Among the 23 “executive actions” President Obama announced yesterday amidst great fanfare (and shameless exploitation of children) is this:
“Issue a Presidential Memorandum directing the Centers for Disease Control to research the causes and prevention of gun violence.”
Obama may want to put a hold on that one, until he comes to grips with what happened the last time a U.S. president tried it.
During the late ’70s, President Jimmy Carter and his inner circle determined to push through comprehensive new federal gun-control legislation. They decided the best way to grease the congressional skids would be to have a massive scientific study conducted which, in the end, would proclaim that gun-control laws were effective in reducing crime.
So the Carter folks handed out a major gun-control research grant to University of Massachusetts sociology professor James D. Wright and his colleagues Peter Rossi and Kathleen Daly. They spent four years and lots of tax dollars to produce what would be the most comprehensive, critical study of gun control ever undertaken. In 1981, they published the results of their research – an exhaustive, three-volume work titled “Under the Gun.”
There was only one problem.
Their findings, summarized starkly by co-author Wright, were that “Gun control laws do not reduce crime.”
“When Wright, Rossi and Daly produced their report for the National Institute of Justice, they delivered a document quite different from the one they had expected to write,” explained David Kopel, research director of the Independence Institute and co-author of the law school textbook, “Firearms Law and the Second Amendment.” “Carefully reviewing all existing research to date, the three scholars found no persuasive scholarly evidence that America’s 20,000 gun-control laws had reduced criminal violence.”
Among their many findings:
- The landmark federal Gun Control Act of 1968, banning most interstate gun sales, had no discernible impact on the criminal acquisition of guns from other states.
- Detroit’s law providing mandatory sentences for felonies committed with a gun was found to have no effect on gun-crime patterns.
- Washington, D.C.’s 1977 ban on the ownership of handguns (except those already registered in the District) was not linked to any reduction in gun crime in the nation’s capital.
- Polls claiming to show that a large majority of the population favored “more gun control” were debunked as being the product of biased questions, and of the fact that most people have no idea how strict gun laws already are.
“As the scholars frankly admitted, they had started out their research as gun-control advocates,” said Kopel, “and had been forced to change their minds by a careful review of the evidence.”
Fast-forward to the late ’80s, when the women of Orlando, Fla., were terrified of being sexually attacked, since 33 women had already been raped in just one nine-month period. After people began flocking to gun stores to protect themselves, the Orlando Sun-Sentinel newspaper got together with the police to offer a firearms safety course.
It was all very well publicized. Everybody knew that in Orlando there were 6,000 women who had handguns and knew how to use them. The result was that in the following nine-month period, there were only three rapes. In addition, crime in general declined. The fact is, Orlando, Fla., was the only U.S. city with a population of over 100,000 that had a reduction in crime that year.
In fact, it is not only Orlando that experienced a dramatic decrease in crime. After the 1987 Florida right-to-carry legislation, homicide, firearm homicide and handgun homicide rates all decreased. Eight of Florida’s 10 largest cities experienced drastic decreases in homicide rates from 1987 through 1995: Jacksonville, down 46 percent; Miami, down 13 percent; Tampa Bay, down 24 percent; Orlando, down 41 percent; Fort Lauderdale, down 53 percent; Hollywood, down 30 percent; Clearwater, down 21 percent; and Miami Beach down an incredible 93 percent.
Opponents of Florida’s right-to-carry legislation claimed their state would become known as the “Gunshine State.” But the last quarter century’s actual experience (as of mid-2011, Florida has issued a total of 2,031,106 concealed-carry permits under the 1987 law) proves Florida’s trailblazing program to fight crime has been a tremendous success. As U.S. Sen. Orin Hatch, R- Utah, put it: “The effect of that legislation on state crime rates has been astonishing. The predictions of the gun-control advocates were wrong, flat wrong.”
But no matter. Politicians and others intent on restricting or eliminating firearms ownership ignore mountains of evidence, virtually all of which points to the same conclusion – that guns in the hands of responsible, law-abiding citizens always, in all places and times, result in a safer, more secure and more civilized society.
Therefore, if the Centers for Disease Control, at Obama’s direction, actually conducts honest research – and that’s a magnum-caliber “if” – it will arrive at the same conclusion as Jimmy Carter’s research team: Their basic premise is wrong.
As John Lott, former chief economist at the U.S. Sentencing Commission, crime-statistic researcher and author of the widely cited book, “More Guns, Less Crime,” reiterated today:“Gun control just does not work. Indeed, it makes things worse.
Read more at http://www.wnd.com/2013/01/how-obamas-gun-order-will-backfire/#Cb8GHTW8ViL4Q8st.99