Statistics are everywhere around us. Our rights are commonly attacked using statistics as grounds for statistics. How accurate are the statistics used by gun control advocates though? As the old saying goes “using statistics is a great way to lie”. Let’s take a look at how the left uses statistics to spread propaganda.
A common way to gather statistics is by surveying the public. This is the most unreliable way to gather statistical data because the surveys are usually voluntary, meaning respondents tend to be passionate about the subject. Another problem is that the surveys are generally targeted. The surveys are either mailed to individuals who donate to gun control organizations or directed by algorithms on social media to individuals who associate themselves with gun control pages. The people surveyed are supposed to be a sample representation of all people, and they want the consensus to be in their favor. For instance shoe maker Toms has started an initiative to end gun violence, citing on their website that more than 90% of people support universal background checks. I know I wasn’t asked, and I would bet nobody reading this was asked either.
Parameters used in statics are commonly changed to make something appear worse than it is. Generally, the gun control crowd won’t include all parameters used in the statics they provide. For instance, according to fas.org, a mass shooting is defined by the FBI as a single event where four or more people are killed. Congress commonly uses three or more people being killed in a single event. Citing the congress statistics inflates the number of annual shootings. On top of this, using gang violence or killings in other crimes in those statistics skews the number more in a negative direction. Some politicians have been known to use their own definition, including shootings where only three or four people were injured instead of killed.
Putting this together, it’s easy to see how the gun control crowd pads their statistics so it appeals to their narrative. First off, I would suggest looking at where the information is coming from before taking any merit in information that is given to you when it comes to gun control. Statistics can be used both ways though too, so I wouldn’t take any statistics as fact without double checking for yourself. The bottom line is statistics can be manipulated to make anyone believe anything. It can be dangerous when used by gun control advocates to scare people who are on the fence or neutral on the topic.