“The statistics tell us how bad the problem is” That .000002% police shooting statistic is the exact same value as the statistic posted in your article for school children killed by a gun in school. You want to include one statistic in policy discussions, but not the other. As I stated in my first reply, you cant have it both ways.
Yes you can, because we’re talking about different policies.
For instance, our supposed policy to reduce police shootings might be “police body cameras,” and our supposed policy to reduce school shootings might be “mass shooter drills in schools.”
There are advantages and disadvantages to each policy, and there are different relative levels of efficacy to each policy. And we weigh the relative levels of efficacy (the juice) against how difficult the policy is going to be to adopt in terms of costs and disadvantages (the squeeze). This is how we evaluate policy. It’s literally how competitive policy debate is framed.
So the drawback for police body cameras is, as near as I can tell, the cost of the cameras. That’s it. There’s no rights infringement, and few new laws necessary, and no real other drawbacks. In fact, there are subsidiary advantages because the recordings on the body cameras can be useful in criminal investigations. So we evaluate that:
Pros: X% reduction in unjustified police shootings, increased efficacy in criminal investigations. I might X to be relatively large by percentage of total unjustified police shootings, but that the unjustified shootings are relatively small in number, so the total number of lives saved wouldn’t be tremendously much.
Cons: Camera cost.
And we evaluate whether the juice is worth the squeeze. How much money are we spending per life saved?
We do the same thing for mass shooter drills:
Pros: Y% reduction in deaths from mass shooters. I might argue that this ratio is exceedingly small, because the school shooters probably also get familiar with the drills, and learn better ways to do their school shooting.
Cons: Cost, but also general anxiety instilled into the children. Also, it makes everyone think about shooting up a school more, which in turn may increase the total number of school shootings. I’ve written about that here.
And we evaluate whether the juice is worth the squeeze.
Whether the juice is worth the squeeze is the fundamental question we must answer in policy discussions. For what it’s worth, addressing mass shootings, or even overall gun homicide, by a global buyback program is absolutely not worth the squeeze. I’ve done the math for that, and it turns out you need to buy back about 80 million dollars worth of guns to save one life.
Gun Buybacks and Gun Seizures Don’t Work if you Believe in Math
This just needs to be put to bed, once and for all.
All policy discussions in the end are juice vs squeeze.