guns. mr. kleck: paul admits to an advocacy of registration. there is a difference between registering cars and registering guns. the difference is that nobody is seriously advocating banning cars. i mean, maybe the really green people would think there is something to be said for that, but they are a pretty small minority, but there are lots of people who do support banning guns. and certainly about half will support banning semiautomatic guns that get labeled as assault weapons. and about a quarter will still support banning handguns although the number is declining. so yeah, people want to ban it. and what would you need administratively if you wanted to seize all the guns or all the handguns or all the assault weapons or all the large capacity magazines? well, you would need a record of who has them.
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and it may be law enforcement or a governmental impossibility to know who owed your gun and who should turn it in if you declare you have to turn in an assault weapon, which is exactly what happened. state of california said turn in your assault weapons, whatever they were, and how would they know if you had one and should be turning it in? the only way the government can know that is if they have a record of it. and that is what registration is. it records who has specific guns. it doesn't have any crime control value. every single study that's assessed registration laws on crime rates has found there is no effect of having a registration law on crime rates. so what has got no crime control rationale. but it has got plenty of rationale making banning some subset of guns administratively feasible. mr. helmke: first of all, the supreme court in these cases made it clear that you can't ban guns.
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so i mean, it is the night after the heller case, i congratulated them, you got what you wanted. then supreme court said that the remedy is that he should get a license for his gun. why do we move forward and let -- with the licensing and registration scheme? it is unconstitutional. the supreme court is behind you on this sort of thing. the government has the name. and then i point out that the folks with the list of concealed carry permits. which means the government has their name with a list of concealed carry permits. mr. kleck: they don't like that, either. mr. helmke: they have it up. and that point out in this day and age, when that is the government. when facebook and twitter and what everybody else is figuring out what toothpaste to use, you can find out pretty much everything about everybody. you don't think someone can figure out who the likely gun owners are this country? the gun registration thing some bugaboo -- i think that is left
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over from centuries, decades past. mr. kleck: so, as a lawyer, you think that information floating around on the internet would be enough for the court to issue a search warrant? to look for a gun? mr. helmke: they will not do that because you can't have gun bans constitutionally. mr. kleck: i am pretty sure a registration form by the government would be a pretty good basis for probable cause. mr. epstein: -- next question. >> somewhat related to the registration question. but generally further restriction question, what do you think the effectiveness of any of these laws will be in the face of reprinted guns? mr. epstein: why don't you answer that question first, then paul. first?an you answer
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mr. kleck: i wish i knew more about it. it is one of those things where the cat is already out of the bag. or the horse is out of the corral, or whatever the euphemism is. the information won't die. it is on the internet. it is circulating. the plans are there. the programming to make your 3-d printer crank out the weaponry is there. but, does anybody really want one? i mean, that was my initial reaction when i heard about somebody saying you could 3-d print a gun. why would you want one? most 3-d printers crank out plastic. do you really want a gun that will melt after firing two or three times? and especially, are you going to want one when there are 350 million real guns out there made out of steel and wood and plastic and all sorts of really durable stuff, why would you need or want this? so, i think it is gun anarchists out there who are pushing the idea of putting out these 3-d
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manufactured guns. it is a symbolic significance. i guess to a libertarian audience it is thumbing your nose at the government. maybe that is what it is all about. i don't see it as being of any practical significance. mr. helmke: i was just going to say that i think the significance thing is how this will change in the future. i mean, if you can get to the stage -- right now, a lot of these plastic guns aren't as durable. they are not as reliable. they might be only good for one or two uses and then it might explode or overheat or whatever. then you still need a metal firing pin or you need some metal attached to it to make it effective. i do not know why anybody would do it. i think it is kind of interesting. it is trying to understand -- all guns, ignoring the 3-d guns, all guns start out in the legal market. how do they end up in the hands of the bad guys is something that we should study.
