We’re Number 2! We’re Number 9! When It Comes to Danger, We Think It’s Mighty Fine!

Via the wonderful folks at the Nashvillest and the charming Caleb Hannan at Pith, we learn that Forbes has ranked the most dangerous cities in the nation and Tennessee has made the list twice–Memphis at #2 and Nashville at #9.  As Hannan points out, we’re more dangerous than the city The Wire was based in.

And, frankly, it’s for this reason that I’m opposed to any gun control in Tennessee.

When you listen to why people in the State want guns, they’re saying a lot of things that we Democrats need to hear.  Why do people want guns?

Most people have some pretty ordinary and understandable reasons for wanting to have guns.  They want to be able to protect their families.  They want to feel safe in their own homes and communities.  They want to be able to feed their families.  They have seen what happens to people who have their guns stripped from them by the Government, that they then become easy targets for nefarious people.

I’m not going to begrudge the single mother in a shitty neighborhood in Memphis a gun.  It might not be a choice I would make and I might have to play all “But what if your kids find it and shoot you or themselves,” as is my way as a liberal, but I’m not going to begrudge her having one.

I’m not going to begrudge the man who takes his son out and spends weekends filling their deep-freeze with deer meat, meat they otherwise couldn’t be able to afford.

I’m not going to begrudge the rape victim who now has a gun in her purse.

I’m not going to begrudge the African American man who says, “Hell no if I’m going to let the Government disarm me again” when our State has such a long and ugly history of pretending like the 2nd Amendment doesn’t apply to Black people.

What I am going to do, though, is say that we, as Democrats DO BELIEVE that it is a societal failure that we’re at this point.  No one in Tennessee should have to live in a neighborhood where they are afraid for their lives and the lives of their children.  No one in Tennessee should be afraid to call the police for fear that involving the authorities will cause more problems than it solves.  No one should be terrified to think of how they’re going to put food on their family’s tables.  And we damn sure should be aware and ashamed of how gun control has been used in this State to disarm oppressed communities in order to make it easier to keep them down.

What we need to do is to hear what the gun owners are really saying and to show how our policies would help them meet their goals.

You know, if we have any policies that would help them meet their goals.

I’m still unclear about that.

I’m assuming that most Democrats see it as an abject failure that we make up 1/5 of the top ten most dangerous cities.

But maybe they don’t.

Or maybe I’ll break off into my own subset of the TNDP and say that, for the record, “The TNBDP is damn tired of talking about gun control and is ready to start talking about what we can do to fix our communities.”

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41 thoughts on “We’re Number 2! We’re Number 9! When It Comes to Danger, We Think It’s Mighty Fine!

  1. Interesting how the two heavily Democratic leaning communities in TN are the two most dangerous cities in our state.

  2. Oh, Jim, that was such a good try, but you lobe “Interesting how the two heavily Democratic leaning communities in TN are the two most dangerous cities in our state.” at me and I’m just going to point out that all but three of the cities in the top 15 are Southern.

    So, are liberals the problem or Southerners?

  3. I’ll have to research it later, but I am willing to bet that the vast majority of these cities have been under Democratic control for a long time.

  4. Oops, forgot my smiley face on that one.

    Jim, Memphis has been under the thumb of King Willie since 1991. I don’t think even the Democrats claim him.

  5. hehe Rustmeister – get ready for Congressman Willie. That will make me laugh if he gets on the ballot for that. Heck I might even cast my first vote ever for Willie if he does end up running to be my Congressman.

  6. Yeah, but here’s my thing. I’m not sure that, even if we suddenly had the most strict gun control laws in the land, that you could keep a determined evil person from trying to kill other people.

    Andrew Kehoe took out 45 people at a school, a number Harris and Klebold could only dream of, and he didn’t use a gun.

    So… I don’t know. I’m just saying that the way we continue to have these discussions doesn’t seem to be leading us anywhere. And bad people do bad things.

  7. Which is, of course, more to the point.

    If you want to open up the can of worms that Democratic governance leads to crime, I think it only fair to open up the can of worms that Republican propagandizing leads to shooting sprees.

  8. So cities are autonomous when it comes to setting policies on poverty, funding their police force, deciding what gun laws apply? Geez, and here I thought that in the US there are state and federal policies, laws, and funding streams that the city government administers and enforces. I don’t recall any hard-hitting municipal ordinances attacking structural inequality, though I have been told to get off the lawn in front of City Hall once or twice.

    There’s the problem, Jim. You’re living in ancient Greece and the rest of us are in the 21st century US.

