Common Sense

The most vocal of the anti-gun crowd would love nothing better than to see the complete confiscation of all handguns. But, knowing that this goal is very likely out of their reach, they instead chant the mantra of “common sense gun laws.”

Their version of common sense goes like this: since everyone knows that guns are dangerous, and everyone knows that ordinary citizens can’t be trusted with guns, and everyone knows that guns cause crime, it’s just common sense to limit the availability of guns to ordinary citizens. And, in their minds, I’m sure that limit approaches zero.

Any time there is a high profile shooting, like Virginia Tech or Gabriella Giffords, this case gets driven home by the anti-gun crowd, using the most emotional images possible. The total nut-caseness of the shooters is ignored. After all, it’s the gun that kills.

But, sometimes a monkey wrench gets thrown into this anti-gun concept of common sense: the truth. In this instance, that monkey wrench comes in the form of the FBI Annual Crime Statistics for 2010, released on Monday.

According to the figures released today by the FBI, the estimated number of violent crimes in 2010 declined for the fourth consecutive year. Property crimes also decreased, marking this the eighth straight year that the collective estimates for these offenses declined.

The 2010 statistics show that the estimated volumes of violent and property crimes declined 6.0 percent and 2.7 percent, respectively, when compared with the 2009 estimates. . .

Each of the four violent crime offenses decreased when compared with the 2009 estimates. Robbery had the largest decrease at 10.0 percent, followed by forcible rape with a 5.0 percent decline, murder and nonnegligent manslaughter with a 4.2 percent decrease, and aggravated assault with a 4.1 percent decline.

The sticking point for the anti-gun crowd is that gun sales and CCW permits issued are both up. For those who have trouble keeping both concepts in mind, this means that crime went down while the number of guns and the number of lawful concealed carry holders went up.

I’m no statistician, although I have played an engineer on TV, but it seems like this negative correlation flies in the face of the “common sense” the anti-gun crowd spouts.

The truth is, more guns in the hands of more lawful citizens means less crime. That’s because guns don’t cause crime, criminals cause crime, and those criminals are deterred by the threat of armed victims.

So, the next time someone cries for “common sense” gun laws, explain to them the real definition of common sense. Then ask them Just One Question:

Can you demonstrate one time or place, throughout all history, where the average person was made safer by restricting access to handheld weapons?

No one has yet answered this “yes.”

The evidence is clear. Guns aren’t the problem. Criminals are the problem. And that is real common sense.