Yet another virtuoso display of logical gymnastics from Mr Kevin Baker that must surely put him in firm contention for the US Olympic team. He cites the increase in the number of legally-owned weapons in England and Wales as 'evidence' of the foolishness of gun control. So just run this past me again - legalising more categories of weapon would decrease the number of legally-owned weapons? No, of course not. Even Baker himself would have to concede the blindingly-obvious - that whatever problems we may have now with an undesirably high number of legal weapons, that number would be much, much higher without legislative restrictions. So gun control does work to depress the number of legally-owned weapons. And why does that matter so much? Kevin, astoundingly, is rather keen to remind us of the reason himself -
"Forgotten Derrick Bird so soon?"
Er, no we haven't, Kevin. You, on the other hand, might wish to forget him rather urgently, because there must surely be a better advert for the legendary "responsibility of legal gun-owners" than the mass-murderer Mr Bird.
In a similar peculiar vein, Baker goes on to claim that gun control has somehow contributed to the problem of illegal weapons. Oh yes, of course it has, Kevin, it's well known that the UK has a much worse problem with illegal guns than countries with fewer legal restrictions on gun ownership, such as - to pluck an example out of thin air - the US.
He also makes bizarre reference to grenade attacks -
"There have been grenade attacks in the UK. In 2003 a 63 year-old woman lost a leg when a grenade was tossed into her Liverpool home, for example."
Are we supposed to conclude that "owning a gun for defensive purposes" would have given her premonitory powers that it was going to happen, enabling her to know exactly when to start firing wildly through her window?
Finally, if you're ever tempted to take one of Kevin's "rigorous statistical analyses" seriously ever again, you might want to consider this schoolboy howler -
"The population of England and Wales is a bit over 62 million"
No, it isn't, Kevin. That's the population of the whole United Kingdom, including Scotland and Northern Ireland. Just goes to confirm what I've always said - to hell with guns, America needs to invest in some damn good geography teachers.
UPDATE : Having thought about this some more, there's another point that baffles me. After the Cumbrian massacre, Kevin and his Fan Club assured us that the only problem was not that Derrick Bird obtained his weapons legally, but instead that there weren't a whole lot of other gun owners out there in a position to leap into action when needed and shoot Bird on sight (after all, "when there are only seconds to spare, the police are only ever minutes away").
And yet we now learn from Kevin that gun control has been an abject failure because this country is supposedly awash with guns anyway, of both the legal and illegal variety. So, according to his very own logic, it appears that widespread gun ownership isn't much use at 'protecting' the public from the likes of Derrick Bird after all. But between you and me, I think most of us had worked that out already.