  9. Pingback: SayUncle » Tennessee’s Dangerous Cities

  10. Bigger cities will tend to have a higher crime rate for no other reason that you have more people packed into a smaller amount of space. Big cities also tend to be more liberal (imo, because when you have a large diverse body of people occupying a fairly small amount of space, a liberal ideology is the only one that can be successful).

    I’m willing to bet that the ratio of population to space has a much higher correlation to crime rate than any political criteria. But if you must bring up political affiliations you can’t ignore bridgett’s point. Many of the policies most likely to affect crime rates are not established at that local of a level. Most of the cities listed are sitting in the middle of red states, so if you want to make it partisan, be sure to note which party you ought to be blaming.

  11. Jim made the statement that the democratic-leaning counties are the ones where violence is worst, and said he may look it up later.

    I took it upon myself to research the entire Forbes list you linked, and compared it against the recent 2008 election results by county. Red represented a majority of Republican votes, Blue represents Democrat votes. Want to guess what I found? Every single one of them went to Obama. Here’s the list. I used the NY Times map as my source, and you’re welcome to go look it up.

    http://elections.nytimes.com/2008/results/president/map.html

    1. Detroit, MI Blue
    2. Memphis, TN Blue
    3. Miami, FL Blue
    4. Las Vegas, NV Blue
    5. Stockton, CA (San Joaquin County) Blue
    6. Orlando, FL Blue
    7. Little Rock, AR Blue
    8. Charleston, SC Blue
    9. Nashville, TN Blue
    10. Baltimore, MD Blue
    11. New Orleans, LA Blue
    12. Baton Rouge, LA Blue
    13. West Palm Beach, FL Blue
    14. Charlotte, NC Blue
    15. Philadelphia, PA Blue

    Now, far be it for me to make a partisan argument out of this. I don’t identify myself with either the Republicans or the Democrats. I consider the pros and cons of each candidate in each election. It is nearly always an issue of who is the least despicable of the candidates. Both parties enjoy the lion’s share of corruption and self-servitude. Gun control has been, however, a pet issue of our President and the current Democratic leadership in Congress, so for the purposes of this discussion, the data is corollary. After all, the only point Jim made was that the violent places are all Democrat-majority.

    And please do not lump California in with the South. That is an insult to southerners. Also, Las Vegas would be considered “West”, not South.

    In response to dolphin’s comment, why are there no Texas cities on this list. Last I checked, Houston is the 6th largest city in the U.S., but somehow it didn’t make the cut. While it does have its share of crime, especially post-Katrina, it still pales in comparison to the other much smaller cities on the list. I agree that crime does tend to increase with population,but it’s not directly corollary.

    An interesting side note, Houston is another blue city in an otherwise red state, comparable to Philadelphia. Texas has preemption laws governing the the regulation of firearms, where Pennsylvania allows its cities to create local ordinances banning possession and carry of arms. Somehow Philadelphia with its strict gun laws beats out Houston in this most dangerous places list.

    Beyond the gun issue, I believe this reaches much further into the perceived role of government in the daily lives of citizens.

    If the issue were proliferation of gun ownership, then it would seem logical that the most dangerous places to live would be more rural areas where gun ownership is highest. On the contrary, people living in rural areas are inherently more independent and self-sustaining- less likely to be dependent on government assistance in their everyday lives. Rather than turning to the police as a talisman against crime, these people have a personal interest in self-preservation against criminal acts, knowing full well that they are responsible for their own safety.

    By contrast, city-dwellers have been lulled into the notion that crime against one’s person is to only be dealt with by the police, and are largely mentally powerless against a criminal. This is only pushed further when conditioned by laws that prohibit citizens from possessing the most efficient tools for self-defense, making not only self-preservation difficult and often times illegal, but actions of self-defense themselves socially taboo as well. How many times have we heard public officials claim that if we just “give the person what he wants, no one will get hurt”? In practice, that doesn’t work out so well, and we’re slowly becoming a nation of victims with social convention running counter to our inherent instincts for self-preservation.

    Aunt B, I appreciate your willingness to look at facts on this issue. Your post was quite refreshing.

  12. I support gun control for exactly the reasons you support it. I want to disarm the redneck inbreds so that my bros in the underclass can crash through their locked doors and tell them that they can’t hide from the twenty-first century.

    That single mother in Memphis should stop funding the gun manufacturers that keep my black bros from seeking justice against the redneck inbreds. The money she spends on a gun goes toward designing new guns that keep my bros from claiming the white man’s wealth.

    That redneck inbred deer hunter should learn to eat organic food.

    That “rape victim” should recognize that the Sexual Revolution is over, that the sexy people (liberals) won, and she should stop being such a fucking tease and start spreading the happiness and the legs.

    That black man should stop being a traitor and a gun-toting Oreo, and should get in line behind the progressive agenda.

