This is from the Washington Free Beacon.
White House spokesman Josh Earnest struggled to answer direct questions Thursday about whether any of President Obama’s proposed gun control measure would have prevented the recent mass shootings seen in the U.S.
Reporter Byron Tau brought up Sen. Marco Rubio’s (R., Fla.) remark that no recent mass shootings would have been prevented by gun legislation, a statement rated “True” by the Washington Post fact-checker.
[…]“Can the White House point to a recent mass shooting that would have been stopped by a expanded assault weapons ban or stricter background checks?” Tau asked. “The evidence seems to be that in all these recent mass shootings, these folks either passed background checks or were very determined to circumvent the strict gun laws that are already on the books. Can you point to any that would have been prevented or stopped by the kind of proposals the White House is championing?”
“Again, Byron, I think the same thing applies here, which is it’s not our view that we should wait until somebody who’s on the no-fly list walks into a gun store, legally purchases a gun and kills a bunch of innocent Americans before we pass a law preventing it,” Earnest said. “That’s a common-sense view. The president believes that’s in our national security, and that’s why we believe quite strongly that Congress should take action to address it and close the no-fly, no-buy loophole.”
Tau asked whether any of the mass shooters were on the no-fly list.
“Not that I’m aware of,” Earnest said.
Here’s the the clip:
The Democrats want to prevent people from defending themselves against criminals and terrorists, but they don’t have a plan to do anything to stop the criminals or the terrorists. Their focus is on disarming the law-abiding people, not detecting and punishing the law-breaking people.
The peer-reviewed research
Whenever I get into discussions about gun control, I always mention two academic books by John R. Lott and Joyce Lee Malcolm.
- The Lott book was published by the University of Chicago Press (now in its 3rd edition)
- The Malcolm book was published by Harvard University Press
Here is a paper by Dr. Malcolm that summarizes one of the key points of her book.
Tracing the history of gun control in the United Kingdom since the late 19th century, this article details how the government has arrogated to itself a monopoly on the right to use force. The consequence has been a tremendous increase in violent crime, and harsh punishment for crime victims who dare to fight back. The article is based on the author’s most recent book, Guns and Violence: The English Experience (Harvard University Press, 2002). Joyce Malcom is professor of history at Bentley College, in Waltham, Massachusetts. She is also author of To Keep and Bear Arms: The Origins of an AngloAmerican Right (Harvard University Press, 1994).
Upon the passage of The Firearms Act (No. 2) in 1997, British Deputy Home Secretary Alun Michael boasted: “Britain now has some of the toughest gun laws in the world.” The Act was second handgun control measure passed that year, imposed a near-complete ban on private ownership of handguns, capping nearly eighty years of increasing firearms restrictions. Driven by an intense public campaign in the wake of the shooting of schoolchildren in Dunblane, Scotland, Parliament had been so zealous to outlaw all privately owned handguns that it rejected proposals to exempt Britain’s Olympic target-shooting team and handicapped target-shooters from the ban.
And the result of the 1997 gun ban:
The result of the ban has been costly. Thousands of weapons were confiscated at great financial cost to the public. Hundreds of thousands of police hours were devoted to the task. But in the six years since the 1997 handgun ban, crimes with the very weapons banned have more than doubled, and firearm crime has increased markedly. In 2002, for the fourth consecutive year, gun crime in England and Wales rose—by 35 percent for all firearms, and by a whopping 46 percent for the banned handguns. Nearly 10,000 firearms offences were committed.
[…]According to Scotland Yard, in the four years from 1991 to 1995 crimes against the person in England‟s inner cities increased by 91 percent. In the four years from 1997 to 2001 the rate of violent crime more than doubled. The UK murder rate for 2002 was the highest for a century.
I think that peer-reviewed studies – from Harvard University, no less – should be useful to those of us who believe in the right of self-defense for law-abiding people. The book by economist John Lott, linked above,compares the crime rates of all U.S. states that have enacted concealed carry laws, and concludes that violent crime rates dropped after law-abiding citizens were allowed to carry legally-owned firearms. That’s the mirror image of Dr. Malcolm’s Harvard study, but both studies affirm the same conclusion – more legal firearm ownership means less crime.