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Iowa Gun Control Data Compiled and submitted by Edward Crowell Just so there are no surprises, I do not favor

gun control. Quite the opposite. I believe my life has value, as do the lives of my family and especially my child. I have a right to defend myself from assault and a duty to protect my child. In the absence of police or soldiers, unless they happen to be right there when something bad happens, there is nobody else who must provide for that protection. At the very least, I am responsible for myself and my child until the police arrive. And when they do arrive, police do not have an affirmative duty to protect me (Castle Rock v Gonzales, US Supreme Court, 2005). They have other priorities that may increase my safety, but they are not required to keep me safe. Protection of self and defense of my child is my job. Protection and defense are the reasons police and military have the tools they have. And they have the tools they have because they are the best for the job. Those tools are guns. Since we‟re doing the same job for the same reasons I want the same tools, the best tools. I want extended magazines for the exact same reasons police want them. I want assault rifles for the same reasons the military want them. But that‟s not going to happen today. Today I‟m going to present a range of data I‟ve developed to provide some perspective and some basic information to form a basis for deciding about gun control in Iowa. First, let‟s talk about where Iowa is, right now. I think that‟s important before we talk about where to go. Iowa ranks number 6 in the US for lowest murder rate at 1.5 per 100,000 population in 2011. Ahead of us is Hawaii at 1.2, New Hampshire, Rhode Island and Vermont in a three way tie at 1.3, and Minnesota at 1.4 per 100,0001. That‟s something to be proud of. What that means is that in 2011 there were 46 murders and non-negligent manslaughters. For the whole year. For the whole state. In the time from 1960 to 2010, Iowa has not had more than 80 murders in a year2. Let‟s see what that looks like, shall we?

Murder and nonnegligent Manslaughter
90 80 70 60 50 40 30 20 10 0 1950 1960 1970 1980 1990 2000 2010 2020

That spike at the right? 2008. Flood. Natural disasters will do that. So that‟s our first bit of perspective: Iowa does not have a lot of murder (and nonnegligent homicide). For comparison it is better to use rates. That way we don‟t get lost in the difference between a state with ten million citizens and a state with one million. So here‟s that in a chart:

Murder and nonnegligent manslaughter rate
3 2.5

2

1.5

1

0.5

0 1950

1960

1970

1980

1990

2000

2010

2020

At the worst, during the late „70‟s and early „80‟s, the murder rate topped 2.5 per 100,000. For perspective, that is the 2011 murder rate for #13 South Dakota. So, at our worst we were about as bad as South Dakota today. No matter how you slice it, Iowa is only dealing with 1.5 per 100,000 or about 46 murders a year. And that‟s ALL murder and non-negligent homicide. The FBI data says 19 of those were with firearms3 (7 handguns, 0 rifles, 2 shotguns, 10 firearms (type unknown), 10 knives or cutting instruments, 10 other weapons, 5 hands/fists/feet/pushed/ect). That‟s something to be proud of. I think it is fair to say Iowa is doing something right with numbers like that. FIRST POINT: IOWA DOES NOT HAVE A GUN PROBLEM We have the sixth lowest murder rate in the nation (and that‟s only because of a three way tie for second). The difference between us and #1 lowest murder rate Hawaii is: .2 per 100,000. That‟s about or less than the year to year variation in murder rate. The only thing separating us from #1is the random variation of year to year. And only 19 involving guns at all (by the way, since there were zero rifles, that means no murders by “assault weapons”). Please don‟t mess that up. Iowa does not need gun control or changes to reduce murders, we already have among the lowest murder rates in the nation. The data is there for the comparison with other crime

