Thursday, June 16, 2016

More Guns = Less Homicides?

After the Orlando shooting, you'd be forgiven for thinking that America is murderously out of control, but that's not true. According to FBI data, there are less homicides now than at any time since 1963, when there were 4.6 slayings per 100,000 people. As of 2014 there were 4.5.

The 1970s, '80s and '90s were far more deadly, as the above kill chart shows. So what's changed? At least two things; gun ownership and prison. As the US murder rate fell by 49% over the last 20 years, there was a 141% increase in the number of guns available to the public. By the anti-gun lobby's reckoning, America should be more violent now than ever, but no.

Prison is also a factor, with the last 30 years seeing a remarkable 790% increase in the federal prison population, from 25,000 to 219,000 inmates. It's presumably harder for violent people to go out and shoot someone when they're behind bars.

How Did You Get Here?

That aside, something's changed, something which makes people feel less safe and more likely to get shot at work in San Bernardino or a nightclub in Orlando, or a concert in Paris, or an office building in New York, or... the list goes on.

Oh Look, Islam

What's new here? Not more guns, statistics show that more of them don't add up to more shootings. Not jail time either, after all, you can't shoot up a club from the confines of your cell. So what's changed?

Like Buddhism, But Way More peaceful

Surely it wouldn't have anything to do with Islam.




LL said...

Three strikes laws put career criminals behind bars for life. Barack is freeing as many of the black ones as he can, but there prisons are full and the nation is safer.

LSP said...

You know a lot more about it than I do, but it stands to reason that locking criminals up would lead to less crime, murders included. Still, it seems to me that something's badly wrong with a country that has to incarcerate so many people. Of course if you take a certain demographic out of the equation the stats change considerably.

Then there's Muslim immigration. What could possibly go wrong.

Euripides said...

The silliest stuff to come out of terrorism in Orlando is Obama's abysmally ignorant rant against naming Islamic terrorism. That isn't even a problem with PC brain. It's a problem with trying to appease people who don't want to be appeased and who continue to kill in the name of their god.

LSP said...

It's like a desperate wish fulfillment -- if only we keep telling them how peaceful they really are, then suddenly they'll all become Buddhists and turn Mecca into a giant Woodstock in the sand.