|Source: The Economist|
Error Exposed of the left hand chart: Having a gun in the house does not make you safer:
Owning a gun has been linked to higher risks of homicide, suicide, and accidental death by gun.Comment on the Right Hand Chart
• For every time a gun is used in self-defense in the home, there are 7 assaults or murders, 11 suicide attempts, and 4 accidents involving guns in or around a home.
• 43% of homes with guns and kids have at least one unlocked firearm.
• In one experiment, one third of 8-to-12-year-old boys who found a handgun pulled the trigger.
I think having a gun for hunting is quite reasonable, if one hunts for a reason such as putting meat on the table or controlling animal pests (e.g. for farmers: foxes that eat your chickens, crows that eat your grain). I think hunting licenses might demand proof that one can use a gun safely. I think many hunters should keep their hunting rifles out of the home, such as locked in a hunting club.
I was once a target shooter, and I still believe it to be a useful sport. I think most serious target shooters practice and compete at gun clubs or commercial ranges. Why not keep guns locked up at such places rather than at home. Again, I think a license for such use might not only be appropriate, but might require proof of the ability to use the weapon safely.