Wintery Knight

…integrating Christian faith and knowledge in the public square

New CDC study on gun violence that Obama requested undermines gun control

Here’s an article about the CDC study from the leftist Slate magazine. (H/T ECM)

First – Obama ordered this study, and it was performed by an agency under his control – the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

The article says:

Earlier this year, President Obama ordered the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to assess the existing research on gun violence and recommend future studies. That report, prepared by the Institute of Medicine and the National Research Council, is now complete. Its findings won’t entirely please the Obama administration or the NRA, but all of us should consider them.

The article explains 10 findings of the report.

Here are a few of them:

2. Most indices of crime and gun violence are getting better, not worse. “Overall crime rates have declined in the past decade, and violent crimes, including homicides specifically, have declined in the past 5 years,” the report notes. “Between 2005 and 2010, the percentage of firearm-related violent victimizations remained generally stable.” Meanwhile, “firearm-related death rates for youth ages 15 to 19 declined from 1994 to 2009.” Accidents are down, too: “Unintentional firearm-related deaths have steadily declined during the past century. The number of unintentional deaths due to firearm-related incidents accounted for less than 1 percent of all unintentional fatalities in 2010.”

5. Mass shootings aren’t the problem. “The number of public mass shootings of the type that occurred at Sandy Hook Elementary School accounted for a very small fraction of all firearm-related deaths,” says the report. “Since 1983 there have been 78 events in which 4 or more individuals were killed by a single perpetrator in 1 day in the United States, resulting in 547 victims and 476 injured persons.” Compare that with the 335,000 gun deaths between 2000 and 2010 alone.

7. Guns are used for self-defense often and effectively. “Almost all national survey estimates indicate that defensive gun uses by victims are at least as common as offensive uses by criminals, with estimates of annual uses ranging from about 500,000 to more than 3 million per year … in the context of about 300,000 violent crimes involving firearms in 2008,” says the report. The three million figure is probably high, “based on an extrapolation from a small number of responses taken from more than 19 national surveys.” But a much lower estimate of 108,000 also seems fishy, “because respondents were not asked specifically about defensive gun use.” Furthermore, “Studies that directly assessed the effect of actual defensive uses of guns (i.e., incidents in which a gun was ‘used’ by the crime victim in the sense of attacking or threatening an offender) have found consistently lower injury rates among gun-using crime victims compared with victims who used other self-protective strategies.”

10. It isn’t true that most gun acquisitions by criminals can be blamed on a few bad dealers. The report concedes that in 1998, “1,020 of 83,272 federally licensed retailers (1.2 percent) accounted for 57.4 percent of all guns traced by the ATF.” However, “Gun sales are also relatively concentrated; approximately 15 percent of retailers request 80 percent of background checks on gun buyers conducted by the National Instant Criminal Background Check System.” Researchers have found that “the share of crime gun traces attributed to these few dealers only slightly exceeded their share of handgun sales, which are almost equally concentrated among a few dealers.” Volume, not laxity, drives the number of ill-fated sales.

The findings of the CDC study are not aligned with either side of the gun control debate, but considering the source (an agency of the Obama administration), I expect them to be even more liberal than the real state of affairs.

A better place to look for the truth about guns is in the academic literature. Here are two books I really like for that.

Both of those books make the case that permitting law-abiding citizens to own firearms for self-defense reduces rates of gun violence.

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Wayne Grudem explains what the Bible says about self-defense

Reformed Baptist theologian Wayne Grudem speaks on the Bible and the right of self-defense.

About Wayne Grudem:

Grudem holds a BA from Harvard University, a Master of Divinity from Westminster Theological Seminary, and a PhD from the University of Cambridge. In 2001, Grudem became Research Professor of Bible and Theology at Phoenix Seminary. Prior to that, he had taught for 20 years at Trinity Evangelical Divinity School, where he was chairman of the department of Biblical and Systematic Theology.

Grudem served on the committee overseeing the English Standard Version translation of the Bible, and in 1999 he was the president of the Evangelical Theological Society. He is a co-founder and past president of the Council on Biblical Manhood and Womanhood. He is the author of, among other books, Systematic Theology: An Introduction to Biblical Doctrine, which advocates a Calvinistic soteriology, the verbal plenary inspiration and inerrancy of the Bible, the body-soul dichotomy in the nature of man, and the complementarian (rather than egalitarian) view of gender equality.

The MP3 file is here.

Topics:

  • what about turning the other cheek? doesn’t that undermine self-defense?
  • what does Jesus say about the right to self-defense in the New Testament
  • did Jesus’ disciples carry swords for protection during his ministry?
  • why did Jesus tell his disciples to sell their cloaks and buy swords?
  • what about Jesus stopping Peter from using force during Jesus’ arrest?
  • shouldn’t we rely on police instead of our own personal weapons?
  • what about brandishing a handgun vs actually trying to shoot someone?
  • what are violent crime rates in pro-gun USA and in the anti-gun UK?
  • does outlawing guns cause violent crime to increase or decrease?
  • do academic studies show that gun control decreases crime?
  • do academic studies show that concealed carry laws decreases crime?
  • what do academic studies show about defensive handgun usage?
  • do many children die from guns in the home compared to other causes?
  • doesn’t the US Constitution limit the usage of guns to the army and police?
  • what did the Founding Fathers believe about lawful ownership of firearms?
  • What should be the goal of someone who uses a weapon in self-defense?

