Second Amendment Factsheet
Research strongly suggests that guns decrease violent crime & murder rates approximately 4% for every 1% increase in firearm ownership. Research also suggests that each percentage point increase in rates of permit-holding results in approximately a 2.5 percent drop in the murder rate.
Murder and violent crime numbers have decreased over the last quarter century, even as the population has grown and as more people own more firearms.
Between 1990 and 2017 in the USA:
- Population grew from 249 million to 325 million (a 31% increase)
- Firearm ownership more than doubled from roughly 200 million to 400 million weapons
- Number of concealed carry permits increased from under 6 million to more than 18 million
- Murders fell from 23,440 to 14,542 - (9.4 per 100,000 to 4.5)
- Violent crimes are down from 1,890,000 to 1,245,000 – (729.6 per 100,000 to 383.8 a 48% decrease in rate per 100,000)
- Rapes fell from 106,000 to 99,000 – (42.8 to 30.7 per 100,000), during that same period.
More Guns, More people yet fewer murders, fewer violent crimes, fewer rapes.
2% of (from 3,054 out of 3,242) US counties - 51% of total murders; 54% of counties - zero murders.
Assault Weapons Ban:
Since the sunsetting of the Federal “Assault Weapons” Ban (2004) the percentage of murders committed with rifles has fallen: 4.8% before the ban; 4.9% during the ban; 3.6% since 2004.
“Even when we use coding choices that are most charitable to Lankford, his 31 percent estimate of the US’s share of world mass public shooters is cut by over 95 percent. By our count, the US makes up less than 1.43% of the mass public shooters, 2.11% of their murders, and 2.88% of their attacks. All these are much less than the US’s 4.6% share of the world population. Attacks in the US are not only less frequent than in other countries, they are also much less deadly on average. [editors emphasis](CPRC article (Sep 2018) refuting criticism of work): https://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=3238736" )
- Mass shootings: Rifle 13% of the time; rifle and handgun 28%; handguns 59%.
- Over the last 20+ years, 9 out of every 10 mass public shootings have taken place in “gun-free zones”. Meanwhile, schools that allow teachers to carry guns have not seen a single attack, nor even a wounding or killing by firearm
Suicide (2017 CDC data): 47,173 suicides, of which 23,854 were carried out with firearms. Unfortunately, suicide rates, slowly declining from the 1980s - even as gun ownership increased substantially - have been climbing for the last 10 years; suicide is a mental health issue, not a firearms issue.
Accidents (2017 CDC data):
169,900 accidental deaths, to include:
73,990 drug misuse
40,231 motor vehicle accident
495 Accidental Firearms deaths
“Concealed handgun permit holders are extremely law-abiding. In Florida and Texas, permit holders are convicted of misdemeanors and felonies at 1/6th of the rate at which police officers are convicted.” CPRC
“Over 2/3rds of published, peer-reviewed studies by criminologists and economists have found that right-to-carry laws reduce violent crime in the US. Not a single such study has found that right-to-carry causes an increase in murder, rape or robbery.” - Dr. John Lott
Between 1995 and 2018, during which the Federal Assault Weapons ban expired (2004), legal gun ownership doubled and Concealed Carry Shall-Issue laws spread (the number of permits more than tripling), murder rates and gun firearms murder rates have not increased; indeed, they’ve declined. Sensationalist claims that the USA is especially gun violent have been de-bunked. So-called mass shootings have been shown to be below global norms and in numerous cases CC permit holders stopped mass shootings, saving incalculable lives.
States which have introduced laws giving law-abiding citizens greater access to purchase and carry guns have not seen violence increase. The most restrictive laws tend to be in places where gun violence is well above national averages.
Guns save lives and lower violent crime rates.
Note: Data has been derived from numerous sources, primarily government websites however the analyses are mostly from the work of Dr John Lott and the Crime Prevention Research Center all of which data, methodology and analysis has been rigorously checked by numerous academics and laymen.