"I have never, ever come across anyone as willfully obtuse and boneheaded as you've demonstrated yourself to be with your extraordinary behaviour at my blog over the last 36 hours or so. However offensive and cynically misleading the others have been at times, at least there's been a sense of a sentient life-form being behind their comments."
-Mr. James Kelly - (scroll about halfway down in that comment thread to see the above quote)
I guess I'll take such insults from Mr. Kelly as compliments, as I have done with other anti-gunners in the past. He says this while he complains that it's the mean pro-gun folks who are being uncivil. Now, I will certainly admit to a certain amount of sarcasm in some of my comments as a means of poking fun at some of Mr. Kelly's more absurd claims but I don't consider that to be rude or uncivil.
As Kevin has so aptly pointed out, what we have here is a conflict of visions. One is based on factual evidence and logic, and is thus provable. The other, as Mr. Kelly himself is quick to remind us, is based on his "feelings" and "beliefs" rather than anything factual and reality based.
To quote Mr. Kelly as to the basis of his positions on this entire debate,
'The difference in this debate is that I have been arguing on the basis of what I believe to be true, and doing my best to explain why I believe it. Kevin, by way of contrast, claims to be able to literally ‘prove’ his case beyond any doubt whatsoever by recourse to detailed statistical data."
How can two sides attempt to have a reasoned debate when one side argues from the basis Mr. Kelly does? Not even basic principles and simple definitions in the English language can be mutually agreed upon if Mr. Kelly claims from the start that nothing he says need be grounded in reality nor supported by factual, empirical evidence.
It's as if Mr. Kelly is a "flat-earther" living in an alternate reality, while the rest of us understand that the world is round and can literally "prove" that this is true. Naturally this continued insistence and reliance on "voodoo statistics" irks the flat-earther. Conveniently, Mr. Kelly's tactics also absolve him of any responsibility for backing up his assertions and opinions.
If I am sure of one thing it is that discussions like those between us pro-gun bloggers and Mr. Kelly are an integral part of the larger pro-gun cause. They allow any neutral 3rd party observer who may stumble upon Kevin or Mr. Kelly's comment sections to ascertain which side states their position and provides empirical support, and which side continues to say "But the Earth is flat!" even as a mountain of evidence is posted disproving that claim.
Click on these words for links to the discussion at Mr. Kelly's. There are quite a few posts and comments to sift through, but it's worth your time.
Here are a handful of Kevin's posts, and Weer'd Beard and Nate have also weighed in on the discussions. I particularly liked how Weer'd titled his 1st post "Zealotry" given that Mr. Kelly's reliance upon feelings and "belief" above all else bears a striking resemblance to religious zealotry.