My Book Explained by Analogy

Analogies can often enlighten us, but they can also mislead us. No analogy is perfect, and the one I will present is imperfect too. However, some enlightening moments make it worth going through. In what follows, I’ll attempt to describe the methodology of my book using something other than violent crime using a fictional story I call Storytime. Instead of firearms, I will use lightning. I will also ask the reader to use their imagination. In this new world I will be presenting, there are things you can do to reduce your chances of being hit by lightning and things you can do to improve your chances of surviving a lighting strike.


Imagine that you woke up today and violent crime committed with a firearm did not exist. For example, when you went to the National Safety Council’s (NSC) website and saw the lifetime odds of dying, you did not see Gun Assault as 1 in 208 for 2021*.  Instead, in this new world we are living in, the lifetime odds of dying from a Lightning Strike was listed as 1 in 208.

Each morning, you turned on your television, and the lead story of the morning news would be about someone being hit by lightning. But, of course, your favorite news website also details these incidents. In addition, classes on how to prevent being hit by lighting are available. These classes are taught by experienced utility line workers who repair lines during bad weather conditions. As it turns out, some of the gear worn by these workers helps them survive lightning strikes.

The constant news presence and classes help spawn an entire industry about surviving lightning strikes. Civilians went in droves to purchase the same gear the utility line workers wore. The unique requirements of civilians also drove many innovations in that same gear.

However, researchers pointed out that civilian lighting strikes differed from utility worker lightning strikes. Many civilians were struck at home, often during social gatherings. This fact implied that preventative measures for the house should be done first, and the gear necessary to survive done second.

Researchers also pointed out that some of the recommendations of the utility workers could cause harm to civilians. For example, utility workers often went ten mph over the speed limit to avoid car congestion since car congestion was a predictor for lightning strikes. In addition, should these workers cause a traffic accident, they have special protection from the law due to their job. However, researchers warned that civilians could cause accidents too and do not have special protection from the law.

This research spawned several simple recommendations for civilians to avoid being hit by lightning.

  • If the weather calls for lightning, avoid social gatherings.
  • If the weather calls for lightning, avoid vehicle travel.
  • Set up your home with equipment known to prevent lightning strikes.
  • After these recommendations, you may want to investigate the gear that helps survive a lightning strike, but it is best used at home first. Other recommendations from utility workers should be used with caution.  


Hopefully, this analogy helps a prospective reader understand what my book is and is not about. Enjoy your day!

* NOTE: The NSC lists guns from all intents as 1 in 89. That is because they include suicide victims that used firearms. I highly suspect that the same people who convinced the CDC to remove defensive gun use statistics probably influenced this change. See my critique of the CDC’s firearm fast fact webpage in another post.   For firearms and suicide, see my book and my supplementary post on that topic.