Another point is that gun control is not just for massacre prevention. The daily toll due to gun violence far outweighs the sensational eventus that dominate media coverage. Regular violent crime isn't news precisely because it's so regular. Even though violent crime is down in the US it's still much higher than most everywhere else. Correlation is not causation but it's foolish not to consider the possibility that stricter gun control in other countries has contributed to lower levels of violence. Or maybe we're just sick bastards...
That is an interesting point, and I don't know the answer to the broader sociological issue you touch on here. The comparative international stats on their face do support those who advocate tighter gun control. On the other hand, in a world in which criminals can get guns illegally, legal owwnership may deter crime. I believe there are stats to support this too, in connection with legal concealed carry.
Given where we are at, I would rather be in a position to defend myself and my loved ones, rather than waiting for who knows how long for the police. Since I purchased a handgun, I believe our family is safer. Thankfully we've not had to use it.
Also I am wary of government, and an armed citizenry can serve the role of an important check on government excess (without the need to exercise that role except as a deterrent). We have seen what has happened in Europe, from time to time, when governments confiscated the guns from the citizens ... turning them into defenseless subjects ... and victims. Of course up to this point such concerns have been largely theoretical in the U.S., but they were at the forefront of many of the Founder's minds. On the other hand, violent extremist groups can use this rational to arm themselves before striking. So it cuts both ways.
Yesterday I heard that a man in our neighborhood, known for working with gang members, told some of them to stop tagging graffiti on a wall, and they chased him down for two blocks and knifed him to death. The story might have ended differently if he had had a concealed firearm to protect himself. On the other hand, a man carrying a gun may feel empowered to put himself in a provacative situation, resulting in gun violence. So it can cut both ways.
So, I dunno, it is complex. You see more or less what side I fall out on, though.