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often times are stolen from a gun, this sort of thing. i'd point out that you don't really have gangs making guns. now, theoretically, you can have gangs making the guns. that might change the mix. that is still years away, i think. but if it ever gets to the stage where you could easily make an effective multi-use gun on your own, i think that is going to make it, the debate will be a lot different. mr. epstein: next question. >> this question is for paul. since you mentioned mass shootings, it seems to be the case that a lot of these shootings might have been prevented if already existing laws were properly and effectively enforced. i am curious as to what you are advocating for additional regulations and restrictions if it is the case that already existing laws might have already prevented these laws if they were probably enforced. mr. helmke: i am not sure what
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laws you are talking about other than laws against murder. it is against the law to murder someone. laws serve a number of purposes. laws hopefully are written to try to prevent crimes, bad things from occurring, laws are also written when a bad thing occurs, then you've got the legal right to arrest that person and charge them for it, laws also sort of set what communities, what society's norms are for behavior. a lot of the mass shootings basically, the person did not break any law at all. the gabby giffords shooter, arizona has no laws on the books with regard to guns, he was not breaking a single law carrying the gun, carrying a loaded gun, waving the loaded gun. he did not break the law until he the trigger the first time and he was not stopped by the good guy with a gun, he was stopped when the magazine ran out of bullets and he got tackled by some 65-year-old type person.
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>> yay old people. mr. helmke: the sandy hook shooter, his mother had a good collection of guns and they did not do her any good, he used a lot of them to shoot her and then went to the school, you had school kids get away when he went to change out the magazine, it held 31 bullets. if he had had a smaller magazine that was capped at 10 or 15 or 18, more people might have gotten away, too. i mean, when laws have problems and you strengthen the laws, just this quick example, one of the few gun control laws we have on the books is the gun control act of 1968, it set the list of prohibited purchasers, felons, people who were dangerously mentally ill. for 25 years basically the way it operated is if you want to -- buy a gun, they would just rely on my say so. obviously, bad people can lie. so the brady bill that started to have background checks from
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federally licensed dealers, said, let's do a check on the is sort of thing. we did not say that prohibited law does not work, let's get rid of it. we said let's figure out what we need to do by going to licensed gun dealers who are presumably law-abiding to figure out what they can do. when we have something that is not working and bad things happen, look to see if you need to change the law, strengthen the law, try something else, but instead we just basically say, laws are no good, we can't do let's getoe is us, more guns, and like i say, if more guns made us safer, we would be the safest country in the world, and we are not. mr. epstein: comment, gary? mr. kleck: the one specific and control measure that paul mentions that the brady campaign and other gun control organizations mentioned is a ban on large capacity magazines, the idea being that if the mass shooters had magazines that held no more than 10 rounds, which is the usual cut off, they would hurt fewer people.
