Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Guns don't kill people, Phila. does

Running in the Philadelphia Inquirer, no less.


Guns don't kill people, Phila. does

By John Lott and Maxim Lott
When Mayor Street spent 15 hours waiting in line for an iPhone recently, the city was not impressed by his love of new technology. Rather, Street had to answer to a passerby asking, "How can you sit here with 200 murders in the city already?"

Local politicians say they know the source of the problem: the lack of gun control. Gov. Rendell recently complained the state legislature "has been in the control of the NRA." Street blames the increasing murder rate on "the dangerous proliferation of guns on our city streets." Last Tuesday, two City Council members announced the novel legal tactic of suing the state government to let Philadelphia pass its own gun laws.

The desire "to do something" is understandable, but new gun laws aren't the answer.

In the five years from 2001 to 2006, Philadelphia's murder rate soared more than 36 percent while nationally, the murder rate increased only 2 percent. Indeed, only two other cities in the top 40 experienced a sharper rise in murder rates, according to FBI crime statistics.

Read the whole thing.


Daniel said...

Since, by definition, what law makers do is pass laws, it is not surprising that the chosen solution is to pass a law.

That said, the commentary piece makes an excellent point.

The urge to "do something" sometimes translates to do something politically expedient, but not necessarily something that will solve the original problem.

But if as the commentary says, that the arrest/case closure rate is lower there than other similar sized cities and this lower rate is the cause of the higher murder rate, passing a law that makes it more difficult for law abiding individuals to purchase firearms while, at the same time, doing nothing to solve the arrest/case closure rate, probably won't help solve the higher murder rate.

Aloha - Dan

Anonymous said...

I lived in Philly 1969 to 1970 during which time I attended Fitler elementary school followed by two very interesting years at Roosevelt Jr High. During this period not a single day at school passed that I wasn't assaulted, attacked, robbed by the student body made up almost exclusively of African American gang bangers. Teachers and Vice principles were of no help. Looking at the current crisis in Philly I can well imagine my ex-classmates out committing murders, drive byes etc. As long as law enforcement does not go into these black neighborhoods eradicating drug addicts and welfare sponges the crime rates will continue to sky rocket in Philly. Very sad and the rest of the state is punished with stricter firearms laws. I hope you stay safe

Steve in Colorado