Those of you who know me know that I am a huge advocate of firearm ownership and regular training and practice; with the exception of those who have been legally restrained from owning such because of their own mistakes. In a previous article I took the opportunity to dispel some of the examples that both pro and anti gun organizations tout as example of effective and ineffective gun control; the problem was that it was not quite as simple as they portray it. Globally I discovered that how effective different methods of control were on violence had much more to do with culture and financial state than anything else. Every country has anomalies, and the US is no exception.
We really don’t have a solid foundation for comparing ourselves to another nation, and I’m discovering that there is a lot to be similarly said when it comes to state gun control laws and actual violence. Regardless of how many firearms there are per capita, states and cities with a higher poverty ratio are more likely to have gun violence issues than states populated by a healthy number of middle and upper class people regardless of restrictions. Likewise, states with more inner city areas are going to have more murders per capita than states which are predominantly rural farmland.
As you look at the numbers below; organized in this case by percentage of state populations which own firearms, you will notice that while there are some trends it’s not very clear cut. In some cases single cities throw off the stats of entire states. While Chicago is not as high as I had previously been let to believe from the media, the District of Columbia was quite interesting when realizing that it beat out both nationwide states and cities for gun related violence, while simultaneously having the fewest number of firearms per capita. But since it also had the highest non firearm related murder rate then it can be assumed there are some other underlying issues than just gun control.
Verify what you don’t agree with and double check the things you do. Don’t take the word of the media when you make your own decisions. For my part; I’m going to stick to my belief that legal law abiding citizens armed and trained will always be better than a populace which relies completely on law enforcement reaction time in an emergency. The bad guys don’t give a second thought to the good intentions of law makers, so why make yourself vulnerable. And that’s not even taking into account my opinion on the governmental checks and balances that an armed populace create; protecting us from enemies both foreign and domestic.
The state stats are from 2011, the city stats are from 2013; as a side note should you will likely see small discrepancies from current numbers; but overall they hold solid. Feel free to cut and paste into an excel format so that you can sort the numbers most interesting to you.
|STATE||POPULATION DENSITY||TOTAL MURDERS||TOTAL GUN MURDERS||GUN OWNERSHIP PERCENT||MURDERS PER 100,000||GUN MURDERS PER 100,000||CITIES WITH THE HIGHEST GUN MURDER RATE per 100,000|
|Louisiana||105||437||351||44.10%||9.6||7.7||New Orleans 27.7|
|Missouri||87.26||419||321||41.70%||7||5.4||Kansas City 19.3|
|District of Columbia||10298||131||99||3.60%||21.8||16.5|