Tuesday, January 1, 2013

District of Columbia Homicide Rate Has Dropped Every Year Since the 2008 Landmark Supreme Court Ruling Making It Legal for Law-abiding Residents to Own Guns

Again this year the Washington Post New Years Day headline boasts: Homicides decrease in Washington region.”  The New Years Day 2012 headline was: As homicides fall in D.C., rise in Prince George’s, numbers meet in the middle.  This year’s article also proudly notes that DC Homicides dropped to 88 in 2012 while the 2011 number was 108, in 2010 it was 132 and in 2009 it was 140.  As it does every year The Post also noted the homicide statistics for the surrounding Maryland and Virginia DC suburbs but again this year makes no attempt to compare the rates among the various jurisdictions.

A cursory analysis of the stats in this article might reveal why the Liberal WaPo avoids any analysis --- could it be because it would clearly demonstrate a dramatically inverse relationship between homicide rates and restrictions on gun ownership

Using the US Census Bureau’s latest population estimates, DC with 617,996 people had 88 homicides in 2012 for a rate of 14.2 per 100,000 people. The two Maryland DC-suburbs of Montgomery County and Prince George’s County have 1,861,027 with 78 homicides for the same period for a rate of 4.2 per 100,000. The three Virginia suburbs of Alexandria City, Arlington County and Fairfax County have 1,460,997 people with 21 homicides for a 1.44 per 100,000 rate.

This reveals that a DC resident, where gun ownership is still very restricted is almost ten times more likely to be a homicide victim than a “gun loving” Virginian where gun ownership is almost unrestricted.  Even a Marylander, with moderately strict gun laws, is almost three and a half times less likely to be a homicide victim than a DC resident. Much better than DC but a Marylander is still almost three times more likely to be a homicide victim than one of us “gun tottin” Virginians.

Now I’m not opposed to registration and some reasonable limits on ownership such as terrorists, ex-cons and the mentally unstable but there should be no restrictions on ownership by average citizens – anywhere in the US. There is a “God-given” right of self protection, especially in one’s own home, and a gun is the only way to exercise that right. One has to go no further than right here in our own DC-area backyard to clearly demonstrate that contrary to liberal rhetoric, it is an “inconvenient truth” that “guns actually do make us safer.” Case in point, Virginia has by far the laxest gun laws and the least gun violence of any of the surrounding jurisdictions. Additionally, the DC homicide rate only began declining after the Supreme Court ordered the loosing of DC gun ownership laws in 2008. Is the fact that this dramatic drop coincided with this landmark court decision coincidence or might there be a cause-effect relationship? Could it be criminals are not so anxious to attack law-abiding citizens if they might be "packing heat?"

The obvious message in these statistics - guns make us more and not less safe!.

While we’re addressing restrictions on guns, here’s a riddle for you.  What do New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg, Congressman Gerald E. Connolly (D-VA) and Obama advisor David Axelrod all have in common other than they all three trashed NRA CEO Wayne LaPierre for suggesting to have armed officers in schools to protect children?

Answer:  they all live in Democrat controlled jurisdictions that have ARMED Officers in their schools and two of them, Bloomberg and Connolly, were the local elected officials responsible for them being there!

In a recent press conference Mayor Bloomberg dismissed the plan saying “I think it’s a terrible idea. We don’t need (armed officers) in our school system” but it turns out the NYPD already has 350 armed officers who rotate throughout the school system.  Congressman Connelly describe the idea of allowing armed guards to carry firearms in schools as “reprehensible” and “outrageous” but for his entire time as Fairfax County Board Chairman (2003-2008) he assigned armed police officers to be on campus at all times during the school day in ALL county high schools and intermediate schools.  Chairman Connolly’s actions were consistent with Bill Clinton’s 2000 $60M "Cops in Schools" program.

While we’re at it, here are a couple other interesting (and maybe) inconvenient FACTS:

In any given year in this country there is one child drowning death for every 11,000 residential swimming pools or 550 children under the age of 10 drown every year in our 6 million pools. Meanwhile there is one child killed by a gun for every one million (plus) guns in this country or with about 200 million guns, approximately 175 children under 10 die. This means a child is over 100 times more likely to drown in a pool than be killed by a gun. Hence, banning residential pools is a much more effective way of protecting children than banning fire arms.

In Switzerland, every male adult is issued an assault weapon for militia duty and required to keep it in his home. As a result, Switzerland has the highest per capita rate of guns in homes in the entire World yet is one of the safest places to live. Fire arm deaths in Switzerland is .56/100,000. Compare that to the United States where Assault Weapons are heavily regulated and automatic ones are outlawed and our rate of fire arm deaths is 2.97/100,000 per year. That means an American is 5.3 times more likely to be killed by a gun in the United States than someone in Switzerland where everyone and their brother has an automatic assault weapon. Go figure!