Locally a homeless man was arrested for selling two rifles, well, one air rifle and one .22 rifle to a nine year old boy for $8. I don’t know about you, but I have a hard time figuring out how you end up stealing two guns from a gun shop, then selling them to some kid for his lunch money, and there not being a whole lot of drugs involved in the thought process. At least the guy won’t be homeless anymore.
The Congressional Research Service has put out a study (which Reason.com summarizes here) that shows mass shootings are not on the rise, and that there’s no real trend. The numbers tend to be pretty volatile. That’s probably because they don’t represent more than a tiny fraction of the total violent deaths in this country. They do point out that total numbers have gone up, but when controlled for the population increase, there is no trend:
Those are raw totals, without taking population growth into account. If you look at the number of victims per capita, the average has gone up a little from 1970 to today but the numbers are so small that the fluctuations are essentially statistical noise. “Basically, there is no rise,” says Fox, the Northeastern criminologist. “There are some years that are bad, some that are not so bad.”
I would note this study when you see people spreading Bloomberg’s fabricated nonsense about mass shootings reaching epidemic levels. One key thing about this study is it distinguished between types of mass shootings, namely between “mass public shootings,” which is what most of the public thinks of when they hear the term “mass shooting,” and what the study defines as “familicide mass shooting,” and “other felony mass shooting.” I think this is an important distinction, because as the study notes, the public sees a distinction between these types of events.
Also interesting, the study looks at the use of so-called “assault weapons.” 27% of public mass shootings, in only incident in the case of familicide mass shooting, and in 9.7% of other felony mass shootings. Hardly the “weapon of choice” for mass killers that the media would like everyone to believe.
This study will be an important one for our side going forward, given Bloomberg’s desire to overstate the number of mass shootings in an attempt to drive public support for more gun control laws.
The Columbus Dispatch thinks the mass shooting trend is hard to explain. Well, first, there is no trend. That whole FBI study was fabricated to serve the Administration’s gun control agenda. Secondly, it’s pretty clear these things tend to cluster because the media likes to focus on the shooter, reprint their manifestos, and generally make them infamous. Other people with mental health issues see these stories, and desire such infamy for themselves. If you’re kind of a loser, or really not all there upstairs, this looks like a way to go out while being somebody, even if that somebody is a deranged mass murderer. I believe this is a big part of what drives other insane, depressed, or depraved people to carry out such attacks. If the media just stuck to the facts, and didn’t frame their stories in a way that makes the mass shooter notorious, I think you’d see far fewer mass-shootings. I know Bearing Arms does not print the names of mass shooters, and I’ve tried to do that in my blogging as well.
Found this on Facebook, and while I can’t say I read all the comments, I did scroll through to the end, so I saw an awful lot of the root-level stories. Unsurprisingly, they were basically all self-defense incidents. Not all were defensive firearms uses, and more than a few ended with an attack hoist on their own petard, with the “victim” getting ahold of an attacker’s weapon and using it on the attackers.
The main thing I noticed? That in a lot of the cases, the attackers were not armed with firearms, but the victims were. So that even the anti-gunners got their way and were able to wave the magic wand and disappear all the guns, it would result in good people unable to defend themselves against bad people. These are the people anti-gunners want dead, maimed, or raped. And a number of them did what their attackers wanted and were still hurt after compliance.
The story of the Katie Steinle killing has taken a new direction, with the “breaking news” that the gun used by her killer was stolen from the car of a federal agent; though whether it was a service weapon or personally owned is an open question at this writing. And the right-hand-side of my internet is all about the carelessness of the agent (with gratuitous Project Gunwalker references as well.) I was already somewhat uncomfortable with how this story is being used by the right to saddle up and go after immigration policy, because the drifter who picked up a gun and let his DTs pull the trigger (his own explanation, basically) happened to be an illegal alien – as though only an illegal alien could have committed this tragedy. But if the owner of the firearm hadn’t been a federal agent, the very same people pointing and laughing would instead be pre-emptively defending the firearm owner and waiting for the other side to wave their bloody shirt for the cause of lost-and-stolen, and firearms registration, and strict liability.
Someone was tragically and negligently killed last week, by another person who is, by the accounts I’ve seen, remorseful and at least partially willing to accept responsibility (he appears to have pleaded not guilty in his first court appearance, despite the admission of guilt in the interview). Using it as an example of Something Must Be Done is just as much waving the bloody shirt as what the other side does under other circumstances. I get it, tragedy grabs eyeballs, and it’s tempting to try and use that to advance a cause. But if I don’t like it when the other side does it, I ought to also not like it when “my” side does it. And I don’t.