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so, the argument, it is a subtle one, but it is, well, there is no real difference between a guy who has 30 rounds in three separate magazines, each holding 10 rounds, versus a guy who has a single 30 round magazine. it is not the difference in rounds that matters. it is the fact that the guy who has only 10 round magazines, he has to reload more often. so that is why paul keeps citing that one example of gabrielle giffords, someone tackled the shooter while he was reloading. the problem is, a, we do not really know that is what happened. he may well have been struggling with a defective magazine and that is why they were able to tackle him. in other words, it had nothing to do with him trying to reload as far as we know. maybe that was the case, but there is, to my knowledge, in the past 30 years, not a single case of somebody who actually got tackled while they were reloading. so the fact that the ban on big
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magazines would make the shooter reload more often, it does not have the significance he is hinting. and he also says that in the sandy hook shooting, a bunch of school kids escaped while the guy was reloading. we in fact have not the slightest evidence that was what was happening. we don't know whether was choosing to stop shooting for a while, whether he was taking a break to wipe the perspiration off his forehead, we have no idea, there is no evidence whatsoever that his reloading efforts had anything to do with those kids escaping. mr. epstein: all right, next question. >> thank you. paul, you mentioned that, you mentioned a lot of the school shootings like sandy hook and you said we did not have a good guy with a gun stopping the shootings. you also earlier compared u.s. statistics to, and i quote,
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other civilized countries. so my question is, would you then support a law that would actually repeal the law that did not allow a good guy with a gun to stop the shootings because of the guaranteed victim, or the gun free school zone act, which is why we could not have a good guy with a gun stopping shootings. and could you define a civilized country since you compared it? mr. helmke: i meant developed countries. i tried to clarify that when i was speaking. generally they look at 25 and other industrialized countries when they are doing these comparisons. the other comparison was to, like, canada, new zealand, and australia, because they have the sort of frontier settlement background that we had. i don't -- i have no objection to schools hiring school resource officers, bringing in
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police officers to deal with when there is a threat, to deal with the possibility of a threat, to deal with school shootings. i am opposed to having teachers given the responsibility of doing this. my wife was a teacher for 37 years. it was tough enough to keep your purse secure, much less a gun secure in the classroom. i have talked to people that have been shot and injured at virginia tech and at other school shooting situations. and some of these people are people that were familiar with guns, had used guns, knew guns. they have indicated the gun would have done nothing for them. it would have only made them an earlier target in situations. if we are going to have -- if there is a threat someplace, get someone who is trained to handle that threat to that place to deal with it. that's how you handle these situations. you are never going to have a perfect situation. again, we are always hoping that
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the hero is there someplace. but in real life, that's hard to have. adding more guns to the situation just ends up usually having more things go wrong. has anyone here been in a school when there has been a school shooting? mr. kleck: i guess not. the gentleman in the back. mr. helmke: the one i usually bring up when i'm speaking at college campuses, because a lot of times they will talk about college kids should have their concealed carry permit. and i talk about, folks have gone through years of school, generally, and have not -- not many people have been in a school shooting. there's more now than there used to be. then i say how many of you in college knew anyone who ever got drunk, how many knew anyone who abused drugs, how many knew
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anyone who was seriously depressed or had relationship issues, whatever. you add to that the fact that college dorms are not very secure in the classrooms don't have places to store things. the idea of adding more guns into a college setting or even a k-12 setting i don't think makes sense unless you are hiring professionals to be there. mr. epstein: comment, gary? mr. kleck: paul argues that the reason why you can't have authorized teachers or security officers with guns in a school is because you can't secure the gun. if you can't secure a purse, how can you secure a gun? there is a simple device called a trigger lock. which is, it just goes behind the trigger and makes it utterly impossible to fire the gun, whether you are a kid in the classroom or anybody else. if you're not the authorized user who does not have a key to stick in that lock, you're not going to be able to use it. to my knowledge, in 40 years of research, i have never heard of a single documented case where somebody defeated a trigger lock and then did harm with the gun where an unauthorized user got a hold of the gun and disengaged the trigger lock.
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that is, they did not commit homicides, they didn't commit suicides, and they did not commit an accidental death or injury with the gun. so, that's not an issue. but the fact that people have to make up these spurious reasons why you couldn't have an authorized shooter just shows the weaknesses of the argument. it's not like every schoolteacher would be packing a gun on their hip. the usual proposal is there is one or two people who have been trained, often because they are former military or police, who are the authorized accessors of the gun. and there may be one or two guns in the entire school and they are secured with either a locked cabinet or a trigger lock. and so, the idea that, well, the problem is somebody unauthorized will get a hold of the gun and god knows what will happen, that is not an issue. if you want to argue, well then, they would be surprised or shocked and they would not have the frame of mind to use the gun effectively, that is possible.
