Originally posted January 18, 2013.
You can do your part in safeguarding our children by alerting your representatives in Washington, your governor, and your local sheriff to John R. Lott, Jr.’s More Guns Less Crime.
Understanding crime and gun control laws is the forte of America’s eminent authority John Lott. Milton Friedman has written about Mr. Lott’s research in documenting how far “politically correct” vested interests are willing to go. National Review’s John O. McGinnis, writes about John Lott, providing strong empirical evidence that yet another liberal policy is a cause of the very evil it purports to cure. As Mr. McGinnis points out, Mr. Lott has permanently changed the terms of the debate on gun control.
In More Guns Less Crime, John Lott warned “If the National Uniform Crime Report data through 1994 or state waiting periods and background checks are any indication, the empirical evidence does not bode well for the Brady Law.” Lott of course proved correct. No statistically significant evidence has appeared that the Brady Law has reduced crime. In fact, there is some statistically significant evidence that rates for rape and aggravated assault have risen by about 4% relative to what it would have been without the law.
As a way to encourage gun owners to take responsibility for keeping their guns safe, President Obama mentions trigger locks as a safety tool. John Lott offers a contrary opinion from a guy who had a little experience with guns, Mafia turncoat Sammy “the Bull” Gravano: “Gun control? It’s the best thing you can do for crooks and gangsters; I want you to have nothing. If I’m a bad guy, I’m always going to have a gun. Safety locks? You’ll pull the trigger with a lock on, and I’ll pull the trigger. We’ll see who wins.”
President Obama would have Americans believe that separate storage of guns and ammunition makes for responsible gun ownership. Have you ever been awakened by abnormal sounds emanating from your downstairs? If you’re like me, you have. What’s your play if your ammo is nowhere near your gun? Sound promising? Sounds completely nuts to me. As John Lott points out, “Safe storage rules also seem to cause some real problems. Passage of these laws is significantly related to almost 9 percent more rapes and robberies and 5.6% more burglaries.”
I have not read any encouragement from President Obama about the single strategy guaranteed to significantly reduce multiple-victim public shootings in public places—concealed handguns. Makes one wonder whom the vice president had advising him at his well-press-covered get-togethers. Apparently not the real stats expert, John Lott. John makes the concealed weapons case clear as a bell: “Estimates imply that the average state passing these (concealed weapons) laws reduces the total number of murders and injuries per year from 1.91 to .42 (per 100,000 people). That equates to a measured 78% decline in murders and injuries. The data is overwhelmingly significant.” And where is the president and his meetings-overloaded VP? Nary the peep. John Lott concludes, “Despite expecting a deterrent effect from these (concealed weapons) laws because of the high probability that one or more potential victims or bystanders will be armed, the drop in murders and injuries is still surprisingly large.”
President Obama tells Americans that we need to make sure our laws are effective in identifying the dangerous or untrustworthy individuals that should not have access to guns. Aside from the fact that a big percentage of Americans are going to have little interest in government determining just who is dangerous and untrustworthy is the little fact that such people will always find a way to get guns. John Lott provides clarity once again. “Some laws, such as the Brady law, may prevent some criminals from buying guns through legal channels, such as regular gun storage. Nevertheless, such laws are not going to prevent criminals from obtaining guns through other means, including theft. Just as government had difficulty stopping gangs from getting drugs to sell, it is dubious that the government would succeed in stopping criminals from acquiring guns to defend their drug turf.”
IN CONCLUSION: It is now clear why The Wall Street Journal’s James Bovard wrote, “A compelling book (More Guns Less Crime) with enough hard evidence that even politicians may have to stop and pay attention. More Guns Less Crime is an exhaustive analysis of the effect of gun possession on crime rates.”
Read John Lott’s editorial in today’s Wall Street Journal by clicking here.