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post #145 of 195
Quote:
Originally Posted by Golfingdad View Post


Funny, because when @boil3rmak3r
 posted the above, I almost responded with something very similar.  While I can appreciate just how terrifying that scenario would be, if somebody asked me to list the things that present the greatest potential for my family to be harmed, it would be way, way down on the list.  In fact, I don't know that I would have even thought of it enough to mention it.  My list would be drunk drivers; texting drivers; just plain old shitty drivers; heck, even good drivers when my kids try and wrestle free from my hands in parking lots; unvaccinated kids at school trying to give my kids measles or something; and then somwhere down the line I'd put a break-in.

But for the record, I agree with @k-troop
's line that I bolded and underlined.

Gdad, I agree that the other risks you mention are much more likely than a home invasion. The thing is, what can you do to protect your family from a drunk driver or unvaccinated kids? If you have a way, please let us know.

Maybe I'm a little biased because I had a cousin who was killed during a home invasion (she was beaten to death). Luckily, her children were grown and out of the house, so nobody else was hurt.

Who knows, even if she owned a gun, she still may not have survived, but the evidence in the case showed that she fought for her life.

I most certainly hope that I'd NEVER need to use my weapon for defense, but you never know what life can throw at you...
post #146 of 195
Quote:
Originally Posted by boil3rmak3r View Post


Gdad, I agree that the other risks you mention are much more likely than a home invasion. The thing is, what can you do to protect your family from a drunk driver or unvaccinated kids? If you have a way, please let us know.

Maybe I'm a little biased because I had a cousin who was killed during a home invasion (she was beaten to death). Luckily, her children were grown and out of the house, so nobody else was hurt.

Who knows, even if she owned a gun, she still may not have survived, but the evidence in the case showed that she fought for her life.

I most certainly hope that I'd NEVER need to use my weapon for defense, but you never know what life can throw at you...

I'm very sorry to hear that.  And you actually reminded me of a friend of a friend who had something similar happen back when I was in college.  She lived alone, was actively searching for a roommate, had a guy come visit under the ruse of checking out the apartment, and then met the same fate as your cousin.  Absolutely awful.

 

And to answer your questions ... there is really nothing I can do, other than drive as cautiously as is realistically possible.

 

For me, though, it's just a matter of math.  The chances of a gun accident in the house while waiting for the invasion, or the chances of having it used against me during the invasion, together, trump the possibility of it saving my life.  I think it would add slightly more risk than it would potentially prevent.

 

I can also acknowledge that part of my stance comes from the fact that I am a large male and am not exactly scared of people.  I've never thought about it before, but if my wife suddenly came to me and said that she wanted to get a little handgun for herself for protection, figuring she'd get all the necessary education and training, and get herself a CCW (see, I'm back on topic ;)) then I'd probably say go for it.

 

They're just not for me.  (I would really like to shoot some guns at a range sometime though)

post #147 of 195
Quote:
Originally Posted by Golfingdad View Post

 

For me, though, it's just a matter of math.  The chances of a gun accident in the house while waiting for the invasion, or the chances of having it used against me during the invasion, together, trump the possibility of it saving my life.  I think it would add slightly more risk than it would potentially prevent.

 

This is my main beef (as a statistician how can I not gravitate to the statistics?!).  The numbers are unequivocal.  Way more people are killed by guns in their own home through accidents or suicide than lives are saved through use of those guns in home defense.  That's a fact, not a guess.

post #148 of 195
Quote:
Originally Posted by mdl View Post
 

 

This is my main beef (as a statistician how can I not gravitate to the statistics?!).  The numbers are unequivocal.  Way more people are killed by guns in their own home through accidents or suicide than lives are saved through use of those guns in home defense.  That's a fact, not a guess.

What statistics on how many lives are saved?  Let me know where those are.  It cannot be calculated, you ARE making a guess.  A couple years ago, a CC holder stopped a mall shooter. We have no idea how many lives he saved. There have been many other examples before and since. Many of which do not make the mainstream news. How can you compare stats that don't exist?

post #149 of 195
Quote:
Originally Posted by cipher View Post
 

What statistics on how many lives are saved?  Let me know where those are.  It cannot be calculated, you ARE making a guess.  A couple years ago, a CC holder stopped a mall shooter. We have no idea how many lives he saved. There have been many other examples before and since. Many of which do not make the mainstream news. How can you compare stats that don't exist?