statistics, but murder is the big one, so let‟s not make that more complicated than I‟m already going to make it. Overall the nation is talking about a gun problem. I think I‟ve shown Iowa doesn‟t have one. But let‟s go ahead and assume there is a gun problem in the US. Further, let‟s simplify the talk to what has really set this all off: firearm murders. Specifically the shooting at Newtown. Let me be clear, that massacre by a lone madman was and will remain a tragedy. The emotional response should be dramatic when so many children are killed. However, that is a poor basis for legislation. Legislation should be based on reasonable means to achieve realistic goals and based on the best information available. I put forth that gun control does not fit those criteria. And I‟ll demonstrate that several ways as we go along. First, in the debate about gun control there are a lot of numbers and statistics talked about. Crime rates, murder rates, different states, different countries, different years. There are a lot of regulations proposed, bans, magazine limits, background checks, tests, training. In an effort to get something that doesn't require advanced mathematics to understand, I wanted to compare the amount of gun control in each US state with the murder rate in that state. Crime data for each state is collected and published by the FBI and murder rates for each state in 2011 are available1. Measuring the overall gun laws of a state would be difficult for one person, but The Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence ranks each state on the basis of their gun control laws. Those rankings are available online as well4. By comparing a state's gun control rank and their murder rate we should be able to see more gun control leading to less murder. CHART 15
12

Muder Rate (per 100,000)

10 8 6 4 2 0 0 10 20 30
Brady Rank

40

50

60

Looking at the chart, which plots the Brady Rank against the Murder Rate, there is no trend. The points are all over the place. Looking at the numbers themselves5, the 10 states tied at 39th by Brady Rank have murder rates from 2.5 to 7.5 per 100,000. For comparison, the national average is 4.71. The data also shows that California, rated best for gun control, has a murder rate

of 4.8, more than double of worst rated Utah's 1.9. California‟s murder rate is four times that of the lowest murder rate (Hawaii, 1.2 per 100,000). In order to have easier numbers to compare I used the murder rate from the FBI Uniform Crime Report for 2011 to rank each state by murder rate from 1, lowest murder rate, to 50, highest murder rate6. CHART 26

60 50 40
Murder Rank

30 20 10 0 0 10 20 30
Brady Rank

40

50

60

If gun control works, better gun control should mean less murder. In that case, the Brady Rank and the Murder Rank should be similar. This would be seen in the chart as the dots following some sort of line. Ideally, low Brady Rank (indicating “good” gun laws) would also have low Murder Rank (meaning low murder rate). If that were the case, we would see a line starting in the lower left and sloping upwards to the upper right of the chart. That just isn‟t what the data shows. Number one Brady state California is 32nd for murder rate. Dead last Brady state Utah is seventh best in the nation for murder rate. The Brady Rank and Murder Rank just don't match up. If gun control works, it should save lives and reduce crime. If anyone can reliably evaluate a state's gun control, The Brady Campaign should be able to. If anyone can provide useful murder rates, the FBI should be able to. Using what should be reliable numbers, a state's gun control doesn't seem to have any relation to murder rate. If it doesn't reduce murder, should we be seriously considering gun control? I don't know if gun control has worked for other countries or other times, but I think comparing gun control ranks and murder rates shows gun control doesn't work now, here. However, the Brady Rank could be subjective. I don‟t think so as they use a fairly specific and detailed “scorecard” to get their ranking numbers. One of the numbers I see relating

to gun control claims that with increasing gun ownership you get increasing murder. So, we can plot that as well.

Gun Owner % vs Murder Rate
12 10
Murder Rate per 100,000

8 6 4 2 0 0.000

10.000

20.000

30.000

40.000

50.000

60.000

70.000

Gun Ownership %

No relationship. Really, that‟s scattered all over the place. States with very close gun ownership have widely varying murder rates. For that to happen gun ownership must not be a measurable factor in murder rates. Now, a side foray into some statistics. When two things tend to show up together they are related and this can be calculated as a correlation. Really all that means is they tend to happen together (whatever together may be in the data you‟re talking about). The more one happens at the same time as the other, the more correlated they are. If they always happen together that would show high correlation. For the charts above, if the two things we are interested in are related there would be some kind of line (and maybe not a straight one) or a pattern. The better the data fits a line the more reliable that is. A measure of how accurately a line fits the data is the R2 (coefficient of determination). The math to get it is a pain, but most spreadsheet programs will calculate it for you. R2 ranges from -1 to 1. The closer that value is to 1 or -1, the better your line is for predicting data (the better it “fits”). The closer to 0 it is, the less your data “fits” the trend.

