: : : : and allowing citizens to carry concealed firearms has resulted in lower violent crime rates.
: : : SDF: No, it's the end of the recession that did that. And I really doubt you have any convincing evidence to show otherwise.
: : Don: False. Lott and Mustard did the most extensive study on the matter in history. They covered almost every county in the US. They did multiple regressions. They showed that the biggest effect on crime was increased concealed carry. They did regressions for all possible causes, and economic factors were rulled out. You see, when Florida enacts a liberalized concealed carry law, crime drops there. But not in other states. When Texas enacts a liberalized concealed carry law, crime drops there, but not in other states. Since some 30 states passed such laws, they had plenty of data points to look at. They could compare between states with similar economic situations but with different laws.
: SDF: Can you give us all a bibliographic cite on this one?
Don: Yes, here it is. This link includes the original paper in pdf format, links to several articles critical of Lott, and Lott's response. The Lott response to Black and Nagin seems to be obsolete--it leads to several other articles, all written in 1999.
Don: Basically, Black and Nagin used Lott's data (which was collected from almost every county in the US over about a 15 year period), and re-crunched his data. But before they re-crunched it, they through out data for the state of Florida and almost every county with a population of under 100,000. They applied a means test, as Lott originally did. The result of their cherry picked data: assaults still went down due to liberalized concealed carry laws, but other crimes remained the same. Lott re-crunched the data, cherry picking it the same way they did. He found that their results were true using a means test over a short time period, but he got his original results when using a longer time period. He also found that if you used an algorithm finding the slope of the data (the changing rate of violent crime), he got his original result even for short time periods. This is because the slope looked like this:
* | *
* | *
* | *
Where * is the line representing the crime rate (the y axis is time), and the L lines up with the enactment of the liberalized concealed carry law. A means test on this data will fail, that is, it will show the same average crime before and after the law was enacted--but the crime rate was rising before the law was enacted, and falling afterwards.
It is interesting to note that the "peaceful" people who advocate gun control find it necessary to place death threats against Lott and his wife and children.
An interesting point of Lott's is that before his study, gun control advocates claimed blood would flow in the streets due to liberalized concealed carry laws. After his study, they were trying to argue that crime only went down a little . . .