 

I've seen stats like this reported many times before.  In the search for a source, this was the 2nd link in my first search.

 

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/9715182

 

"For every time a gun in the home was used in a self-defense or legally justifiable shooting, there were four unintentional shootings, seven criminal assaults or homicides, and 11 attempted or completed suicides."

 

So according to this study it's 22:1.  Like I said, it's not even close.

post #150 of 195
Quote:
Originally Posted by cipher View Post
 

What statistics on how many lives are saved?  Let me know where those are.  It cannot be calculated, you ARE making a guess.  A couple years ago, a CC holder stopped a mall shooter. We have no idea how many lives he saved. There have been many other examples before and since. Many of which do not make the mainstream news. How can you compare stats that don't exist?

I agree, sort of.  Technically, he said "Way more people are killed by guns in their own home through accidents or suicide than lives are saved through use of those guns in home defense."  So, based on that statement, I think he can come up with numbers to back it up, because the implication is that it's a gun "used."  So just compare accidents and suicides to "bad guys" shot, right?

 

But I agree with you that the amount of crimes prevented can't be quantified.

 

EDIT:  To add that after seeing Matt's stats, it may not be quatifiable, but I would say that it's probably pretty reasonable to conclude that the answer is probably not nearly enough to make up that 22:1 ratio.

post #151 of 195
Quote:
Originally Posted by mdl View Post
 

 

I've seen stats like this reported many times before.  In the search for a source, this was the 2nd link in my first search.

 

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/9715182

 

"For every time a gun in the home was used in a self-defense or legally justifiable shooting, there were four unintentional shootings, seven criminal assaults or homicides, and 11 attempted or completed suicides."

 

So according to this study it's 22:1.  Like I said, it's not even close.

That study is pretty ridiculous.  Statistics that are formed to quantify something that cannot be done is done so with an agenda.  That is fine.  I know goes both ways.  The study cannot calculate how many lives are saved correctly and how many crimes still would have happened had guns not been available.  It only knows how to quantify the bad.  It is a ridiculous attempt to quantify such a comparision, and the idea that it is not even close is just the same. Sorry, it just can't be known.  I still disagree.

post #152 of 195

@mdl I will admit that IMO the ruslts in reality could very well be in your favor, but we have no idea how much.

post #153 of 195
Quote:
Originally Posted by cipher View Post
 

That study is pretty ridiculous.  Statistics that are formed to quantify something that cannot be done is done so with an agenda.  That is fine.  I know goes both ways.  The study cannot calculate how many lives are saved correctly and how many crimes still would have happened had guns not been available.  It only knows how to quantify the bad.  It is a ridiculous attempt to quantify such a comparision, and the idea that it is not even close is just the same. Sorry, it just can't be known.  I still disagree.

DISCLAIMER:  Didn't see @cipher's second post before clicking post on this one...

 

You're entitled to disagree obviously.  But just recognize that your belief is driven by your priors (subjective belief, ideology, faith, whatever you want to call it).  How strong would the evidence have to be for you to believe having a gun in the home is more danger to the family than otherwise?  If it were 100:1?  How about 500:1?  If there were 300 suicides, 100 accidental deaths, and 100 wife murders for every documentable use of a gun in home defense, would you still believe more lives are saved by having guns in the home?  I say this just to make you consider.  Even with the real 22:1 ratio of measurable incidents, you have to belief there is an absolutely massive and unmeasurable number of lives saved to discount the statistics.

 

Consider a different case.  How about smoking?  Like with guns in the US, it is impossible to truly know the potential outcome in an alternative universe, and you can't do an experiment.  Like your argument about guns is factually and logically possible, it is factually possible that there are genetic or other factors that both make people more likely to smoke and more likely to get lung cancer (i.e., confounders).  However, the evidence is so overwhelming in the other direction, and so many different analyses with different types of statistical control agree, that pretty much everyone, except maybe tobacco company execs, agrees smoking causes lung cancer even though we can't experimentally prove it.