Shall we see what that can look like?

Brady Score vs Gun Measures
70.000 60.000 50.000
Gun Owner %

40.000 30.000 20.000 10.000 0.000 0 10 20 30
Brady Rank

f(x) = 0.6115180795x + 21.0887814916 R² = 0.5074959296 40 50 60

The Brady Rank is the same as before, and so is the Gun Owner %. Even without the line in there we can see this data is much less scattered. We can also see the R2 is .507. This isn‟t 1 and isn‟t 0, it is somewhere between. If we really wanted to make a model to predict new data we could evaluate exactly what that means. We don‟t need that much detail. For our purposes, it‟s enough to say that Brady Rank and the percent of homes owning a gun are correlated, though not perfectly. This isn‟t terribly surprising. The Brady Rank is based on gun control laws, gun control laws make getting guns harder, so fewer people own them. This is a good time to consider another statistical truism: Correlation is not causation. What this means is that just because two things are related that doesn‟t mean one causes the other. Sometimes they have the same cause, sometimes it really just is co-incidence (they happen to occur together). In this case, it would be unreasonable to claim the Brady Rank causes people to own or not own guns. However, the Brady Rank is based on gun laws and gun laws would affect how many people get guns. While correlation is not causation, causation must have correlation. Basically that summarizes as two things that are related need not cause each other (one leading to the other), but if two things do cause each other then they will be related because they are related. So, does murder rate increase as gun ownership increases?

Gun Owner % vs Murder Rate
12 10
Murder Rate per 100,000

f(x) = 0.0142916808x + 3.6684613016 R² = 0.0087552909

8 6 4 2 0 0.000

10.000

20.000

30.000

40.000

50.000

60.000

70.000

Gun Ownership %

Nope. Very low R2, meaning that a line is a bad fit. This data shows no relationship to the murder rates8. Basically, gun ownership is a bad predictor for murder rate (at least this set of owner data and the 2011 murder rates). To be fair the above ownership data came from a website that claimed uscarry.com as the source of its data. I couldn‟t find it there and couldn‟t track it back to an original source. So, I used another source as well9. Pediatrics is hardly “gun friendly” so their data should not be biased in any way favoring less gun control. When plotting their gun ownership % to Murder Rate for 2011 we get10:

pediatrics 2002 ownership data plots
12 10 8 6 4 2 0 0 10 20 30 40 50 60 70
% any houshold firearm

f(x) = 0.0134473364x + 3.6803705151 R² = 0.0087186561

Not any better. However, the Pediattrics data is from 2002, so let us see that with 2002 murder rates:

pediatrics 2002 ownership data plots
14 12 10 8 6 4 2 0 0 10 20 30 40 50 60 70
% any houshold firearm

Hmm…maybe a year‟s delay, better check 2003.

pediatrics 2002 ownership data plots
14 12 10 8 6 4 2 0 0 10 20 30 40 50 60 70
% any houshold firearm

2003 Murder and nonnegligent manslaughter rate

Not any better. I haven‟t put in trend lines because it‟s obvious that this is too scattered to be useful. The Pediatrics article included more than just a percent of households with a gun of any type. They also listed percent of households with loaded guns. Gun control advocates would likely say that‟s a pretty dangerous situation and someone could go off the handle and grab a loaded gun at any time. That‟s bound to increase murder, right?

