Libertarian

Giffords Folly in Gun Violence Prevention

Photo: Giffords Law Center to Prevent Gun Violence

In one map the Gifford’s Center for Gun Violence Prevention illustrated clearly what gun control advocates refuse to admit, that gun and magazine bans do very little to prevent violence. Their score card lists 21 states with failing grades and their website touts that “for the first time ever more Americans live in A states rather than F states.”

The A states make up 30% of the country’s population, while F states make up 29%. Nearly 700,000 people left California last year and about 200,000 relocated to states with F ratings, so it is not likely those statistics will hold through next year. 

The reality is the majority of Americans live in states that are neither the worst nor the best, according to their numbers 40% of America lives in the “in between” spaces of the country, graded B through D-. The Gifford’s Law Center believes that in order for the US to be safer overall, gun control very much like California, New York, and Illinois needs to be enacted in every state.

The most common gun control laws that states try to pass to curb gun violence are high capacity magazine bans and so-called “assault” weapon bans. A study by Boston University concluded after looking at 10 different gun control laws over a 26 year period, states that enacted these two gun control measures did not see a notable drop in gun violence. Further, “household gun ownership was not associated with overall rates of homicide. Factors that were significant positive predictors of overall homicide rates were the percentage of males, the violent crime rate, and population density. Overall population was negatively associated with homicide rates.” The data makes no mention of access to firearms as a predictor for homicide rates. 

The safest states in the nation based solely on violent crime and property crime are all states with “bad” grades according to Giffords, except for New Jersey which is ranked 4th behind Maine, Vermont, and New Hampshire. All three with failing grades for gun violence prevention and all with a population under 2 million. The 5th safest state is Idaho, also assigned a failing grade for gun violence prevention and a population under 2 million people.

The statistics are clear, banning guns and high capacity magazines does not solve the gun violence problem, it doesn’t even significantly affect it. The Giffords Law Center for Gun Violence Prevention is focusing on a non existent magic pill to solve the symptoms of violence without regard to the disease that causes it in the first place.

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