Violence, Guns, & Puzzlement

I’ve been staring at the chart from here:

https://www.theguardian.com/news/datablog/2011/jan/10/gun-crime-us-state

The original has links to the FBI data and a spreadsheet of this data. Also, in the original, you can click on a column heading to sort the data. So “hit the link” for more.

Gun crimes by US states

State  Total firearms murders, 2011  % change, 2010-11  Fire- arms murders as % of all murders  Fire- arms murders rate  Fire- arms robberies rate  Fire- arms assaults rate

RATES ARE PER 100,000 PEOPLE. SOURCE: FBI UNIFORM CRIME REPORTS

NO DATA FOR FLORIDA OR ALABAMA
State           Total   %change %All    Rate    Robbers Assaults
United States 	8,583 	-3 	68 	2.75 	39.25 	43.77
Alaska 	         16 	-16 	55 	2.24 	18.19 	80.47
Arizona 	222 	-4 	65 	3.53 	50.24 	57.36
Arkansas 	110 	18 	72 	4.39 	45.45 	100.56
California 	1,220 	-3 	68 	3.25 	42.97 	45.39
Colorado 	73 	12 	50 	1.51 	25.74 	45.72
Connecticut 	94 	-3 	73 	2.71 	34.85 	20.06
Delaware 	28 	-26 	68 	3.09 	69.67 	81.36
Dist. of Col. 	77 	-22 	71 	12.46 	242.56 	87.7
Georgia 	370 	-2 	71 	3.93 	72.48 	58.64
Hawaii 	          1 	-86 	14 	0.07 	n/a 	n/a
Idaho 	         17 	42 	53 	1.14 	3.41 	23.43
Illinois 	377 	4 	83 	2.93 	2.26 	5.26
Indiana 	183 	29 	64 	3.29 	53.14 	29.91
Iowa 	         19 	-10 	43 	0.71 	7.31 	21.95
Kansas 	         73 	16 	66 	2.78 	24.86 	76.87
Kentucky 	100 	-14 	67 	2.36 	39.77 	25.14
Louisiana 	402 	15 	83 	10.16 	63.48 	99.51
Maine 	         12 	9 	48 	0.9 	5.8 	4.52
Maryland 	272 	-7 	68 	4.7 	79.71 	41.18
Massachusetts 	122 	3 	67 	2.02 	27.84 	33.19
Michigan 	450 	9 	73 	5.06 	55.95 	86.41
Minnesota 	43 	-19 	61 	0.82 	20.11 	22.52
Mississippi 	138 	15 	74 	7.46 	60.07 	51.69
Missouri 	276 	-14 	76 	4.64 	52.47 	88.9
Montana 	7 	-42 	39 	0.76 	3.78 	29.03
Nebraska 	42 	31 	65 	2.5 	25.44 	33.84
Nevada 	        75 	-11 	58 	3.07 	69.77 	53.3
New Hampshire 	6 	20 	38 	0.53 	9.83 	15.14
New Jersey 	269 	9 	71 	3.07 	49.87 	26.94
New Mexico 	60 	-10 	50 	2.98 	34.96 	87.26
New York 	445 	-14 	57 	4.12 	23.28 	20.06
North Carolina 	335 	17 	69 	3.87 	48.72 	67.44
North Dakota 	6 	50 	50 	0.93 	4.79 	4.79
Ohio 	        344 	11 	70 	3.54 	65.45 	37.97
Oklahoma 	131 	18 	64 	3.64 	42.81 	58.07
Oregon 	         40 	11 	52 	1.05 	14.57 	17.55
Pennsylvania 	470 	3 	74 	3.97 	54.69 	39.44
Rhode Island 	5 	-69 	36 	0.57 	12.71 	17.86
South Carolina 	223 	8 	70 	5.41 	52.93 	127.88
South Dakota 	5 	-38 	33 	0.68 	4.91 	20.6
Tennessee 	244 	11 	65 	3.92 	72.88 	137.58
Texas 	        699 	-13 	64 	2.91 	50.21 	58.28
Utah 	         26 	18 	51 	0.97 	10.98 	21.32
Vermont 	4 	100 	50 	0.75 	4.32 	12.6
Virginia 	208 	-17 	69 	2.58 	35.4 	21.35
Washington 	79 	-15 	49 	1.25 	20.72 	28.44
West Virginia 	43 	59 	58 	2.87 	16.08 	52.04
Wisconsin 	80 	-18 	59 	1.47 	43.86 	27.4
Wyoming 	11 	120 	73 	2.01 	3.65 	20.44 

Mostly I come to the conclusion that gun laws are orthogonal to gun crimes. It looks like rural / farming states have a lower rate of gun violence, generally, despite (or perhaps because of) pervasive gun presence on farms and in farm communities.

There is some evidence for the disaster that is “Black On Black” violence. States with larger urban black populations tend to have high gun violence stats (see D.C., Mississippi and Louisiana compare Virginia, Oklahoma) but there’s a lot of noise in that speculation.

Places like California and Illinois and Washington D.C. have essentially draconian gun laws, yet gun murder rates of 3.2, 2.93, and 12.46, respectively (USA average 2.75 so all “above average” though statistical significance not determined). Then States with very loose gun access and lots of guns like New Hampshire, Vermont, and South Dakota have rates of 0.53, 0.75, and 0.68, respectively.

How “loose” are N.H. gun laws? Rather like when I was a kid in California and we didn’t bother locking the doors to our house and left the keys in the car “in case someone needed to move it”.

http://gun.laws.com/state-gun-laws/new-hampshire-gun-laws

Like its neighbors (Vermont and Maine), New Hampshire has very liberal gun control laws. What makes New Hampshire law on gun unique however, is the level to which these laws exhibit such looseness. Most states with sub-standard gun control laws, do not require a permit or license to purchase or possess a handgun or rifle.

The only restrictions in regards to licenses or permits are typically for carrying a concealed gun. New Hampshire is a slight exception to this rule. Like other states with weak gun laws, New Hampshire does not require a permit or license to possess or purchase any sort of firearm. Registration is also not necessary. The slight alteration found in New Hampshire’s gun laws is in regards to a concealed gun. A concealed handgun in the state does not require a permit, however, it will require a specific license in certain situations.

But there look to be strong “confounders” between rural / urban vs. Black-on-Black vs. Gun Laws. Rural areas have little need for “gun laws”, so they don’t matter. Urban areas have lots of crime, so enact lots of laws, that seem to accomplish nothing (except perhaps disarming the innocents). Then a large, frustrated, and drug impacted urban black population “has issues” and uses what it can to deal with them. (One is left wondering to what extent the similarly poor and dispossessed “white trash” populations have the same “issues” and might that explain places like Tennessee at 3.92. Or if something else entirely is going on.)

It doesn’t seem to matter if your State is rich, with very draconian gun laws (New York at 4.12) or poor with little in the way of gun laws (Maine 0.92); as semi-randomly and not matched examples. I know, all the folks in Maine are going to shout they are Not Poor! I know folks who live there in nice large houses… but they don’t cost $Million for a tiny flat…

I’d speculate that poor urban jungles raise crime and murder rates, laws be damned (partly based on observing New York and Chicago, and to some extent Oakland California up close). I can’t tell if that is the cause of the Black-on-Black peaks, or if similar poor white urban jungles are the same, mostly as I don’t know of any; or of any stats on them. (I’m sure they exist, but they don’t make the news much).

What does seem very clear, though, is that if you wish a quiet peaceful State to live in, the rural farming oriented ones, with as few gun laws as possible, and lacking urban ghettos are your best choices. For rampant gun violence, head to the poor urban ghettos with the most strictures on gun ownership, where you can watch the black bodies pile up killed more by other blacks than by the police. (The stats are showing way more deaths than those reported in the news as police shootings… it isn’t the police killing 1 in 10,000 in D.C.)