2011 murder rate:

LOADED (LOCKED OR UN) IN HOME
60 50 40 30 20 10 0 0 5 10 15 20 25
% loaded firearm in home

f(x) = 1.573638638x + 13.13749486 R² = 0.2586434732

brady rank Linear Regression for brady rank

2002

LOADED (LOCKED OR UN) IN HOME
14 12 10 8 6 4 2 0 0 5 10 15 20 25
% loaded firearm in home

2002 Murder and nonnegligent manslaughter rate Linear Regression for 2002 Murder and nonnegligent manslaughter rate

f(x) = 0.2429041899x + 2.745744684 R² = 0.1887040225

2003

LOADED (LOCKED OR UN) IN HOME
14 12 10 8 6 4 2 0 0 5 10 15 20 25
% loaded firearm in home

2003 Murder and nonnegligent manslaughter rate Linear Regression for 2003 Murder and nonnegligent manslaughter rate

f(x) = 0.2555186773x + 2.7506452709 R² = 0.2236802841

To be fair, it does show a positive slope indicating a trend of higher murder rates in states with higher percentage of homes containing a loaded firearm. However, the best R2 of .25 is still not a good fit. That‟s being generous; typically I‟d say that‟s not a statistically relevant relationship. There are too many points that vary too much for loaded firearms in the home to be a good predictor of murder rates. No relation, again. The Pediatrics data does give some relationships, for instance, across all states, homes with a loaded firearm correlates to percentage of homes with a loaded and unlocked firearm very well. Just so we can see what a trend would look like if we had one.

LOADED (LOCKED OR UN) IN HOME
14 12 10 8 6 4 2 0 0 5 10 15 20 25
% loaded firearm in home

f(x) = 0.6162716111x + 0.0185702232 R² = 0.9607340708

Loaded and unlocked Household Firearm, Linear Regression for Loaded and unlocked Household Firearm,

Which makes sense. If you have a lot of homes with loaded guns, a number of them are going to not be locked up (and the relation is remarkably stable across different states and overall ownership, meaning people will either keep them locked or not without influence from much anything else. Like gun control laws). Since we have numbers for the percentage of homes with loaded and unlocked guns and murder rates, surely having unsecured, loaded firearms relates to higher murder!
12 10 8 6 4 2 0 0 2 4 6 8 10 12 14
loaded and unlocked %

2011 murder rate per 100k Linear Regression for 2011 murder rate per 100k

f(x) = 0.305270748x + 2.7223841645 R² = 0.1962320455

14 12 10 8 6 4 2 0 0

2002 Murder and nonnegligent manslaughter rate Linear Regression for 2002 Murder and nonnegligent manslaughter rate

f(x) = 0.3499209155x + 2.9533843506 R² = 0.15480753

2

4

6

8

10

12

14

loaded and unlocked %

14 12 10 8 6 4 2 0 0

2003 Murder and nonnegligent manslaughter rate f(x) = 0.3756419799x + 2.9323799777 Linear Regression for 2003 R² = 0.1911048803 Murder and nonnegligent manslaughter rate

2

4

6

8

10

12

14

loaded and unlocked %

Wow, no relation again. Some upward slope, but the R2 values are low, so it‟s not reliable. Beginning to look like having guns and even unsecured guns has…nothing to do with murder. Since I had the 2011, 2002, and 2003 murder rates for all the states handy, I decided to take a look at what comparing those would show. Here it is: 2002 vs 2003
14 12 10
2003 murder rate

