Wednesday, January 1, 2014

2013 District of Columbia Homicide Rate Once Again Inches Out Maryland But Far Out Paces Virginia!

Each New Years Day I anxiously await the Washington Post article exposing the homicide stats for the District of Columbia, our Nation’s Capital, and the surrounding suburbs. For some reason and unlike past years, this year the article was relegated to the Metro Section rather than the Front Page but the full article by Peter Hermann and Lynh Bui “Get in the Street and Hear Our Pain” is available at this link.

Like past years, the WaPo curiously makes no attempt to compare the rates among the various jurisdictions but even a cursory analysis of the stats in the article might reveal a motive for why the Liberal WaPo NEVER attempts any analysis; could it be because it would clearly demonstrate the dramatically inverse relationship between homicide rates and restrictions on gun ownership.

My detailed analysis of the 2012 stats can be found here on my Blog at: but here is the detailed math for the 2013 numbers using the most recent population figures from the US Census Bureau and the Stats in the article:

DC population = 632,323
2013 Homicides = 104 (*Corrected from 103 in WaPo 3 Jan 14)
2013 Homicide Rate = 16.45 / 100,000 people.

Maryland DC-suburbs of Montgomery & Prince George’s Counties
Population = 1,885,847 (Montgomery = 1,004,709; PG = 881,138)
2013 Homicides = 66
2013 Homicide Rate = 3.50 / 100,000.

Virginia suburbs of Alexandria City, and Arlington and Fairfax Counties
Population = 1,485,941 (Alexandria = 146,294, Arlington = 221,045, Fairfax = 1,118,602)
2013 Homicides = 14 homicides
2013 Homicide Rate = .94 / 100,000.

This reveals that a person would be fortunate to live in Virginia where gun ownership is almost unrestricted because a DC resident, where guns are still almost impossible to own, is 17.5 times more likely to be a homicide victim then us Gun Tottin Virginians (16.45/.94 = 17.50). Even a Marylander, with moderately strict gun laws, was 4.7 times less likely to be a homicide victim than a DC resident (16.45/3.5 = 4.70). Much better than DC but a Marylander is still more than 3.7 times more likely to be a homicide victim than one of us Virginia Gun Totters! (3.50/.94 = 3.72)

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. If you don’t believe me, just ask any Bostonian who was subject to the “hide in your home” order during the Boston Marathon Bomber manhunt this April. 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 DC’s 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!

Here are a few other inconvenient FACTS I’ve mentioned in my previous articles:

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!