Originally published May 21 2013
Facts over fiction: Gun deaths plummet 39 percent over 18 years as Americans buy record number of guns
by J. D. Heyes
(NaturalNews) The anti-gunners will try to spin it, of course, but there is no spinning the cold, hard data surrounding economist John Lott's longtime contention - backed up by years of research, of course: More guns truly does equal less crime.
And now, it's official. According to newly released Department of Justice figures, firearm-related homicides fell 39 percent over the course of 18 years in the U.S. During that same period, non-fatal firearms crimes have fallen a whopping 69 percent (http://www.bjs.gov/content/pub/pdf/fv9311.pdf).
"Firearm-related homicides declined 39 percent and non-fatal firearm crimes declined 69 percent from 1993 to 2011, the Justice Department's Bureau of Justice Statistics (BJS) announced today. Firearm-related homicides dropped from 18,253 homicides in 1993 to 11,101 in 2011, and non-fatal firearm crimes dropped from 1.5 million victimizations in 1993 to 467,300 in 2011," says a press release from the Bureau of Justice Statistics.
"For both fatal and non-fatal firearm victimizations, the majority of the decline occurred during the 10-year period from 1993 to 2002," the release continues. "The number of firearm homicides declined from 1993 to 1999, rose through 2006 and then declined through 2011. Nonfatal firearm violence declined from 1993 through 2004 before fluctuating in the mid- to late 2000s."
It's hard to fudge these numbersCNSNews' Joe Schoffstall noted that one of the most interesting findings is that "only 2 percent of state prison inmates who owned a gun at the time of their offense bought it at either a flea market or a gun show," though of course the Obama Administration and gun controllers all over the country make it seem as though millions of criminals are buying millions of guns at gun shows, hence the "need" for expanded background checks:
In 2004 (the most recent year of data available), among state prison inmates who possessed a gun at the time of the offense, fewer than two percent bought their firearm at a flea market or gun show. About 10 percent of state prison inmates said they purchased it from a retail store or pawnshop, 37 percent obtained it from family or friends, and another 40 percent obtained it from an illegal source.
It is particularly important to note that last statistic: "...40 percent obtained it from an illegal source." With this in mind, ask your gun-banning legislators to explain how additional gun control laws will prevent a criminal from behaving like a criminal when it came to obtaining a gun.
Here are some additional highlights from the report:
-- Firearm-related homicides declined 39 percent, from 18,253 in 1993 to 11,101 in 2011.
-- Non-fatal firearm crimes declined 69 percent, from 1.5 million victimizations in 1993 to 467,300 victimizations in 2011.
-- Firearm violence accounted for about 70 percent of all homicides and less than 10 percent of all nonfatal violent crime from 1993 to 2011.
-- From 1993 to 2011, about 70 percent to 80 percent of firearm homicides and 90 percent of non-fatal firearm victimizations were committed with a handgun.
-- Males, blacks, and persons ages 18 to 24 had the highest rates of firearm homicide from 1993 to 2010.
-- About 61 percent of non-fatal firearm violence was reported to the police in 2007-11.
Truly, more guns = less crimeThere's more. Despite the hard data indicating that firearm-related violence in the U.S. has been declining substantially, most Americans actually think the opposite is true. According to the Pew Research Center, 56 percent of Americans believe gun crime is up, compared with just 12 percent who thought it had decreased. You can blame that on a totally gun-averse mainstream media that primarily focuses coverage on anti-gun politicians and pundits and their lie that more guns in the hands of law-abiding citizens is a threat to public safety.
Finally, in what Lott has to regard as a satisfying vindication of his work, Pew reported:
Compared with 1993, the peak of U.S. gun homicides, the firearm homicide rate was 49 percent lower in 2010, and there were fewer deaths, even though the nation's population grew. The victimization rate for other violent crimes with a firearm - assaults, robberies and sex crimes - was 75 percent lower in 2011 than in 1993.
Anti-gun politicians will try to claim that their "smart, balanced approach to gun control" over this time period is responsible for these figures. But you know better. The reality is, the number of firearms in private hands has exploded over the past dozen or so years (fueled recently by Obama's new gun control pushes). Also, fewer restrictions on guns, such as the adoption of concealed carry laws (in most states), are the primary reasons why gun crimes have fallen.
The DOJ figures are proof.
Sources for this article include:
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