 

As an (I think) instructive and interesting aside, there's a case in statistics and experimentation that sort of reverses the typical roles, where more typically liberal and science minded folks don't like to believe the strong evidence:

 

Longish Paragraph on Statistics of Psychic Abilities (Click to show)
There's been a long history of experimental study of essentially ESP, or psychic abilities of some sort.  In fact the CIA had a long running research program looking into whether they could use psychics in intelligence work in the cold war!  If you look at all the studies that have been done, restricting on stringent experimental controls, the overall evidence that there are in fact people with slight but real psychic abilities is as strong as the evidence that daily aspirin helps reduce heart attacks.  But most scientists will accept that the collection of aspirin studies convincingly shows that it helps while questioning the existence of psychic abilities.  There have been a series of interesting statistical papers exploring why this is using Bayesian statistics.  The basic conclusion is that you can show mathematically how strong someone's prior belief that psychic abilities don't exist must be in order for them not to believe the evidence.  I don't remember the exact numbers, but it was something like, if you're agnostic and think there's a 50/50 chance that psychic abilities are real, then the evidence will convince you that there is a very low probability that the psychics are getting lucky.  In other words, the evidence will convince you that we can be quite sure that some psychics have small but real abilities.  On the other hand, if you start with 95% or 99% certainty that psychics are all frauds, then the current evidence will only make you, say, ~90% certain that psychics are fraud.  In other words, despite the evidence you'll still be quite sure that psychic abilities are not real.  For the record, I saw a presentation by one of the leading statisticians in this sub-sub-field and came away convinced that at least some psychics probably do have relatively small psychic abilities.
post #154 of 195
Quote:
Originally Posted by mdl View Post
 

 

As an (I think) instructive and interesting aside, there's a case in statistics and experimentation that sort of reverses the typical roles, where more typically liberal and science minded folks don't like to believe the strong evidence:

 

Longish Paragraph on Statistics of Psychic Abilities (Click to show)
There's been a long history of experimental study of essentially ESP, or psychic abilities of some sort.  In fact the CIA had a long running research program looking into whether they could use psychics in intelligence work in the cold war!  If you look at all the studies that have been done, restricting on stringent experimental controls, the overall evidence that there are in fact people with slight but real psychic abilities is as strong as the evidence that daily aspirin helps reduce heart attacks.  But most scientists will accept that the collection of aspirin studies convincingly shows that it helps while questioning the existence of psychic abilities.  There have been a series of interesting statistical papers exploring why this is using Bayesian statistics.  The basic conclusion is that you can show mathematically how strong someone's prior belief that psychic abilities don't exist must be in order for them not to believe the evidence.  I don't remember the exact numbers, but it was something like, if you're agnostic and think there's a 50/50 chance that psychic abilities are real, then the evidence will convince you that there is a very low probability that the psychics are getting lucky.  In other words, the evidence will convince you that we can be quite sure that some psychics have small but real abilities.  On the other hand, if you start with 95% or 99% certainty that psychics are all frauds, then the current evidence will only make you, say, ~90% certain that psychics are fraud.  In other words, despite the evidence you'll still be quite sure that psychic abilities are not real.  For the record, I saw a presentation by one of the leading statisticians in this sub-sub-field and came away convinced that at least some psychics probably do have relatively small psychic abilities.

Fascinating stuff Matt.  I realize this is veering way off topic, but I couldn't help but see how this part about psychics can apply to so many different things.  Most notably, as far as we're (usually) concerned here on TST, with the willingness or reluctance of people to accept 'new' ball flight laws, decelerating putting strokes as preferable, not laying up to 'comfortable' yardages, etc, etc.  The more ingrained peoples belief in what Nick Faldo or Hank Haney or Johnny Miller says, the harder it is for them to be convinced by scientific evidence of the opposite.

 

Anyways ... now back to your regularly scheduled CCW programming. ;)

post #155 of 195
Quote:
Originally Posted by mdl View Post
 

DISCLAIMER:  Didn't see @cipher's second post before clicking post on this one...

 

You're entitled to disagree obviously.  But just recognize that your belief is driven by your priors (subjective belief, ideology, faith, whatever you want to call it).  How strong would the evidence have to be for you to believe having a gun in the home is more danger to the family than otherwise?  If it were 100:1?  How about 500:1?  If there were 300 suicides, 100 accidental deaths, and 100 wife murders for every documentable use of a gun in home defense, would you still believe more lives are saved by having guns in the home?  I say this just to make you consider.  Even with the real 22:1 ratio of measurable incidents, you have to belief there is an absolutely massive and unmeasurable number of lives saved to discount the statistics.

