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Firearm violence expert says the ‘good guy with a gun’ myth is a ‘collective adolescent fantasy’

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Speaking with PBS Newshour this week, firearm safety expert Dr. Garen Wintemute of UC Davis Medical Center offered a firm rebuttal to the claim — often repeated by defenders of gun ownership — that the only thing that can stop a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun.

Host Judy Woodruff asked about some of the proposals being floated to respond to the recent mass shootings in Dayton, Ohio, and El Paso, Texas. One proposal often favored by conservatives is the expansion of “concealed carry” laws that would let people permitted to arms themselves in public with a hidden gun to use their state-issued licenses across state lines.

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But this idea doesn’t make much sense, according to Wintemute.

“Both Texas and Ohio, where we have had mass shootings just in the past few days, are places with concealed carry, at least one with open carry, where it’s hard for me to imagine that among the people wisely running away from that shooting scene were a substantial number of people who were themselves armed,” he said. “We have this collective adolescent fantasy, if I may, that an armed civilian is going to step up and prevent these events. The data show that that almost never happens.”

Expansion of concealed carry standards across state lines also might be “counterproductive,” he said, because it would force states that set high standards for issuing licenses to essentially lower their standard to for people coming from elsewhere.

The claim that having more people walking around with concealed weapons is also belied by the broader evidence. Data has consistently shown that, the more guns a place has, the more homicides are likely to occur. And a recent study found that right-to-carry handgun laws actually lead to a significant increase in violent crime.

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This accords with common sense. For every rare case in which a person with a concealed gun actually stops a potential mass shooter, how many more cases will there be where a misunderstanding leads to violence? Or a firearm is accidentally discharged? Or a gun is stolen? The more guns around, the more common these inevitabilities become. The fewer guns we have, the fewer people will die because of them.

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Enjoy this piece?

… then let us make a small request. Like you, we here at Raw Story believe in the power of progressive journalism — and we’re investing in investigative reporting as other publications give it the ax. Raw Story readers power David Cay Johnston’s DCReport, which we've expanded to keep watch in Washington. We’ve exposed billionaire tax evasion and uncovered White House efforts to poison our water. We’ve revealed financial scams that prey on veterans, and efforts to harm workers exploited by abusive bosses. We’ve launched a weekly podcast, “We’ve Got Issues,” focused on issues, not tweets. Unlike other news sites, we’ve decided to make our original content free. But we need your support to do what we do.

Raw Story is independent. You won’t find mainstream media bias here. We’re not part of a conglomerate, or a project of venture capital bros. From unflinching coverage of racism, to revealing efforts to erode our rights, Raw Story will continue to expose hypocrisy and harm. Unhinged from corporate overlords, we fight to ensure no one is forgotten.

We need your support to keep producing quality journalism and deepen our investigative reporting. Every reader contribution, whatever the amount, makes a tremendous difference. Invest with us in the future. Make a one-time contribution to Raw Story Investigates, or click here to become a subscriber. Thank you.



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Trump is ‘a bottomless pit of emotional need’ with a ‘desperate’ desire for friends: NYT’s Charles Blow

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New York Times editorial writer Charles Blow called out the president in his Sunday editorial for always associating the country with himself.

The byproduct of narcissism is that everything surrounds the narcissist. Such is the case with President Donald Trump's latest series of tweets talking about "My Stock Market" and quoting a fan referring to him as the second coming of Christ.

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‘Disconnected from reality’: NY Times editor ridicules Trump for being a ‘farce’ of a president

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New York Times editorial board member, Michelle Cottle, released a scathing op-ed highlighting the president's tendency to give oxygen to his adversaries that no one else would be paying attention to otherwise.

In a piece relating the White House to a "three-ring" circus, Cottle called the president a "farce" for his new war with Anthony Scaramucci.

As the president tweeted, no one had heard of Scaramucci until Trump hired him and former chief-of-staff John Kelly fired him after only 11 days.

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Trump goes off on Twitter rant about ‘My Stock Market’ at nearly 2 a.m. in France

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President Donald Trump has an early morning meeting Monday with Egypt's President Abdel-Fattah el-Sisi. He also has a full day of meeting with the G-7, but that wasn't his focus in the early morning hours.

"My Stock Market gains must be judged from the day after the Election (sic), November 9, 2016, where the Market went up big after the win, and because of the win. Had my opponent won, CRASH!" Trump tweeted Sunday night in the U.S., which was nearly 2 a.m. in France where the president is staying during the G-7 summit.

My Stock Market gains must be judged from the day after the Election, November 9, 2016, where the Market went up big after the win, and because of the win. Had my opponent won, CRASH!

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