Thread: Documentation for All Factual Evidence I Cited in the Lafayette Open Carry Debate on June 17, 2010
In order to substantiate the statements I made during the Open Carry Debate in Lafayette, I have compiled the documenation for anyone interested in reviewing the unbiased and independent evidence for themselves. In addition to reviewing this evidence provided, I would also encourage everyone to look into this all-too-important issue for themselves by researching this issue for themselves. I would recommend that you rely on government sourced facts/evidence/statistics, independent polling organizations, and peer-reviewed, academic research studies. Pro-gun or anti-gun lobby information is obviously biased.
Karen Arntzen and Assemblywoman Lori Saldana claimed that Open Carry is not popularly supported by the public in general. They are wrong. This Harris Poll released just two days ago show that 50% of all Americans support our 2nd Amendment Right to Open Carry.
The Mauser-Kates Study, "Would Banning Firearms Reduce Murder and Suicide? A Review of International Evidence", was academically peer reviewed and then published on Volume 30, Number 2 of the Harvard Journal of Law & Public Policy (pp. 649-694).
“Whether gun availability be viewed as a cause or as a mere coincidence, the long term macrocosmic evidence is that gun ownership spread widely throughout societies consistently correlates with stable or declining murder rates. This pattern simply cannot be squared with the mantra that more guns = more death and fewer guns = less. Whether causative or not, the consistent international pattern is that more guns = less murder and other violent crime.” (Page 33)
“As of 2006, 40 states have adopted laws under which guns became vastly more available to law abiding, responsible adults, i.e., 3.5 million Americans are legally entitled not just to keep guns in their homes but to carry concealed handguns with them wherever they go. But this has not resulted in more murder or violent crime in these states. Rather adoption of these statutes has been followed by very significant reduction in murder and violence in those states.” (Pages 14-15)
“Over a decade ago University of Washington public health professor Brandon Centerwall undertook an extensive, statistically sophisticated study comparing areas in the U.S. and Canada to determine whether Canada's much more restrictive policies had better contained criminal violence. When he published his results it was with the admonition:
If you are surprised by my findings, so are we. We did not begin this research with any
intent to "exonerate" handguns, but there it is -- a negative finding, to be sure, but a negative finding is nevertheless a positive contribution. It directs us where NOT to aim public health resources” (Pages 98-99)
(Study by Brandon Centerwall referenced above is called, “Homicide and the Prevalence of Handguns: Canada and the United States, 1976 to 1980”, published in the American Journal of Epidemiology, Vol. 134 No. 11:1245-1260)
UK vs. US Violent Crime Rates
I touched on this subject with an audience member after the debate. Here are the facts when comparing a country that has no virtually no legal firearms in a public setting (UK) vs. a country with a legally armed citizenry (US)
The published violent crime rates, all from their respectively linked government sources below, clearly demonstrate the truth about this issue.
USA: 466/100,000 (FBI)
Canada: 900/100,000 (Statistics Canada)
U.K.: 3580/100,000 (Home Office)
Ever since the institution of their wholesale handgun ban in 1997, there are so few legal handguns in the UK that even most of the cops there don't carry them. And yet, the criminals there have absolutely no problem whatsoever getting theirs. Don't believe me? Check out what the British mainstream media have to say about this topic:
In fact, since the institution of that wholesale handgun ban in England in 1997, the violent crime rate in that country has become so unacceptable that the government has resorted to lying about it and has been caught by their mainstream media for under reporting it by as much as 60%. If you don't believe me, feel free to click on the link here and see for yourself.
Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services Department of Licensing
Out of 1,787,628 CCWs issued over 23 years, only 167 ever used a firearm in a crime. That is well below one in every 10,000 (10,704 to be exact). Armed citizens are model citizens.
To further establish the principal benefits of carrying guns in public, look to this mainstream media article from MSNBC regarding the steadily decreasing number of firearm related deaths in this country even as common, law abiding citizens are becoming more increasingly well armed while going about their daily business in a public setting.
70% of all violent crimes occur away from home
According to the federal government’s own Bureau of Justice Statistics, National Crime Victimization Survey, “Weapon Use and Violent Crime”, published in September 2003 NCJ 194820, covering the years between 1993-2001. Figures 5 and 6. Author: Craig Perkins.
National Institute of Justice DGU (Defensive Gun Use) Study
“Guns in America: National Survey on Private Ownership and Use of Firearms” published in 1997 during the anti-gun Clinton administration, found that there are 1.5 million DGUs/year in the US. Averaged out over the number of days in a year, that is 4,109 DGUs every single day in the US. Look on page 9 for 1.5 million DGUs/year figure.
Brady Campaign Grading Scale
In the latest Brady Campaign report card, press released on Feb. 28, 2010 (based on 2008 Statistics):
California received the highest grade: 79. California’s violent crime rate is 503.8/100,000. California’s homicide rate was 5.8/100,000
Utah received the lowest grade: 0. Utah’s violent crime rate is 221.8/100,000. Utah’s homicide rate is 1.4/100,000. Utah is both an Open Carry and “shall-issue” concealed carry state.
