I read your piece in The Atlantic today. I would like to address your points in order as you wrote them.
1. Maybe this time is different.
I agree. This time is different. After every mass shooting or notable gun incident such as George Zimmerman defending himself, gentlemen and ladies of the media like yourself trot out the same arguments. The Josh Sugarmann argument that "assault weapons" are different. The "impulsivity" theory so popular in the medical literature that guns cause crime merely by being present. Et cetera, ad nauseam.
But this time, everybody knows all those arguments have been disproved. This time, your readership knows that you know it too. For example, you know very well that the M-16 is a rifle specifically chosen by the US military because it was -less- lethal than the M-1 Garand, and that the AR-15 is not a machine gun. You know that .223 caliber ammo is too weak for deer hunting. You know that the Second Amendment is not about deer hunting. You've been told so often over the years by so many people, your ears probably ring every time you hear it again.
All you media guys know this stuff. And after 2000 when Al Gore lost the election to Chimpy McBushitler you didn't bring up any of it for twelve years. Until today. Post election 2012, Obama safely ensconced for four more years.
This time is different, because this time there is no chance at all you are mistaken or just don't know the facts.
2) Are more guns the answer?
Yes. Obviously so. Furthermore as I said above, you know it to be true. Already demonstrated across the USA. I don't have to bore you with the Concealed Carry success story or all the famous cases where armed civilians stopped mass shootings. You know them all.
3) What about the "knowledge gap?"
There is no knowledge gap. There is no question about "whether gun-safety advocates "know enough" about firearms to make sensible proposals". They aren't gun safety proposals. They are gun confiscation proposals. Civil disarmament proposals. Propaganda disguised as concern for the children. "As the father of a young daughter, I for one do not want her growing up in a world where she is told she has to carry a gun to be safe." Please. Can we really be that stupid, Mr. Fallows? Really?
This is not a debate, sir. Its not a discussion of the relative merits of a public policy. Gun control has no merits. It is a stupid idea which doesn't work, and has been proven not to work every single time it is tried. You know it, and we all know that you do.
This is a partisan smear campaign waged by the Democrat Party for political advantage, and you are a volunteer. Your boss got his daily update from the Democrat Party. He told you to dust off that anti-gun piece you've had cluttering up your hard drive since the 1990's, and you did. How does the saying go, "never let a crisis go to waste"?
I should tell you though, I think you and the rest of your main stream media colleagues are making a grave mistake. The only concrete result of your propaganda push has been record breaking gun sales in an already record breaking year. It seems to me that about half the people in the USA have decided they really need lots of guns and ammunition, as in lots more than they already had stored up from four straight years of record gun sales. Call me a crazy gun freak if you like, but I don't think that's a healthy sign in a democracy.
Update: Well the guy wrote me back! It was an awesome conversation:
Brave people write under pseudonyms.The Phantom
Smart people write under pseudonyms, you mean.James Fallows
Do you know the term SWATing? It happens to people like me sometimes when we disagree with sacred cows like gun control in public. Ask Patrick Frey and Erick Erickson how they liked it Mr. Fallows, that would be my answer to you. Safety first. Or perhaps take the example of Stephen Crowder who got punched out on camera last week by one of your Democrat coreligionists in Michigan.
At any rate, you want to back up your article or you going to concede my point?
Sorry, no written exchanges with people who won't use their real names.
Like any name I give this idiot is going to be the real one. I'm tempted to make some shit up, but its really not worth the trouble, he'll just lie. Again.