JOHN LOTT’S article responding to Hillary Clinton’s claims in the 3rd Presidential debate in regards to the 2nd Amendment and the Heller Case:
Fox News carries this commentary on a recent study, “Murder rate drops as concealed carry permits rise, study claims” ~ with a h/t to Wintery Knight:
A dramatic spike in the number of Americans with permits to carry concealed weapons coincides with an equally stark drop in violent crime, according to a new study, which Second Amendment advocates say makes the case that more guns can mean safer streets.
The study by the Crime Prevention Research Center found that 11.1 million Americans now have permits to carry concealed weapons, up from 4.5 million in 2007. The 146 percent increase has come even as both murder and violent crime rates have dropped by 22 percent.
“When you allow people to carry concealed handguns, you see changes in the behavior of criminals,” said the center’s president, John R. Lott, a Fox News contributor. “Some criminals stop committing crimes, others move on to crimes in which they don’t come into contact with victims and others actually move to areas where they have less fear of being confronted by armed victims.”
Six states don’t require a permit for legal gun owners to conceal their weapons, and Lott notes those states have some of the lowest violent crime rates in the nation.
The real measure of the deterrent effect of concealed carry permits, according to Lott, is not laws on the books, but the percentage of a given state’s population that holds the permits. In 10 states, more than 8 percent of adults hold concealed carry permits, and all are among the states with the lowest crime rates. Lott claims his group’s analysis shows that each one percentage point increase in the adult population holding permits brings a 1.4 percent drop in the murder rate.
“We found that the size of the drop [in crime] is directly related to the percentage of the population with permits,” Lott said.
Between 2007 and the preliminary estimates for 2013, murder rates have fallen from 5.6 to 4.4 per 100,000….
The American Spectator has this great information that sets the record clear by giving guidelines to the debate:
Type “mass shootings” and “common” into a search engine and you’ll get all sorts of breathless commentary that might lead one to believe there Americans face a genuine epidemic of shooting rampages. A few headlines:
Homicide in America is far more common than it ought to be. But mass shootings — defined as four or more murders in the same incident — constitute a minuscule share of the total, as I discuss in “The Shooting Cycle” in the most recent edition of the Connecticut Law Review…
I want to break here and post something Mother Jones said in trying to define what a Mass Shooting is… “she” says this:
Broadly speaking, the term refers to an incident involving multiple victims of gun violence. But there is no official set of criteria or definition for a mass shooting, according to criminology experts and FBI officials who have spoken with Mother Jones.
Mother Jones then goes on to quote the definition — after being ambiguous about it — as four or more [excluding the shooter]. Wikipedia says this:
The FBI defines mass murder as murdering four or more persons during an event with no “cooling-off period” between the murders. A mass murder typically occurs in a single location where one or more people kill several others.
- Aggrawal A. (2005) Mass Murder. In: Payne-James JJ, Byard RW, Corey TS, Henderson C (Eds.) Encyclopedia of Forensic and Legal Medicine, Vol. 3, Pp. 216-223. Elsevier Academic Press, London
- “Serial Murder – Federal Bureau of Investigation”. Fbi.gov. Retrieved 2012-03-07.
It is odd to me why Mother Jones would be ambiguous about it while at the same time use the accepted FBI terminology/definition. At any rate, I HIGHLY suggest reading this Debunking of Mother Jones’ “10 Pro-Gun Myths,” worth the read.
Obama recently praised Australian gun-control.
Ann Coulter tackles this “Australian Stat” often mentioned. She quotes the New York Times’ Elisabeth Rosenthal as saying this:
Rosenthal also produces a demonstrably false statistic about Australia’s gun laws, as if it’s a fact that has been carefully vetted by the Newspaper of Record, throwing in the true source only at the tail-end of the paragraph:
“After a gruesome mass murder in 1996 provoked public outrage, Australia enacted stricter gun laws, including a 28-day waiting period before purchase and a ban on semiautomatic weapons. … Since, rates of both homicide and suicide have dropped 50 percent … said Ms. Peters, who lobbied for the legislation.”
