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The Relationship between Crime Rates and Concealed Carry

Is there a correlation between the amount of crime in a given area and the number of citizens that have a concealed carry permit.
by

Chris Hicks

on 20 April 2010

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Transcript of The Relationship between Crime Rates and Concealed Carry

What is Concealed Carry? Concealed carry is what refers to a citizens legal right to carry a firearm or other weapon on them or in close proximity to them. It is widely debated and disputed whether or not it actually does any good towards lowering crime rates or if it has no connection at all. It is not a federally mandated piece of legislation. It is completely up to the states to decide whether the states want to issue these permits or not, and some states don't allow these permits at all. The politics involved It is difficult to find unbiased research on this topic due to peoples' belief on the subject. Generally speaking, people that tend to be more liberal believe that more guns are not the answer. Where as people that tend to think more conservatively believe that guns can be a deterant to crime. Crime Rate Crime rates are in place to attempt to statistically provide the amount of crime in a given area. Some people believe that guns reduce the amount of violent crime in an area of high concentration of legally owned guns, however lead to an increase of less serious offences. Previous research conducted A University of Maryland scholar by the name of John Lott wrote a book titled "More Guns, Less Crime" that specifically deals with the effect of concealed carry on the crime rate of that area. However Yale Law professors John Donohue III and Ian Ayres say that Lott's conclusion was reached due to a limited data set. The men then claimed that when the tests were ran in a more complete data set that none of the conclusions that Lott reached were the same. In 1998, there was a proposition in place to allow volunteer armed patrols to wander about the parks of New York City.

“The New York residents of the Flatbush and Borough Park neighborhoods, where armed patrols were to be placed, have spoken and said that the patrols are not welcome. In fact, Rabbi Yakove Lloyd, the leader calling for the armed patrols, has postponed them "until further notice." The last thing that we need in New York City is a group of gun-toting vigilantes "patrolling" our streets. The New York City Police Department is in the best position to protect residents from crime.”

This is a quote submitted by the person put in charge of representing these communities. This response seems to be the norm whenever there is a movement towards more guns in an area. But is this response a wise one? Statistics The United States has 90 guns for every 100 citizens, this makes the United States the most heavily armed society in the world. U.S. citizens own 270 million of the world's 875 million known firearms.
About 4.5 million of the 8 million new guns manufactured worldwide each year are purchased in the United States. Small Arms Survey 2007 by the Geneva-based Graduate Institute of International Studies However even though we have the most guns, we rank #24 in the world as far as murder per capita is concerned at 0.042802 per 1,000 people. *

* http://www.nationmaster.com/graph/cri_mur_percap-crime-murders-per-capita

From 1994 to 2004 Tennessee researched the passing of the legislation allowing concealed carry and if the permit holders ever disobeyed the law. The results were that a very small percentage of permit holders disobeyed the law and crime rates dropped over the decade. 100% of the County Sheriffs liked the law and stood behind it. However Tennessee ranked number 2 in the nation as far as violent crimes committed in 2006 with a rate of 760 per 100,000. Number 1 was South Carolina with 766 per 100,000. Vermont, that has an unrestricted policy ranked 48 in the nation with 137 per 100,000. However Arizona has the same type policy and ranked 6 with 688 per 100,000. So the statistics can show both sides of the arguement. Conclusion The fact that the statistics can go either way for this relationship, either positive or negative, is the sole factor that is the fuel that feeds this debate. Both sides of the arguement have thier statistics and neither side is backing down. In my personal opinion, I believe that a trained, law-abiding citizen should be allowed to carry a concealed weapon on them as long as they follow the law. Whatever the effect may be on the crime rate, I personally feel safer having a weapon with me when I'm out.
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