Chicago, D.C., New York City, and increasingly California. (We now have door locks and car keys stay in the pocket – also from personal experience, most of the reported shootings are in major city ghetto areas with minority populations and large drug presence. There’s just as much drug use among rich whites, IMHO, as I’ve seen it, but the added price brings added security in the delivery… where folks without money become desperate). But what I can’t explain is the places like Louisiana at 10.16 and Mississippi at 7.46 that are just out of line with what’s around them. Quasi rural, with some major cities. High black population, but generally not pushed into racial ghettos. Texas, right next door, at 2.91 despite the massive Dallas / Fort Worth metroplex, significant black population, and pervasive guns. “Something is different” and I’m not sure what it is. The idea of Mississippi as a murder capital State just never showed up in the news flow. Louisiana sort of, as it has that whole Mardi Gras over the edge reputation (that is actually not that deserved… it’s mostly just a big street party). Perhaps it is just a poverty axis. Texas tends to have fairly low poverty rates.

In any case, it deserves some more pondering time, and likely will need more detailed information to sort things out (like, oh, gun violence stats by county or district, so you can see correlations with ethnic clusters, education levels, poverty levels, etc. etc. One of them ought to ‘click’ at fine enough grain.)

What stands out to me, though, is the complete lack of any clear story in the numbers. Gun Laws don’t do a damn thing good, and may increase the gun violence and murder rates (or may be a useless reaction to them). Living in sparsely populated rural areas is a great thing to do… but nobody much can afford to to that as the jobs are urban (sort of by definition). Being in wealthy areas seems to help (personal observation of The Bay Area / Silicon Valley vs Oakland-Richmond areas) perhaps a lot, but we’re not going to make everyone rich very easily (especially not with the present Socialist Government making us all “equal in poverty”). Then with anomalies like Louisiana and Mississippi there is clearly some kind of cultural aspect. Something “is different” between them and Texas on one side, Georgia on the other (and it isn’t being in the South…)

So my conclusion from all this is pretty simple. To reduce gun violence, we need to do “something different” and address just what is going on in those very high rate areas. There is absolutely zero need for national laws as clearly indicated by all those very very low gun violence States with no significant existing gun laws in them. They are doing just fine, thank you very much and at best a one-size-fits-all National Fix can screw them up.

The problem is clearly LOCAL. Urban core areas. Black ghettos. Some particular peculiar States. Until we know what it is that is causal, we can’t “fix it” with laws. Clearly attempts do do so have failed (Illinois / Chicago, Washington D.C., New York, etc. etc.) and applying that more broadly will only make things worse, not better. One ‘virtue’ of pervasive guns in the hands of ‘good people’ is that ‘the right people get killed’. Homicide stats don’t capture that, but I think it matters. In a ‘gun pervasive’ place, some violent Ya Hoo breaks into a home to commit a robbery or rape and ends up dead. One Homicide. In gun ban places, he breaks in and “does the deed” then shoots the family. 1 to 5 dead. Then repeats it and repeats it until caught. Likely up in the half dozen or so dead by the time caught. This matters, probably a lot, from a statistical point of view. “Truncating chain murders” matters. A similar benefit shows up in “3 Strikes” law States as they cull the repeat violent from the population. It might be interesting to map historical homicide stats vs “3 Strikes” law adoption and see just how much it matters. (I read an article about it some time back, but don’t have the stats at the moment)

It is also quite clear that the Simpleton Notion of “Gun Bad, No-Gun Good” is quite bogus. High gun use States are generally safe. Gun banning States and D.C. are not. Police and the Army carry guns for a reason. They work and keep the peace.

But how to figure out why Louisiana is the way it is, and Texas isn’t; now that’s an interesting question… as is why Indiana (3.29) diverges so much from Iowa (0.71). So near (each other) and yet so far…

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About E.M.Smith

A technical managerial sort interested in things from Stonehenge to computer science. My present "hot buttons' are the mythology of Climate Change and ancient metrology; but things change...
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64 Responses to Violence, Guns, & Puzzlement

  1. Gail Combs says:

    Some added info on guns and The Second Amendment.

    The Supreme Court ruled police have NO duty to protect. Those yammering for gun laws should remember that.
    PLUS
    Gun free zones are the equivalent of shooting galleries where the targets can’t shoot back. If you want to prevent this from happening allow schools and retail businesses INCLUDING BARS to arm their employees. Ask Israel and Switzerland on how to deal with the problem. Switzerland arms every male from 18 to 65 and has the lowest crime rate. (Switzerland just outlawed Burkas too.)

    Discussions of murder and crime are nothing but straw-men used to conceal the truth. What started the American revolution was not Taxation without Representation but a tyrannical government that banned and tried to seized the colonists weapons and gunpowder. The Second Amendment was ALWAYS about the right to bear arms in defense against a tyrannical government. The philosophy underlying our US Constitution is the state exists to protect the rights of the individual. The more common philosophy is the individual exists to serve the state. Who is ‘the state’? They are our owners, and the owners are not a nameless, faceless government; it’s other people. A King, a dictator, an oligarchy all with their armies of bureaucrats.

    As Thomas Jefferson put it, “When governments fear the people, there is liberty. When the people fear the government, there is tyranny.” Governments have no fear of an unarmed people.

    “To disarm the people…is the most effectual way to enslave them.” — George Mason June 14, 1788

    George Mason, the co-author of the 2nd Amendment during the Virginia Convention to ratify the Constitution, 1788 made it clear what the militia is.
    ” I ask Sir. what is a militia? It is the whole people. To disarm the people is the best and most effective way to enslave them”.

    Recent history proves this true.
    In 1911 Turkey put in place Gun control and from 1915 to 1917 ~ 1.5 million Arminans were killed.

    In China gun control was put in place in 1935, from 1948 to 1952 ~ 20 million were killed

    In 1938 Germany put in place Gun control after a False Flag. Then the Nazis killed 20,946,000 people.

    Guatemala Gun Control went in in1964 and from 1964 to 1981 ~100,000 Mayan Indians were rounded up and killed.

    Uganda gun control went in in 1970. From 1971 to 1979 ~ 300,000Christians killed, the total was 2 to 3 million murdered.

    Cambodia passed gun control in 1956. From 1975 to 1977 1 to 2 million well educated people were murdered.

    ……………..

    “The most foolish mistake we could possibly make would be to allow the subject races to possess arms. History shows that all conquerors who have allowed their subject races to carry arms have prepared their own downfall by so doing.” — Adolf Hitler.

    So the question becomes what hidden plans does America’s Ruling Elite have for us that would provoke armed resistance. Because this is the only reasonable explanation for the idiotic focus on political correctness, disarming the population and KNOWINGLY importing terrorists.

    Socialist George Bernard Shaw, co-founder of the Fabian Society, may have the answer to why the Elite are so intent on removing guns from Americans. Most know his famous quote.

    “A government that robs Peter to pay Paul can always depend on the support of Paul.”

    What is constantly removed from the internet are his other quotes about the intentions of the State, once it gains complete control through bribing Paul with other people’s money.

    “The moment we face it frankly we are driven to the conclusion that the community has a right to put a price on the right to live in it … If people are fit to live, let them live under decent human conditions. If they are not fit to live, kill them in a decent human way. Is it any wonder that some of us are driven to prescribe the lethal chamber as the solution for the hard cases which are at present made the excuse for dragging all the other cases down to their level, and the only solution that will create a sense of full social responsibility in modern populations?”

    Source: George Bernard Shaw, Prefaces (London: Constable and Co., 1934), p. 296.

    “Under Socialism, you would not be allowed to be poor. You would be forcibly fed, clothed, lodged, taught, and employed whether you liked it or not. If it were discovered that you had not character and industry enough to be worth all this trouble, you might possibly be executed in a kindly manner; but whilst you were permitted to live, you would have to live well.”

    George Bernard Shaw: The Intelligent Woman’s Guide to Socialism and Capitalism, 1928, pg. 470

    And if you think this is way out consider these quotes:

    “This is the first time in the history of mankind that we are setting ourselves the task of intentionally, within a defined period of time, to change the economic development model that has been reigning for at least 150 years, since the Industrial Revolution… democracy is a poor political system for fighting global warming. Communist China is the best model. —- Christiana Figueres, disciple of Al Gore, and Executive Secretary of the UN Framework Convention

    “A massive campaign must be launched to de-develop the United States. De-development means bringing our economic system into line with the realities of ecology and the world resource situation.” —-
    Dr. Paul Ehrlich, Anne Ehrlich, and Dr. John Holdren, Obama’s Science Czar from the book Ecoscience: Population, Resources, Environment, 1970, p. 323

    “A total population of 250-300 million people, a 95% decline from present levels, would be ideal.” — Ted Turner, founder of CNN and the UN Foundation, (Ex Senator Timothy Wirth who started the Global Warming ball rolling in Congress is now President of the UN Foundation.)

