This Study Says That Some Gun Control Laws Cause *More* Deaths

Guns in a round

The British medical journal, the Lancet, published a study where they conclude that if the federal government expanded background checks and required every firearm to be registered, it would account for a whopping 90% reduction in gun deaths. Dr. David Hemenway, who sits in a chair on the Harvard School of Public Health, said it was difficult to project a 90 percent reduction and pointed to serious doubts about any U.S. study on gun laws due to, obviously, our very partisan political standings.

It’s absolutely no secret: overseas academia and the liberal left would love for us to require everyone to register their firearms and be thoroughly vetted by a team of medical, legal, and psychological professionals before getting our hands on those guns. We’ve known that for awhile. They’ll throw the same punches every time. But it was a surprising admission that even they don’t see the statistical correlation between some of our more quixotic gun laws, as revealed in a recent article through the US News & World Report.

“Stand-your-ground laws – which allow someone to use deadly force in self-defence – as well as permitting law enforcement discretion when issuing concealed-carry permits, appeared to be associated with higher gun deaths. Other laws that appeared associated with higher gun deaths included limiting the number of guns people can buy, a three-day limit for a background-checks extension, locks on firearms and allowing police to inspect stores.”

Let’s recap:

  • Limiting the number of guns a person can purchase
  • Three day “waiting periods”
  • Firearm locks
  • Police inspections
  • Police discretion

None of these things are a value-added when it comes to reducing gun violence.

Now, I’m not supposing we’re in the business of taking individual studies from a variety of sources, citing incomplete statistics and poor subsets of data as Bible.

The big political drive these days is to close a “gun show loophole” because private sales account for nearly 40% of all firearm sales transactions. Of course the government would be interested in restricting that — it’s an untracked stream of revenue. Do criminals get access to guns through private sales? Guaranteeably. Outside of theft, the only other way to get access to a gun is to avoid a background check. That said, I think law-abiding gun owners are in the majority of the purchasers who obtain firearms in this manner.

Here’s another thing — which is going to be an extremely unpopular opinion — I don’t care about gun violence studies. Really.

Before the hate mail starts to filter in, I’d like to point out that there’s no distinction kept in the statistics for those who lawfully defended their lives against violent assailants. There’s no “proving” the outcome of a gun violence situation. And as such, I’d rather have a single mom maintain the right to protect her child or an elderly man defend his property than propose additional sweeping law reform to a situation that isn’t even attributable with a top ten causes of death in the United States.

If you have a group of five thugs systematically bashing in a person’s front door, I’m really not concerned with how many of them were shot in the ensuing struggle. I don’t feel bad for them and I don’t feel like there’s any reason to debate adding new laws to the books because of it. Conversely, when one of those thugs steals a gun and shoots someone, I don’t feel any law that’s proposed would stop him from doing that.

I’m actually more annoyed with the fact that a criminal who attempted to inflict severe harm on another person is treated at taxpayer’s expense. If you try to rob a convenience store and you get shot and live, you should have to pay back the cost of that medical care.

You could literally make every gun in America registered and sealed to a buyer’s name, and you would still see guns get stolen and being used in violent crimes. As such, the only real take-away that I see coming from this Lancet study (or pretty much any other study delving into this subject matter) is that law-abiding citizens are held to a completely different standard than criminals. More importantly, I’ve yet to see a federal push to enabling law-abiding gun owners and concealed carriers to better protect themselves.