Crimes Or Gun Purchases: Which Really Comes First?

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Cause and effect. Many people don’t tend to think through the effect of a specific cause and, therefore, they end up with unintended consequences.

But other people see the cause and effect relationship, and choose to take an action (a cause) which they think is most likely to get the effect that they want. Anti-gunners try to do this, but their faulty reasoning as to what causes a certain effect keeps giving them wrong answers as to what action to take (or what cause to use to get the desired effect).

A perfect example of this faulty reasoning shows up when you look at the relationship between crimes committed and rates of people buying firearms. Anti-gunners think that rising numbers of gun purchases cause more gun violence, but is that really the case? A post attributed to “admin” at gunfacts.info (which, we assume, was written by Guy Smith, founder of the project) gives us details:

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The basic debate surrounding whether gun sales lead to gun crimes is kinda stupid.

For decades, the Bureau of Justice Statistics (BJS) has produced this chart. Only 11% of crime guns come from retail, so any increase in guns sales in any given year or locality will only result in a fractional immediate increase in gun crimes. Multiply this by the average of eleven years between the retailing of a gun and its use in crime (“time-to-crime”) and the rate of retailed guns affecting crime rates becomes small and rather silly.

But this doesn’t keep some activist groups from claiming that it is so.

They trot out tables showing correlations between gun sales and crime in various cities or states before saying “AH HA!” Then, the opposition camps say, “Maybe gun sales go up in response to crime,” and the first group goes oddly silent.

The article continues:

Firearm homicides are the worst of gun crimes and may be a good proxy for other gun crimes. That’s for another day.

But for now, it is safe to say that there is statistical evidence that people buy guns in response to crime (real or imagined) and less likely that new gun purchases lead to gun homicides.

Yes, it’s clear that one of the primary drivers of firearms purchases is concern about crime because crimes have already been committed in the area geographically near the buyer. In other words, crimes drive firearms purchases.

So, when anti-gunners try to say the opposite by saying that firearms purchases drive crime, they couldn’t be more wrong.

But that’s not really a surprise, is it?

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