Gun-control advocates love to create specious reports that attempt to show the impact certain anti-gun policies have on crime rates.
A recent example is one produced by the Center for American Progress, CAP, called, “America Under Fire: An Analysis of Gun Violence in the United States and the Link to Weak Gun Laws.” It was immediately picked up by biased media outlets and parroted by gun-grabbing politicians.
The CTPost ran a story titled, “Connecticut Among Five Safest States for Gun Violence,” and quoted Gov. Daniel P. Malloy in the article who referenced the study during a press conference.
“We’re proud of the progress we’re making in Connecticut,” said Malloy. “We have the second-toughest laws. We are the fifth-safest state with respect to shootings.”
The underlying argument being made is that anti-gun policies are responsible for low crime rates. However, this claim is B.S. To use a football analogy, it would be like arguing, “The Patriots have the best uniforms in the league, that’s why they’re 6-1 on the season.”
Clearly, uniforms have no impact on team performance. Reasons for the Patriots success include all of the following: Tom Brady, Bill Belichick, the clever defensive schemes, the solid run game, the dominate players at TE, the overall team discipline, the doggish work ethic perpetuated by a winning culture.
Anyways, in an awesome response to the CTPost and its coverage of the CAP study, NRA legislative liaison for the state of Connecticut, Christopher G. Kopacki explains how one ought to trust the FBI on crime stats and not the study of a progressive think-tank.
Remarkably, the “study” in its very first paragraph, describes many of the factors which influence a state’s violent crime, murder and suicide rates and then ignores all those factors in its analysis, instead focusing on only one factor: gun control laws. The nation’s top law enforcement agency, the FBI, is adamant that its crime data NOT be used to create these misleading state “rankings.”
The FBI says, “These incomplete analyses have often created misleading perceptions which adversely affect geographic entities and their residents. For this reason, the FBI has a long-standing policy against ranking participating law enforcement agencies on the basis of crime data alone. Despite repeated warnings against these practices, some data users continue to challenge and misunderstand this position.”
Here are some factors the FBI says are “known” to affect crime rates:
• Population density and degree of urbanization.
• Variations in composition of the population, particularly youth concentration.
• Stability of the population with respect to residents’ mobility, commuting patterns, and transient factors.
• Economic conditions, including median income, poverty level, and job availability.
• Modes of transportation and highway systems.
• Cultural factors and educational, recreational, and religious characteristics.
• Family conditions with respect to divorce and family cohesiveness.
• Effective strength of law enforcement agencies.
• Administrative and investigative emphases on law enforcement.
• Citizens’ attitudes toward crime.
• Crime reporting practices of the citizenry.
The FBI has this exactly right. If you are truly interested in promoting effective laws to protect the public, you must consider all the factors that influence crime rates — not the one factor the FBI doesn’t even consider, gun control laws.
So, just know when you see or hear about these state “rankings” as they relate to “weak gun laws” and “gun violence,” they’re complete nonsense. Gun control laws have no statistically significant impact crime rates. Just as uniform quality has zero impact on team performance.