Thanks for joining the conversation. To your first point, I’d also accuse you of seeing select correlation as causation in the registration = gov’t taking guns argument. There are also plenty of examples in the 20th century of populaces with little to no private gun ownership or with restrictive gun registration requirements in which the gov’t has not suddenly begun oppressing it’s people. The difference is the continued existence of healthy public debate and democratic means of the people participating in governance.
To your second point, immediately after the line you quote I say, “ One reason that the numbers are so high is that guns are the single most effective way to commit suicide.” The overall suicide rate is a mental health concern that definite needs to be looked at and is most likely a multi-faceted problem requiring very personal solutions for individuals. But when looking at means of commuting suicide, guns are most likely to be successful. Most other means are more likely to result in hospitalization than death. Even if the attempted suicide rate remained constant, reducing access to the most lethal means would likely reduce deaths.
And your comment doesn’t really negate the fact that you are more likely to kill yourself with a gun that to be killed by someone else who uses a gun. Because the gun debate is largely fought on the public safety stage, the public has a distorted view of how a owning gun is likely to impact their life, as shown by the rising number of people buying guns for personal protection despite lower crime rates.
I think we all deserve a more honest debate in the public space about the benefits and risks associated with owning a gun. We’ve worked to make automobiles, airplanes, home appliances and medicines all safer, through a mixture of technology and public awareness. I’m not advocating for any particular change to our current laws, but I do think we have to face the facts as they are and have a debate in public. Shooting down the discussion itself helps no one.