    By the way, I’m not even black. I’m just a middle class white boy who has been to enough punk rock concerts to know that the future lies with the “criminals” and with disarming the redneck inbreds and their “liberal” enablers like Aunt B.

  13. Are there all that many people who are even any color? Most people I know have all sorts of blotches and changes in skin tone here and there.

  14. What I’m fucking talking about is gun control first, and the REVOLUTION next!!!!! We don’t need inbred fucks using their guns to stop America’s Che Guevaras. Unlike the gun owning pieces of shit, we don’t have their sweet little Jesus holding us back with bullshit morals.

    WE CAN DO WHATEVER THE FUCK WE WANT.

    We will take their guns and THEN IT WILL BE PARTY TIME.

    Oh, and Andy Axel, I HAVE tried meth, have you? No, I didn’t think you would, you right-wing fucks never are up for anything except your sweet little Jesus and your fake penises.

    GUESS WHAT BITCH, I’VE GOT A REAL PENIS. And if you dumb fucks would get with the 21st century, you’d know that SEX IS THE WAVE OF THE FUTURE. ALL kinds of sex.

    Instead of reading your precious Bible, read HUSTLER. Most of what I know about politics I learned there.

  15. It’s very sad. Clearly Proud Liberal has a very tiny penis and is not smart enough to figure out how to pleasure sexual partners in any innovative non-penis oriented ways, so he roams the internet acting like a racist, misogynist asshole with poor reading comprehension skills so as to guarantee that no one will ever want to see him naked and thus discover his secret shame.

    Proud Liberal, most people are very forgiving of a small penis if the man who owns it is a thoughtful, imaginative lover. It’s sad you will never discover that.

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  17. Pingback: SayUncle » Correlation

  18. @John The Texaner,

    PA does have preemption. Philly’s problem is a revolving door “justice” system.

  19. John the Texaner,

    For not wanting to make a partisan argument, you sure are trying your best to do just that.

    You ask why there are no Texan cities on the list? Good question, why not any New York cities, or Maine, or Virginia, or Illionois, or Maryland? The reason is simple. Because it’s a list of 15. There are over 10,000 cities in the US (according to the 2000 Census, a little outdated I know), so it’s obvious that ALOT more will be left off the list than included on it.

    I think you’re dismissing the very logical conclusion of higher population = higher crime rate, while jumping to embrace conclusions that are far more dubious. You can’t simply dismiss the correlation between population and crime on the basis that the 6th highest population missed the list. I’m not suggesting that high population is THE factor that causes higher crime rates. I’m suggesting that it is a major one that interacts with a near infinity of other factors.

    If a person who is willing to rob my house is walking down the street in the city and sees a 50″ HDtV sitting in my living room through my window, I’m likely to get robbed. On the other hand, if the exact same person is walking down my street in the country, they are far less likely to walk an acre and a half to my house just to see if there might be something inside they want to steal. I don’t think they care whether I am “dependent on government assistance in their everyday lives,” it’s a matter of convenience.

    Then of course the question is whether that person would be walking down my street in the first time. If, for math simplicity, we assume that 10% of the population are potential criminals, then in a town of 1000, there are only 100 people who I’d have to worry about, where as I’d have to worry about 10,000 in a city of 100,000. And because of population density, I’d be even more likely to come in direct contact with 1 or more of those 100,000 in the city.

    All of these make far more logical sense in explaining higher crime rates than wild speculation on people’s political views or attitudes towards the government.

  20. Ah yes, I stand corrected.

    Philadelphia went and enacted local ordinances in 2007, despite state preemption, and then were roundly spanked for their actions in court a little over a year later.

    With that kind of attitude towards gun owners from the chief of police (who was a big proponent of the ordinances), I’d find the place oppressive to live in too.

  21. First, you’ll storm the Bastille, then you’ll overthrow the tyrants, right, Proud Liberal ?

    And when I say “Bastille”, I mean “your parent’s basement”.

  22. dolphin.

    As I noted at the beginning of my post, I was exploring Jim’s suggestion that the violent cities were democratic-leaning. They were. I left that argument where it ended.

    I do admit that I didn’t look at all the specific reasons for why Forbes listed the cities as “most violent”, and it’s likely an over crime/accident indicator they’re looking at. Reviewing it now, the list includes both violent crimes and property crimes such as theft and larceny – which don’t seem to me to be an accurate indicator of “danger” as applicable in this discussion.

    As a note, you will never find Chicago on any of these lists. The reason for this is that Chicago does not report rape to the FBI, making it impossible to calculate a comparison to other US cities with regards to violent crime.

