This is the second to last installment of the Gun Control-Fact vs. Fiction series by the intellectual patriot, J.V.
“The horrifying truth is this: we live now in a culture that not only does not respect life, but discards it like trash — not only at the beginning of life, but also at the end, and every place in between. What has happened to us?”
– Catholic Deacon Greg Kandra
Then, there is the legal side of the equation. Columnist Harry Binswanger lays bare the intellectual and legal fraud behind the gun grabbers by noting: “[T]he government may not descend to the evil of preventive law. The government cannot treat men as guilty until they have proven themselves to be, for the moment, innocent. No law can require the individual to prove that he won’t violate another’s rights, in the absence of evidence that he is going to. But this is precisely what gun control laws do. Gun control laws use force against the individual in the absence of any specific evidence that he is about to commit a crime. They say to the rational, responsible gun owner: you may not have or carry a gun because others have used them irrationally or irresponsibly. Thus, preventive law sacrifices the rational and responsible to the irrational and irresponsible. This is unjust and intolerable. The government may coercively intervene only when there is an objective threat that someone is going to use force. … Statistics about how often gun-related crimes occur in the population is no evidence against you. That’s collectivist thinking. The choices made by others are irrelevant to the choices that you will make. … The government may respond only to specific threats, objectively evident. It has no right to initiate force against the innocent. And a gun owner is innocent until specific evidence arises that he is threatening to initiate force.” And in any event, guns are already one of the most heavily regulated products in America. As if that has done a lot of good!
But, what do the “professionals” say about strong gun laws and the reduction of firearm homicides? Attorney Marc. J. Victor summarizes it succinctly, noting “In 2004, the National Academy of Sciences reviewed 253 journal articles, 99 books and 43 government publications evaluating 80 gun-control measures. Researchers could not identify a single regulation that reduced violent crime, suicide or accidents. In 2003, the Centers for Disease Control analyzed ammunition bans, restrictions on acquisition of firearms, waiting periods, registration, licensing, child access prevention and zero tolerance laws. After their analysis, the Centers for Disease Control concluded there was no conclusive evidence that any gun control laws reduced gun violence. Foreign researchers have also come to the same conclusion. In Australia in 2008, a peer reviewed study at the University of Sydney reached virtually the same conclusions as both the National Academy of Sciences and the Centers for Disease Control. Gun control measures simply do not reduce gun violence.”
And as we discuss “professionals,” what does the FBI say? In their Uniform Crime Reports, the Federal Bureau of Investigation states that, “in 1992 the US had a violent crime rate of 757.7 per 100,000, with a murder and non-negligent manslaughter rate of 9.3 per 100,000.” When you consider the numbers, we are talking an extremely small percentage. 20 years later – and with the large increase in the number of guns – what was the same rate at the end of 2011? Well, if you listen to the leftist media, your answer will be wrong. According to the FBI site above, the violent crime rate dropped to half of what it was in 1992, or 386.3 per 100,000 in population (vs. the 2.034 in gun control nirvana England). Similarly, murder dropped almost 50% to 4.7 per 100,000. Ever hear anyone at a news outlet broadcast that after a shooting spree? Of course, this same report illustrates it is certain urban areas – in most cases the cities having the stricter gun control laws such as Chicago – that have the higher murder rates.
One twist to the gun control cities needs to be noted, however. Washington DC instituted strict gun control several decades ago. Here is how that played out:
Compare the chart above to the National Inst. of Justice chart below, which graphs the whole of the United States:
Did the handgun ban in D.C have any significant effect, compared to other states that did not? Look at the two blips in the graphs, and draw your own conclusion. But if you need help…Jeffrey Shapiro at economicpolicyjournal.com, in his article “What I Saw as a Prosecutor in Washington, D.C., Makes Me Wary of Strict Firearms Laws,” noted that the DC ban on firearms in 1976, which even prohibited people from keeping guns in their homes for self-defense, had – surprise, surprise – unintended effects. Violent crime increased after the ban was enacted, with homicides going from 188 in 1976, to 369 in 1988, to 454 by 1993. Correlation is not causation, it is true. But if you wish to take the risk, good luck to you. Even worse, the D.C police department was mandated to create a special “Gun Recovery Unit,” which meant the police were forced to spend resources checking otherwise law abiding citizens with meager returns for the investment. In 1997 Police Chief Charles Ramsey disbanded the unit and re-assigned them to patrol duties.