    Dr Eric Pianka, biology professor at the University of Texas in his March of 2006 acceptance speech, said “the only feasible solution to saving the Earth is to reduce the population to 10% of the present number” Pianka’s suggestion was airborne Ebola and the members of the Texas Academy of Science gave Pianka a standing ovation. (William Dembski informed the FBI who interviewed Pianka.)

    ………..

    See How Your Senators Voted on the 4 gun control amendments
    http://dailysignal.com/2016/06/21/see-how-your-senators-voted-on-4-gun-control-amendments/
    Tillis and Burr

  2. Larry Ledwick says:

    They just released the new crime statistics for Colorado following our recent gun law changes.

    Homicide up 14.7%
    Rape up 10.6%
    Robbery up 9.6%
    Aggravated assault up 4.6%
    Other assaults up 7.8%
    Motor vehicle theft up 27.7 % <— this is closely associated with other crimes as getaway cars are usually stolen cars

    http://www.koaa.com/story/32378420/new-report-details-crime-in-colorado-in-2015

    Local law enforcement attribute a lot of this to drug related crimes, we have had several home invasion type break ins from folks looking for drugs and money, in some cases they went to the wrong home and terrorized an innocent family. Much of this appears to be secondary to marijuana legalization ( cash only businesses with lot of cash on hand and banks refuse to handle their accounts etc.) Denver has seen a significant increase in homeless and street crimes in the down town area. The city of Denver just made a major increase on street presence in the core down town area to try to control these "travelers" who are harassing tourists and business people on the streets.

  3. Adrian Camp says:

    As an aside, how much wasted time and effort comes from not defining the problem before trying to find a solution?

    (Here in Dallas the news reports a shooting death most days, it seem. Most from a very small selection of suburbs. If you found the same thing in Houston, Austin and San Antonio I would not be surprised. And if you subtracted them from all of Texas there would not be many murders left.)

  4. tom0mason says:

    After reading all you say E.M. I still find some areas that I would think requires more examination by law enforcement analysts.
    I would be interested to find what is happening in those many states that show significant %change, and the reasons for it. Yes, often large %change is because a small change in a small overall totals lead to large %change (e.g. Vermont and Wyoming), but what about —
    Arkansas total=110, +18% change;
    Missouri Total=276, -14% change;
    Ohio Total=344, +11% change.
    What has Missouri done right compared to the other two?

    Why Florida and Alabama unlisted? — even Wikipedia has some data for these states (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gun_violence_in_the_United_States_by_state).
    Is it an effect of the FBI’s closing date for compilation of the statistics?

    Sex, race, victim or offender https://www.fbi.gov/about-us/cjis/ucr/crime-in-the-u.s/2011/crime-in-the-u.s.-2011/tables/expanded-homicide-data-table-6
    Though the Bureau of Justice has a different figures (from different sources?)

    Firearm Violence, 1993-2011
    Michael Planty, Ph.D., Jennifer L. Truman, Ph.D.
    May 7, 2013 NCJ 241730

    Presents trends on the number and rate of fatal and nonfatal firearm violence from 1993 to 2011. The report examines incident and victim demographic characteristics of firearm violence, including the type of firearm used; victim’s race, age, and sex; and incident location. The report also examines changes over time in the percentages of nonfatal firearm crimes by injury, reporting to the police, and the use of firearms in self-defense. Information on homicide was obtained primarily from the Centers for Disease Control’s (CDC) National Vital Statistics System. Nonfatal firearm violence data are from the National Crime Victimization Survey (NCVS), which collects information on nonfatal crimes reported and not reported to the police against persons age 12 or older from a nationally representative sample of U.S. households.

    Highlights:
    Firearm-related homicides declined 39%, from 18,253 in 1993 to 11,101 in 2011.
    Nonfatal firearm crimes declined 69%, from 1.5 million victimizations in 1993 to 467,300 victimizations in 2011.
    Firearm violence accounted for about 70% of all homicides and less than 10% of all nonfatal violent crime from 1993 to 2011.
    From 1993 to 2011, about 70% to 80% of firearm homicides and 90% of nonfatal firearm victimizations were committed with a handgun.
    Males, blacks, and persons ages 18 to 24 had the highest rates of firearm homicide from 1993 to 2010.
    About 61% of nonfatal firearm violence was reported to the police in 2007-11.

    http://www.bjs.gov/index.cfm?iid=4616&ty=pbdetail

  5. Larry Ledwick says:

    Missouri Total=276, -14% change;

    What has Missouri done right compared to the other two?

    I think the answer to that is that they did not have Fergeson related riots.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ferguson_unrest
    (St. Louis as I recall also had an uptick in violence related to the Ferguson unrest)

    Like you say you need to be aware of some external factors to make sense of some changes presented as % change. Last year you had 4 this year you had 5 therefore you had a 25% increase.
    That is just noise, but going from 100 to 125 is a significant shift.

  6. w.w.wygart says:

    If you cannot figure out the problem of gun violence, or interpersonal violence in general, looking through the sociological telescope, try correlating with: IQ, G-factor, and impulsivity. My theory is, if you could find the data, gun violence correlates almost to unity with lower intelligence and high impulsivity, with a dash of just plain crazy thrown in. These are all highly genetically driven characteristics, maybe some epigenetic factors as well: maternal stress levels and drug use in utero & etc.

    What would be really interesting to investigate is how strongly consanguinity, or what used to be called ‘coefficient of inbreeding’ correlates – for both perpetrator and victim. What would be really, really interesting to find out is how strongly our average street cop correlates to those factors as well.

    I think we have taken this discussion about as far as we can looking at the problem solely through the lens of sociology. Sociological factors are poured through biological machines; maybe it is time to take a serious rethink about what lies under the hood.

    It goes almost without saying that a theory such as mine has for several generations been so far outside the Overton Window, that it has become essentially impossible to discuss. But, if admitted for scientific investigation would allow us to make testable predictions about where to expect gun violence to be found, where it will increase, and where it will decrease. It also allows us to draw meaningful conclusions otherwise impossible, for instance, one way to understand what is really happening with gun violence, on the societal scale, is to think of it as how the slowest and the most impulsive in society eliminate themselves from the gene pool. Hair raising thought, but its not ‘judging’ anyone. Historical analysis could then be undertaken to see if this phenomenon is new, or a more general failure mode of human societies, or maybe only urbanized societies.

  7. Larry Ledwick says:

    I generally agree with you.

    Approximately 3% of society is sociopathic, (ie have little or no empathy for others and also tend toward being impulsive behavior and are generally good at manipulating others). Approximately 30 percent of the population is born with one of the thrill-seeking genes, and 20 percent with both.

    http://www.deathreference.com/Sy-Vi/Thrill-Seeking.html

    Add to those two cohorts the segment of the population Male (high testosterone) and age 14 – 24 when the brain is still developing an adult way of looking at the world.

    http://www.aacap.org/AACAP/Families_and_Youth/Facts_for_Families/FFF-Guide/The-Teen-Brain-Behavior-Problem-Solving-and-Decision-Making-095.aspx

    I suspect if you did an evaluation of those 3 cohorts of the population and adjusted for that portion socialized to violence you would identify 80% or more of people likely to commit gun crime.

    The last gun crime spike in the late 1980’s and early 90’s coincided with a peak in the population of young adults from the baby-boom 2.0 – In 2014 13.7% of the population is between 15 – 24, the cohort who would have been in that 15-24 band in the late 1980’s early 1990s accounted for 14.88% of the population in 1990. It also coincided with the sudden import of violent drug gangs from Jamaca etc. and tough economic times.

