It seems that over the weekend, a reader took issue with my placing a link to the FBI’s Uniform Crime Reports in a post on gun control. In that post I said that the title of “Murder Capital” was awarded annually to cities with gun bans. It’s time to take a look at that claim and see if it’s actually true.
The title is awarded, if you could call it that, to the city with more than 500,000 residents with the highest rate of murder per capita.
Detroit was the murder capital in 2001. In 2002, Washington, D.C. was the murder capital. In 2003, the title of murder capital went to Chicago. And in 2004, it looks like Baltimore was the murder capital.
For 2005, I don’t have final data yet, but it looks like it will end up being Philadelphia, the only part of the state of Pennsylvania exempt from the state’s concealed carry law.
It’s clear to anyone with a couple of brain cells to rub together that violent crime is not caused solely by gun bans. However, it’s quite obvious that banning guns makes the problem worse.
The seminal work on this is still More Guns, Less Crime by John R. Lott, Jr. Lott initially set out to prove that gun control prevented crime, and after years of research, actually was forced to admit the opposite is true. “High crime urban areas and neighborhoods with large minority populations have the greatest reductions in violent crime when citizens are legally allowed to carry concealed handguns,” he said.
Being first a scientist, and a liberal second, Lott followed up with The Bias Against Guns, in which he further debunks the myths on gun control such that it prevents crime. Criminals are almost never willing to risk their lives in a simple mugging or burglary, and will avoid armed conflict; when law-abiding citizens are disarmed, criminals are emboldened.
And then there’s the whole other issue of handgun bans being unconstitutional: Individuals have an individual right to own guns under the Second Amendment, whether you like it or not, and whether the Supreme Court upholds the Constitution or not.