Civilian disarmament has been a long-time goal of many liberal Americans. As with most progressive issues, the anti-gun crowd has spread its tentacles into all sorts of little-related or even non-related areas in its effort to convince the public of their cause. “Gun violence,” said Judy Schaechter, M. D., “is America’s most preventable disease.” Who would have thought that gun violence could be classified as a disease? Like cancer? Or polio? Or diabetes? Yet this has become a standard argument for some who wish to eliminate, or heavily curtail, the ownership of guns.
Dr. Miguel Faria, Jr., a brilliant neurosurgeon, has different beliefs. Dr. Faria, born in Cuba, saw what happened after communist dictator Fidel Castro confiscated all civilian-owned guns. Dr. Faria’s danger-antenna warned him that his adopted homeland could be next. As a physician, he realized how easily data could be skewed in one direction or another. And as editor of the Journal of the Medical Association of Georgia, he had enough clout to at least attempt to bring clarity to the issue. “Gun violence studies,” Dr. Faria writes, “do not fall within the discipline of biology, but within the spheres of sociology or criminology.”
Under President George W. Bush, Dr. Faria became a member of the Injury Research Grant Review Committee of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). During his tenure there, he blocked grants that were blatantly anti-gun.
America, Guns, and Freedom picks apart each argument of the medical professions’ attempts to link guns and public health. Several chapters deal with that issue.
Since my personal interest in the gun control debate lies in the self-defense issue, I’ll concentrate most of this review on that aspect of the controversy.
In today’s world, even the right to self-defense is being questioned. The Declaration of Independence declares that citizens have the “unalienable right of Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.” If that is so, the right of self-defense is paramount to human existence. The problem for the anti-gunners is that self-defense stories can be highly emotional and, if allowed to become widely known to a suggestible public, can turn the argument against the controllers.
For instance, did you know that a rape victim shot and killed her attacker when he returned to assault her in her Lake City, Florida home? Did you know that a ring of carjackers in Milwaukee were captured after a nurse shot one of the violent gang members who tried to steal her car? Did you know that an 11-year-old boy shot a home invader who broke into his residence and threatened to kill him? Did you know that numerous attempted mass murders have been stopped by armed citizens? Even when a gun is not used, it can deter a violent attack. For instance, all an Idaho woman had to do to get a home invader to flee was point her gun at him. As soon as he saw the weapon, he hightailed it. There are thousands of such true cases on the internet. And these are just the stories that made a local newspaper somewhere.
The CDC, the media, and other gun control advocates like to stick these stories on a back shelf when discussing the issue. In fact, in their “research” into gun violence, they rarely mention the other side of the issue, i.e., the numerous cases of successful self-defense by everyday citizens. The elephant standing in the room is completely ignored. Dr. Faria discusses this phenomenon at length.
“Backed by the public health establishments,” Dr. Faria informs readers, “liberal politicians…continue to espouse the erroneous concept of guns and bullets as virulent pathogens that need to be stamped out by limiting gun availability and ultimately eradicating guns from the citizenry.” Dr. Faria writes that researchers such as Florida State University Professor Dr. Gary Kleck studied the issue of self-defensive uses of firearms for many years. Kleck’s studies revealed that each year up to two-and-a-half million Americans may use firearms for self-protection. Only two percent actually fire their weapon—in most cases, just showing a gun will deter a criminal.
For instance, when Hurricane Andrew blasted through south Florida in 1992, it destroyed billions worth of property, leaving citizens to fend for themselves for months. It was not unusual for news photos and television broadcasts to show residents of destroyed homes guarding their property with shotguns, rifles and even AK-47-type weapons. Few of those citizens ever fired on a looter. Just the knowledge that armed citizens were not going to be easy targets deterred most predators. This has happened in many cases, such as the Los Angeles riots, the Ferguson riots, and many, many others.
These historical precedents do not fit into the narrative that no citizen needs a gun, so they’re rarely mentioned by the anti-gunners.
Throughout the book, Dr. Faria hits the reader with facts that tear into the liberal narrative. Whether it’s a blackout on the issue of self-defense, biased information in medical journals, the prejudices of the American Medical Association (AMA) and CDC against gun ownership, or the media’s complicity in narrating a one-way version of events, Dr. Faria takes them all on.
I highly recommend America, Guns, and Freedom to anyone who has an interest in the gun control debate.
Written by Robert A. Waters
Robert A. Waters is the author of the national best-seller The Best Defense: True Stories of Intended Victims Who Defended Themselves With A Firearm (1998) as well as five true crime books, including Guns Save Lives (2002) and Guns and Self-Defense (2019). Visit his popular blog, Kidnapping, Murder and Mayhem, on the internet at www.RobertWaters.net.
This article originally appeared on Mr. Waters’ blog, Kidnapping, Murder, and Mayhem, and is posted here with permission for the enjoyment of our readers at HaciendaPublishing.com.