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by
Howard Nemerov

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August 1, 2011 - 4:25 pm

Lawyer Jack D’Aurora penned an op-ed in the Columbus Dispatch claiming that gun ownership causes more crime. Here’s two of his quotes:

“Mark Duggan of the University of Chicago estimates that 500,000 guns are stolen annually. Stolen guns mean more gun violence.”

“Some research shows that as guns become more available to law-abiding citizens, crime increases and additional problems are created.”

Since 2001, the average homicide rate for Right-to-Carry (RTC) states–whose liberal laws enable law-abiding citizens to carry concealed handguns–declined 12.8%, compared to 3.3% for non-RTC states. Moreover, the difference in violent crime rates between RTC and non-RTC states increased over time, as shown in the chart below.

The following chart shows a similar trend for murder.

Moreover, rates have been trending downwards in RTC states while remaining level in non-RTC states.

My research shows that concealed carry licensees are far more law-abiding than the adult non-licensee population, among states reporting convictions. In Texas, non-licensees commit FBI major crimes (e.g. murder, burglary) 9.6 times more often than licensees. Florida, Minnesota and Michigan have similar results.

Bottom line: If the general public were as law-abiding as concealed carry licensees, there would be a 98% drop in FBI major crime, with billions of dollars saved each year in related costs to victims and society. Putting it in context, such savings equals about 40% of a state’s education budget.

Since 2000, Americans have bought over 5 million firearms annually. According to this law lobbyist’s rhetoric, RTC states should be more violent. But that’s the difference between rhetoric and reality.

Former civilian disarmament supporter and medical researcher Howard Nemerov investigates the civil liberty of self-defense and examines the issue of gun control, resulting in his book Four Hundred Years of Gun Control: Why Isn’t It Working? He appears frequently on NRA News as their “unofficial” analyst and was published in the Texas Review of Law and Politics with David Kopel and Carlisle Moody.
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