Among other things, Glassner informs us that we shouldn’t be worried about violent crime Violent crime is (as of 1999) going down and has never been a huge problem. He provides plenty of statistics (with citations) to demonstrate this very convincingly (along with numerous other points.
But several times throughout the book, he stops talking about how violence isn’t a significant problem to briefly(?) rant about how violent crime involving guns is a HUGE problem. A sane person will recognise that gun violence is a subset of violence, and therefore the problem of gun violence CANNOT be a bigger problem than the problem of violence in general. Glassner, however, is not sane when it comes to the issue of guns.
Glassner writes intelligently and coherently for the most part, but as soon as the subject of guns comes up, he begins contradicting himself. He chastises People magazine for saying that gun violence is rare, three paragraphs after he himself insisted that violence is not a huge problem.
He writes from a very liberal perspective, but he does so rationally, and as a very rational, very liberal reader, it doesn’t bother me. Except when he starts ranting about guns. It doesn’t matter how much I favour gun control—his arguments on the subject at flat-out self-contradictory and the very scare mongering he spends the entire book arguing against. His out-of-place rants break the intelligent flow of the book in several spots. (I know I’m harping on this myself, but it really drove me to distraction numerous times.)
For the most part, however, this is an excellent book. It’s certainly a very left-wing perspective, but better left than right.