 

Consider a different case.  How about smoking?  Like with guns in the US, it is impossible to truly know the potential outcome in an alternative universe, and you can't do an experiment.  Like your argument about guns is factually and logically possible, it is factually possible that there are genetic or other factors that both make people more likely to smoke and more likely to get lung cancer (i.e., confounders).  However, the evidence is so overwhelming in the other direction, and so many different analyses with different types of statistical control agree, that pretty much everyone, except maybe tobacco company execs, agrees smoking causes lung cancer even though we can't experimentally prove it.

 

As an (I think) instructive and interesting aside, there's a case in statistics and experimentation that sort of reverses the typical roles, where more typically liberal and science minded folks don't like to believe the strong evidence:

 

Longish Paragraph on Statistics of Psychic Abilities (Click to show)
There's been a long history of experimental study of essentially ESP, or psychic abilities of some sort.  In fact the CIA had a long running research program looking into whether they could use psychics in intelligence work in the cold war!  If you look at all the studies that have been done, restricting on stringent experimental controls, the overall evidence that there are in fact people with slight but real psychic abilities is as strong as the evidence that daily aspirin helps reduce heart attacks.  But most scientists will accept that the collection of aspirin studies convincingly shows that it helps while questioning the existence of psychic abilities.  There have been a series of interesting statistical papers exploring why this is using Bayesian statistics.  The basic conclusion is that you can show mathematically how strong someone's prior belief that psychic abilities don't exist must be in order for them not to believe the evidence.  I don't remember the exact numbers, but it was something like, if you're agnostic and think there's a 50/50 chance that psychic abilities are real, then the evidence will convince you that there is a very low probability that the psychics are getting lucky.  In other words, the evidence will convince you that we can be quite sure that some psychics have small but real abilities.  On the other hand, if you start with 95% or 99% certainty that psychics are all frauds, then the current evidence will only make you, say, ~90% certain that psychics are fraud.  In other words, despite the evidence you'll still be quite sure that psychic abilities are not real.  For the record, I saw a presentation by one of the leading statisticians in this sub-sub-field and came away convinced that at least some psychics probably do have relatively small psychic abilities.

Just so you know I have no ill feelings, I respect your views and am sure you are probably more intelligent and well-studied than I. I would imagine we could have some pretty cool conversations in person. I don't like these things on a site like this where tone is vacant.

 

Since you asked me to, I guess the ratio would have to be extremely high(something like a chance that every time I pick up a gun it will explode and kill me). Until then I can keep them safe and am very confident in my use of the tool with what I have been trained. I can calculate the risk vs. the benefit to my family, in my house.

 

I typed out a long response but it would just belabor this discussion to which I am honestly losing interest in on this platform. I am not saying you are doing this @mdl but I have grown tired of being told people are basically bad and are paranoid for having guns and being put in a box(about certain subjects) for my religious faith. The implications that my conclusions are void of logic or reason is unfortunate. I don't care if anyone believes or follows what I do. I just want to play some golf, and go relax in the woods during the fall. 

post #156 of 195
Quote:
Originally Posted by mdl View Post
 

You're entitled to disagree obviously.  But just recognize that your belief is driven by your priors (subjective belief, ideology, faith, whatever you want to call it).  How strong would the evidence have to be for you to believe having a gun in the home is more danger to the family than otherwise?  If it were 100:1?  How about 500:1?  If there were 300 suicides, 100 accidental deaths, and 100 wife murders for every documentable use of a gun in home defense, would you still believe more lives are saved by having guns in the home?  I say this just to make you consider.  Even with the real 22:1 ratio of measurable incidents, you have to belief there is an absolutely massive and unmeasurable number of lives saved to discount the statistics.

 

First, I've seen studies that say virtually the opposite. Plus, several studies that say things like "kids are 6x more likely to drown in a pool than via a handgun" and stuff like that.

 

But let's just pretend the 22:1 thing is correct. That completely ignores the level of training and ability anyone has, and the precautionary measures they take in ensuring that their gun won't be found and played with by their children, etc.

 

So, there are plenty of steps individuals can take to reduce the ratio for themselves. Even if it's truly 22:1 (I don't think it is), then I may be 0.1 to 1 and some idiot somewhere might be 10000:1.