    Based on 2014 population figures the US has about 9.5 million sociopaths, 13.7 % of them are in the key age group for violence (15-24) or about 1.3 million. Some of them will be high functioning sociopaths using socially acceptable outlets for their lack of empathy, (jobs like doctors, police, and aggressive business men tend to select for high functioning sociopaths where lack of empathy and the ability to sell yourself to others can sometimes be and advantage).

    If 1/3 of sociopaths find culturally positive outlets for their “skills” that still leaves you with 865 thousand sociopaths in the population, and age range most prone to impulsive risk seeking behavior and violence resolution of conflict. Add in a 100,000 or so “normals” who have empathy but grew up in violent surroundings where that urge was beaten out of them (abusive homes, gang cultures) and you have something like 1 million folks in the population who are highly prone to use of violence and have limited emotional control over impulses.

    Mugging someone on the street is an adrenaline high not much different that base jumping for those who crave stimulation and an adrenaline fix. The only difference is the income to afford to take the less violent form of stimulation seeking.

    I think it is far more likely a social issue than anything to do with availability of weapons or the type of weapon available. A street punk is perfectly happy mugging someone with a base ball bat if that is all he can get his hands on.

  8. p.g.sharrow says:

    The argument of Nature vs.Nurture is generally carried out by those that are interested in feel good answers rather then actual facts. Much of my 70 years has been involved in breeding and working with livestock. Domestication is largely a breeding result. If you keep and breed Knotheads then you get more of them. If you keep animals that are easy to work with, their offspring are generally easy to work with. In my opinion, those with higher intelligence tend to be easier to work with as well. Those that are good parents tend to produce better parenting offspring.
    In a world of kill or be killed and survival of the fittest. Do unto others and cut out may be a good survival skill. But in a co-operative world some amount of empathy for others is necessary. “High functioning” Sociopaths might attain high position but make poor parents and their offspring tend to come to a bad end. There is no doubt that good parenting is helpful for a good outcome but whether that is a learned or genetic driven outcome is the argument. Sometimes good parenting results in a bad outcome, is that nature or nurture? I’m sorry, but you can’t train a sociopath to have empathy for others, and an emphatic can not be turned into a sociopath. Learned behavior is only a cosmetic covering for the inborn tendencies.
    Hillary Clinton is a fine example of a high functioning sociopath that feigns sympathy for others while she lines her pockets with wealth and power…pg

  9. dalecoz says:

    I don’t know how widely applicable this is, but the town I grew up in (Rockford Illinois) went from moderate to high murder rates when law enforcement took out almost the entire top leadership of the gang that had owned the town’s drug trade for decades. We went from “Yay! Big drug bust” to “Holy crap, somebody is getting shot almost every night.” With the big fish gone, the minnows came out and fought over who got to be the next big fish.

    Maybe that’s the missing factor: the anomalous high rates may come where rival drug gangs are having an ongoing turf war.

    Other possibilities
    :(1) the composition of local organized crime.groups. Older, more sophisticated crime groups generally try to make their enemies disappear–Jimmy Hoffa as an example, while less sophisticated gangs or ones from more “macho” cultures tend to leave bodies to be found or even draw attention to them.
    (2) Quality of local law enforcement. Louisiana has a reputation for being insanely corrupt and New Orleans city government has a reputation for being both very corrupt and really inept. Based on Katrina, those reputations are accurate. Bad police work can mean killers staying free longer and vigilante killings becoming common as a result.

    Personal experience: Bad local law enforcement can screw up even rural areas. My aunt lived in a county where the local sheriff decided that the police stayed where the people were. Sparsely populated areas got essentially no police presence. So hunters were openly shining deer, surrounding areas and driving deer into constricted spots to be slaughtered, ignoring farmers’ no hunting signs, etc. An organized group of thieves would wait until farmers left for town, have someone follow them with a cell phone to let the thieves know when they started back, then pull up a truck and start loading tools. My aunt’s garage got broken into and the deputies made no attempt to even pretend to investigate–just handed us an insurance form and said “Fill this out and we’ll sign it.” The locals said that it normally took a half hour to forty-five minutes to get law enforcement out to a 911 call and that went up to two hours if you mentioned that there was shooting involved.

    Bottom line: Corrupt, lazy or overwhelmed law enforcement can be a factor.

  10. p.g.sharrow says:

    To continue’
    When the traders came to town to sell their wares. The local warlord sold off his “Knothead” slaves as well as emptied his jails of trouble makers. The Traders bought them up as a back haul to be sold at profitable destination for products that they could sell in other ports. Intelligent, domesticatable slaves tended to become freemen and moved into the general population while the “Knotheads” when freed, created their own ghettos.
    American Afroed blacks have created their own mythology to explain their condition but much of it is self inflicted. I have met many people over the years and those that are Afroed are in a dead end society that preys on it’s self. Those that left the “plantation” and never looked back do as well as any other people.
    I read a man by the color of his soul, not by the color of his hide…pg

  11. Larry Ledwick says:

    Louisiana at 10.16 and Mississipi at7.46 is perhaps an historical reflection. New Oleans was built by pirates and river boat people, two notoriously rough crowds. I don’t think that culture has changed much since Andrew Jackson defended New Orleans with the help of the local tough guys.

    http://www.historynet.com/andrew-jackson-leading-the-battle-of-new-orleans.htm

  12. tom0mason says:

    Larry Ledwick thanks for the reminder.

  13. John F. Hultquist says:

    Rough numbers, per year:
    9,000 murders using a gun
    19,000 suicides with a gun
    38,000 highway deaths

  14. Terry Jay says:

    Alaska is interesting. The firearm is a necessary household appliance over the entire state, perhaps excluding the major (for Alaska) metro areas. The game regulations covering Fish and Game give a lot of leeway to the rural areas for subsistence, and the rural areas take advantage. Harvesting game is a target of opportunity, so lots of firearms in a generally loaded but safe condition, You could likely make the same assertion for a lot of western states. The point would be that pervasive loaded or easily loaded firearms held by virtually every household does not correlate well with any crime statistic. I doubt you would see a gun safe in any rural location, but may see the wall mounted open access gun rack common in the US before about 1970.

    Also, I believe the statistics show that concealed carry permit holders are less likely to commit a gun crime, or any crime, than police in that state.

    Dean Weingarten http://gunwatch.blogspot.com/ does a decent job referencing defensive gun use in the US, and on occassion provides extended commentary on gun issues.

    If spoons and forks cause obesity, then glasses cause alcoholism.

  15. gallopingcamel says:

    You have to love this video that points out that Plano,Texas (aka “Gun Nut Central”) has a murder rate of 0.4/100,000.

    In contrast, Detroit with stringent gun control has a 54.6/100,000, more than 100 times the rate in “Gun Nut Central”.

    Clearly this nation would have far fewer murders if the good people of Detroit enjoyed “Concealed Carry” rights as in Texas and several other states. You can bet that the murder rate would fall by a factor of at least ten. Terrorists would have a much tougher time if their intended victims enjoyed “Concealed Carry” rights and “Gun Free Zones” were outlawed.

  16. Adrian Camp says:

    Texas has open carry now, since Jan 1. I’ve never seen it or even seen any obvious external sign of concealed carry, but it is surely there. Plano is pretty much a suburb of Dallas now. I wonder what are the figures for Oak Cliff, a southern suburb which seems to me to get a lot of mentions in the TV news.

  17. cdquarles says:

    There is also some confounding of the data due to how it is collected. If someone gets killed but the crime happened elsewhere (think folk being flown to the nearest trauma center, which will be in the larger cities anyway), how is that handled?

    We already know that US infant mortality statistics look worse because of our criteria and that our medical system tries to save everyone and worry about the bill later.

  18. cdquarles says:

    Alabama’s laws are not loose, just rational. Alabama has been an open carry state pretty much since 1819. Concealed carry was frowned upon, but was a ‘shall issue’ controlled by local law enforcement.

    One thing about smaller, more rural areas is that everyone knows everyone that is a local and if you move in, everyone quickly gets to know you. Only transients don’t get such vetting. Urban areas do have locality issues that rural areas don’t have.

