This question should be used in public discourse more often. It should also be followed up with clarification questions like, “How will it do that?” and “What do you expect the outcome to be?”

Why should we ask these questions? Because they are important. The intentions behind most, if not all of proposed legislation around guns at the personal level is coming from a place of wanting to help make our country a better place and to save lives. Remember that in your conversations.

For follow up questions, one that is overlooked frequently is “What if I had a proposal that has scientific backing that would save more people every year than all of the mass shooting victims in the last 30 years? Would that be worth talking about?” See the section here on Raising the Minimum Wage

Another follow up question could be “If there was a proven way to reduce our homicide rate by an estimated 12%, saving over 2000 people per year from being murdered, would you be interested in hearing more about that?” Fixing Gun Violence in America Federal funding for projects like this one have been proven to reduce homicide rates by 50% in communities where they are implemented.

And although there are tons more that could be asked, perhaps a final one should be “If there was a way to identify and treat folks before they had a mental health break, would you be interested in hearing about how?” Universal Healthcare, including ubiquitous and free mental healthcare would help those in crisis who are more likely to self harm than to harm others.

These questions are not misleading. They are not redirecting. They are real questions, and if the answer to the original question is anything related to reducing harm and making sure that less people die, these questions are absolutely related as we’ve linked in articles above.

Unfortunately, the actual groups that are calling for more gun control aren’t necessarily interested in these things. But individuals absolutely are.