That’s right. Illinois, the Land of Lincoln and home to the city which has the title, “Murder Capital of America,” is seeing crime drop precipitously.
Recent data from one of America’s largest cities appears to support the premise that a better-armed society is a less violent one. The Chicago Police Department released Q1 crime numbers and showed the lowest murder rate since 1958.
Why is this significant? Because Chicago was labeled by the FBI as recently as September 2013 as the “Murder Capital of America,” passing New York City for that dubious honor. And what seems to be the reason for this measurable downturn in murder and other crime?
Because the Illinois legislature passed a statewide concealed-carry law on July 9, 2013. It was the last state in the U.S. to allow its citizens to conceal-carry a firearm.
But it’s not just the murder rate that is dropping:
The report also said there were 90 fewer shootings and 119 fewer shooting victims compared to last year. There were 222 fewer shootings and 292 fewer shooting victims compared to the first quarter of 2012.
Of course the Liberals would have none of this! It just isn’t in their DNA to admit that legally armed citizens reduce the crime rate. Period.
However, Chicago Police Chief Gerry McCarthy doesn’t agree. He gives credit to reduction in crime to the confiscation of over 1,300 illegal guns in the first three months, better police training and “intelligent policing strategies.” McCarthy and staunch Obama supporter Mayor Rahm Emanuel are strong opponents of the new concealed-carry law.
The first concealed-carry permits in Illinois were issued in late February, so there isn’t enough time or data to accurately conclude that the new law is fully (or even partly) responsible for Chicago’s across-the-board drop in crime.
Of course, the majority of criminals assumed the concealed-carry law went into effect last summer, so that could logically account for the drop in crime. Mike Miller from the Independent Journal Review has done research on this.
Gun crime experts John Lott, Jr. and David Mustard made the famous argument in “Crime, Deterrence, and Right-to-Carry Concealed Firearms” that: “When state concealed handgun laws went into effect in a county, murders fell by 8.5 percent, and rapes and aggravated assaults fell by 5 and 7 percent.” More guns mean less crime.
Gary Kleck, PhD., also a gun crime expert, found that the crime deterrence effect of firearms possession is significant: sophisticated statistics suggest three to four crimes are stopped by a handgun than are committed in the United States every year.
Of course, this isn’t news to those of us on the Conservative side of this debate. It is just simple fact.