2nd Ammendment Fact Sheet
Way too much misinformation abounds regarding the Constitutionally Guaranteed right for US Citizens to Keep and Bear Arms. I hope this list of US Government facts regarding the use of Firearms in America will help you clear up the question when one of those “Anti Gun” people starts foaming at the mouth and claiming it is the gun that causes crime. Here we go:
Guns are used 2.5 million times a year in self-defense. Law-abiding citizens use guns to defend themselves against criminals as many as 2.5 million times every year—or about 6,850 times a day. So you could easily say that each year, firearms are used 80 times more often to protect the lives of honest citizens than to take lives.
Even anti-gun Clinton researchers concede that guns are used 1.5 million times annually for self-defense. According to the Clinton Justice Department, there are as many as 1.5 million cases of self-defense with a firearm every year. The National Institute of Justice published this figure in 1997 as part of “Guns in America”—a study which was authored by noted anti-gun criminologists Philip Cook and Jens Ludwig.
Concealed carry laws have reduced murder and crime rates in the states that have enacted them. According to a comprehensive study which reviewed crime statistics in every county in the United States from 1977 to 1992, states which passed concealed carry laws reduced their rate of murder by 8.5%, rape by 5%, aggravated assault by 7% and robbery by 3%
One of the nation’s leading anti-gun medical publications, the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA), found that the Brady registration law has failed to reduce murder rates. In August 2000, JAMA reported that states implementing waiting periods and background checks did “not [experience] reductions in homicide rates or overall suicide rates.”
Concealed Carry v. Waiting Period Laws. In 1976, both Georgia and Wisconsin tried two different approaches to fighting crime. Georgia enacted legislation making it easier for citizens to carry guns for self-defense, while Wisconsin passed a law requiring a 48 hour waiting period before the purchase of a handgun. What resulted during the ensuing years? Georgia’s law served as a deterrent to criminals and helped drop its homicide rate by 21 percent. Wisconsin’s murder rate, however, rose 33 percent during the same period.
Twice as many children are killed playing football in school than are murdered by guns. That’s right. Despite what media coverage might seem to indicate, there are more deaths related to high school football than guns. In a recent three year period, twice as many football players died (45 deaths)from hits to the head, heat stroke, etc., as compared with students who were murdered by firearms (22 deaths) during that same time period.
More guns, less crime. In the decade of the 1990s, the number of guns in this country increased by roughly 40 million—even while the murder rate decreased by almost 40% percent. Accidental gun deaths in the home decreased by almost 40 percent as well
CDC admits there is no evidence that gun control [laws] reduces crime. The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) has long been criticized for propagating questionable studies which gun control organizations have used in defense of their cause. But after analyzing 51 studies in 2003, the CDC concluded that the “evidence was insufficient to determine the effectiveness of any of these [firearms] laws.”
Gun shows are NOT a primary source of illegal guns for criminals. According to two government studies, the National Institute of Justice reported in 1997 that “less than two percent [of criminals] reported obtaining [firearms] from a gun show.”(10) And the Bureau of Justice Statistics revealed in 2001 that less than one percent of firearm offenders acquired their weapons at gun shows.
Several scientific polls indicate that the right to keep and bear arms is still revered—and gun control disdained—by a majority of Americans today. For example:
* In 2002, an ABC News poll found that almost three-fourths of the American public believe that the Second Amendment of the U.S. Constitution protects the rights of “individuals” to own guns.
* Zogby pollsters found that by a more than 3 to 1 margin, Americans support punishing “criminals who use a gun in the commission of a crime” over legislation to “ban handguns.”
* A Research 2000 poll found that 85% of Americans would find it appropriate for a principal or teacher to use “a gun at school to defend the lives of students” to stop a school massacre.
A study claiming “guns are three times more likely to kill you than help you” is a total fraud. Even using the low figures from the Clinton Justice Department, firearms are used almost 50 times more often to save life than to take life.(15) More importantly, however, the figure claiming one is three times more likely to be killed by one’s own gun is a total lie: Researcher Don Kates reveals that all available data now indicates that the “home gun homicide victims [in the flawed study] were killed using guns not kept in the victim’s home.” In other words, the victims were NOT murdered with their own guns! They were killed “by intruders who brought their own guns to the victim’s household.”
Gun-free England is not such a utopia after all. According to the BBC News, handgun crime in the United Kingdom rose by 40% in the two years after it passed its draconian gun ban in 1997. And according to a United Nations study, British citizens are more likely to become a victim of crime than are people in the United States. The 2000 report shows that the crime rate in England is higher than the crime rates of 16 other industrialized nations, including the United States
Of the 2.5 million times citizens use their guns to defend themselves every year, the overwhelming majority merely brandish their gun or fire a warning shot to scare off their attackers. Less than 8% of the time, a citizen will kill or wound his/her attacker
As many as 200,000 women use a gun every year to defend themselves against sexual abuse.
Armed citizens kill more crooks than do the police. Citizens shoot and kill at least twice as many criminals as police do every year (1,527 to 606). And readers of Newsweek learned that “only 2 percent of civilian shootings involved an innocent person mistakenly identified as a criminal. The ‘error rate’ for the police, however, was 11 percent, more than five times as high.”
Handguns are the weapon of choice for self-defense. Citizens use handguns to protect themselves over 1.9 million times a year.(27) Many of these self-defense handguns could be labeled as “Saturday Night Specials.”
Concealed carry laws are dropping crime rates across the country. A comprehensive national study determined in 1996 that violent crime fell after states made it legal to carry concealed firearms. The results of the study showed: States which passed concealed carry laws reduced their rate of murder by 8.5%, rape by 5%, aggravated assault by 7% and robbery by 3%;(29) and If those states not having concealed carry laws had adopted such laws in 1992, then approximately 1,570 murders, 4,177 rapes, 60,000 aggravated assaults and over 11,000 robberies would have been avoided yearly.
Vermont is one of the safest five states in the country. In Vermont, citizens can carry a firearm without getting permission . . . without paying a fee . . . or without going through any kind of government-imposed waiting period. And yet for ten years in a row, Vermont has remained one of the top-five, safest states in the union—having three times received the “Safest State Award
In Florida concealed carry helps slash the murder rate in the state. During the fifteen years following passage of Florida’s concealed carry law in 1987, over 800,000 permits to carry firearms were issued to people in the state. FBI reports show that the homicide rate in Florida, which in 1987 was much higher than the national average, fell 52% during that 15-year period—thus putting the Florida rate below the national average.
Do firearms carry laws result in chaos? No. Consider the case of Florida. A citizen in the Sunshine State is far more likely to be attacked by an alligator than to be assaulted by a concealed carry holder. During the first fifteen years that the Florida concealed carry law was in effect, alligator attacks outpaced the number of crimes committed by carry holders by a 229 to 155 margin. BUT the 155 “crimes” committed by concealed carry permit holders are somewhat misleading as most of these infractions resulted from Floridians who accidentally carried their firearms into restricted areas, such as an airport