Here is the link for you to verify these statistics for yourself.
Police Have No Duty to Protect Any One Single Individual as demonstrated by the US Supreme Court.
Warren vs. District of Columbia – Three rape victims sued the District of Columbia because of negligence on the part of the police. Two of three female roommates were upstairs when they heard men break in and attack the third. After repeated calls to the police over half an hour, the roommate's screams stopped, and they assumed the police had arrived. They went downstairs and were held captive, raped, robbed, beaten, and forced to commit sexual acts upon one another and to submit to the attackers' sexual demands for 14 hours. The police had lost track of the repeated calls for assistance. DC's highest court ruled that the police do not have a legal responsibility to provide personal protection to individuals, and absolved the police and the city of any liability. This ruling was upheld by the US Supreme Court.
Castle Rock vs. Gonzales - was a case decided by the Supreme Court of the United States, in which the court ruled, 7-2, that a town and its police department could not be sued under 42 U.S.C. §1983 for failing to enforce a restraining order, which had led to the murder of a woman's three children by her estranged husband.
2nd Amendment is an Individual Right
Heller vs. District of Columbia - "Putting all of these textual elements together, we find that they guarantee the individual right to possess and carry weapons in case of confrontation. This meaning is strongly confirmed by the historical background of the Second Amendment. We look to this because it has always been widely understood that the Second Amendment, like the First and Fourth Amendments, codified a pre-existing right. The very text of the Second Amendment implicitly recognizes the pre-existence of the right and declares only that it “shall not be infringed.” As we said in United States v. Cruikshank, 92 U. S. 542, 553 (1876), “[t]his is not a right granted by the Constitution. Neither is it in any manner dependent upon that instrument for its existence. The Second amendment declares that it shall not be infringed." - Majority opinion, United States Supreme Court DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA ET AL. v. HELLER.
This argument is further confirmed by every single one of our Founding Fathers. Allow me to quote a few of them to demonstrate this point.
"Laws that forbid the carrying of arms disarm only those who are neither inclined nor determined to commit crimes. Such laws make things worse for the assaulted and better for the assailants; they serve rather to encourage than to prevent homicides, for an unarmed man may be attacked with greater confidence than an armed man." - Thomas Jefferson
"The constitutions of most of our states (and of the United States) assert that all power is inherent in the people; that they may exercise it by themselves; that it is their right and duty to be at all times armed; that they are entitled to freedom of person, freedom of religion, freedom of property and freedom of the press." - Thomas Jefferson (1743-1826), US Founding Father, drafted the Declaration of Independence, 3rd US President, Source a letter from Thomas Jefferson to John Cartwright in 1824.
"No free man shall ever be debarred the use of arms." - Thomas Jefferson, Proposed Virginia Constitution, 1776
"A strong body makes the mind strong. As to the species of exercise, I advise the gun. While this gives moderate exercise to the body, it gives boldness, enterprise and independence to the mind. Games played with the ball and others of that nature are too violent for the body and stamp no character on the mind. Let your gun therefore be the constant companion of your walks." - Thomas Jefferson's advice to his 15 year-old nephew Peter Carr 1785
"The said Constitution [shall] be never construed to authorize Congress to infringe the just liberty of the press, or the rights of conscience; or to prevent the people of the United States, who are peaceable citizens, from keeping their own arms." - Samuel Adams of Massachusetts -- U.S. Constitution ratification convention, 1788
"Besides the advantage of being armed, which the Americans possess over the people of almost every other nation... Notwithstanding the military establishments in the several kingdoms of Europe, which are carried as far as the public resources will bear, the governments are afraid to trust the people with arms." - James Madison, Federalist Papers, #46 at 243-244
"The right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed; a well armed, and well regulated militia being the best security of a free country: but no person religiously scrupulous of bearing arms, shall be compelled to render military service in person." - James Madison, Proposed Amendments to the Constitution June 8, 1789
"A people armed and free forms a barrier against the enterprises of ambition and is a bulwark for
the nation against foreign invasion and domestic oppression." - James Madison (1751-1836), Father of the Constitution for the USA, 4th US President
"Arms in the hands of the citizens may be used at individual discretion for the defense of the country, the overthrow of tyranny or private self-defense." - John Adams (1735-1826) Founding Father, 2nd US President A Defense of the Constitution of Government of the United States of America, 1788
"The great object is that every man be armed. Everyone who is able may have a gun." - Patrick Henry
"Are we at least brought to such a humiliating and debasing degradation, that we cannot be trusted with arms for our own defense? Where is the difference between having our arms in our possession and under our own direction, and having them under the management of Congress? If our defense be the real object of having those arms, in whose hands can they be trusted with more propriety, or equal safety to us, as in our own hands?" - Patrick Henry, 3 Elliot Debates 168-169
"The supposed quietude of a good man allures the ruffian; while on the other hand, arms like laws, discourage and keep the invader and the plunderer in awe, and preserve order in the world as well as property. The same balance would be preserved were all the world destitute of arms, for all would be alike; but since some will not, others dare not lay them aside...Horrid mischief would ensue were one half the world deprived of the use of them..." - Thomas Paine (1737-1809) Source: I Writings of Thomas Paine at 56, 1894
To a man, every single one of our Founding Fathers believed in the individual right to keep (own) and bear (carry) arms (firearms).