AMERICAN HISTORY AND FIREARMS
On a broader level, as noted above, of course guns also have historically ensured American freedom, both from internal tyranny as well as external invasion. Bill Bonner wrote “When King George sent troops to put down the revolution a letter appeared in the London paper. It came from a man who had lived in the colonies. He told his countrymen that if they were shipping out to fight the Americans they should be sure to write their Last Wills and Testaments before they left. Because the Americans all had guns and knew how to use them.”
And King George wasn’t alone: Isoroku Yamamoto, Commander-in-Chief, Imperial Japanese Navy, killed in action, April 1943, reportedly said “You cannot invade the mainland United States. There would be a rifle behind every blade of grass.” And now you know why, perhaps, after the Sandy Hook shooting, China called for the American population to be disarmed, just like the Chinese population is, in a Xinhua article entitled Innocent Blood Demands No Delay for U.S. Gun Control (really, China? Tell us more, then, about your enforced abortion policy against women who do not want it after they have had a single child). This is the same China where the founder of the current government, Mao Zedong, stated “political power grows out of the barrel of a gun.” (Full quote is All political power comes from the barrel of a gun. The communist party must command all the guns, that way, no guns can ever be used to command the party.”) The Chinese fellow below was lucky. Estimates of the death toll at Tienanmen Square in 1989 of people who weren’t so lucky range from several hundred to several thousand. No one really knows, as the socialists running the government wouldn’t release the figures.
But, assuming guns, themselves, are the problem, let’s look at the government, and all the assault weapons and ammunition it has assemble just in the past year: In April 2012, the DHS purchased 450 million rounds of hollow point bullets, which Natural News says is enough to wage a seven year war with the American people. The purchase order is here, for your own examination. DHS then went on to purchase another 750 million more rounds of ammunition as well, in addition to the following “goodies”: Over 1 million rounds of hollow-point .223 rifle ammo ( you know… the Adam Lanza Connecticut shooting rounds); over half a million rounds of non-hollow-point .223 rifle ammo; 220,000 rounds of 12 gauge shotgun #7 ammo (target ammo); over 200,000 rounds of 12 gauge shotgun #00 buckshot ammo (tactical anti-personnel ammo); 66,000 rounds of 12 gauge shotgun slugs (tactical anti-personnel, anti-vehicle rounds); over 2 million rounds of hollow-point .357 Sig JPH (hollow-point) pistol ammo (anti-personnel); 0ver 4 million rounds of .40 S&W JPH (hollow-point) pistol ammo (anti-personnel); over 60,000 rounds of .308 match grade anti-personnel sniper rounds (BTHP); Plus, hundreds of thousands of additional rounds of .38 special, .45 auto, 9mm, 7.62×39 (AK rifle) ammo, and others. And then in January, the hypocrites at the DHS had the temerity to announce they were buying 7,000 assault rifles – with the “clever” (for a bureaucrat!) idea that they would call them “personal defense weapons” and fool the public. See the actual request by the General Service Administration (GSA) request for proposal (RFP) by the Department of Homeland Security on the Federal Business Opportunities website.
And one more question posed by Natural News: What is behind this? The DHS does not fight foreign wars – it only operates in the United States. Even worse, hollow point ammunition is banned by the Geneva convention,and not used by the U.S. military. In total, 1.6 billion rounds were purchased in just 2012 alone, meaning every single man, woman and child has five bullets with their name on it. So, if guns are the cause of crime, well, I’ll let you draw your own conclusions. Of course, the leftist media has said little to zilch about all of this either. (And yes, I realize we are talking government here, so many of the shooters may well be horribly inept –but still… 1.6 billion bullets?!)
Ah, but you say… “this is the government with the guns, so it is OK.” The reality is that those who maintain this have neither listened to the Founding Fathers’ statements noted above, nor have they still, after 2,000 years, answered the question the Roman satirist Juvenal posed: Quis custodiet ipsos custodes? (Who will watch the guards, or more colloquially, who controls the controllers)? Perhaps some of the 500 TSA (as of 2011) agents who have been arrested for stealing passenger goods could answer that question? And this number is probably just the tip of the iceberg, as, for example, a 2008 investigative report conducted by Pittsburg’s WTAE station found that despite over 400 reports of baggage theft, about half of which the TSA reimbursed passengers for, not a single arrest had been made. Of course, the TSA does not, as a matter of policy, share baggage theft reports with local police departments, so it could be much worse.
