There are lots of things far more dangerous to anybody and everybody on a daily basis than guns. Given that any attempt to remedy any of these “problems” costs resources, it makes sense to focus on things that matter the most and for which it is easy to affect effective change. Guns are nowhere near the top of that optimization list*.

Mungowitz links to an excellent article on this in the NYTimes.

People just don’t know how to think about risk properly. It’s what Nassim Taleb’s The Black Swan is all about. It’s a really great book.

-JD Cross

* – which is the reason for the title of the post: if you care about helping people lead better lives, then you will focus your attention on the things at the top of the list (I’m not sure what the list actually looks like, but I know based on the number of people that actually do die from gun violence that guns are not near the top of the list). Thus, if you’re focused on guns and gun control, you necessarily aren’t being the most efficient in your attempt to help people.