John R Lott, Jr. Qualifications
Since the Brady Campaign's Karen Arntzen had claimed to have discredited John R. Lott's work, I will provide you with his credentials and cite the refereed (peer-reviewed) journals that have published his study, More Guns, Less Crime.
John Richard Lott Jr. (born May 8, 1958) is a senior research scientist at the University of Maryland, College Park. He has previously held research positions at other academic institutions including the University of Chicago, Yale School of Law, the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania, and the American Enterprise Institute. He holds a Ph.D. in economics from UCLA, and his areas of research include econometrics, law and economics, public choice theory, industrial organization, public finance, microeconomics, labor economics, and environmental regulation.
More Guns, Less Crime by Dr. John R. Lott, Jr.
“In light of all the studies of right-to-carry laws, it is remarkable that not a single refereed academic study by economists or criminologists has found a bad effect from these laws.” (Page 295)
“More Guns, Less Crime” was peer-reviewed and published in the Journal of Legal Studies, V. 26 No. 1, pages 1-68, January 1997
“More Guns, Less Crime” was also published as on August 15, 1996 as a draft study in Law and Economics Working Paper No. 41.
Scope of Study: Data in the book analyzed in 1st Edition was from 3,054 counties, tracking changes over a 15 year period, controlling for dozens of variables such as demographic changes, population density per square mile, total county population, racial and age breakdown of county, real per capita unemployment insurance payments, real per capita income maintenance payments, real per capita retirement payments per person over 65 years of age, arrest rate changes, and changes in other gun laws.
Here are some of the topics addressed in Dr. Lott's book, More Guns, Less Crime that are relevant to this debate about Open Carry.
In 1988, There were a total of 200 accidental handgun deaths in the US. 22 of these accidental deaths occurred in states with concealed handgun laws, while 178 occurred in states without these laws.
Violent Crimes That Could Have Been Prevented with Concealed Carry: In 1992, 1400 murders could have been prevented, 4200 rapes could have been prevented, 60,000 fewer aggravated assaults, and 12,000 fewer robberies.
Level of Training has no effect on crime: “The presence or length of the training periods typically show no effect on crime, and although the effects are significant for robbery, the size of the effect is very small.” (Page 92).
Shall-Issue Concealed Carry Laws 3rd in Importance in Influencing Crime:
“Many factors influence crime, with arrest and conviction rates being the most important. However, nondiscretionary concealed-handgun laws are also important, and they are the most cost-effective means of reducing crime.” (Page 164)
High School Shootings Stopped By Law Abiding Citizens
In October of 1997 at Pearl Mississippi, Assistant Principal, Joel Myrick, stopped Luke Woodham’s shooting spree by going to his car and taking out his handgun.
In April of 1998, in Edinboro, Pennsylvania, James Strand, local restaurant owner, stopped 14 year old, Jerome Wurst, from continuing on a school shooting spree by pulling out a shotgun.
Armed vs. Unarmed for Men and Women
According to our own federal government, through the Department of Justice’s National Crime Victimization Survey (1993), Lawrence Southwick found that women offering no resistance to attack are 2.5 times more likely to be seriously injured than if they were to resist with a gun. For men,Lawrence Southwick found that men offering no resistance to attack are 1.4 time more likely to be seriously injured than if they were to resist with a gun. This research was confirmed by Dr. Gary Kleck. The best advice is to resist with a gun but if no gun is available, it is better to offer no resistance than to fight.
Prisoner Survey interviews:
This survey conducted across ten state correctional systems. 56% said they would not attack a potential victim known to be armed.
Wright and Rossi (1986, p. 151) interviewed felony prisoners in ten state correctional systems and found that 56 percent said that criminals would not attack a potential victim that was known to be armed. They also found evidence that criminals in those states with the highest levels of civilian gun ownership worried the most about armed victims.
Survey of Police Officers Opinion on Issuance of Concealed Carry Permits:
Law Enforcement Technology Magazine conducted a survey in 1991 that showed 76% of all street officers and 59% of all managerial officers believed that law abiding citizens should be able to get handgun carry permits.
Thank you for taking the time to review the material that I have presented to you here. If you have questions about any of the evidence that I have presented here or questions about Open Carry in general, please feel free to e-mail me at email@example.com
"History does not long entrust the care of freedom to the weak or the timid" - General Dwight D. Eisenhower
Oakland Gun Rights Examiner at Examiner.com
Press Secretary at Responsible Citizens of California