Monday, June 12, 2006

Gun Grabber Ethics

From John Lott's book, More Guns, Less Crime, regarding attacks on his thesis and research:

One of the more interesting experiences occurred when I asked Susan Glick, of the Violence Policy Center, to participate (in commenting on his work). Glick, whom I called during June 1996, was one of the last people that I approached. She was unwilling to comment on my talk at Cato because she didn't want to "help give any publicity to the paper." Glick said that her appearance might help bring media attention to the paper that it otherwise wouldn't have gotten. When I pointed out that C-SPAN was likely to cover the event, she said she didn't care because "we can get good media whenever we want." When I asked her if I could at least send her a copy of the paper because I would appreciate any comments that she might have, she said, "Forget it, there is no way that I am going to look at it. Don't send it."

However, when the publicity broke on the story with an article in U.S.A. Today on August 2, she was among the many people who left telephone messages immediately asking for a copy of the paper. In her case, the media were calling, and she "need[ed] [my] paper to be able to criticize it." Because of all the commotion that day, I was unable to get back to her right away. ABC National Television News was doing a story on my study for that day, and when at around 3:00 P.M. the ABC reporter doing the story, Barry Serafin, called saying that certain objections had been raised about my paper, he mentioned that one of those who had criticized it was Ms. Glick. After talking to Mr. Serafin, I gave Glick a call to ask her if she still wanted a copy of my paper. She said that she wanted it sent to her right away and wondered if I could fax it to her. I then noted that her request seemed strange because I had just gotten off the telephone with Mr. Serafin at ABC News, who had told me that she had been very critical of the study, saying that it was "flawed." I asked how she could have said that there were flaws in the paper without even having looked at it yet. At that point Ms. Glick hung up the telephone.

I think this is an important revelation about the mindset of those within the gun control movement. It shows the singleminded determination in seeing their goals implemented, that the agenda is paramount, even at the expense of facts that diminish their case for governmental regulations. It also illustrates how conscious dishonesty isn't morally problematic for those on the road to achieving victory in this arena. My contention is that this goes far beyond wrongheadedness. It represents a desire for power over the lives of others, not an innocent interest in seeing crime rates plummet.

Many believe that most people basically are decent folks who, even if ignorant of the facts, can be shepherded out of the hills of illogic and into the pastures of reason with sound, calm arguments. What they discount is the sad reality that some people not only do not know the truth, but don't want to know the truth. In fact, they despise and actively wage war against it.

No comments: