In an April 22 op-ed by columnist Nicholas Kristof, the New York Times advised readers to consider using bear spray against home intruders instead of firearms.
Kristof claimed the idea that a gun in the home makes someone safer is actually a “delusion,” and he portrayed the U.S. as extremely violent, writing, “Elsewhere, brutes send their victims to the E.R.; in America, they send them to their graves.” He then listed three examples to bolster his point, two of which were examples where shooting victims were sent to the E.R. and the third of which was a shooting death.
Kristof claimed that foreigners look at the United States in bewilderment, wondering why Americans are so in love with guns. He pointed to Japan in particular, where he claims “fewer people are murdered with guns in a typical year than sometimes in a single mass shooting in America.” He did not discuss suicide numbers and the fact that suicides in Japan have been higher than suicides in the United States in recent years, despite stringent gun controls in Japan.
He concluded by, predictably, pushing for the kind of gun controls that have been in place in California since the 1990s, yet have failed to prevent mass shooting after shooting in that state.
Kristof admitted he has guns on his farm, but stressed that the pursuit of “personal safety” is not a good reason to get one. He suggested homeowners use bear spray instead of firearms to fight off home intruders.
Rule #1 for responding to home intruders (and government tyranny): don’t bring a can of bear spray to a gunfight.