John Lott Responds:
…Here is the actual data from Australia. First note that gun ownership exhibits a very interesting pattern that isn’t often acknowledged. There was a large gun buyback in 1996 and 1997 that reduced gun ownership from 3.2 to 2.2 million guns. But immediately after that gun ownership increased dramatically and is essentially back to where it was before the buyback. Why is that important? Well, if it is the number of guns that is important, you should initially see a large drop in suicides or crimes and then see it increasing. Yet, in none of these data series do you observe that pattern.
For example, homicides didn’t fall until eight years after the laws. It is not clear what theory they have for why the long delay would occur. Nor can I even find an acknowledgment of that long lag in the cited literature. A more natural explanation for the drop at the eight year point would be the substantial increases in police forces that occurred at that time…
…elsewhere he states:
…This is actually pretty amazing given the threat that the government could actually again try to confiscate guns in the country. That imposes a real potential tax on gun ownership.
Australians own as many guns now as they did at the time of the Port Arthur massacre, despite more than 1 million firearms being handed in and destroyed, new research reveals.
A University of Sydney study has shown there has been a steady increase in guns imported into the country over the past decade, with the number of privately owned guns now at the same level as 1996. . . .
Weirdly, gun control advocates are claiming that the buy back is lowering suicides at the same time that they are upset that gun ownership is back to it pre-buy back levels. One doesn’t need a semi-auto to commit suicide. While Australia’s population grew by 20 percent between 1997 and 2011, apparently its gun ownership rate grew by 45 percent. If they are right, the pattern should have been clear: suicides with guns should have plunged in 1997 and then quickly grown after that. Obviously that pattern wasn’t what was observed….
Crime is dropping recently in Australia, but this can be attributed to gun ownership rising back up to the previous rates before the ban. Gay Patriot comments on the before mentioned Obama quote about Australia:
I reiterate the two hidden rules of “Common Sense Gun Laws:”
1. “We only want to keep guns away from dangerous persons.”
2. “Anyone who owns a gun is a dangerous person.”
National Review also makes the point that in order to praise Australian “success,” one is praising anti-Constitutional actions:
Let me be clear, as Obama likes to say: You simply cannot praise Australia’s gun-laws without praising the country’s mass confiscation program. That is Australia’s law. When the Left says that we should respond to shootings as Australia did, they don’t mean that we should institute background checks on private sales; they mean that they we should ban and confiscate guns. No amount of wooly words can change this. Again, one doesn’t bring up countries that have confiscated firearms as a shining example unless one wishes to push the conversation toward confiscation.
Obama gave the impression that gun-violence is on the increase. This is false. As both Pew and the Department of Justice recorded last year, the majority of Americans believe that gun violence is proliferating when it is in fact dropping. This year marked a 20-year low. More than anything, America has a copycat problem in its schools.
Just a long side-note, continuing with the American Spectator article:
…The Bureau of Justice Statistics reported that from 2002-2011, 95 percent of total homicide incidents involved a single fatality, 4 percent involved two victims, 0.6 percent involved 3 victims, and only .02 percent involved four or more victims. Another study performed between 1976 and 2005 yields similar results — that less than one-fifth of 1 percent all murders in the United States involved four or more victims. In other words, the bottom line is that out of every 10,000 incidents of homicide, roughly two are mass killings.
Further, contrary to what the zeitgeist may suggest, mass shootings are not on the rise. Prominent criminologist James Alan Fox has found “no upward trend in mass killings” since the ’70s. Take campus statistics as an example: “Overall in this country, there is an average of 10 to 20 murders across campuses in any given year,” Fox told CNN (and roughly 99 percent of these reported homicides were not mass shootings). “Compare that to over 1,000 suicides and about 1,500 deaths from binge drinking and drug overdoses.” Mass shootings on college campuses lag far, far behind many much more prevalent social and mental health problems.