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that is a plausible argument. but the idea that you could not secure the gun or these proposals entail all the teachers being armed and packing a gun on their hip, that is crazy. that has nothing to do with the real debate. mr. epstein: next question. >> thank you, guys. my question is to the both of you. it seems both of you are ok with background checks, and you happened to make a quip about gangs in chicago printing guns. so, i guess that is a little allusion to the black communities in chicago that are experiencing gun violence by gangs. i'm going to frame this question under new york state gun control laws. so, in new york state, you have to put up a $700 registration fee to get a permit. you need seven pieces of i.d. outside of your municipal i.d. to get a permit.
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and apparently asking for i.d. for voting is racist, so imagine seven pieces of i.d. you can get denied for your gun permit if you were convicted of a single felony, and you could still get denied. it seems to me that these sorts of gun control laws in new york really only affect communities of color. because most legal gun owners in new york are white. so, i would like to know, would you be -- would either of you be in support of repealing new york's racist gun laws? mr. epstein: this will have to be the last question. gary, you go first with that question and then paul, and then we will have the summation. mr. kleck: unfortunately, it does not apply just to racial minorities. it applies to everybody. it is almost impossible for a middle-class white person to get a permit in the city of new york.
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and it is the city more than the rest of the state of new york. and the questioner did accurately portray just how very difficult it is. furthermore, it can be denied on totally subjective grounds. somebody in the police department can say, i do not think this person has a reasonable basis or sufficient reasonable basis to get a permit. and there is no specific criteria that are articulated in the law. it can be a completely arbitrary , subjective judgment. and yes, when you have that kind of discretion, anybody who happens to be personally racially biased, or for that matter gender biased, can easily let those biases influence that subjective a judgment. which is quite different from the standard background check, where it is cut and dry. you either have a criminal conviction or you don't.
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if you do, you can't get the gun, the permit, whatever. if you are clean, you can get it. but new york city's laws are remarkably subjective. mr. helmke: first of all, anyone who has a finally regardless of how long ago is banned, cannot buy a gun, much less get a permit to carry. and that is federal law. so, that is one of the things that goes back to the gun control act of 1968. the supreme court has not ruled on the issue of whether there is a constitutional right to carry a gun outside of your house. both the heller case and the mcdonald case said you had the right to have a gun in your home for self-defense. so, we are not getting into the constitutional issues. i have generallky -- i do not know details of new york's carry laws. i generally support may issue states rather than the states where the police chief can have a chance to deny someone because often times they are going to have information that may not be a formal disqualifier for buying a gun, but they will know they have responded to 25 domestic
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arguments at that place, or they have got neighbors that know -- that say drugs are being sold there or they have arrested this person five or six times but don't have a -- they might be on a misdemeanor charge that involved violence, but not enough to bar them from carrying. i do think that the way to counteract subjective discrimination would be to have some sort of an appeal process for those things. and that doesn't bother me. but generally, i trust the sheriffs and the police chiefs to have a better sense of who should be able to carry loaded guns in public and therefore endanger the rest of us. i think that is the right way to go. mr. epstein: summations. you have five minutes to summarize. you can take the podium or do it from the chair. mr. kleck: i'm still lazy, still going to do it from the chair.
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you know, the debate is -- the really technical debate is too boring to talk about. but in a way, this issue really boils down to how much defensive gun use there is, and it is a mark of how threatening large numbers of defensive gun use is to the pro-control movement that they go to such great lengths to discredit large estimates. paul seriously suggests that you can count up defensive gun uses by counting of how many news articles there are about them. he doesn't actually quite say i believe that in fact, he kind of hints he does not believe it, but why bring it up? he offers the national crime victimization survey's estimate of 100,000 defensive gun uses, but that survey has never asked a single respondent a direct question about defensive gun use. they are only counting how many people kind of volunteer the information that they have pointed a deadly weapon at another human being.
