Gun control and crime

Items of historical interest.

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Gun control and crime

Postby GOSA » Tue, 2007-04-24 10:03

Gun control and crime

In 1976, Washington, D.C., instituted one of the strictest gun-
control laws in the country. The murder rate since that time has
risen 134 percent (77.8 per 100,000 population) while the
overall rate for the country has declined 2 percent. Washington,
D.C., politicians find it easy to blame Virginia’s less-
stringent gun laws for the D.C. murder rate. Yet Virginia Beach,
Virginia’s largest city with almost 400,000 residents, has had
one of the lowest rates of murder in the country — 4.1 per
100,000.


In New York City, long known for strict regulation of all types
of weapons, only 19 percent of the 390 homicides in 1960
involved pistols. By 1972, this proportion had jumped to 49
percent of 1,691. In 1973, according to the New York Times,
there were only 28,000 lawfully possessed handguns in the
nation’s largest city, but police estimated that there were as
many as 1.3 million illegal handguns there.


In 1986, Maryland banned small, affordable handguns called
Saturday night specials. Within two years, Maryland’s murder
rate increased by 20 percent, surpassing the national murder
rate by 33 percent. Then Maryland passed a one-gun-a-month law.
Yet between 1997 and 1998, 600 firearms recovered from crime
scenes were traced to Maryland gun stores. Virginia, one of only
two other states with a similar law, ranked third as a source of
guns used by criminals in other states.


On the other hand, New Hampshire has almost no gun control and
its cities are rated among the safest in the country. Across the
border in Massachusetts, which has very stringent gun-control
laws, cities of comparable size have two to three times as much
crime as New Hampshire.


Vermont has the least restrictive gun-control law. It recognizes
the right of any Vermonter who has not otherwise been prohibited
from owning a firearm to carry concealed weapons without a
permit or license. Yet Vermont has one of the lowest crime rates
in America, ranking 49 out of 50 in all crimes and 47th in
murders.


States which have passed concealed-carry laws have seen their
murder rate fall by 8.5 percent, rapes by 5 percent, aggravated
assaults by 7 percent and robbery by 3 percent.


Texas is a good example. In the early 1990s, Texas’s serious
crime rate was 38 percent above the national average. Since
then, serious crime in Texas has dropped 50 percent faster than
for the nation as a whole. All this happened after passage of a
concealed-carry law in 1994.
What have YOU done for YOUR rights today?
GOSA
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