For or against weapons of self-defense?

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Editor:

In the Aug. 14 issue of Farm and Dairy, a story Money doesn’t buy safety: U.S. streets dangerous reviewed a book called Homicide.

While I would agree with some of the author’s conclusions, it is obvious the author has an anti-gun bias. The author tries to relate the ease of gun availability in the United States to higher violent crime rates than in other countries.

The problem is that it just isn’t true. For example, contrast the dropping crime rates in the United States with those in England and Australia where anti-gun nuts have all but eliminated private ownership of guns.

There, violent crime has skyrocketed because the criminals know the law-abiding no longer have weapons of self-defense.

In the United States, in every state that has passed concealed carry laws – which allow the law-abiding to carry a gun for self defense – violent crime drops.

Ironically, since the story about homicide came from Gainesville, Fla., it should be noted that when Florida passed a concealed carry law in 1987, its murder rate was 36 percent over the nation’s average.

Within 4 years that rate dropped to 4 percent below the national average. This is typical in all states that allow its citizens to carry guns.

In fact, in Kennesaw, Ga., where an ordinance passed in 1982 required all households to own a gun and ammunition, crime dropped 89 percent.

So it is true that there is a correlation between guns and crime, but the correlation is just the opposite of what anti-gun nuts would have people believe.

The correlation is that when law-abiding people carry guns, crime drops. The fact is that where criminals are afraid that any potential victim may be carrying a gun, people are safer.

The author suggests ways to reduce gun ownership in the United States as a way to reduce violent crime; but in reality getting criminals off the streets is how to stop crime, not taking guns away from the law-abiding who use these weapons to protect themselves.

It should be remembered that the greatest loss of life caused by terrorists in this country was by madmen using airplanes to kill people, and in hijacking these airplanes, they used knifes. Why not an outcry for the elimination of airplanes or knives?

And wasn’t it too bad that our laws at that time prevented the pilots from having guns with them? There is one simple way to reduce crime - put criminals in jail and keep them there.

Perhaps the author should have studied how our revolving door justice system that dumps career criminals repeatedly back on the street is to blame for any crime rates. That would have made more sense.

Terry Crock

Massillon, Ohio

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