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and not surprisingly, in a government-run, government-sponsored survey which is not anonymous where they know where you live and your phone number and so on, people are not inclined to volunteer the information. that survey has nothing to say in this debate. but there are 20 national surveys plus, 20 plus, that have without exception indicated defensive gun use is really common. and why is this surprising? millions of americans, tens of millions of americans, maybe hundreds of thousands of americans own guns. and there's a lot of crime where you had would have an opportunity and a need to use a gun for self protection. so, this is a fact that needs to be taken account of in making policy. you should not be making policy that cuts into people using guns for self-protective purposes. where they are not killing people to protect themselves. they are just avoiding death and injury themselves, for the most part, by pointing a gun at a criminal and saying, knock it off. and so, i don't have any problem
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at all with gun control measures that are selectively aimed at bad guys. including convicted felons, and including people who have been declared to be dangerous to themselves and others by a court of law. i have no problem with that, either. but what i do have a problem with is laws that will disarm more people, whether it be all guns or handguns or so-called assault weapons or large capacity magazines, it will do this more for non-criminals than for criminals. will that is bad policy, poorly thought out, and not supported by the best possible evidence. mr. helmke: so let's put together good policy that's going to try to reduce the number of deaths but not take the guns away that are going to be used for defensive gun purposes. gary concedes that background checks make sense. we have not had -- we discussed
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so-called assault weapons. there is no evidence, i don't think at least in the early thing i read, maybe because of the way it was written in the mid-1990's, that the so-called assault weapons were used for defensive purposes. most of the time, the person was first of all waving a handgun. i think that was the most prevalent that you had. i don't have the chart in front of me now. no, on your chart, you do. in your survey you indicate if you responded to the offender, 48% of whom did not have a gun -- with a gun, or a weapon, what kind of weapon? they list baseball bats, knives, handguns. they do not list assault rifles. so, what i'm saying is that we can structure some things. registration and licensing if we go there should not be taking the guns away from good people. it should be helping us track who actually owns the gun and where it's going. laws on reporting lost and stolen guns. laws requiring guns to be locked
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up, like gary suggests, for schools might make sense. there are things we can do. but what we are doing is nothing. we are allowing people to basically buy any kind of gun, any number of these guns as they can, and then we end up with the cost of it. and what we have not talked about is how these defensive gun uses sometimes in and of themselves cause problems. i think in one of gary's columns he talks about, maybe it was 33% are bad guy versus good guy defensive gun uses. you get sometimes where basically you get an arms race or an escalation of conflict. look at the george zimmerman trayvon martin situation. here is something that should have at the worst been a fight. and george zimmerman pulls out the gun and trayvon martin is dead. you get the situation the other day, someone comes to their house and the door is open, so they pull their gun and shoot and it turns out it's a dallas
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police officer and she is in the wrong room. you know, these are what people consider defensive gun uses. having that gun makes someone more willing to pull the gun, more willing to shoot the gun, more willing to escalate situations that should not be. again, i concede. i admit, i agree, there are good purposes used for guns. i am not anti-gun. but i think we can -- we need to realize that when we as a society allow people to have an instrument that can kill others, kill many others, kill them at a distance, and allow people to carry those loaded in public, thereby impacting others either accidentally or intentionally, or negligently or recklessly, we as a society i think have an appropriate chance to respond to that. it is not a constitutional issue. it is one that requires good research and requires good policy.
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my bottom line tonight is let's not take away good defensive gun uses. let's try to get more effective gun laws that will make it harder for dangerous people to get guns. let's lift the prohibitions on studying these issues and treat this as a public health issue and try to make it safer for all of us. instead, everybody goes to their corner, i'm all for guns or i am all against guns. i do not know anyone who wants to ban all guns. i do not know anyone who wants everyone to have every gun there is. there should be plenty of room for middle ground. let's decide which people should be restricted. right now, we restrict felons, dangerously mentally ill, and some others. let's see if violent misdemeanant is should be put in that category or if maybe some tax cheat felons should be taken off that category. you can look at who gets guns. let's look at the types of guns. right now, we restrict fully automatic machine guns. we have done that since the mid-1930's. it has been effective. you do not see machine guns in bank robberies anymore. let's decide if semiautomatics should be treated like machine guns or create new rules for them.