    Just because you took my gun from me does not mean that you have disarmed me. I’ll use my brain and find another way to defend myself and my family, if necessary. What I will not do, while in my right mind, is to initiate force. To truly disarm a person requires ‘getting into their heads’ and filling it with pap, like ‘modern’ Progressives do.

  19. ELindsley says:

    My suspicion on why Indiana has a higher rate than other rural/agricultural states is due to 2 cities: Gary & Indianapolis. Gary is a suburb of Chicago. Indianapolis is a typical larger city. You take those two cities out of the stats and I suspect the rate for Indiana will go down.

  20. Larry Ledwick says:

    I guess comments about Dallas fit here better than any place else.
    This item has some interesting coverage on it, I have no experience with this news outlet so judge it accordingly as a new unknown source.

    http://heavy.com/news/2016/07/micah-xavier-x-johnson-dallas-police-shooting-sniper-gunman-shooter-suspect-name-identified-photos-facebook-video/

  21. J Martin says:

    In the UK suicides and murders by firearms are about 50 times lower per 100,000 than the USA.
    I don’t think I want to move to your side of the pond, or even visit. Road deaths also several times lower. You guys need roundabouts. Australia had a mass murder problem which they solved by adopting UK style gun control. Until the US economy can provide everyone with a middle class lifestyle then there will always be a gun death problem.

    You will have to fix society before you can fix the gun problem. But since the middle classes and poor are getting ever more squeezed and poorer I don’t think society is getting fixed any time soon. Armed revolt in the USA one day ? But who or what would they revolt against ? It’s easier for the lower strata of society to use their guns on each other than those who are responsible for the disparity.

    But they succesfully fixed the wealth gap the last time it got so big. In the ,1940s ? Hope of a repeat perhaps ?

  22. E.M.Smith says:

    @J Martin:

    I think you are speculating on Australia. In the years post gun confiscation homicides went UP, dropping back to the same a few years after that. Eventually dropping a little lower after a dozen or 2 years, but in the context of pervasive video and an aging population.

    Per the UK I can only note that car deaths are not caused by guns, so perhaps there is something else driving both, like a painfully polite submissive culture. (I say that having been raised that way and getting beat up for it, eventually changing at about 18 to a more “in your grill” American behaviour and having far fewer issues since…)

    BTW, if I wanted someone dead, I wouldn’t use a gun. It would be via a “perfect accident”… More in keeping with my British roots…

  23. E.M.Smith says:

    https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_countries_by_intentional_homicide_rate

    lists the USA at 3.9 (Mexico is 15.7 and Canada is 1.4), per 100,000 population.
    Compare Bahamas at 29.8 and Jamaica at 36.1 vs. Israel at 1.8 and Swtzerland at 0.5 (both armed to the teeth).

    Note that in Jamaica firearms law is restrictive, automatic weapons forbidden, handguns licenced, etc.

    In that context, the UK at 1.0 is not very informative. The USA being closer to Canadian numbers than Mexico or the Islands, despite large population from such areas.

    The various gun laws vary widely (and mostly far more restrictive) seem at best unrelated to homicides, and more likely negatively correlated.

    Yes, if you live in a white English derived place, homicides are lower.
    It’s cultural.
    Yes, if you empty an island of guns, gun deaths go down, the people killing each other by other means with the strong choosing knives and the weak poisons. This is better how?

    Oh, and we do have traffic circles / roundabouts. .. often haited… try taking a boat trailer, 18 wheel truck, RV (caravan), flex bus or ladder truck through one.

  24. w.w.wygart says:

    Here are some more interesting statistics. Lots of nice charts and graphs too. Enjoy.

    http://www.colorofcrime.com/2016/03/the-color-of-crime-2016-revised-edition/

  25. Larry Ledwick says:

    One other item is you controlled inner city crime in about 6 major cities the US intentional homicide rate would be comparable to Switzerland. The violent gun crime in this country is confined to about 100 – 150 square miles of inner city territory (which happens to also have been controlled by Democrats for 50 -100 years, and has very restrictive gun control laws). Much of the rest of the nation is comparable to the UK and Europe, especially in the western rural areas which have a gun in almost every home.

    When I was growing up in the 1960s in the suburbs just outside Denver, no one could remember the last murder by gun in my community of about 50,000 people. They had their first auto fatality in 20+ years when I was in high school. It was a community that I could go for a walk at 2:00 am by myself at age 15 and never have any problem. In fact I was stopped by a cop once he asked what I was doing, I told him could not sleep and just taking a walk. We chatted for a little while and he went on about his business and I spent another hour walking home.
    See below the average homicide rate in the community I grew up in (Arvada) over the last 13 years is 1.307 / 100,000 just a little below Canada.

    http://www.city-data.com/crime/crime-Arvada-Colorado.html
    http://www.city-data.com/crime/crime-Denver-Colorado.html
    http://www.city-data.com/crime/crime-Commerce-City-Colorado.html
    http://www.city-data.com/crime/crime-Aurora-Colorado.html

    Note that most of the violent crime is on the east side of Denver.

  26. Another Ian says:

    E.M.

    “MAC DONALD: Rush, here’s another very politically incorrect fact, and I don’t want to racialize policing, people should not. But if we’re going to talk about race and policing, let’s talk about cop killings. Over the last decade, black males made up 40 percent of all cop killers, even though they’re six percent of the population. It turns out, Rush, that a police officer is 18-and-a-half times more likely to be killed by a black male than an unarmed black male is likely to be killed by a police officer.”

    From http://www.rushlimbaugh.com/daily/2016/07/08/heather_mac_donald_talks_about_her_essential_book_the_war_on_cops

  27. gallopingcamel says:

    @Chiefio,
    “Yes, if you live in a white English derived place, homicides are lower. It’s cultural.
    Yes, if you empty an island of guns, gun deaths go down, the people killing each other by other means with the strong choosing knives and the weak poisons. This is better how?”

    As a Brit, I believe that our murder rate is deliberately under-reported. The real rate could be more than three times the official rate.

  28. cdquarles says:

    The arguments made about guns can be made about ‘drugs’. People are (deliberately?) not asking the correct question. The problems with ‘drugs’ relate to intoxication. Intoxication is a covariate of loss of impulse control. Instead of focusing on intoxication, making things worse by criminalizing commerce, and blaming inanimate objects for things that only living things do, maybe we ought to take a step back and look at ourselves and the culture we have made. If you actually want less of the consequences of sinning, well, stop sinning. Again, drinking, drugs, guns, and etc. are not the problem. The problem is ‘spiritual’ if you will.

  29. Larry Ledwick says:

    National Shooting Sports Foundation throws out some numbers on gun violence and number of guns.
    Like global warming really hard to show a correlation here.
    If you asked a random person on the street it would be safe to assume they would expect the numbers to be very different. The media has painted a wholly false picture.

    The one thing they don’t elaborate on much is even though the numbers are dropping in absolute terms if you consider the increase in population since the peaks for homicides and unintentional firearms fatalities, the trend is even more strongly negative.

    In 1929-1930 unintentional firearm fatalities were 3200 / year in a population of 122,775,046 for a unintentional firearms fatality rate of 2.6/100,000. In 2015 there were 586 unintentional firearms fatalities, out of a population of 317,297,938 or 0.18 fatalities / 100,000 or a 14.4 fold reduction in accidental death due to firearms.

    http://www.washingtonexaminer.com/americans-urged-to-buy-a-gun-get-trained-carry-it-always/article/2596052

    The fact is that the US today is the safest it has ever been regarding your likelihood of being killed by a firearm, when you consider population growth. This in spite of in excess of 357 million firearms in private hands.

    https://img.washingtonpost.com/blogs/wonkblog/files/2015/10/number_of_guns1.png

  30. Jeff says:

    Have to like the “357 million”…

    I’m really worried about the false flag potential about all of this. I live in Germany, and my inlaws
    (and in America, my musical colleagues and teachers) lived through Hitler pulling stunts like this.
    Kristallnacht, et. al.

    Never let a good crisis go to waste. I hope and pray that I’m wrong here. Another, perhaps trivial issue over here is that when push comes to shove, and “survival” becomes paramount, with all of the “protected” species and prohibited means of killing/trapping/etc. them for food, we’re in for kind of a rough ride in survival terms.

