Sunday, January 06, 2008

Can You Handle the Truth?

According to the Detroit Free Press,
Six years after new rules made it much easier to get a license to carry concealed weapons, the number of Michiganders legally packing heat has increased more than six-fold.

But dire predictions about increased violence and bloodshed have largely gone unfulfilled, according to law enforcement officials and, to the extent they can be measured, crime statistics.

The incidence of violent crime in Michigan in the six years since the law went into effect has been, on average, below the rate of the previous six years. The overall incidence of death from firearms, including suicide and accidents, also has declined.
Some people accept the reality of the situation, not only in Michigan, but in other states that have eased restrictions on carrying concealed weapons.
John Lott, a visiting professor at the University of Maryland who has done extensive research on the role of firearms in American society, said the results in Michigan since the law changed don't surprise him.

Academic studies of concealed weapons laws that generally allow citizens to obtain permits have shown different results, Lott said. About two-thirds of the studies suggest the laws reduce crime; the rest show no net effect, he said.

But no peer-reviewed study has ever shown that crime increases when jurisdictions enact changes like those put in place by the Legislature and then-Gov. John Engler in 2000, Lott said.
And yet, some people, I'm not going to mention their political persuasion, can't face the fact that in spite of their visceral fear and hatred of guns, their predications of daily shoot outs in the streets have proved wrong.
Kenneth Levin, a West Bloomfield physician, was one of those critics. In a letter to the Free Press in July 2001, he referred to the "inevitable first victim of road or workplace rage as a result of this law."

Last month, Levin said he suspected "it probably hasn't turned out as bad as I thought. I don't think I was wrong, but my worst fears weren't realized."
Shikha Hamilton of Grosse Pointe, president of the Michigan chapter of the anti-gun group Million Moms March, said she believes overall gun violence (including suicide and accidental shootings) is up in Michigan since 2001. Many incidents involving CCW permit holders have not been widely reported, she said.

The most publicized recent case came early in 2007, when a 40-year-old Macomb County woman fired from her vehicle toward the driver of a truck she claimed had cut her off on I-94. Bernadette Headd was convicted of assault and sentenced to two years in prison.

Hamilton said that even if gun violence has ebbed, it remains pervasive, tragic and unnecessary. At the least, a more liberal concealed weapons law means there are more guns in homes and cars and on the street, she said, and more potential for disaster.
So facts don't matter. What matters to these people is what they believe. They sound like extremists to me. Dr. Sanity has more on the type of people who refuse to face reality. And she does name political affiliations.

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At 1:43 PM, Blogger Mrs. C said...

The people that BOTHER to get a license are just the ones that will more than likely not run off and shoot a bunch of people. I think the math goes:

Guns + stupid or crazy people = dead people

PS Thanks for the math advice again. We are focusing more on drills this week. :]

At 2:52 PM, Blogger Rancher said...

I remember a British gentleman visiting the south during the Civil War remark how polite everyone was to one another. “It might have to do with the fact that you all have pistols!” Common sense, you going to break in on the local gun nut like me or on the bleeding heart liberal that declares his house a gun free zone? My wife did a report back in college and found that if you stayed out of saloons and weren’t a prostitute life was far less violent during the “Wild West” than today.


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