There have been a few media stories going around showing that SAFE Act prosecutions have been on the rise, but a local NBC affiliate takes a look at the actual numbers, and it turns out most of the prosecutions are in New York City, and are for unlicensed handgun possession, a crime before the SAFE Act but which the SAFE Act raised from a misdemeanor to a felony.
There have been only 31 cases prosecuted in the entire state of New York for possession of an illegal assault weapon, and only 8 people charged with failure to register.
Leah Gunn Barrett, executive director of New Yorkers Against Gun Violence, said her organization believes the statistics show the SAFE Act is being enforced uniformly, despite some of the charges being rarely used.
“You’re not going to have the State Police going door to door seeing if you have an AR-15 and if it’s registered,” Barrett said. “I don’t know, maybe that will start to happen, particularly if there’s a massacre using one of these weapons in the state.”
Don’t for a minute believe these people aren’t in favor of a pervasive police state in order to accomplish their goals. The SAFE Act was never about public safety at all. It was about expressing disapproval for “those kinds of people,” and making them uncomfortable such that they’ll either move elsewhere, or become “better” people, you know, like downstate elites.
Criminals don’t bother with “assault weapons,” which is reflected in the fact that they are very very seldom used in crimes, and now reflected in the paltry number of cases prosecuted under New York State’s enhanced ban.
Clayton Cramer has this video outlining his study on the effects of private transfer bans on murder rates:
I think it would probably make sense to control with states that didn’t pass private transfer bans. If murder rates are declining generally (as they were in the mid to late 1990s), or rising generally (as they were in the late 1960s), it would mask the true effect. I think it would be more accurate to say that, for instance, California’s murder rate increased faster than states that didn’t pass such a ban. Maryland and Pennsylvania are both listed as success stories, but during those periods in question, murder was falling generally.
Remember, the United States has a population nearly the size of Europe, and because the US is a single huge media market (because we all speak the same language) it seems like it happens here more often. Once you run the numbers, it’s just not true that we’re exceptional in this regard.
Remember: New definition of “mass shooting” is “four or more people hit by bullets”. Remember that when they trot the totals out. If JJ shoots Pookie, Ice Dog, and Ray-Ray, and one of them manages to wing him back with return fire, that’s a “mass shooting”.
(They’re counting the Virginia News Crew as a mass shooting because white reporters count as two ordinary people.)
Hopefully Tam won’t mind if you borrow that argument for all your lefty friends who are posting this crap on Facebook about 355 mass shootings this year.
Keep in mind that early reports are almost always wrong, but clearly this is a major mass shooting event. You can expect our opponents to immediately begin exploiting this tragedy. Remember that Oregon is controlled by anti-gun Democrats. This could be the end of the Second Amendment in Oregon if Oregon gun owners don’t start immediately mobilizing to counter what is no doubt coming.
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.