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Posts Tagged ‘self-defense’

More guns, less crime

Posted by Richard on February 26, 2014

From the Citizens Committee for the Right to Bear Arms:

BELLEVUE, WA – The FBI’s semi-annual uniform crime data for the first half of 2013 confirms once again what the firearms community already knew, that violent crime has continued to decline while gun sales have continued to climb, the Citizens Committee for the Right to Keep and Bear Arms said today.

The report, issued last week, says murders declined 6.9 percent from the first half of 2012, while aggravated assaults dropped by 6.6 percent nationwide and robberies were down 1.8 percent. Forcible rapes declined 10.6 percent from the same period in 2012 and overall, violent crime fell by 10.6 percent in non-metropolitan counties and 3.6 percent in metropolitan counties.

“This new information reinforces the notion that not only do guns save lives, their presence in the hands and homes of law-abiding citizens just might be a deterrent to crime,” observed CCRKBA Chairman Alan Gottlieb. “The National Shooting Sports Foundation has been reporting a steady increase in firearm sales for the past few years. Taken as a whole, one cannot help but conclude that the predictions from gun prohibitionists that more guns leads to more crime have been consistently wrong.”

Gottlieb said the tired argument from the anti-gun lobby that more firearms in the hands of private citizens would result in sharp increases in violence have run out of traction. Not only has the decline in crime corresponded with an increase in gun sales, it also coincides with a steady rise in the number of citizens obtaining concealed carry licenses and permits, he noted.

“The FBI report says burglaries and auto theft have also decreased,” Gottlieb said, “and it is impossible to look at this pattern and not suggest that increased gun ownership just might be one contributing factor. Gun prohibitionists would, of course, dismiss that suggestion as poppycock, but you can bet your life savings that if the data was reversed, and violent crime had risen, the gun control lobby would be rushing to every available microphone declaring that guns were to blame.

“This continuing pattern brings up a pertinent question,” he concluded. “If the gun ban lobby has been so wrong about more guns resulting in more crime, what else have they been wrong about? The word ‘everything’ comes to mind.”

2013 was yet another record year for gun sales.

In Detroit, where government services including law enforcement have been cut back, more and more people are taking responsibility for defending themselves. And, wonder of all wonders, they have the support of the police chief:

Detroit Police Chief James Craig has been an outspoken supporter of arming law-abiding citizens, and has publicly stated that “Good Americans with concealed pistols translates into crime reduction.”

Living conditions in Detroit have declined in recent years. The city’s bankruptcy led to a reduced police force, and residents have had to learn to protect themselves. Self-defense killings in Detroit rose to 2200% above the national average in recent years, and Chief Craig says that more than 300 legally armed citizens defended themselves last year.

Maybe wanna-be thugs in Detroit will think twice about messing with homeowners in the area.

UPDATE: Related — Michael Barone says the evidence of the last quarter-century has changed his mind regarding “shall issue” concealed carry laws:

The result has been that over the years the entire nation has become carry-concealed-weapons territory, as shown in a neat graphic in a Volokh Conspiracy blog post by Dave Kopel. Back in 1987, some people, myself included, worried that such laws would lead to frequent shootouts on the streets arising from traffic altercations and the like. That has not happened — something we can be sure of since the mainstream media would be delighted to headline such events.

To the contrary, violent crime rates have declined drastically during the last quarter-century. I don’t think you can prove that concealed-weapons laws caused that result, but they have probably contributed to it, because would-be criminals are less likely to assault people they believe might be armed. In any case the argument that concealed-weapons laws would lead to more violent crime has been about as thoroughly refuted as an argument can be.

One lesson, I think, is that responsible citizens tend to behave like responsible citizens, even if — or perhaps especially if — they’re armed. Another lesson is that the national political dialogue can be totally irrelevant to what really happens in American life.

HT: Instapundit

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Ukranians seek to add right to bear arms to constitution

Posted by Richard on February 26, 2014

I guess being attacked by your own government for daring to protest its actions has a way of focusing the mind on what’s important. The Ukrainian Gun Owners Association recently issued this statement (emphasis in original):

Today every citizen of Ukraine understands why our country has hundreds of thousands of policemen. Last illusions were crushed when riot police used rubber batons and boots at the Independence Square on peaceful citizens.

After such actions we realize that it is not enough to only adopt the Gun Law.

As of today Ukrainian Gun Owners Association will start to work on the preparation of amendments to the Constitution, which will provide an unconditional right for Ukrainian citizens to bear arms.

People should have the right to bear arms, which will be put in written into the Constitution.

Authorities should not and will not be stronger than its people!

