View Full Version : The Numbers!

Buckeye Dan
08-18-2011, 10:59 PM
First of all this was inspired by this thread:
Which lead to a link for the Brady bunch where they claimed this:
Polls prove over and over again that Americans support sensible gun laws and donít want guns in public places.

I saw the word "lie" used in at least one response. I agree that it must be a lie. Of course polls on any given subject can be drastically influenced by the location or sample that they are given in/to.

Then I found this:

It is a historical record of what looks to be just about every major gun poll ever taken. I cannot verify their accuracy completely. I did take a moment to look up a few polls where I knew to find them. Gallup for instance keeps fairly tidy records. I compared the numbers they claimed to the numbers that pollingreport.com claimed and they match.

Assuming we can trust all of the information that can be found on pollingreports.com then what does the Brady claim really look like?

I know I can ask one question in Cleveland then move 2 towns over only to ask the same question and alter almost any poll. BUT! Based on the compilation that is found on that particular site what is the truth?

Does anyone care to categorize, collate, correlate and chart/graph the data in order to answer all of the Brady's claims which we take for granted as being lies? The same lies that usually are lies based on gun sales, crime rates and actual popular public opinion that we can attribute with real time, real world observations and personal experiences.

My prediction= Worst case scenario is that it's closer to 50-50 the way I figure it. It's hard to single out half the population. Are 150 million people wrong about the Constitution, gun rights in general including the right to self defense with one?

Maybe we really aren't the 10 or 12 million wing nuts they claim us to be?

08-19-2011, 12:10 AM
The tricks in polling are first, precisely how a question is worded, and secondly exactly what is in the news that the respondents have in their heads when asked the question.

Many polls ask questions about existing law, but phrased as though the law(s) would be a new thing.

08-19-2011, 10:44 AM
"If you torture the data, they will confess."

08-19-2011, 11:03 AM
Also realize that "reasonable gun control" or any other qualifier changes over time. If someone is asked "do you support reasonable gun control?" it means something different in 2011 than it did in 1985. Geography also alters the definition of many terms. Most polling questions are manipulated, on both sides, to most favorably present their side.

08-19-2011, 7:33 PM
Ah... Push polling.


08-19-2011, 7:56 PM
In the oral arguments of McDonald v. Chicago:

JUSTICE BREYER: Let me be specific, suppose Chicago says, look, by banning handguns not in the hills, not hunting, nothing like that, nothing outside the city -- in the city, we save several hundred human lives every year. And the other side says, we don't think it is several hundred, and, moreover, that doesn't matter. How do you decide the case?

Mr. Gura: We decide that by looking, not to which side has the better statistics, but rather to what the framers said in the Constitution, because that policy choice was made for us in the Constitution.


08-20-2011, 9:29 AM
The tricks in polling are first, precisely how a question is worded, and secondly exactly what is in the news that the respondents have in their heads when asked the question.

Many polls ask questions about existing law, but phrased as though the law(s) would be a new thing.

exactly - and as others state - the question could be saying something about the NIBC, and then say: "Do you support reasonable gun control laws like this"?

At that point, they take just the the "support reasonable gun control", and as far as they are concerned registration, purchase limits, ammo limits, etc are also 'reasonable gun control laws like the back ground check' by their definition of the word reasonable.

or" do you support reasonable gun control laws that would prevent violent felons and mentally unstable people from owning firearms?

Yes? well then to them you just said you support registration of all firearms, purchase limits, waiting periods, bans, etc., etc., as they did not state exactly what type of laws were 'reasonable' and what would be allowable all in the name of keeping guns out of those people's hands. If you have seen some of the Brady, et al. poll questions, you will see that on the surface, the questions seem reasonable. but then after they twist it, it becomes something totally different that you would NOT support.

They play with that gray area and then restate it in they way they want to sell it. While most of us here I think support reasonable laws - like the INSTANT background check - you get into trouble answering these questions. Look at the source of any poll, and if you see an anti-gun org (or no org listed), you shouldn't support anything that is listed in fuzzy "similar" laws language or that leave it wide open. Its like signing a contract that says: "The usually fee for this is $200, do accept this contract given that $200 or similar amount is an acceptable fee?"

The NRA and other pro-2A groups put out polls as well, and you can tell the difference in the language used in their questions.

08-20-2011, 9:35 AM
In the oral arguments of McDonald v. Chicago:


and what was the CURRENTLY minority position on the 2A? One SCOTUS judge change, and...

And how many Amendments have been added? Can the 2nd be repealed, or redefined by a new Amendment, if there is enough popular vote among VOTERS?

You can not rely upon anything written that can be changed. What we must do is educate and sway people's opinions to make sure that the law can't be changed, or misinterpreted AGAIN. A1s it has already happened once, it, or something worse, can happen again and with an unfriendly to the 2A SCOTUS the fate could be VERY different.