f(x) = 0.9326534609x + 0.4174307928 R² = 0.9317767528

8 6 4 2 0 0 2 4 6 8 10 12 14
2002 murder rate

2003 Murder and nonnegligent manslaughter rate Linear Regression for 2003 Murder and nonnegligent manslaughter rate

2011 vs 2003

14 12 10 8 6 4 2 0 0 2 4 6 8 10 12
2011 murder rate per 100,000

f(x) = 1.1255063227x + 0.0241204066 R² = 0.8147415502

2003 Murder and nonnegligent manslaughter rate Linear Regression for 2003 Murder and nonnegligent manslaughter rate

2011 vs 2002
14 12 10 8 6 4 2 0 0 2 4 6 8 10 12
2011 murder rate per 100,000

f(x) = 1.1719445046x - 0.2751985863 R² = 0.824644605

2002 Murder and nonnegligent manslaughter rate Linear Regression for 2002 Murder and nonnegligent manslaughter rate

2002 and 2003 murder rates are fair predictors of 2011 murder rates, R2 greater than .8. What‟s both interesting and a bit obvious in hindsight is that the 2002 murder rates are very good predictors of the 2003 rates. What can we conclude? Places that have high murder tend to have high murder and tend to have high murder rates even a decade later. Same for low murder rate states. What makes this especially interesting is how much has changed since 2002 and how different the states are from each other, but the murder trends are pretty stable.

Almost like expiration of the Assault Weapon Ban, changes in state laws, increases in concealed carry, and other changes in gun laws has no relation at all to murder rate. I am not claiming that more guns means less crime. I don‟t see that in this data. I also don‟t see that less guns means less crime. What I see is that murder rates show no relation over time or within 2011 to Brady Rank (as a measure of gun control), gun ownership (as reported by the usliberals.about.com or the Pediatrics data), having loaded guns, or even loaded and unlocked guns in the home. One more. I saw it argued that murder was higher in states with no large cities AND claimed by some that states with large cities have more murder. So, what about murder rates and population density?

Population Density vs 2011 Murder Rate
12
murder rate per 100,000

f(x) = -0.016062425x + 4.6155918367 R² = 0.0131579775

10 8 6 4 2 0 0 10 20 30 40 50 60
Population density (square miles)

0.013? That‟s pretty conclusive that population density isn‟t the issue. Now, I do think that this repetitive comparison of different measures with murder rates makes the argument for gun control as a means to reduce murder essentially disproven. Using simple data, murder rates, brady ranks, crime rates, and gun owner ranks we can see there is no trend or pattern. We can give it a number of how good the fit is. Some things do relate, but nothing about guns here relates to murder. SECOND POINT: GUNS DO NOT RELATE TO MURDER Therefore, regulating guns will not reduce murder. If there is a reduction in murder after gun regulation it cannot be attributed to the regulations consistently. One more nail in that coffin, bear with me. Even if you could show perfect correlation between gun ownership and murder rates, that doesn‟t mean gun control would reduce murder. Even if the data showed, conclusively, that states with high murder rates also had high gun ownership and that states with low ownership always had low murder rates, gun control is still sunk.

Correlation is not causation, remember? Here‟s an example: Suppose that in high murder rate areas, always, there is high gun ownership. Suppose that in low murder rate areas, always, there is low gun ownership. Suppose that all in between states for murder rate are also in between for gun ownership. Now, with that correlation being given, is there a way to explain them where gun control would be completely ineffective? How about this: what if people in high murder rate areas are more likely to own guns because they are in high murder rate states. What if people in low murder rate states are less likely to own guns precisely because they are in a place with low murder rates? In that situation changing gun laws do nothing for murder rates, murders are not caused by gun ownership, gun ownership is caused by murders. Just what if: guns don‟t cause crime and death, but crime and death cause people to own guns to defend themselves with? Wouldn‟t that turn this whole thing on its head. People are not entirely random or idiots. Where there is danger, people want to protect themselves. Guns are the tools for that. Simple thought experiment, apply Occam‟s Razor, what makes more sense: 1. Guns cause crime and make people more violent and deadly OR 2. Where there is crime, violence, and death, people get themselves a gun FINAL POINT: EVEN IF GUNS AND CRIME / DEATH / MURDER ARE RELATED, YOU CANNOT CONCLUDE GUNS CAUSE CRIME If we cannot, even with a perfect correlation between guns and crime, reliably conclude that guns cause crime, why would regulating guns be an answer to a crime problem? I thank you for taking the time to read this and consider the numbers. I hope this helps you make a decision on gun control11. ________________ Edward Crowell PO Box 216 Cedar Rapids, IA 52406