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where should guns be excluded? who should be able to carry a gun? what kind of guns should be out there? these are the things the supreme court says are constitutionally permissible. those are things that could be effective. those are things that should be studied. this shouldn't be the hot button issue that we make it out to. gary and i should not have to come back 10 years from now having the same argument we had 10 years ago. thank you for being here. [applause] mr. epstein: ok. please vote on the resolution if you voted the first time. the resolution is in front of you. so, yes, no, or undecided. tom woods, are you in the house? i think you are. ok. tom woods, the tom woods show, i highly recommend it. i have been on it 14 times. we will make a plug for something he is doing. tom, take it away. [applause] mr. woods: i was going to say
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gene had been on an indeterminate number of times but apparently he is keeping count. it is 14. every year, my colleague bob murphy and i, we cohost the contra krugman podcast. i assume that podcast is self-explanatory. somehow we have been able to have a profitable cruise monetizing the krugman name for two years running. now this is our third year. and believe it or not, it is the most fun you can possibly imagine. we're doing it again next month where it is the mexican riviera. it is not too late join us. it will be the most enjoyable week of the year. if you cannot make it next month, next year, we have not announced this publicly yet, i'm going to get in trouble with bob, thank goodness the c-span cameras are still running so bob will find out i said this, we are next you're going to do alaska in july. alaska is on your bucket list, a lot of you.
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and for the crazy people in the room, going to alaska with tom woods and bob murphy specifically is on your bucket list. that will be your chance to cross it off. if you would like information, of this year or future cruises, just text the word contra to 333444 and we will keep you posted. mr. epstein: are we ready to close voting? still coming in? still coming in. i want to make some future announcements about the form. october 15 at the jerrod lynch theater, that debate on socialism versus capitalism, we will see who wins. please come. i want socialists there too, but i certainly want you to be there as well. and on november 14, that will be
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wednesday november 14, columbia university professor john mcwhorter will defend the resolution, the message of antiracism has become as harmful a force in american life as racism itself. against nyu professor nicholas author of "black is a country." that will be a debate about antiracism versus racism. on monday, december 3, a harvard professor of economics, author of "the curse of cash," will defend the resolution governments of the advanced industrial economies should phase out the use of paper money in the form of large denomination notes and sharply restrict the use of crypto currencies. that is against george mason university professor of economics larry white. so, that is in december.
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those two events, the other events through may will be held at the subcultural theater. the only event that will be the exception is in october at the gerald lynch theater. october 15. ready to bring the results? ok, please bring them up. all right, the initial vote in favor of the resolution was 45.59%. that rose to 50%. so, the yes votes picked up 6.41%. that's the number to beat. the no votes were 33 points, 33, and declined slightly to 33.77. it looks like the yes gets the tootsie roll. congratulations, gary. [applause]
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[captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2018] [captioning performed by the national captioning institute, which is responsible for its caption content and accuracy. visit] announcer: what does it mean to be american? that is this year's c-span video competition question. areents and the teachers asked about it. tweeted,m illinois what does it mean to be an american? social studies students brainstorming constitutional rights, national characteristics, and important people and events of the nation. curen from florida tweeted, hms students brainstormed idea. gary has two students recognized. i think he is going for a trifecta. tweeted,a senator
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visited high school to speak with her government class and was interviewed by students participating in c-span's scholarship program. we discussed freedom of speech and the first amendment. tweeted, it is project-based learning at its finest. asking --we're what does it mean to be american? we are awarding $100,000 in total cash prizes, and including eight total prize of $500,000. for more information go to ted widmer.
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the hisweek, ted widmer biography of martin van buren. was martin van buren? mr. widmer good question. a lot of people think we need to ask that question. he was the eighth president of the united


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