 

The gun violence "issue" in the U.S. is largely an economic one. Remove minority-on-minority crimes in the inner cities and U.S. gun violence rates drop below several other countries with similar or stricter gun laws. Additionally, the U.S. stats often include suicides, while other countries do not. Canada has gun ownership levels that are quite high - Bowling for Columbine even pointed this out - yet because they don't have the inner city problems of Detroit, MI, their rates are significantly lower.

post #157 of 195
Quote:
Originally Posted by cipher View Post
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by mdl View Post
 

 

I've seen stats like this reported many times before.  In the search for a source, this was the 2nd link in my first search.

 

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/9715182

 

"For every time a gun in the home was used in a self-defense or legally justifiable shooting, there were four unintentional shootings, seven criminal assaults or homicides, and 11 attempted or completed suicides."

 

So according to this study it's 22:1.  Like I said, it's not even close.

That study is pretty ridiculous.  Statistics that are formed to quantify something that cannot be done is done so with an agenda.  That is fine.  I know goes both ways.  The study cannot calculate how many lives are saved correctly and how many crimes still would have happened had guns not been available.  It only knows how to quantify the bad.  It is a ridiculous attempt to quantify such a comparision, and the idea that it is not even close is just the same. Sorry, it just can't be known.  I still disagree.

 

I'll second this.  

 

And as an engineer, I'm all about statistics.   BUT if it's even a 1 in a million chance by owning a gun I can stop a potential home invasion, rather than be at the total mercy of someone who has no regard for my life or my families.     Now more than ever, there are some really evil predatory bad guys / gangs out there folks, not just crack head burglars looking to pawn your golf clubs when you're out of the house.   That to me is not worth the risk ... however remote it may be

post #158 of 195
Quote:
Originally Posted by iacas View Post

 

But let's just pretend the 22:1 thing is correct. That completely ignores the level of training and ability anyone has, and the precautionary measures they take in ensuring that their gun won't be found and played with by their children, etc.

 

So, there are plenty of steps individuals can take to reduce the ratio for themselves. Even if it's truly 22:1 (I don't think it is), then I may be 0.1 to 1 and some idiot somewhere might be 10000:1.

 

The gun violence "issue" in the U.S. is largely an economic one. Remove minority-on-minority crimes in the inner cities and U.S. gun violence rates drop below several other countries with similar or stricter gun laws. Additionally, the U.S. stats often include suicides, while other countries do not. Canada has gun ownership levels that are quite high - Bowling for Columbine even pointed this out - yet because they don't have the inner city problems of Detroit, MI, their rates are significantly lower.

 

Yeah, fair enough.  This is why I admitted I'm sort of hypocritical on this fact and if my wife really pushed for it I might acquiesce given classes and proper storage.  Obviously there are lots of idiots with guns and low level drug guys killing each other skewing the statistics.  Personally I'd be most concerned about the suicide thing.  I knew a kid in high school who killed himself with his family's (properly stored, though obviously he knew where the keys were) home defense gun.  The 11:1 attempted/successful suicides per home defense use isn't obviated by the fact that a responsible owner can surely reduce the risk of accidents to near zero, and isn't going to use the gun to kill his wife or murder someone or whatever.  And there's no doubting that attempted suicides with a gun are much more likely to be successful.

post #159 of 195

Blame the hammer, not the carpenter.

 

It's a common theme.....

post #160 of 195
Quote:
Originally Posted by inthehole View Post

I'll second this.  

And as an engineer, I'm all about statistics.   BUT if it's even a 1 in a million chance by owning a gun I can stop a potential home invasion, rather than be at the total mercy of someone who has no regard for my life or my families.     Now more than ever, there are some really evil predatory bad guys / gangs out there folks, not just crack head burglars looking to pawn your golf clubs when you're out of the house.   That to me is not worth the risk ... however remote it may be

FWIW, that bolded part isn't exactly true. Just about any crime you can think of is down pretty significantly in recent years - homicides, gun crimes, home invasions, armed robberies, gang activity, etc. With the legalization of marijuana in some states, there's some evidence that that could lower violent crime rates. Suicide is one of the few gun-related crimes that has gone up or stayed level in recent years.

All I'm saying is have a gun, or not - I don't have particularly strong feelings either way - but don't do it just because your perception is that the world has gotten exponentially more dangerous. (That's not to say, of course, that those crimes never happen, just that they aren't getting more common.)