Footnotes: 1. FBI Uniform Crime Report data for 2011 murder rates was downloaded on January 5, 2013, from http://www.fbi.gov/about-us/cjis/ucr/crime-in-the-u.s/2011/crime-in-the-u.s.2011/tables/table-4 2. Uniform Crime Reporting Statistics - UCR Data Online, http://www.ucrdatatool.gov/. Sources: FBI, Uniform Crime Reports, prepared by the National Archive of Criminal Justice Data . Date of download: Jan 11 2013. 3. http://www.fbi.gov/about-us/cjis/ucr/crime-in-the-u.s/2011/crime-in-the-u.s.2011/tables/table-20

4. Brady Campaign state rankings were copied from the Brady Campaign report downloaded January 5, 2013, from http://www.bradycampaign.org/xshare/stateleg/scorecard/2011/2011_Brady_Campaign_ State_Scorecard_Rankings.pdf 5. The data used for Chart 1 is below (shown in order of best to worst Brady Rank)
State Brady Rank Murder Rate (per 100,000) California 1 4.8 New Jersey 2 4.3 Massachusetts 3 2.8 New York 4 4 Connecticut 5 3.6 Hawaii 6 1.2 Maryland 7 6.8 Rhode Island 8 1.3 Illinois 9 5.6 Pennsylvania 10 5 Michigan 11 6.2 North Carolina 12 5.3 Colorado 15 2.9 Oregon 15 2.1 Washington 15 2.4 Alabama 17 6.3 Minnesota 17 1.4 Delaware 18 4.5 Virginia 19 3.7 Georgia 22 5.6 South Carolina 22 6.8 Tennessee 22 5.8 Iowa 25 1.5 Maine 25 2 Ohio 25 4.4 New Hampshire 27 1.3 Vermont 27 1.3 Nebraska 29 3.6 Nevada 29 5.2 Arkansas 39 5.5 Indiana 39 4.8 Kansas 39 3.8 Mississippi 39 8 Missouri 39 6.1 New Mexico 39 7.5 South Dakota 39 2.5 Texas 39 4.4 West Virginia 39 4.3

Wyoming Florida Wisconsin Idaho Kentucky Louisiana Montana North Dakota Oklahoma Alaska Arizona Utah

39 41 41 47 47 47 47 47 47 50 50 50

3.2 5.2 2.4 2.3 3.5 11.2 2.8 3.5 5.5 4 6.2 1.9

The Brady Rankings set states scoring the same as tied at the same rank, using the lowest number in the tied series as the rank. 6. The data for Chart 2 is below, in order of lowest to highest Murder Rank (1 is lowest murder rate, 50 is highest).
State Hawaii Rhode Island New Hampshire Vermont Minnesota Iowa Utah Maine Oregon Idaho Washington Wisconsin South Dakota Massachusetts Montana Colorado Wyoming Kentucky North Dakota Connecticut Nebraska Virginia Kansas New York Alaska New Jersey Brady Rank 6 8 27 27 17 25 50 25 15 47 15 41 39 3 47 15 39 47 47 5 29 19 39 4 50 2 Murder Rank 1 4 4 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 12 12 13 15 15 16 17 19 19 21 21 22 23 25 25 27

West Virginia Ohio Texas Delaware California Indiana Pennsylvania Nevada Florida North Carolina Arkansas Oklahoma Illinois Georgia Tennessee Missouri Michigan Arizona Alabama Maryland South Carolina New Mexico Mississippi Louisiana