OK, you say… “but gun control – it’s for the children.” To which I only ask, which children? The 60 children who were murdered in gun-free Chicago in 2012, as noted above? The ones the left has zero compunction about leaving trillions and trillions of dollars of debt to pay off? The ones that escaped partial birth abortion? The kids that currently have one trillion dollars in student debt, all so the their Marxist professors can retire at age 52, after having every summer off and only twenty hours of contact time, or less, with the students each week?
But what about other countries? I’m glad you asked!
For England, as the article Barbarians Within the Gates, Part III, Schwarz Report, Oct. 2011, p. 5 noted, “The UK’s ban on handguns in 1997 “…did not stop actual crimes committed with handguns. Those crimes rose nearly 40% according to a 2001 study by King’s College London’s Centre for Defense Studies, and doubled by a decade later, according to government statistics reported in the London Telegraph in October 2009.” Joyce Lee Malcolm corroborates this information in a Dec. 26, 2012 article, noting that “Within a decade of the handgun ban and the confiscation of handguns from registered owners, crime with handguns had doubled according to British government crime reports. Gun crime, not a serious problem in the past, now is. Armed street gangs have some British police carrying guns for the first time. Moreover, another massacre occurred in June 2010. Derrick Bird, a taxi driver in Cumbria, shot his brother and a colleague then drove off through rural villages killing 12 people. In fact, James Simpson, in his must-read article, notes that “After the handgun ban, gun crime, including handgun crime, skyrocketed. In 1997/98, there were 2,636 crimes committed with handguns in England and Wales. By 2001/02, handgun crimes had increased to 5,871. Overall, firearms were used in 9,974 crimes. (“Gun crime soars by 35%,” Daily Mail, Jan. 9, 2003). Firearms crime in the U.K. peaked in 2005/06 and has declined since. In 2010/11, firearms were used in 7,024 crimes, and 3,105 of these were handgun crimes, down from the earlier peak, but still well above its 1997/98 level. In 2010/11, 9.3 percent of all homicides were committed with a firearm. U.K. firearms crime and violent crime in general remain well below U.S. levels, but both have increased dramatically despite a century of gun control. (Press release, Home Office, Jan. 19, 2012).”
But, as they say in the old Ronco commercials – Wait! There’s more! Summarizing from Freedom Outpost, the UK’s Home Office Statistical Bulletin, which provides crime figures for England and Wales, ex Scotland and Northern Ireland (which thus skews the numbers slightly down) show that in 2011, there were 762,515 violent crimes in a population of 56 million, including approximately 125% more rape victims per 100,000 people each year than the United States (Source) and 133% more assault victims per 100,000 people each year than the United States (Source). In sum, there were 1,361 violent crimes per 100,000 population in the UK – or 3.5 times the rate of the U.S. The UK murder rate is lower, at 1.3 per 100,000 population. However, it is not noted what weapons are using to commit murders or violent crimes in the UK. The net of this is that the UK has a higher rate of violent crime than armed Americans, and that more guns do not mean more violent crime.
Ben Swann of Fox News also concentrated on this UK gun issue when he addressed the Piers Morgan/Alex Jones debate of early Jan., 2013. Morgan incorrectly cited 35 gun deaths in UK in 2011 vs. 11,000 in the US. Not true at all. FBI crime stats show there were 12,664 homicides in the US., with 8,583 were firearm related, not 11,000. Of those, 400 were listed as justifiable killings by law enforcement, 260 in the same category by private citizens. England does have a lower homicide rate, but with a population of 62 million, the UK actually had 59 homicides in 2011. Adjusted for population, that would equate to roughly 300 or so murders. But that’s basic math, which you cannot expect the left to do. The reality is, that as Dr. John Lott has noted, “the overall number of gun murders in Britain being low does not prove that the gun ban worked, considering that the figure was already comparably low BEFORE the ban as well, i.e., the ban did not cause a decrease in gun murders, even according to the official numbers.” In a nutshell, as theendrun.com notes, “…gun murders in Britain being low does not prove that the gun ban worked, considering that the figure was already comparably low BEFORE the ban as well, i.e., the ban did not cause a decrease in gun murders, even according to the official numbers.” Even more importantly, the anti-gunners in general have no clue that, as Lott states, “…total homicides are the most important concern, rather than how a homicide was committed.”
