Harvard Study Finds Repressing Gun Rights Does Not Reduce

Discussion in 'News / Current Events' started by Revmitchell, Sep 1, 2013.

  1. Revmitchell

    Revmitchell
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    ...Since at least 1965, the false assertion that the United States has the industrialized world’s highest murder rate has been an artifact of politically motivated Soviet minimization designed to hide the true homicide rates. 2 Since well before that date, the Soviet Union possessed extremely stringent gun controls that were effectuated
    by a police state apparatus providing stringent enforcement.

    So successful was that regime that few Russian civilians now have firearms and very few murders involve them. Yet, manifest suc‐cess in keeping its people disarmed did not prevent the Soviet Union from having far and away the highest murder rate in the developed world. In the 1960s and early 1970s, the gun‐less So‐viet Union’s murder rates paralleled or generally exceeded those of gun‐ridden America.

    While American rates stabilized and then steeply declined, however, Russian murder increased so drasti‐cally that by the early 1990s the Russian rate was three times higher than that of the United States. Between 1998‐2004 (the lat‐est figure available for Russia), Russian murder rates were nearly four times higher than American rates. Similar murder rates also characterize the Ukraine, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, and various other now‐independent European nations of the former U.S.S.R.

    Thus, in the United States and the former Soviet Union transition‐ing into current‐day Russia, “homicide results suggest that where guns are scarce other weapons are substituted in killings.” While American gun ownership is quite high, Table 1 shows many other developed nations (e.g., Norway, Finland, Germany, France, Denmark) with high rates of gun ownership. These countries, however, have murder rates as low or lower than many devel‐oped nations in which gun ownership is much rarer. For example,
    Luxembourg, where handguns are totally banned and ownership of any kind of gun is minimal, had a murder rate nine times higher than Germany in 2002.


    http://www.law.harvard.edu/students/orgs/jlpp/Vol30_No2_KatesMauseronline.pdf
     
  2. Revmitchell

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    ...A second misconception about the relationship between fire‐arms and violence attributes Europe’s generally low homicide rates to stringent gun control. That attribution cannot be accu‐rate since murder in Europe was at an all‐time low before the gun controls were introduced. For instance, virtually the only English gun control during the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries was the practice that police patrolled without guns. During this period gun control prevailed far less in England or Europe than in certain American states which nevertheless had—and continue to have—murder rates that were and are comparatively very high.

    In this connection, two recent studies are pertinent. In 2004, the U.S. National Academy of Sciences released its evaluation from a review of 253 journal articles, 99 books, 43 government publications, and some original empirical research. It failed to identify any gun control that had reduced violent crime, sui‐cide, or gun accidents. The same conclusion was reached in 2003 by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control’s review of then‐extant studies. Stringent gun controls were not adopted in England and Western Europe until after World War I. Consistent with the outcomes of the recent American studies just mentioned, these strict controls did not stem the general trend of ever‐growing violent crime throughout the post‐WWII industrialized world including the United States and Russia.
     
  3. Revmitchell

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    Professor Malcolm’s study of English gun law and violent crime summarizes that nation’s nineteenth and twentieth century experience as follows:


    The peacefulness England used to enjoy was not the result of
    strict gun laws. When it had no firearms restrictions [nine‐
    teenth and early twentieth century] England had little vio‐
    lent crime, while the present extraordinarily stringent gun
    controls have not stopped the increase in violence or even
    the increase in armed violence.

    Armed crime, never a problem in England, has now be‐
    come one. Handguns are banned but the Kingdom has mil‐
    lions of illegal firearms. Criminals have no trouble finding
    them and exhibit a new willingness to use them. In the dec‐
    ade after 1957, the use of guns in serious crime increased a
    hundredfold.
     
  4. Aaron

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    bump :type:
     
  5. Revmitchell

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    However unintentionally, the irrelevance of focusing on weaponry is highlighted by the most common theme in the more guns equal more death argument. Epitomizing this theme is a World Health Organization (WHO) report assert‐ing, “The easy availability of firearms has been associated
    with higher firearm mortality rates.”

    The authors, in noting that the presence of a gun in a home corresponds to a higher risk of suicide, apparently assume that if denied firearms, potential suicides will decide to live rather than turning to the numerous alternative suicide mechanisms. The evidence, however, indicates that denying one particular means to people who are motivated to commit suicide by social, eco‐nomic, cultural, or other circumstances simply pushes them to some other means.

    Thus, it is not just the murder rate in gun‐less Russia that is four times higher than the American rate; the Russian suicide rate is also about four times higher than the American rate.
     
  6. Revmitchell

    Revmitchell
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    No evidence that more guns means more deaths.
     

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