39 25 39 18 1 39 10 29 41 12 39 47 9 22 22 39 11 50 17 7 22 39 39 47

27 29 29 30 32 32 33 35 35 36 38 38 40 40 41 42 44 44 45 47 47 48 49 50

The Brady Rankings set states scoring the same as tied at the same rank, using the lowest number in the tied series as the rank. I have done the same for Murder Rank. 7. http://usliberals.about.com/od/Election2012Factors/a/Gun-Owners-As-Percentage-OfEach-States-Population.htm 8. Data for the chart is below.
BRADY RANK Hawaii New Hampshire Rhode Vermont Minnesota Iowa Utah Maine Oregon Idaho Washington Wisconsin 6 27 8 27 17 25 50 25 15 47 15 41 GUN OWNER % MURDER RATE 6.700 1.2 30.000 1.3 12.800 1.3 42.000 1.3 41.700 1.4 42.900 1.5 43.900 1.9 40.500 2 39.800 2.1 55.300 2.3 33.100 2.4 44.400 2.4

South Dakota Massachusetts Montana Colorado Wyoming Kentucky North Dakota Connecticut Nebraska Virginia Kansas Alaska New York New Jersey West Ohio Texas Delaware California Indiana Pennsylvania Florida Nevada North Carolina Arkansas Oklahoma Georgia Illinois Tennessee Missouri Arizona Michigan Alabama Maryland South Carolina New Mexico Mississippi Louisiana

39 3 47 15 39 47 47 5 29 19 39 50 4 2 39 25 39 18 1 39 10 41 29 12 39 47 22 9 22 39 50 11 17 7 22 39 39 47

56.600 12.600 57.700 34.700 59.700 47.700 50.700 16.700 38.600 35.100 42.100 57.800 18.000 12.300 55.400 32.400 35.900 25.500 21.300 39.100 34.700 24.500 33.800 41.300 55.300 42.900 40.300 20.200 43.900 41.700 31.100 38.400 51.700 21.300 42.300 34.800 55.300 44.100

2.5 2.8 2.8 2.9 3.2 3.5 3.5 3.6 3.6 3.7 3.8 4 4 4.3 4.3 4.4 4.4 4.5 4.8 4.8 5 5.2 5.2 5.3 5.5 5.5 5.6 5.6 5.8 6.1 6.2 6.2 6.3 6.8 6.8 7.5 8 11.2

9. http://pediatrics.aappublications.org/cgi/content-nw/full/116/3/e370/ 10. I have included the actual data for the first charts. I do not for the rest. The data is easily available and putting the numbers in just adds length without purpose. Anyone wanting my numbers or any sources not cited can feel free to contact me at ed.crowell.law@gmail.com and I‟ll provide them.

11. In the interest of being thorough, I don‟t actually find the numbers dispositive. My decision is based on the fact that my life has value and I have the right to defend my life from assault. Self-defense is a right supported even by Ghandi. With the right to selfdefense comes a right to the tools to defend myself. There is no reason to deny me the best tools for my family and myself. The best tools for stopping violent criminals are the ones police and military use, which is why they use them. Therefore, I deserve the best tools to defend myself and my family from assault, be it a lone criminal, gang, mob, riot, invading army, or domestic tyranny, now or in the future, real or potential. However, I frequently see numbers used to support gun control so it seemed worthwhile to dispute those numbers in the simplest way I could conceive. If gun control works at all like I see claimed, there should be at least some effect on murder rates. There is none. There is not even a large enough effect directly on firearms murders to show up in the overall murder rate. I mention this because if gun control even just affected gun murders, given the large percentage of murders committed with guns, it should be apparent in the overall murder rate. Again, it is not. Finally, rights exist against the government. If someone is giving a talk, exercising their freedom of speech, I can stand around telling them to shut up and yell over them, blast an air horn, wave around a flag and generally be infringing on the exercise of their right as all get out. I can kick them right off my property because I don‟t like what they have to say. None of which triggers protection of freedom of speech because I am not a government actor. I have a right to arms, protected from acts of the State. There is no right to safety, for one. For two, the hazards and fears they claim are not from the government, they‟re from individuals. Between individuals the ruling law of interaction are things like harassment, negligence, assault, battery, wrongful death, reckless endangerment, that sort of thing. No second amendment action needed unless the State wants to insert itself.