Worse, the violent crime rates are most likely under reported (gotta keep them tourists pouring in, y’know!). The UK’s Independent reported a few years ago that there may be up to 2 million violent crimes “missing” from the official data! See also the very enlightening article that has a very highly documented discussion on the massaged UK crime rate numbers. Even more disturbingly, in the most recent report I have, 2006, there was one knife crime committed for every 374 people in England, while in the US it was one gun crime for every 750 people the same year. As Bob Livingstone points out, “In other words, a person was twice as likely to be a victim of a knife crime in the U.K. as he was a gun crime in the United States.” There…does that make you feel more safe?
One other point of interest about British gun laws need to be made: According to Fernando “FerFal” Aguirre, a resident of Northern Ireland (see his web site of , handguns in fact are allowed in one part of the UK, and allowed to be used in self-defense as well – Northern Ireland. And, of course, you know what is coming next, don’t you? The part of the UK that has the lowest firearm homicide is…. no, I won’t make you guess… Northern Ireland. According to UK government statistics, Northern Ireland has 20% fewer gun related murders per year than the rest of England, Scotland and Wales, is spite of obviously much higher gun ownership. Yes, there could be multiple explanations for this. But suffice to say, the simplistic, unscientific propaganda of the left about guns needs some serious examination. See the FerFal blog for further documentation on this.
Still, what of the delta between the US and UK murder numbers? Do fewer guns actually mean less crime? But you know the answer to this. The UK has the second highest overall crime rate, the fifth highest robbery rate, the fourth highest burglary rate, in the EU and – most importantly – England has the highest violent crime rate in the EU, with 2,034 violent crimes per 100,000, far ahead of even South Africa at 1,609 per 100,000. The US has a rate of 466 violent crimes per 100,000 – not even in the top 10. (See the Telegraph article, The most violent country in Europe: Britain is also worse than South Africa and U.S.) And Piers Morgan wants us to be more like the UK?
Following leftist “logic,” the US has the world’s highest gun ownership rates, so it should have the highest gun murder rates, correct? Actually, Honduras, Jamaica and El Salvador, along with 24 other countries. The US – with the highest gun ownership rate – is #28, with a rate of 2.97 per 100,000 population.
Of course, England has always had a much lower gun crime rate – even before the gun control implementation – which the gun grabbers never mention. Also not mentioned is the fact that gun crime has almost doubled in England since the gun ban went into effect.
But, when it comes to knives, just for good measure, England has proposed a 10 year sentence for possession of “any knife with a blade more than three inches long” (I literally have no idea if this includes butterknives!). When researchers from West Middlesex University Hospital found that kitchen knives were used in as many as half of all stabbings, the BBC reported on the move to ban kitchen knives, stating ““The researchers said there was no reason for long pointed knives to be publicly available at all. They consulted 10 top chefs from around the UK, and found such knives have little practical value in the kitchen. None of the chefs felt such knives were essential, since the point of a short blade was just as useful when a sharp end was needed. The researchers said a short pointed knife may cause a substantial superficial wound if used in an assault – but is unlikely to penetrate to inner organs. In contrast, a pointed long blade pierces the body like ‘cutting into a ripe melon.'” Another UK paper, the Inquisitor, justified the ban by invoking Middlesex again, stating, “A West Middlesex University Hospital group contends that violent crime is increasing in Great Britain and kitchen knives are used in approximately half of all stabbings. The team claims that many of the knife attacks are impulsive acts and that a kitchen knife is too convenient of a weapon.” No word yet if England has banned running with scissors or people using pencils with sharp points. And it is singularly unfortunate that England did not think to ban knives like ones under the current ban one thousand years ago during the Viking invasions (“I’m sorry Mr. Svensson, but before you do any looting, raping or pillaging in England, you’ll have to check your blades in with the customs officials… Next in line!!)
Across the English Channel, Holland’s draconian gun laws certainly haven’t helped – witness the recent report entitled 7 Killed 15 Wounded in Dutch Mall. And of course, across the border and going back a few decades to Germany, Nazi guns laws against Jewish firearm owners 60 years ago, as Stephen Halbrook has written, “played a major role in laying the groundwork for the eradication of German Jewry in the Holocaust. Disarming political opponents was a categorical imperative of the Nazi regime” (a full rendering of Nazi gun control laws, including ones against the Jews). As if any further clarification were needed, Hitler himself reportedly stated in 1935 “For the first time a civilized nation has full gun registration. Our streets will be safer, our police more efficient. The world will follow our lead.” (Note: the authenticity of this quote is hotly debated, but even if apocryphal, it certainly captures Hitler’s political zeitgeist, as the Nazi gun control summary points out).
