(Necessary preface that I'm not taking an anti-gun position here, just discussing)
Does a gun ACTUALLY make you safer, or does it only make you feel safer? To answer that question, you have to consider the entire cost of ownership - including how likely it is you'll use the weapon in defense of self or other and how likely the weapon is to be used against you or, in the case of your immediate family, on someone else in your household.
Owning a gun is not all upside, even if it has positive benefits. Every toddler shot with the handgun from his mother's purse is an example of the downside. We can get into a stats and studies war on the topic (I won't engage in that), but it's not clear to me that for the average American the answer is objectively well known.
Based on what I have read on the subject, I believe that yes, a gun would make me safer. And make me feel safer. I can't speak for people who don't know how to use them, wouldn't be willing to use one, or are not comfortable with them.
With that said - my H and I are hoping to someday adopt older children from the foster system. When that time comes, the gun(s) will either be removed completely from the house or transferred to a safe they absolutely could not get into. Because until I really know these children, I think the risk a gun an enterprising kid, who was not raised around guns and who may have emotional issues, could possibly get to outweigh the risk of not having one. (Even though I've had strangers break into my home twice while I was home.)
What is important to me is that I have the right to analyze the situation and decide for myself what makes me and my family safest. I don't need a bureaucrat in D.C. who knows NOTHING about me deciding for me not to worry my pretty little head because they
think I'm safer without a gun. Or they
think I, in my insignificant little life, don't need one (while they're likely surrounded by armed security, since their life is more valuable than mine).
Yes there are risks to owning a gun. Some father just shot and killed his son at a gun range when a hot shell casing went down the back of his shirt and he jerked his arm in reaction. Can you imagine the pain that one human being will live with the rest of his life?
However, you have to remember we have a lot of very liberal, anti-gun people in the media and they play up each story of an accidental shooting with nary a mention of all the lives saved because people had guns. I understand you don't want to get into statistics, but if you ever do, I believe you will find that the media paints a very deceptive picture of the dangers vs. benefits of owning a gun.
What about all the lives saved with a gun? Often by not even needing to shoot it? Those far outweigh accidental deaths. Should those people not have had the right to protect themselves?
What about people who just enjoy guns for sportsmanship? Should they not have that right because someone else had a tragedy or committed a crime?
Children also drown in swimming pools and, believe it or not, bicycle accidents are one of the top causes of death (at least they used to be) in children. Obviously no one NEEDS a bike or swimming pool, but they are not political causes to the media, so those items don't get played up as if they're happening non-stop on every street in America.
In my opinion, yes, people actually are safer with guns, but to me that is irrelevant. What is relevant is that each person have the opportunity to choose for themselves. Especially given the fact that criminals pay no heed to gun restriction laws.