EDIT: In fact, a quick google search just came up with this article that shows despite the drops in crime over recent years, most Americans believe the opposite has happened: http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation/2013/05/07/gun-crime-drops-but-americans-think-its-worse/2139421/
post #161 of 195
Quote:
Originally Posted by iacas View Post
 

 

First, I've seen studies that say virtually the opposite. Plus, several studies that say things like "kids are 6x more likely to drown in a pool than via a handgun" and stuff like that.

 

But let's just pretend the 22:1 thing is correct. That completely ignores the level of training and ability anyone has, and the precautionary measures they take in ensuring that their gun won't be found and played with by their children, etc.

 

So, there are plenty of steps individuals can take to reduce the ratio for themselves. Even if it's truly 22:1 (I don't think it is), then I may be 0.1 to 1 and some idiot somewhere might be 10000:1.

 

The gun violence "issue" in the U.S. is largely an economic one. Remove minority-on-minority crimes in the inner cities and U.S. gun violence rates drop below several other countries with similar or stricter gun laws. Additionally, the U.S. stats often include suicides, while other countries do not. Canada has gun ownership levels that are quite high - Bowling for Columbine even pointed this out - yet because they don't have the inner city problems of Detroit, MI, their rates are significantly lower.

I always chuckle when I see lists of stats and odds painted with broad brushes like that ... "Your chances of getting struck by lightning in your lifetime are xxxx" without adding qualifiers.  Well, if you spend most of your time in Kansas your odds are 50 times greater and in Socal they're 1000 times less. ;)

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by inthehole View Post
 

And as an engineer, I'm all about statistics.   BUT if it's even a 1 in a million chance by owning a gun I can stop a potential home invasion, rather than be at the total mercy of someone who has no regard for my life or my families.     Now more than ever, there are some really evil predatory bad guys / gangs out there folks, not just crack head burglars looking to pawn your golf clubs when you're out of the house.   That to me is not worth the risk ... however remote it may be

But what if the odds of an accident are 1 in 998,000?  You're overall risk has now gone up.

post #162 of 195
Quote:
Originally Posted by Golfingdad View Post
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by iacas View Post
 

 

First, I've seen studies that say virtually the opposite. Plus, several studies that say things like "kids are 6x more likely to drown in a pool than via a handgun" and stuff like that.

 

But let's just pretend the 22:1 thing is correct. That completely ignores the level of training and ability anyone has, and the precautionary measures they take in ensuring that their gun won't be found and played with by their children, etc.

 

So, there are plenty of steps individuals can take to reduce the ratio for themselves. Even if it's truly 22:1 (I don't think it is), then I may be 0.1 to 1 and some idiot somewhere might be 10000:1.

 

The gun violence "issue" in the U.S. is largely an economic one. Remove minority-on-minority crimes in the inner cities and U.S. gun violence rates drop below several other countries with similar or stricter gun laws. Additionally, the U.S. stats often include suicides, while other countries do not. Canada has gun ownership levels that are quite high - Bowling for Columbine even pointed this out - yet because they don't have the inner city problems of Detroit, MI, their rates are significantly lower.

I always chuckle when I see lists of stats and odds painted with broad brushes like that ... "Your chances of getting struck by lightning in your lifetime are xxxx" without adding qualifiers.  Well, if you spend most of your time in Kansas your odds are 50 times greater and in Socal they're 1000 times less. ;)

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by inthehole View Post
 

And as an engineer, I'm all about statistics.   BUT if it's even a 1 in a million chance by owning a gun I can stop a potential home invasion, rather than be at the total mercy of someone who has no regard for my life or my families.     Now more than ever, there are some really evil predatory bad guys / gangs out there folks, not just crack head burglars looking to pawn your golf clubs when you're out of the house.   That to me is not worth the risk ... however remote it may be

But what if the odds of an accident are 1 in 998,000?  You're overall risk has now gone up.

 

Damn man - at least I have a chance at stopping it - that's all that matters.    I could get graphic, but I'm not willing to be outnumbered and have my family brutalized in front of me, while I sit there helpless - it's happened here.    It's a chance I'm simply not willing to take, regardless of the odds.     "The element" (to clarify before anyone jumps the gun, that would be gangs) have migrated about a hundred miles West post 9-11 and it's certainly not better around here in recent years from what I hear on the news, let me assure you

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