    Then again, there’s no app for dressing an animal, etc…

  31. Larry Ledwick says:

    Well this is an interesting tid bit if true (given the medias inability to tell an assault rifle from a musket):

    http://www.thefederalistpapers.org/us/dallas-shooter-used-70-year-old-relic-sks-rifle-that-wouldnt-fit-modern-day-standards-not-an-assault-rifle

    The rifle used by the suspect in the Dallas murders wasn’t an AR-15 variant rifle as many people originally thought. No, in fact the gun used was a 70+ year old relic that would not meet the definition of an “assault weapon” under most state laws. CBS News is reporting that the firearm used was an SKS rifle.

  32. u.k(us) says:

    FWIW, last time I got pulled over (80 in a 55) in a car with no tint, no other passengers.
    I put both hands on the steering wheel (it lets the officer know you are not holding a weapon ).
    Of course I got a ticket, but the thing that struck me the most was how badly the officer was shaking.
    Talk about being on the edge all the time, I felt sorry for him.

  33. p.g.sharrow says:

    ! good rifleman is worth a platoon of assault gunmen. In Vietnam, the estimate was it took 50,000 rounds expended using auto-semi auto assault weapons to cause 1 enemy casualty.
    I’m not sure if a platoon of men could even carry 50,000 rounds of that kind of ammunition. 1 rifleman can easily carry 100 rounds of 30-06 ammunition, hit a man at 200yards and penetrate most body armor. The shooter’s discipline of aim and fire, aim and fire, is what made him a very deadly opponent. He was also wearing tactical body armor. resistant to the light pistol / revolver ammunition used by security police or even assault weapons if they had them…pg

  34. E.M.Smith says:

    @P.G.:

    Why every Marine is a trained rifleman, and why the “mad minute” let the British be very very effective using the Lee Enfield (10 rd bolt rifle) until fairly recently… They had that “aim fire” drilled into them…

    And why I don’t have an “assault rifle” or the semi-auto downgrade of one. Why I’d rather use my lever gun or pump shotgun (with rifle barrel and iron sights… Because “8 rounds and a loading gate” with a big bag of ammo beats the heck out of “one near the target and the rest in the sky” every single time.

    The “pray and spray” doctrine was based on “suppression fire” to cause the other guys to keep their heads down until your aircraft could bomb them. Not very useful in a domestic situation without resupply…

    One of my great regrets is that in the ’80s? I didn’t buy an Indian made Lee Enfield in .308 NATO. It is now discontinued. IMHO, in my hands, it would beat the AR-15…

    Bolt rifle, bigger more powerful caliber, and put a scope on that sucker…

    Oh Well…

  35. E.M.Smith says:

    @UK (US):

    I always leave hands on the top of the wheel with engine off and keys laying on the dash (so he can see I’m not going anywhere…)

    Why? Some guy got shot for “furtive movements”… he was opening the glove box to get his reg and insurance papers…

    @Larry:

    They are the weapon used by most of China until very recently and at one time you could get both the Chinese and Russian surplus ones by the crate and for about $150? Something like that. Use the same round as the AK. Has “only” a ten round FIXED magazine. Essentially a lighter M1-Garand in nature…

    They also, near as I can tell, don’t misfire…

  36. Larry Ledwick says:

    The standard combat load in Vietnam early in the war was 180 rounds of 5.56
    8 (20 round) magazines in ammo pouches and one in the gun. Later in the war they moved to 30 round magazines as the standard load and typically carried 210 rounds, 6 (30 round) magazines and one in the gun. Some of the guys would of course carry all they could hump with additional bandoleers of stripper clips.

    Part of that 50,000 round estimate was due to other factors like use of the miniguns, and recon by fire and mad minute (where early in the morning the unit would shoot up anything near their dug in location that looked suspicious)

    Dollar for dollar the sks is one of the best bargains out there, ammo is cheap and they work. Not too pretty but functional like all the Soviet era weapons.

    From what I saw in the videos the Dallas shooter was likely using one of these, not the classic wood furniture version.

    http://www.cabelas.com/product/Tapco-SKS-Adjustable-Stock-Black/742219.uts

  37. Larry Ledwick says:

    Why? Some guy got shot for “furtive movements”… he was opening the glove box to get his reg and insurance papers…

    It is important “how” you do it too. If you have to reach into the glove box or some other compartment like the center console especially if it is dark, you first tell the officer, what you are going to do and why. He may just shine the light on the glove box and ask you to do it slowly while covering his gun, or ask you to get out of the car and he will retrieve the item if he is getting a warning tingle about you. If you are a little gray haired lady probably no problem.

    It is very much a judgement call on his part based on the total circumstance, some of which you may not even be aware of, but a quick lunge toward the glove box without any obvious reason is not healthy if you are a person who fits the description of someone they are looking for or your manner sends warning bell messages.

    When I was in my 20’s I had stopped at a 7-11 to get a soda like I did almost every day and a local cop drove by and then backed up and parked directly behind my car and waited for me to come out of the store. Turned out I was driving the same make model and color of car with similar body damage of a wanted car for a robbery the day before. Luckily the robbery happened when I was at work so no harm no foul but he was just doing his job.

  38. p.g.sharrow says:

    I’ve been a rifleman for over 60 years. 1 shot at a time. .22, .30-30 or .30-06. I’ve had to buy my own ammunition so it is not wasted on “sound” shots or maybe, snapshots. These old eyes do appreciate a scope but iron sights will do. While in the military I really liked the M-1 as a tough solid weapon that could reach out and touch at even 600 yards. Couldn’t grasp the spray gun concept…pg

  39. Larry Ledwick says:

    @p.g.sharrow
    Yep I qualified in the Navy on the M1 Garand, in the late 1960’s and later shot competition with the M-14 and liked them both. The early M-16A1 I was not fond of, but after the improved M-16A2 came out I grew to like it too for what it was designed to be.

    For heavy tropical jungle cover where meeting engagements occurred at 10+ yards and a long unobstructed shot was 50 yards it was ideal in terms of being quick and having a relatively light ammo load for the number of shots available.

    It (M-16) did not have the punch to shoot though heavy cover ( in WWII they would load the Garand with armor piercing ammo so the could shoot through small trees to get to people in cover behind them). The 30-06 and later NATO 7.62 was satisfactory against light vehicles where the M-16 could not reliably penetrate car bodies and windshields at all angles. The early M16-A1 if you pulled a really tight sling as we were taught with the M1 Garand and the M-14 you could actually bend the rifle slightly and change the point of impact at long range. Not to mention the issues caused by micromanagement by McNamara’s whiz kids that led to the M-16 first being fielded with no cleaning kit, and using a gun powder propellant other than the original design so it needed constant cleaning to prevent jams and having no forward assist handle to help chamber a round on a dirty chamber. Lots of teething problems for a few years.

    Still at 400 yards and under it is a good compromise for relatively light ammo load, and performance in close engagements where maximum range engagements are not the rule. It does still lack the immediate stopping power of a .30 caliber like the AK even with the XM855 SS109 62 grain bullet.

    The M-16 was never intended to be a long range rifle, since statistically most engagements even in WWII occurred at under about 250 yards. The WWII Garand was capable of reaching out to 600-800 yards with the 30-06 round and the BAR also shot the 30-06 but humping all that ammunition would have been awful compared to the modern 5.56. The BAR especially could go through a lot of ammo very quickly so both guns taught aimed fire and some fire discipline to keep from shooting yourself out of ammo.

    Today in Afghanistan the bad guys know the range limitations of the 5.56 M-4 rifle and can just sit out of our troops range and harass them with longer range weapons. Of course we resolve that problem with air power and some newer heavier guns like the old M-14 reintroduced and even some .300 win mag and the newer rifles chambered for the .50 BMG round. There is no such thing as the perfect weapon/rifle/pistol like a golf club each has different best uses and you need to “choose your club” for the situation you expect, and make do when the situation is out side that ideal performance envelope. I imagine there will always be a running debate between the various choices and folks will always favor the system they first were trained on over the newer different systems.
    (it took me almost 25 years to appreciate the M-16 family for what they were designed to do and not measure them by the yard stick of a totally different gun like the M-14 and M1 Garand which really was a totally different concept)

  40. E.M.Smith says:

    @Larry:

    “Chose your club” – Mikey Likey ;-)

    Why some of us have a closet full of clubs ;-)

    Static urban home defense: Humping ammo not an issue, overpenetration of walls a big issue, dove loads in short pump shotgun. Short sword “near”.

