Vail Daily letter: Noble nonsense |

Vail Daily letter: Noble nonsense

Claire Noble is back again with another anti-gun column. This time she’s exercised about the Umpqua, Oregon, shooting. Again, she brings up issues that have nothing to do with that event — like gun storage laws and background checks.

She questions the idea that more guns can mean less crime. There are those who point out that Chicago has as strict a set of gun laws as you can find, but it still has a lot of shootings. Compare that place with Eagle County. I believe per capita gun ownership is higher here, but our murder rate is lower.

The reason for the lower rate here must be something else — like the prevailing culture. If you could remove all the guns from Chicago, would the violence stop? Would Chicago then be a nice a place to live?

Noble goes on to cite to a Harvard study that says more guns equal more murders. She did not give a URL or other information to permit checking this out.

President Obama recently took the same position in a speech about Umpqua. His basis was an article in the August National Journal,”The States With The Most Gun Laws See The Fewest Gun-Related Deaths.”

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On Oct. 5 the Washington Post’s fact-checker did a review of the evidence and awarded the president two Pinocchios. The Post said they wavered between two and three, but in the end chose two. The measure indicated by these icons is as follows:

“Two Pinocchios: Significant omissions and/or exaggerations. Some factual error may be involved but not necessarily. A politician can create a false, misleading impression by playing with words and using legalistic language that means little to ordinary people. (Similar to ‘half true.’)

“Three Pinocchios: Significant factual error and/or obvious contradictions. This gets into the realm of “mostly false.” But it could include statements which are technically correct (such as based on official government data) but are so taken out of context as to be very misleading. The line between two and three can be bit fuzzy and we do not award half-Pinocchios. So we strive to explain the factors that tipped us toward a three.”

I’d give Claire Noble a solid three Pinocchios.

For another take on this issue, check out John Lott, a scholar who wrote the book “More Guns, Less Crime.” Available in its third edition through He is covered considerably on Google.

I’ll leave it to others to deal with Claire Noble’s other errors. Instead, I’d like to focus on something involving presidential candidate Ben Carson. In an interview he was asked what he would do if he found himself in a situation like Umpqua. He said he would resist, and try to get the others to join him. The bad guy would be less able to shoot everyone if they did.

Liberals have taken Dr. Carson to task, saying his remarks were a slur on those who were in the Umpqua classroom. This offers an insight into the mindset of the left. They will attack on some basis, however ill-founded. This observation carries over to a spectrum of left wing attempts to stifle free speech. They want people to be afraid of speaking their minds, for fear of some distorted interpretation by the media and other liberal organs. And the personal attacks that go along with that.

A final thought. Send a contribution to the candidate of your choice. Find their website and use your credit card. Whether it’s Ben Carson, Bernie Sanders, Carly Fiorina or Martin O’Malley. Even if it’s only 25 or 50 bucks. Get some skin in the game. Don’t make them so dependent on the fat cats.

Terry Quinn


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