Armed people are treated with respect!

Larry Pratt of Gun Owners of America, Tim Knight of the Colorado Second Amendment Association, and the NRA have voiced their support. Townhall’s Katie Pavlich noted:

Currently, gun laws in the Ukraine are categorized as restrictive and only “licensed gun owners may lawfully acquire, possess or transfer a firearm or ammunition.” Ukrainians who apply for a firearms license must show “genuine reason” for why they are doing so, which must approved by the State.

I’m guessing that “I want to protect myself from government goons” is not an acceptable “genuine reason” for getting a firearms license there. Sort of like New York, Chicago, …

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Making movie theaters safer for pennies

Posted by Richard on July 27, 2012

Ari Armstrong today proposed a simple and elegant way to increase security in movie theaters (and other public venues):

They could place a large, obvious sign right outside the entrance with the following text:

Armed, off-duty police officers who carry their guns into this theater get unlimited complimentary movie entry and concessions. Please see management for details.

The marginal cost of filling an extra seat in a movie theater is zero. The marginal cost of giving the armed officer free popcorn is what—a quarter?

I think it’s a great idea, but offer one caveat: The average law enforcement officer spends far less time at the range than the average private citizen who carries concealed, and as a consequence is a far poorer shot. A recent report on California police shootings (sorry, I don’t recall where I saw it) found that cops missed their target half the time.

Still, the deterrent effect alone would be significant.

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Bloomberg backtracks on strike talk

Posted by Richard on July 26, 2012

Within hours of the Aurora, CO, theater shootings, New York’s fascist mayor took time out from his efforts to control what New Yorkers may eat or drink to wave the bloody shirt and call for more gun control laws.

Earlier this week on CNN, he came within a few syllables of calling for a nationwide strike of police officers to promote gun control.

He’s now backtracked after it was pointed out that a police strike would be illegal in New York (and in most other places).

Such a strike will never happen anyway. Unlike the (politically appointed) police chiefs and union leaders Bloomberg pals around with, most rank-and-file law enforcement officers oppose civilian disarmament because they know that armed law-abiding citizens help their efforts to prevent violent crimes and to apprehend the perpetrators.

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Headline of the day

Posted by Richard on July 26, 2012

The online headline of the day was on a Doug Patton column at the GOPUSA site:

100 Million Gun Owners Didn’t Kill Anyone Last Week

The column begins with this quote:

“Laws that forbid the carrying of arms…disarm only those who are neither inclined nor determined to commit crimes.”
– Thomas Jefferson

After reminiscing about how, as a youth, he came to learn about and own guns, Patton says:

None of us has any way of knowing whether James Holmes, the shooter in Aurora, Colorado, is simply an evil genius putting on an act in court or if he is a loon who really believes he is Batman’s nemesis, the Joker. We don’t know if his father ever taught him how to use firearms, or if he got his knowledge from watching TV and movies, and playing violent video games.

What we do know is that a society that once lived in reality has evolved into a culture wallowing in fantasy violence, ruled by people whose goal is to disarm the good guys, leaving us all at the mercy of the bad guys.

We know that, like so many communities today, Aurora, Colorado, did not allow law-abiding gun owners to carry their weapons into the theater that night. Perhaps if they had, someone might have been able to stop Holmes before he killed a dozen innocent people and wounded scores of others.

Note: I believe it was purely the policy of the theater owner, Cinemark, not Aurora law, that forbade weapons in the theater.

Even in states that allow concealed carry of firearms, politically correct business owners can forbid the possession of such weapons in their establishments. A sign on the door of the Von Maur department store in Omaha, Nebraska, announces that guns are not allowed. On December 5, 2007, 19-year-old Robert Hawkins read that sign as follows: “Even our security guards are unarmed! Come on in and shoot us!” So he did, killing eight people and wounding five others.

Read the whole thing.

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Aurora shooting victims were disarmed

Posted by Richard on July 20, 2012

Commenting on the mass murder in Aurora, CO, Texas Rep. Louie Gohmert asked, “…  with all those people in the theater, was there nobody that was carrying that could’ve stopped this guy more quickly?”

No, there wasn’t. Because the Cinemark Century 16 theater has “no firearms” signs posted, so the honest, decent people who might otherwise be carrying a weapon left theirs at home or in the car. Cinemark reportedly aggressively enforces a “no firearms” policy at all its theaters.

Criminals, terrorists, and madmen of course aren’t deterred by “no firearms” signs. That’s why mass killings almost always take place in “gun-free zones.” Mass murderers may be crazy but they aren’t stupid — they seek out unarmed victims.