This is a good example of applying the Bible to real life. We need more of that!

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21-year-old man uses legally owned firearm to defend family from three criminals

From KHOU Houston.

Excerpt:

A 21-year-old man sprang into action to protect his family Thursday night when three suspects barged into their northwest Harris County home.

The young man was home with his mother and father in the 3900 block of Brook Garden when the armed men forced their way into the house around 8 p.m., according to Harris County Sheriff’s deputies.

The family was in the middle of baking a cake, when there was a knock at the door.

“I see a young boy and I think it is a friend of my son so I open it a little bit,” the father explained. “These guys push and out comes two more, they push me on the ground.”

After the father was down, the suspects went after the mother. That is when the son ran and got his dad’s gun. He opened fire and hit one of the suspects, who died in the back bedroom. The other two suspects fled the scene.

[...]Neighbors said the son was just doing what he had to do.

“People can’t go breaking into people’s homes and not expect some sort of consequence,” said Harry Moulder.

No charges were expected to be filed against the homeowner’s son.

Another day, another defensive gun use by a law abiding citizen to thwart a crime. When I read stories like this one, I ask myself this question: what’s the liberal alternative resolution to this scenario? They just want the law abiding people to submit to the criminals. The liberal alternative is to let the three people in the home die at the hands of criminals.

Don’t believe me?

Take a look at this list of recommendations for victims of rape, which was put out by a liberal university.

Look:

  1. Be realistic about your ability to protect yourself.
  2. Your instinct may be to scream, go ahead! It may startle your attacker and give you an opportunity to run away.
  3. Kick off your shoes if you have time and can’t run in them.
  4. Don’t take time to look back; just get away.
  5. If your life is in danger, passive resistance may be your best defense.
  6. Tell your attacker that you have a disease or are menstruating.
  7. Vomiting or urinating may also convince the attacker to leave you alone.
  8. Yelling, hitting or biting may give you a chance to escape, do it!
  9. Understand that some actions on your part might lead to more harm.
  10. Remember, every emergency situation is different. Only you can decide which action is most appropriate.

That’s the best campus leftists can do for law-abiding victims of crime. Pee on yourself and maybe your rapist will go away. But you can’t own a gun, because guns scare criminals with their loud noises.

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Man uses firearm to defend home and 2-year-old son from criminals

NBC12 reports on a story sure to be ignored by the anti-gun national media.

Excerpt:

Prince Edward sheriff’s deputies are investigating a deadly home invasion that happened early Sunday morning in Prospect. Two of the three suspects are dead, shot by the homeowner in self defense, according to investigators on scene. Meanwhile, the search continues for the third suspect.

This situation began unfolding at about 4:30 a.m. in the 5000 block of Prince Edward Highway, or Route 460. Investigators told NBC12′s Kelly Avellino three unknown men forced their way in the front door of the home, where a man was alone with a 2-year-old child.

According to a press release issued by Sheriff Wesley W. Reed, that man called 911 to report a home invasion and said the suspects were armed. Reed also said gunfire was exchanged between the suspects and the caller.

Authorities said two suspects were pronounced dead at the scene, while the third managed to escape on foot.

We’re told the homeowner and the child were not harmed.

Just another use of legally-owned firearms to defend property and innocent people. It happens all the time, in places where guns aren’t banned by leftists.

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Great grandmother fires at mugger with legally-owned, legally-carried handgun

Story from the Washington Times.

Excerpt:

A 56-year-old great-grandmother from Detroit has a permit to carry her 9 mm handgun, and when she was assaulted on a city bus, she used it.

Ramona Taylor Kamate, 56, boarded a bus Thursday at Northland Mallin Southfield, Mich., Click on Detroit reports. It was there she came face to face with her attacker.

“He was saying ‘you smell good, looks like you have money’ and I said no I don’t,” Ms. Kamate said. “He grabbed my book bag and I grabbed it back and we started tussling, I bit him on his left hand. When he struck me in my head we started fighting.”

No one tried to help her.

“It’s sad you have all those men on the bus, and no one helped me,” she added.

The assailant ran off the bus with Ms. Kamate’s purse, and the grandmother ran after him.

“Somebody said he had a gun, and when he turned and faced me he went down, and when he went down I just pulled my 9 out and started shooting him,” she said.

Ms. Kamate said she fired 11 shots, but he still got away. Her purse was later found, minus the cash in her wallet.

“At first, I felt remorse because I have grandchildren,” she told Click on Detroit. “If my grandchildren are out here doing what these punks are doing, they need to get the same thing.”

The local Fox channel, Fox 2 Detroit, has a video of the lady explaining what happened. She seems like a normal, old-fashioned law-abiding person who has had it with young punks. Her handgun is an H&K USP9 – an excellent handgun. I was surprised that she missed him with it.

Whenever we see stories like this it is important to ask what the Democrats would do with this woman after they banned all guns, which is what they want. Guns like Romona’s H&K USP9 are banned in the far-left UK and effectively banned in Australia. In Canada, certain pistols can be owned, but not carried concealed by law-abiding citizens for self-defense. Criminals, of course, can and do own and carry guns of any type. Imagine what would happen if the Democrats got through gun bans similar to what other left-leaning countries have done? Without a gun, that woman would not be able to defend herself against a younger, stronger attacker. All women should own firearms and have concealed-carry permits. But if it were up to Democrats, women like that great grandmother would always be the victims of stronger, more aggressive, men. And sometimes men don’t just want money alone.

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