    Mobile civilian urban personal defense / escape: 9mm Handgun. You don’t want to be advertizing you are a target with a big honking rifle. (if in a vehicle, pack long gun but hidden). Also best to keep hands free for carry of ‘stuff’ (used to be ‘kids’… but they grew up…).

    “Boonies” long duration: Nice scoped rifle, preferably two of them, one very light ammo for ‘varmint stew’, the other ‘deer and bear’ caliber but heavier ammo load. Shotgun for birds if you can carry 3. Pistol for “camp gun”. (My kit is .357 based, lever and Single Action, but with 9mm alternate cylinder for ‘compatibility’… while a light .38 Special is overkill for a squirrel and a .357 Mag is marginal on a big bear or hog, it is ‘enough’ each way and weight is 6 ish pounds… plus easy to reload with Lee Loader kit that fits in a pocket).

    Yes, My “OMG!” WTF?” strategy is to point the car at the mountains and run out of gas in a good enough camping / hunting / fishing area to use it as an “iron tent”… hanging around the Urban Jungle is not my idea of good strategy, so that kit is only a short term “get the car loaded” use… Though as I’m slowing down with age and arthritis, going to the static Castle Defense mode will eventually dominate. Brace of 9mm and couple of shotguns…

    Since I don’t live in the jungle, nor have resupply helicopters nor expect opposing platoons of military trained adversaries nor… haven’t seen a need for me for the AR… When limited by your ability to carry ammo, “be the sniper” is the better strategy and camouflage more valuable than a pistol grip or collapsible stock. IMHO of course.

    For me, any range over about 200 FEET is “run away!!!” range. And anything under 50 feet is “in my house and yard” so escape not practical (no retreat over a tall fence at my age and fitness is possible… so ‘back to the wall’). Just about anything works at 50 to 150 feet…

    Oh, and the scopes are mounted on rings that let you use the iron sites under them. The circle of the scope mount around the iron sites is a great “Ghost Ring” effect and even bleary eyed lets you be ‘on target’ at “domestic ranges” and bad lighting. Though I did my DCM qualification shoot with iron sites… so I’m good to 100 yards with them.

    Yet somehow, with all of that, in half a century, I’ve never needed to point a gun at a person in anger. Something about preparation preventing the need…

  41. E.M.Smith says:

    @larry:

    That story on him being a ‘panty stealer’ is interesting… there is a theory that women civilize men by sex. I suspect he wasn’t civilized enough…

  42. u.k(us) says:

    When I was a kid and our “gang” used to “terrorize” the local neighborhood, there was a certain patch of property we never messed with, rumors held that the farmer loaded his shotgun with rock salt.
    The good old days :)

  43. Rob b says:

    @ J Martin

    An Australian perspective …..
    If you use the FBI definition of a mass firearm attack of 3 or more people shot in one incident , then only two weeks ago we had one , the police shot one criminal and three 3 innocent bystanders .
    The death by firearms was decreasing for many years prior to the government intervention and stricter gun laws , and has continued to decrease at the same rate ! ! !
    We have had a few mass murders since the enforced strict gun laws as well , arson and knives being the main types of murder for these mass murders …..
    Do NOT believe the government hype , two university studies , independently , found that the “gun buy” was a waste of tax payers money .

  44. E.M.Smith says:

    @Rob B:

    As you point out, the actual effect on homicides is simply to change the weapon of choice (and a small tendency to have the “perpetrators” of crimes live and the victims die, since only the victims end up disarmed…)

    An interesting chart on homicides in Australia from:

    http://www.aic.gov.au/statistics/homicide.html

    Yes, this is an Australian Government site, so given their climate data behaviour, you can be assured this data paints THE best possible picture of reducing “gun violence”. Also note that the gun confiscation happened from 1996 to 1997. Oh, and it included pump shotguns, so very far reaching.

    There is a tiny dip in 1997, from about 310 to 290 as I read the chart, then homicides RISE to about 340 in 1999 as folks figure out “other means”, return back to the base line of a little over 300 out to 2003, then start the same general decline you see in other aging western democracies for all crime in aging populations.

    So what was the net effect on homicides from 1997 to 2003? The prime half dozen years just after guns were removed and when the effect will be most clear and uncontaminated by larger social and demographic changes? Not a damn thing on homicide rates.

    Yes, you will get fewer gun deaths. Also yes you will get more knife deaths and more poisonings, and more arson deaths. (It is pretty easy to run around a house with a couple of jerry cans of gasoline and toss a match at 3 AM…) It is better to die in a bonfire exactly how? It is better for the criminal to shoot YOU with an illegal gun that for you to shoot them with a legal one exactly how? It is better to have a dozen folks dead from poison in the coffee pot, perpetrator long gone, than shot and perp dead on the floor in the immediate response, exactly how?

    Attempting to stop human behaviour with weapons bans does not work as just about anything can be made a weapon. We have about 1000 years of history on this… and it is consistent.

  45. Larry Ledwick says:

    As I have mentioned in the past:
    Name one major governmental prohibition program that actually worked?
    Liquor 1920’s — Nope (it did significantly improve organized crime wealth and power)

    Hard drugs — Nope still a problem (Harrison Narcotics Act 1924)
    http://www.narconon.org/drug-information/heroin-timeline.html

    Prostitution — last few thousand years — Nope did not work

    Hand weapons — last few thousand years in every region of the world — Nope

    Illegal fishing — Nope
    Illegal hunting — Nope
    Arson — Nope
    political corruption — Nope
    Tax evasion — Nope
    Bank Robbery — Nope
    Illegal border crossing (every country in the world) — Nope did not even work in East Germany and the Soviet Union when they had land mines and electric fences

  46. Larry Ledwick says:

    Gun Homicides in U.S. Down 40% from 1993 to 2014…Lowest Rate in 34 Years — bet you won’t hear that on CNN or NBC or in the NYTimes.
    http://www.cnsnews.com/news/article/terence-p-jeffrey/gun-homicides-us-down-40-1993-2014

  47. p.g.sharrow says:

    @ Larry, how many, in numbers and percentage, has the increase in gun ownership been during that same time period?
    It appears to me that unarmed civilians are in greater danger from police gunfire then from gang bangers shoot outs. Actually cops are in greater danger from their own then they are from civilians, they shoot themselves and each other in large numbers. In the early days, City Office of Police (COPs) street officers were not allowed to carry firearms, far too dangerous for them and for citizens…pg

  48. E.M.Smith says:

    In the news, a prisoner sentenced in court shot and killed two balifs… had to be with an officer’s gun as prisoners are not allowed weapons…. QED…

  49. Larry Ledwick says:

    Being a police officers is really not a terribly dangerous occupation compared to other common jobs. It is fashionable and good ratings to make it sound terribly dangerous but it is not.

    It is approximately 4x more dangerous to be a roofer than it is to be a cop
    roofers = 40.5/100,000
    garbage collectors = 33/100,000
    Farmers and ranchers = 22/100,000
    taxi drivers = 17.8/100,000
    police patrol officers = 10.8/100,000

    Black on black killings (ie gang bangers) kill about 6000 people a year, I can’t find a good statistic source for how many of them were “innocent” bystanders.

    Also keep in mind a good fraction of those killed by cops are “suicide by cop” where they intentionally provoke the officer into a shooting situation, often appearing to be armed when not (ie toy pistol).

    Accidental discharge shootings of cop on cop are very rare, (largely due to much better training on proper gun handling than in the “old days”.

    I would much rather work as a cop than live in a violent inner city like Chicago, St. Louis or Philly.