Saw this on Facebook, and was mildly surprised that NPR posted this
Since 1993, the United States has seen a drop in the rate of homicides and other violence involving guns, according to two new studies released Tuesday. Using government data, analysts saw a steep drop for violence in the 1990s, they saw more modest drops in crime rates since 2000.
The author of the NPR piece can’t even get up much enthusiasm for pushing the “OMG gun suicides” angle; and the summation paragraph (the second most important one for the TL;DR crowd, according to my writing teachers) takes a hard shot at the “criminals get their guns from gun shows” fallacy:
“In 2004 (the most recent year of data available), among state prison inmates who possessed a gun at the time of the offense, fewer than two percent bought their firearm at a flea market or gun show,” according to the Bureau of Justice Statistics. “About 10 percent of state prison inmates said they purchased it from a retail store or pawnshop, 37 percent obtained it from family or friends, and another 40 percent obtained it from an illegal source.”
They note WHY 1993 is chosen as the benchmark date; it’s the peak year for “gun violence.” They also note that in the same period gun ownership has risen significantly. This is an amazingly pro-gun piece, and it’s on the NPR website. Following up to the summary at Pew’s own website, I’d even say the NPR summary is a tad more pro-gun than Pew’s; since Pew spends more electrons noting that the trend was more pronounced in the 1990s and has fallen off since 2000. One article doesn’t make a trend, by any means, but it’s an interesting article. And one worth keeping in my back pocket to deal with people who attack the source rather than the data.
Via Breitbart, a story of someone whose life may have been saved by gun control. And of course there will be no consequences for the police chief or anyone else in government. Because guns cause domestic violence or something.
A restraining order is a piece of paper, and when seconds count, the police are minutes away.
Apparently the media’s zero to sensationalist time is pretty damned low, as they are already couching their headlines to make it seem like Zimmerman has claimed yet another victim. USA Today headline, “George Zimmerman Involved in Shooting.” If you follow through to the article, you’ll note that he was apparently shot by someone else, and was taken to the hospital. Also note that in the background section of the story, they fail to mention that Zimmerman only fired at Martin because Martin was pounding Zimmerman’s head into the pavement. CNN is pimping the same headline. This guy is going to spend the rest of his life looking over his shoulder. Given the trouble he’s had with women since, I’ve said he should look into the monk’s life. That might be all that’s really left for him. At the very least, moving to a different part of the country would probably be wise. I’m kind of tired of seeing this guy in the news.
Three people have been convicted for failing to obey the new background check laws since a bill to expand the requirements went into effect in July 2013.
If you listened to our opponents, there’s an epidemic of criminal trafficking going on right beneath our noses, and surely we just need to pass some “common sense” gun control laws to fix the problem. Three prosecutions in two years does not add up to a serious problem. Shouldn’t Coloradans question the motivation of the people who pushed this law as a solution to a crisis in the wake of such a low level of prosecution? Also, only 24,098 of 512,028 background checks have been processed for private party sales during the period this law has been in effect. That’s a sharp contrast from the 40% number that was batted around by gun control proponents who promoted the ban on private party transfers.
Additionally, the article notes the widespread defiance by gun owners of the magazine restrictions. Perhaps gun control proponents would argue that widespread defiance is also responsible for the astoundingly low numbers of checks run for private party transfers. But if so, doesn’t that just speak to the law’s uselessness? Either this is not the problem our opponents try to sell it as, or the law doesn’t garner enough respect from law abiding persons as to seem worth obeying. Either way, it speaks to the snake oil Bloomberg has sold residents of Colorado.
Murder in New York City is up 20%. Now, it’s quite possible to argue this is a side-effect of electing a socialist mayor who picks fights with the NYPD, but it’s quite certain in this case that gun control isn’t helping, a fact that New York State Rifle and Pistol Association has been pointing out.
Unfortunately, I don’t think any of the supports of the bill care that it’s ineffective. They knew that when they passed it. All the politicians care about is that after Sandy Hook and Webster, something had to be done, and SAFE was something, so therefore it had to be done. This is the most powerful force in politics, and when it’s set in motion, bad results are nearly always guaranteed. Now crime is up 20% in New York, and the usual suspects will be clamoring for something to be done. God help us on what that something is going to be.