In places that are not “gun-free zones,” like the Palms Internet Café in Orlando, FL, would-be robbers or killers risk having their activities interrupted by an armed good guy. WOFL FOX 35 reported (and has the must-see surveillance camera video):

Two men who deputies say tried to rob a Marion County Internet café were both shot by one of the patrons.

It happened just before 10:00 p.m. Friday at the Palms Internet Café located at 8444 SW State Road 200.

When Marion County deputies arrived they found patrons outside the business who told them that two men in masks – one armed with a baseball bat and the other with a handgun – barged into the business. The robbers told the approximately 30 patrons to get on the floor, and they demanded money.

Investigators say Samuel Williams, one of the customers, pulled out his own handgun and shot the robbers. Both robbers began running toward the front door, and the patron fired several more shots as they fled.

Mr. Williams, the hero, is 71.

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March gladness for SAF

Posted by Richard on March 30, 2012

The Second Amendment Foundation had a great month in March, winning four gun rights victories in court. The latest was in Massachusetts, of all places. The Federal District Court struck down a law barring permanent resident aliens from owning a handgun:

BELLEVUE, WA – A Federal District Court Judge in Massachusetts today granted summary judgment in a Second Amendment Foundation case challenging that state’s denial of firearms licenses to permanent resident aliens.

U.S. District Court Judge Douglas P. Woodcock concluded that “…the Massachusetts firearms regulatory regime as applied to the individual plaintiffs, contravenes the Second Amendment.”

The case involves two Massachusetts residents, Christopher Fletcher and Eoin Pryal, whose applications for licenses to possess firearms in their homes for immediate self-defense purposes were denied under a state law that does not allow non-citizens to own handguns. SAF was joined in the case by Commonwealth Second Amendment, Inc. and the two individual plaintiffs. The case is Fletcher v. Haas.

The previous three victories came in North Carolina, Washington state, and Maryland. Read about them here.

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Gun rights wins in Colorado and Maryland

Posted by Richard on March 5, 2012

The Colorado Supreme Court killed the University of Colorado’s ban on campus concealed carry today. From Rocky Mountain Gun Owners:

This ruling supported the decision of a court of appeals from April 2010, and reversed a position paper by then-Colorado Attorney General Ken Salazar (an opinion which the current Attorney General, John Suthers, refused to change).

The crux of today’s ruling states that the Colorado General Assembly did, in fact, intend on concealed carry permit holders to be able to carry on all campuses, statewide.

“First CSU and the Community Colleges, and now all the CU Campuses; finally, the administrators for Colorado’s public colleges have been told they don’t have dictatorial powers,” said Dudley Brown, Executive Director of Rocky Mountain Gun Owners (RMGO), and a lobbyist for the entire 9-year battle for Colorado’s Concealed Carry Act.

“The creation of this criminal safezone, where only criminals are armed, was ill-advised and dangerous to anyone who finds themselves on a college campus,” Brown said.

“Now, RMGO will move on to force more publicly owned facilities to live by the law.”

Meanwhile in Maryland, a federal court has ruled that the right to bear arms doesn’t end at your front door. The Second Amendment Foundation called it a “huge victory”:

Ruling in the case of Woollard v. Sheridan – a case brought by SAF in July 2010 on behalf of Maryland resident Raymond Woollard, who was denied his carry permit renewal – the U.S. District Court for Maryland ruled that “The Court finds that the right to bear arms is not limited to the home.”

U.S. District Court Judge Benson Everett Legg noted, “In addition to self-defense, the (Second Amendment) right was also understood to allow for militia membership and hunting. To secure these rights, the Second Amendment‘s protections must extend beyond the home: neither hunting nor militia training is a household activity, and ‘self-defense has to take place wherever [a] person happens to be’.”

“This is a monumentally important decision,” said SAF founder and Executive Vice President Alan M. Gottlieb. “The federal district court has carefully spelled out the obvious, that the Second Amendment does not stop at one’s doorstep, but protects us wherever we have a right to be. Once again, SAF’s attorney in this case, Alan Gura, has won an important legal victory. He was the attorney who argued the landmark Heller case, and he represented SAF in our Supreme Court victory in McDonald v. City of Chicago.

“Equally important in Judge Legg’s ruling,” he added, “is that concealed carry statutes that are so discretionary in nature as to be arbitrary do not pass constitutional muster.”

“A citizen may not be required to offer a ‘good and substantial reason’ why he should be permitted to exercise his rights,” Judge Legg wrote. “The right’s existence is all the reason he needs.”

A very good day for self-defense rights.

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