People tend to forget that the right to keep and bear arms was included in the Bill of Rights not for hunting, not for sport and not even for self protections from lawless individuals - but rather for protection from a tyrannical and lawless government that had become unresponsive to the needs and freedoms of the citizens.
Whether the bad guys be criminals or agents of a criminal government, they are much less likely to try to break in and subdue someone if they think that person has deadly force to resist with. True, that may not deter groups of agents as much when it comes to single individuals, but it surely would deter such force if there were several tens of millions of individuals thus protected and willing to fight for their lives and freedom.
True, guns may lead to an increase in violence and people always point to the US as an example. Yet, in addition to having always been armed we have also been a rowdier and less tamed country than those we are often compared to. Perhaps it is noteworthy that while we have become increasingly armed insofar as gun sales go over the past several years, our crime rate has actually gone down. During that same time, unarmed England, which is usually used as a comparison, has seen its crime rate increase.
Whether you like guns or not, the fact is that if the colonists had not had their guns there would never have been the Revolution and Declaration of Independence which founded our country. If we give up our guns today, the chances of another revolution will be slim and none no matter how desperately we may come to need one. I surely hope we don't have to have one, but I don't want to see that option that our forefathers clearly intended away either. Tyrants simply love a disarmed population of sheeple.
I am a peace loving and peaceful guy, I really am. But if someone or ones threaten my life and liberty or the life and liberty of those I love, I might just reach for a solution I can deliver at several hundred feet per second. I'm not that great a fighter in the first place and debates don't usually work when your opponent has deadly force and you are unarmed.