And just for good measure, Hitler later added after his conquests “The most foolish mistake we could possibly make would be to allow the subjected people to carry arms; history shows that all conquerors who have allowed their subjected people to carry arms have prepared their own downfall.” The experience with Hitler outlined above was anticipated by the wisdom of the Second Amendment, which declares: “A well-regulated militia, being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms, shall not be infringed.” This right reflects a universal and historical power of the people in a republic to resist tyranny, which was not recognized in the German Reich – and led to a holocaust. One would do very well to google the Nazi Weapons Act of 1938 and compare to the United States Gun Control Act of 1968, as well as more recent laws. But I’ll leave that sobering research to you.
But… why believe me, your humble writer? Rather, listen to a citizen of Austria, Katie Worthman, a survivor of the Nazi regime (and later three years under the Soviets) – in her own words:
Worthman is someone who is very aware how the media corrupts things and allows tyranny to gain a foothold, stating “In the beginning, Hitler didn’t look like, or talk like a monster at all. He talked like an American politician.”
Worthman says the common “wisdom” of Hitler overthrowing governments with the force of arms isn’t true – rather Austria elected Hitler with 98% of the vote at the ballot box. Worthman also notes Austrians had guns, but the Nazis pulled the same “guns are dangerous” ruse, then went to gun registration, and finally forced people to turn in their guns “to cut down crime” – and if one didn’t… there was capital punishment.
Mrs. Worthman notes Hitler’s tyranny “didn’t happen over night, but it took five years, gradually, little by little, to escalate to a dictatorship…” but adds that the antidote to that is “When the people fear the government, that’s tyranny, but when the government fears the people, that’s liberty.” And I trust Worthman a heckuva lot more than Dianne Feinstein when it comes to understanding tyranny. Worthman concluded her interview by stating “Keep your guns, keep your guns and buy more guns.”
Perhaps one might also care to examine Russia, which also has relatively strict gun control laws, under their Federal Weapons Act of 1996. Did their laws prevent the 2002 theatre siege by Chechen militants, which over one hundred killed?
But Russians have already lived through what happens under a tyranny. This is why Pravda published an article by Stanislav Mishin in Dec., 2012, entitled “Americans, Never Give Up Your Guns.” But here is the one critical takeway quote from it: “Moscow fell, for example, not from a lack of weapons to defend it, but from the lying guile of the Reds. Ten thousand Reds took Moscow and were opposed only by some few hundreds of officer cadets and their instructors. Even then the battle was fierce and losses high. However, in the city alone, at that time, lived over 30,000 military officers (both active and retired), all with their own issued weapons and ammunition, plus tens of thousands of other citizens who were armed. The Soviets promised to leave them all alone if they did not intervene. They did not and for that were asked afterwards to come register themselves and their weapons: where they were promptly shot.” Mishin concludes his article by noting the real agenda of the left, both in Russia and elsewhere: “Do not be fooled by a belief that progressives, leftists hate guns. Oh, no, they do not. What they hate is guns in the hands of those who are not marching in lock step of their ideology. They hate guns in the hands of those who think for themselves and do not obey without question. They hate guns in those whom they have slated for a barrel to the back of the ear.” In fact, this reflects precisely what Joseph Stalin said: “If the opposition disarms, well and good. If it refuses to disarm, we shall disarm it ourselves.”
It is simply true, as William Jasper writes, that “A cardinal feature of communist regimes, like all dictatorships, is the prohibition of private ownership of arms, creating a monopoly of force in the hands of the state.” And the results of this monopoly was a holocaust of Russians that was ten times that of Hitler and the Jews But let’s leave the 61,911,000 dead (as per the figure revealed with the USSR fell and its archives were opened) under Soviet tyranny and move on to other countries…
Moving to Mexico, per the UN, gun controlled Mexico (guns are technically legal, but are extremely difficult to qualify for, as well as to find a gun shop) has a homicide rate of 22.7 per 100,000, while the “gun happy” US rate is 4.8 – and significantly, the global average is 7 homicides per 100,000.
Check back in tomorrow for the 10th and final installment of Gun Control-Fact vs. Fantasy.