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April 1993

A Deceptive Contrivance-Reply

Author Affiliations

1527 Highway 27 Somerset, NJ 08873

Arch Neurol. 1993;50(4):346-347. doi:10.1001/archneur.1993.00540040007005

In Reply.  —I thank Suter and White for their comments. There are some ideas so preposterous that only an educated person can believe them, like the suggestion that we can decrease violence by freely increasing the number of handguns in private hands, without regulation and surveillance. Few ordinary citizens, educated at an assembly line, a barber shop, or the school of hard knocks, could embrace this idea. When they buy weapons, they have a clear understanding of what they have in mind or, more appropriately, what they have in their reptilian and paleomammalian (limbic) forebrains.1 Only those Americans with advanced degrees theorize that the dictates of common sense and everyday experience are always less valuable than empirical evidence, however fragile. Moreover, given that "the favorite weapon of your enemy" is now a semiautomatic, the deterrent value of a mere handgun is suspect; perhaps each of us needs a cache

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