(February 02, 2016)
After peaking in the 1980s and early 1990s, crime has plummeted in the United States. The rates of forcible rape, murder, violent crime, property crime, and aggravated assault are currently as low as they were in the 1960s.Some studies have suggested strongly that this reduction in crime can be directly tied to the increase in the number of states which allow concealed carry (and often "open carry" ... where firearms are NOT concealed but in open view ... predominately in holsters) by private citizens.
("Correlation does not imply causation", but the author of this article uses the word "relationship" in the discussion. Based on that synchronicity, it seems reasonable to suggest that some 'relationship' exists between the statistics on violent crime and the increased presence of 'carried' firearms.)
While these statistics demonstrate that Americans are about as safe from crime as they have been in over a half-century, there is a particularly horrendous type of crime that has been alarmingly on the uptick: public mass shootings. In places like San Bernadino, California, Colorado Springs, Colorado, Roseburg, Oregon, Charleston, South Carolina, and Newtown, Connecticut, innocents have been mercilessly gunned down in great numbers.However, other studies , such as the Texas A&M study reported here dispute that assumption:
According to the United States Bureau of Justice Statistics, crime, and specifically violent crime, has been decreasing nationally since 1993, with a similar decline in other Western nations. Some commentators claim the decline in the United States is attributed to the increase in concealed carry legislation. But criminologists point to a variety of factors that have lead to the drop in crime, including changes in policing, punishment, crime prevention technology and socio-economic factors.The Texas Tribune article, quoting state Rep. Garnet Coleman, a Houston Democrat who chairs the House County Affairs Committee, which tackles criminal justice issues asserts that:
It’s also unlikely that a concealed handgun license holder would be in the right place at the right time to stop a crime, Coleman said.That statement seems a little disingenuous. The purpose of undergoing a background check to acquire a concealed carry permit is specifically to catch criminals ... who don't want to apply for a license to do the illegal actions for which they need guns. ("Circular Reasoning" is a difficult concept to explain.)
As to the "unlikely" probability that a CHL holder "would 'be in the right place at the right time" is disproved daily in news reports. For example, John Lott recently described four crimes stopped by civilian handgun carriers in one week in December, 2915.
And in April of 2015, Lott (author of "More Guns, Less Crime") published an article titled:
(Please follow the links from that starting point ... there is a lot of information, including links to published articles.)
This is all background, presented to establish the statistical evidence that firearms ownership DOES have a positive effect on crime prevention, and introducing another opinion on the question whether (civilian) concealed carry provides another approach to crime prevention.