5/99 Concealed Guns Save Lives

Concealed Guns Save Lives
Gun Owners of America
8001 Forbes Place, Suite 102, Springfield, VA 22151
Phone: 703-321-8585 / FAX: 703-321-8408

April 7, 1999

Studies show crime rates fall after states pass laws.
By Larry Pratt

While Americans are still grieving over the horrendous slayings in Colorado, we should not forget the lessons learned from a “massive slaying” that was prevented in 1997.

Assistant Principal Joel Myrick saved the lives of countless students at the Pearl, Miss., high school when he used his own firearm to subdue a gunman who had already killed two students. Myrick surprised his assailant, who no doubt expected everyone to be unarmed.

Some have said that Myrick should not have had a gun at that school, but there are children alive today who are glad he did. In contrast, in a Texas cafeteria in 1991, the parents of Dr. Suzanna Hupp were mercilessly gunned down. Hupp was powerless to help them because in obeying state law, she was unarmed; her gun was in her car.

She vowed to do something about it. She ran for office, got elected and introduced legislation in Texas easing restrictions on the right of decent citizens to carry firearms for their protection. Hupp believes citizens can use firearms to protect themselves, and the evidence is clearly on her side.

    * A 1996 study out of the University of Chicago Law School analyzed crime data from every US. county over 15 years and found that violent crime fell after states made it legal to carry concealed weapons. States passing concealed-carry laws have reduced their murder rates by 8.5%, rapes by 5%, aggravated assaults by 7% and robberies by 3%.
    * A 1997 Justice Department study found that as many as 1.5 million people use a gun in self-defense every year. Other studies have found as many as 2.5 million self-defense uses, with savings to society of up to $38.9 billion annually.

Easing restrictions on concealed carry will save lives. Of course, the fearmongers of society always predict such laws will send crime rates skyrocketing. The facts show otherwise.

Larry Pratt is executive director of Gun Owners of America.

Provided by Gun Owners of America
8001 Forbes Place, Suite 102, Springfield, VA 22151, (703)321-8585