8/99 Paying a Price for Gun Control

Paying a price for gun control

From: Maggie Gallagher’s 08/27/99 Op-Ed in The Washington Times

A friend of mine once heard screams from the rooftop of his New York City building. Grabbing his gun, he interrupted a rape in progress with a few well-timed shots at the intruder’s legs and buttocks. The criminal fled; the woman was grateful. When the police arrived after the fact, as they usually do, they told my friend he was a hero. They also told him he was under arrest.

Eugene Assencao was luckier. As an ex-cop, he was legally allowed to carry the gun he used the other night when he peered into the window of a Brooklyn 7-Eleven, and saw three men pointing a gun at store workers…. Mr. Assencao shot one of the criminals in the stomach, while two others fled.

Mr. Assencao is just one of literally hundreds of thousands of law-abiding Americans who use a gun they own to protect themselves or

others from crime — the number is somewhere between three-quarters of a million to 3 million people each year, depending on which of the national polls you believe, as University of Chicago criminologist John R. Lott Jr. reports in his fascinating book, “More Guns, Less Crime….”

Men and women with guns protect not only themselves; they protect the rest of us. Especially, it turns out, women. Guns are a women’s issue, but not in the way that most people (including Elizabeth Dole) think. “Murder rates decline when either more women or more men carry concealed handguns, but the effect is especially pronounced for women,” reports Mr. Lott. Every women who carries a concealed handgun reduces the murder rate for women “by about three to four times more” than one additional armed man reduces the male homicide rate. The effects are indirect as well as direct. Guns are the great equalizer. When some women carry guns,
    criminals begin to look at all women with, shall we say, new respect.

While opponents of concealed-carry laws argue they would lead to gun battles over fender benders, the reality is, as Mr. Lott points out, “There exists only one, recorded incident of a permitted, concealed handgun being used in a shooting following a traffic accident, and that involved self-defense.” No permit holder has ever shot a police officer, but several have used their guns to save police officers’ lives. In a rational world, George W. Bush should not fear his strong support for law-abiding ctizens’ right to bear arms. More children are killed each year by bicycles than guns.

So why the new push for gun control? Fear is driving this debate. Fear and the fantasy that we can just turn over the task of protecting ourselves to the police, trusting the professionals (as we once trusted our parents) to make us feel safe….

More Evidence of the Unintended Consequences of Gun control.
Please say “NO” to the anti-gun crime bill!

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