As we head into another energy-draining, media-drenched, wrong-headed protest by angry liberals in this weekend’s highly publicized anti-gun march in Washington, responding to the salvos of misinformation becomes a real challenge.
Those who understand and appreciate the Second Amendment and the Constitution — which does not include large numbers of protesters — should be armed with a few basic facts that really do make the entire anti-gun histrionics case go ker-splat!
These are important because whether it is the school kids or the activists or the media, the people driving this narrative are rarely if ever confronted with contextual facts. They shake their heads and wag their fingers in circular agreement chambers at the rubes who like guns, turn the NRA into Satan and claim what a fine job they are doing. But they are provably wrong.
So here’s a quick aide of three well-documented facts to share with friends and family if the discussion turns to the march and the latest wave of anti-gun rights theater.
ACTIVIST CHARGE: More guns means more gun violence and gun death. We must reduce guns to reduce gun violence. New York Times columnist Nicholas Kristof wrote: “Fewer Guns = Fewer Deaths.” Dylan Scott at Vox wrote: “More guns tend to breed more violence — whether accidental or intentional.” These come from the more level heads in the anti-gun debate, much more tame and unemotional than the thousands of protesters that will be stomping about Washington.
ACTUAL DATA: The opposite may actually be true, or at least there is no national data correlation supporting their assertions. As the American Enterprise Institute chart below shows, the number of guns per American increased dramatically from 1993 to 2013. At the exact same time, the gun homicide rate dropped dramatically. So gun ownership increased 65 percent over 20 years nationally, while gun murders in the same 20 years fell by almost 50 percent. The march and the media are wrong.
CONCLUSION: Fewer guns does not mean lower crime.
ACTIVIST CHARGE: We have the most mass shootings because of our antiquated gun culture. Sen. Chris Murphy of Connecticut, speaking on the Senate floor after the Parkland shootings: “This happens nowhere else other than the United States of America.” Previously, President Obama had said: “…this type of mass violence does not happen in other advanced countries.”
ACTUAL DATA: A study by the Crime Prevention Research Center completed in 2015 of mass-shootings around the world for the previous six-year period shows the U.S. not only doesn’t lead the world in mass shootings, it’s not even in the top 10 among advanced nations.
Norway is No. 1, but that is an outlier because the country with a tiny population had the terrible mass shooting of 77 people in 2011. No. 2 is Serbia, then France, Macedonia, Albania, Slovakia, Finland, Belgium, and the Czech Republic. Then comes the U.S., at a rate of less than one-third that of France when it comes to mass shootings per capita.
As all of these European countries (often cited as the exemplars for the United States) either have strict laws on guns or ban them outright. They also have far fewer guns per capita. There would seem to be no correlation again between the availability of guns and mass shootings. This doesn’t even consider Third World nations. The march and the media are wrong.
CONCLUSION: Mass shootings in the United States are not high compared to many European nations.
ACTIVIST CHARGE: More gun control laws reduce violence. A Los Angeles Times editorial argued: “The best data are clear: More guns mean more carnage, and stronger gun laws save lives.”
ACTUAL DATA: The actual research shows that more than 50 percent of all U.S. murders occur in 2 percent of American counties. Murder is shockingly concentrated in major cities that have very tight gun laws and, importantly, very low legal gun ownership. Los Angeles, Chicago, Washington, D.C. are among them. Conversely, in suburban and rural areas across the country where gun laws are more lax and legal gun ownership is high, there are low murder rates.
This is not necessarily a causal relationship. More guns may not cause fewer crimes based on these numbers. Other research has shown a similar corollary affect. However, it shows the opposite is certainly untrue. This is furthered by a famous chart comparing Chicago and Houston demographics, gun laws and crime rates. It is included below and further also shows no correlation between gun control and lower murder rates. The opposite could be argued. The march and the media are wrong.
CONCLUSION: Tighter gun laws and fewer legal gun owners does not reduce the murder rate.
These three data points make the factually irrefutable case that the problem is not the availability guns. It’s who is using them, and where.
(Note: A bonus fourth data point: Since 1950, more than 98 percent of public mass shootings in America have taken place in “gun-free zones.” So, also not a solution.)
These three points are worth remembering and sharing with friends and family as the march dominates news and a lot of social media this weekend.
Rod Thomson is an author, TV talking head and former journalist, and is Founder of The Revolutionary Act. Rod is co-host of Right Talk America With Julio and Rod on the Salem Radio Network.
Today’s news moves at a faster pace than ever, and a lot of sources are not trustworthy. Whatfinger.com is my go-to source for keeping up with all the latest events in real time from good sources.
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