The rare nature of these incidents also holds true for safety in K-12 schools, which garnered a significant amount of attention in the wake of the tragedies in Columbine and Newtown. According to two reports by the Centers for Disease Control, the probability of a child “dying in school in any given year from homicide or suicide was less than one in 1 million between 1992 and 1994 and slightly greater than one in 2 million between 1994 and 1999.”
Of course any story like the above needs a positive one added to it. The Blaze has this:
Two armed criminals reportedly put a gun to a 17-year-old girl’s head on Monday night as she was outside retrieving something from a car. The man, whose intentions still aren’t entirely clear, then ordered the teenager to take them into her house — a decision that would prove to have deadly consequences.
Peering out the window of the St. Louis home were the girl’s mother and father, each prepared to protect their daughter with deadly force. There was also a 5-year-old boy in the house, though his relationship to the family wasn’t known on Tuesday.
The girl’s father, a 34-year-old man, reportedly observed the men walking towards his home while holding a gun to his daughter’s head, a sight that no father ever wants to see. He quickly retrieved his firearm and his wife did the same.
The brave dad then confronted the two criminals and opened fire, hitting both suspects with accurate shots…
“It’s become common knowledge that Denmark, Sweden and Norway routinely rank highest on lists of the world’s happiest nations…” (The World’s Happiest Countries Take The Most Antidepressants)
(As usual, all graphics/pics are linked to other resources.) Often I hear about how much lower the crime rate is in Europe, at times having the “Peace Index” thrown into the conversation without any meditation on what exactly this “index” says. Happiness is another moniker often thrown around without any comparisons of “what constitutes ‘happiness’.” So lets deal first with happiness, and then get into the peace index and gun-control/stats.
What constitutes happiness between the States and Europe? Let’s delve — quickly — into this topic via Forbes (2006):
American happiness is a pursuit important enough to include in one of our Founding documents, right next to life and liberty. This “pursuit” we are use to (and is being harmed/deformed by the welfare state growing larger) creates innovation. For instance David Mamet notes the following:
In my family, as in yours, someone regularly says, “Hey, you know what would be a good idea … ?” And then proceeds to outline some scheme for making money by providing a product or service the need for which has just occurred to him. He and the family fantasize about and discuss and elaborate this scheme. Inherent in this fantasy is the unstated but ever-present truth that, given sufficient capital and expertise or the access to the same, the scheme might actually be put into operation (as, indeed, constantly, throughout our history, such schemes have), bettering the lives of the masses and bringing wealth to their creators. Do you believe such conversations take place in Syria? In France?
David Mamet, The Secret Knowledge: On the Dismantling of American Culture (New York, NY: Sentinel Publishing, 2011), [FN] 120.
Some can be happy with less pay and trusting the state will care for them enough to go on 12-week vacations. While doctors, for instance, may enjoy a month-long vacation in France [mandatory vacation], this “happiness” rather than hard-work often has deadly consequences, one being — for instance — nearly 15,000 people dying in a heat wave in France in 2003 (a record for Europe… previously Italy held it with 3,000).
So Europe being “happier” than the United States is something of a misnomer.
“Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.” We pursue it, not expecting government to provide it for us. If government doeas, a simple economic law states — basically — that creativity is squelched:
When people do, austerity more-often-than-not leads to riots and collapse. And why in many European countries the EU is being rejected, and conservative parties are getting landslides (like UKIP in the UK). People are fed up with horrible health care, no incentive to succeed, taxes, crime, and immigration issues.
Okay, I feel my point has been made. Innovation comes by a drive to work hard, as much as you wish in fact… whereas Europe forces people to work less, and thus is stagnant in relation to this said innovation. What about crime rates and violence, yes, even gun violence? Lets see. Firstly, I deal with some of the more pressing issues with the Peace Index here. But in this conversation, I wanted to deal with violent crimes… which include more than gun violence. As Europe gives birth to a generation divorced of their cultural heritage, you will see a rise in violence, and then a rise in reaction to it. Maybe an over-reaction?