  50. Larry Ledwick says:

    Hmmmm — it is more complicated that everyone thinks, it appears that in reality, blacks are less likely to be shot by a cop than a white suspect.

    http://www.wnd.com/2016/07/study-no-racial-differences-in-cop-shootings/

    The report said, “Using data from Houston, Texas – where we have both officer-involved shootings and a randomly chosen set of potential interactions with police where lethal force may have been justified – we find, in the raw data, that blacks are 23.8 percent less likely to be shot at by police relative to whites. Hispanics are 8.5 percent less likely.”

  51. Pingback: No Tolerance « Jack's Newswatch

  52. E.M.Smith says:

    @Larry:

    That is a surprise… because black males are on average more “in your face” challenging authority. (I don’t consider that a negative motivation. “Question Authority” being one of my favorite bumper snickers… more a statement about the tactics…)

    While teaching, the spouse noticed it “Another defiant black boy refusing directions”. (One kid quote “I don’t need to do what no woman tells me!”) I’ve noticed it in other contexts (watch a sit in when the cops order to go home and clear the streets… all the pasty white rich white guys heading home, “street guys” prepping to confront… I’ve seen it a few times, occasionally from inside the group… as I packed up to go home…)

    My thesis it that it is the lack of fathers in 70% or so of black families. I learned not to be in Dad’s grill via a well applied belt a couple of times… A good black friend got his son in line, when he spent money on a skateboard after being told ‘No’, by breaking it in half and mounting half on the kid’s desk. Minus that, guys run to the defiant side. Being defiant with cops is A Very Bad Idea… and gets worse when you are a 20-something and 6 foot tall…

    So I would expect much higher cop / black physical interaction just from the broken homes and poverty. (Which I think is also seen in white ghettos, but they are more rare. ) The fewer shootings of blacks is a surprise, though…

  53. Larry Ledwick says:

    Looks like a new terrorist attack in France, they appear to have used an “assault truck”
    We need to immediately ban high capacity trucks!
    /sarc
    This is why gun control is a fool’s errand.
    I hope the casualties are not as high as originally reported at 30 dead.

  54. E.M.Smith says:

    Guess I’ll go “hit the news” for a bit and catch up on what’s been happening the last few days.

    I’ve talked with cops and similar folks (agencies) about guns. The guys on the street generally “get it” that a perp with a semi-auto handgun leaves a LOT of evidence behind. A poisoner or a person with an “assault truck” full of fertilizer not so much… And they know that a person skilled with a knife is more of an “issue” than a yahoo with a revolver puting “6 in the pavement” as often happens under stress…

    A knife never runs out of cuts…

    Were I to be allowed ONE weapon in a SHTF scenario of unknown duration, I’d be hard pressed to choose between a “short sword” (aka large kitchen knife) and a “battle hammer” (aka 24 ounce long handle framing hammer)… The gun with limited ammo, not so much… Honorable mention for the “camp axe” / tomohawk… that is sort of both…

  55. E.M.Smith says:

    CNN reporting 77 dead so far. Truck drove for “1+ miles” through the crowd. Shots fired before moving. Hand grenades found in the truck after the perp was shot by {someone | cop}.

    Bet the news will be all about the shots and the grenades and not so much about mowing people down for 1+ miles with a large truck…

    BTW, commenting from “multiuser Puppy” on the Evo via PXE… Nice…

  56. Larry Ledwick says:

    Just bumped the death toll to 80, with 31 injured. Driver drove through the crowd for 1.2 miles and then exited the truck and began shooting at the crowd before police took him down.
    Local media is reporting the attacker was a 31-year old French Tunisian from Nice, known to police.
    Inspire magazine in 2010 encouraged jihadists to use knives, guns, bombs, arson and running over people with cars and trucks. The philosophy of war espoused by jihadists encourages “by any means necessary” attacks. No matter what you ban or control they will move on to something else.
    Some sources say France is a powder keg right now and on the verge of civil war.

    If that is true, we could see open civil war break out between traditional French citizans and the new enclaves of Muslims. If that happens things could get very ugly very fast.

  57. E.M.Smith says:

    84 dead now, 13+ in critical condition. The presence of “fake rifles” and “fake hand grenades” in the truck leaves me wondering if there was intent for a larger event, but they driver got taken by a “sting” operation selling fakes, so was dispatched on a suicide mission with the truck as the folks expecting to use that (intended) armament stayed back for another day. It’s the only thing I can come up with that explains buying fakes, then using a truck…

    One of the news shows (CNN or MSNBC) had a list of prior attacks by “assault vehicle” with a list of something like 3 of them. Typical death toll about a dozen to twenty.

    France has a major problem. That is the 10% muslim population. At about that point, the feedback loop begins to catch and things get dodgy. At about 30% to 40% history has shown a tendency to strong instability, then at about 50% you get a Lebanon where there is a “civil war” with the purge of Christians and other non-believers and founding of a Muslim religious state. As Muslims are fighting a “war of the womb” as a stated ideology, that 10% will be 30%+ as the present crop of children mature (call it about 2040).

    So at some point between now, and then, France has a start of an internal war. No way around it.

    All of the EU is going to have this problem, as they have “free movement” and a flood of invading muslims (claiming ‘refuge’ status… mostly refugess from the kind of world they have made at home) spreading all over the place. That means it is possible that some other country of the EU might get to an internal war status first. (Belgium, Germany…)

    In any case, it’s going to be a mess, much larger than now, and inside a couple of decades. Playing to ignore the problem and ‘run out the clock’ by reaching retirement befoe it blows up is not going to work for European politicians any longer. I wonder how many more countries will need to have a destructive internal war like Christian Lebanon “Paris of the Levant” and turned into hell hole Lebanon like places under Islamist rule before The West catches a clue that this doesn’t end well for them…

  58. Gail Combs says:

    “The future must not belong to those who slander the prophet of Islam.” ~ Barack Hussein Obama @ United Nations General Asembly 2012

  59. Gail Combs says:

    Note that the BLM cop killer who killed 5 Dallas policemen was Faheed Hassen a follower of the Nation of Islam (Louis Farrakhan) the media of course gives his American name, Micah Johnson and never metions he is a muslim terrorist.

    http://pamelageller.com/2016/07/dallas-mass-cop-murderers-arabic-name-was-fahed-hassen.html/

    CAIR admit: “Black Lives Matter is our campaign”

    https://themuslimissue.wordpress.com/2016/07/09/muslim-stealth-jihad-org-cair-admit-black-lives-matter-is-our-campaign/

  60. p.g.sharrow says:

    The Western world is being flooded with young fighters at government insistence! With the impending collapse of IsIs the trained ones are coming as well. They are coming to your towns.
    The princes of Islam are running out of money and must strike NOW! Western citizens are waking to their danger and are pushing out their complacent politicians. The next step will be a test, will the western governments protect the invaders or their citizens…pg

    http://go.clarionproject.org/numbers-full-film/

    Support for Suicide Bombing
    An average of 14% of Muslims surveyed believes suicide bombing and other forms of violence against civilian targets in defense of Islam can be often justified or sometimes justified. This
    translates to 119 million people.
    Based on actual
    population sizes (i.e., the sum of the Muslim populations of each country surveyed by Pew multiplied by the average for that particular country), the number is 136 million.

    Among young, Western Muslims aged 18-29, the percentages who believe that suicide bombings against civilians can be justified are as follows:
    42% of French Muslims
    35% of British Muslims
    and 26% of American Muslims.

    Honor Killings
    An average of
    39% of Muslims surveyed think it is often, sometimes or rarely justified to kill a woman if she engages in premarital sex or adultery.
    This translates to 345 million people.

    OMG…………….pg

  61. p.g.sharrow says:

    Actually Nostradamus said that the Westerners would awaken to their danger and drive the Muslims out again. Just as happened 600 years ago. For years The leaders of Europe invited Muslims into their countries as allies during their lust for power ‘Game of Thrones”. Then the Muslims gained power and attempted to enforce their own rule. The citizens rebelled and eliminated their treacherous leaders and the Muslims.
    “Convert or Die” the Muslim chant, became the Christian one. To this day, Muslims greatly fear being treated to their own medicine…pg

  62. Larry Ledwick says:

    Looks like France just took a step toward the Israeli approach to internal security.

    Conflict News ‏@Conflicts 7 minutes ago
    BREAKING: French minister calls all willing citizens to become army reservists – AFP

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