Firstly, if you are an in-depth kind of reader, at this link you will find multiple debates and appearances of John Lott on CNN and other programs discussing gun crime. But let’s deal with a place that has for years made gun ownership illegal, the United Kingdom. Here is the headline from The Telegraph on the topic:
Which segways into a recent comparison in crime and gun-control in a Wall Street Journal article by Joyce Lee Malcolm, entitled: “Two Cautionary Tales of Gun Control: After a school massacre, the U.K. banned handguns in 1998. A decade later, handgun crime had doubled.” Here is an interview of her in regards to the article, followed by excerpts from said article:
Of course America’s worst massacre involving a school is the Bath Bombing (below), Michigan (1927). And a bomb killed 168 people in the Oklahoma City Bombing. So if someone wants to kill another… no amount of government regulation will decrease this fact:
A great admission via HotAir:
James Craig just took over the office of police chief last summer, but he’s already making waves in Detroit. A reorganization of the police force in the bankrupt metropolis has resulted in a higher clearance rate in murder cases, and the murder rate dropped almost 14% in 2013 from its two-decade high in 2012. However, Craig has some advice for his fellow citizens in Motor City if they really want a drop in crime — arm yourselves:
If more citizens were armed, criminals would think twice about attacking them, Detroit Police Chief James Craig said Thursday.
Urban police chiefs are typically in favor of gun control or reluctant to discuss the issue, but Craig on Thursday was candid about how he’s changed his mind.
“When we look at the good community members who have concealed weapons permits, the likelihood they’ll shoot is based on a lack of confidence in this Police Department,” Craig said at a press conference at police headquarters, adding that he thinks more Detroit citizens feel safer, thanks in part to a 7 percent drop in violent crime in 2013.
Craig wasn’t always in favor of carry permits. While serving in Los Angeles, where permits are issued on a notoriously miserly (and some would add arbitrary) manner, Craig thought that disarmament was the answer. It wasn’t until he went to a carry-friendly jurisdiction that he understood the difference:
Craig said he started believing that legal gun owners can deter crime when he became police chief in Portland, Maine, in 2009.
“Coming from California (Craig was on the Los Angeles police force for 28 years), where it takes an act of Congress to get a concealed weapon permit, I got to Maine, where they give out lots of CCWs (carrying concealed weapon permits), and I had a stack of CCW permits I was denying; that was my orientation.
“I changed my orientation real quick. Maine is one of the safest places in America. Clearly, suspects knew that good Americans were armed.”
It’s not the first time that Craig has endorsed carry permits. Two weeks ago, the Detroit News notes, he told a local radio show that responsibly armed citizens act as a deterrent, in a city that can clearly use one. Even though the murder rate has dropped, Detroit had as many homicides in 2013 as New York City, which has more than ten times its population.
At least one recent study suggests that Craig hits the nail on the head. A long-range study by a Quinnipiac University economist shows that states with more restrictions on firearm ownership and carry permits had higher murder rates by guns than gun-friendly states, and suggests that increasing restrictions on concealed-carry permits pushes the murder rate up, not down. It also showed that assault-weapons bans had no effect on murder rates.
Perhaps more police chiefs will change their orientation with this information at hand. State legislatures should get ahead of that curve.
John Lott, the gun advocate who recently had a heated encounter with Piers Morgan, spoke to Soledad O’Brien on Monday morning — continuing to make his pro-gun argument. O’Brien had a hard time stomaching Lott’s perspective, telling him she simply does not understand it.
Heated debate with Piers Morgan, John Lott:
John Lott on CNN’s State of the Union w/ Wolf Blitzer discussing gun control and the Sandy Hook elementary school mass shooting in Newtown, Connecticut.
Dr John Lott on High Octane.
In the sad and tragic aftermath of the Newtown, Connecticut elementary school shooting, it’s only natural for the more ignorant among us to immediately begin calling for an attack on our Second Amendment right to bear arms even before the bodies of the innocent little angels are removed from the classroom where they were slaughtered by an insane killer. But these people completely ignore the rights of millions of law-abiding, normal American citizens to defend themselves against such insanity, as well as all the cases where lawfully armed citizens have done so. Mark Levin discusses gun control with John Lott, author of More Guns, Less Crime.