    If we want to get more specific, we can look at murder rates per 100,000 as an indicator. Forbes has another list of most Murderous Cities, and it is a top 10 list. You can find the article here, and get a rundown of each city by clicking the “In Pictures: America’s Most Murderous Cities” link.

    Detriot (47.3) still tops the list by far, followed by Baltimore (43.3), New Orleans (37.6), Newark (37.4), St. Louis (37.2), Oakland (36.4), Washington (29.1), Cincinnati (28.8), Philadelphia (27.7), and Buffalo (26.4).

    Still no Texas cities in there, and only one in the “South”, being New Orleans.

    I’m not dismissing that large cities tend to have higher rates of crime. In fact, I said that I do agree that it is a factor. I should have phrased it better. Correlation does not equal causation, and that was the specific point I was trying to make. While crime is higher in larger cities, there are plenty of large cities that lack the level of violent crime of smaller cities, so it is obvious that other factors come into play. I believe societal attitudes towards crime are a significant factor, and this was the point I was trying to make.

    As for your HD TV example, you missed my point. In a society where criminals have little fear of resistance to the commission of crime, crime will flourish. If conditions exist that make a burglar or robber more likely to meet armed resistance, logically the risks to the criminal are higher and the criminal will be less likely to commit a high-risk crime.

    Taking this instance of robbery as an example and the two cities I cited earlier – Houston and Philadelphia, let’s compare statistics. I’m pulling these stats from the FBI crime statistics for 2007, which can be conveniently found on Wikipedia at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States_cities_by_crime_rate. Numbers are again per 100.000 in population.

    Houston is a city of 2,169,544, with an instance of robbery of 529.

    Philadelphia is a city of 1,435,533, with an instance of robbery of 715.

    Despite its greater size and a significant influx of crime post-Katrina, Houston still comes in considerably lower than Philadelphia in robbery statistics.

    I find it significant that a violent crime against a person is less likely in an environment where the possession of firearms for self-defense is considered the norm, as opposed to Philadelphia, where it is actively condemned by local authorities. The essence of my point here is not the guns, but the accepted societal norm of defending one’s self, family, and home.

    Guns are simply the best tools for accomplishing these aims when faced with criminal deadly force. They are tools of last resort, and an equalizer when push comes to shove in a life-threatening encounter.

    As for your static example of 10% of the population to be flawed. While there is certainly a portion of the population that will be inclined to commit crimes, you completely ignore the social influence on the choice of an individual to pursue a life of crime. Where the personal risk and consequences of committing a crime are more severe, an individual would be less likely to pursue those paths. Were risk is low to an individual, the rewards may outweigh the possible risks involved, making criminal acts more attractive. If we want to talk in degrees of severity, one may find the low risk involved in petty theft more attractive than the high-risk robbery or burglary. When a population has been conditioned to offer no resistance to a criminal involved in a severe or violent crime, the low risk versus high reward in such an act transcends that of petty theft, and a criminal would be more inclined to commit the act.

    To use recent international events as an example, we have a situation off the coast of Somalia where the violent act of piracy has gone almost completely unchecked. The risk in such a venture has become nearly zero, while the rewards of the crime are incredibly high. We have an environment where shipping companies and entire nations have written off the payment of huge ransoms as a part of doing business, and effectively encouraged Somali criminals to engage in acts of violent and organized crime. In the absence of risk and the presence of great reward, the crime of piracy has flourished.

  23. John, unless I’m severely misunderstanding you, you’re still basing your entire argument on speculation about people’s motivations, which you have no way of knowing. That and the fact that Houston doesn’t happen to appear on a few lists of 10-15 of 10,000+ cities.

    Here’s your (apparent) assertions that I’d either outright dispute or at the very least argue that we need much more information before we could argue the validity of them:
    1. Guns are the only way (or even the most effective way) one can defend oneself against a criminal.
    2. There are a higher proportion of people who choose to pursue criminal activity in the city than in the country.
    3. That there are a lower proportion of people willing to defend themselves in the city than in the country.
    4. The notion that widespread gun ownership has a deterrent effect on crime.

    And here’s the thing, I’m not a gun control proponent. Own all the guns you want, I’m just opposed to drawing really shakey conclusions on not enough information just because those conclusions might fit into your preconceived notions and agenda.

  24. dolphin,

    I’m basing nothing on motivations. I’m talking about social influence. I’ll give you a very simple example:

    A person may be motivated to break into my house and commit robbery or other heinous crimes against me and my loved ones. When I meet him with my shotgun ready to defend my family, I act to influence him to choose another path or pay the consequences of his choice to persist against me.

    I chose Houston as an example because it is similar in size to Philadelphia, and provides a contrast in violent crime trends. I also chose it to provide a conservative example, knowing full well that Houston has a crime problem.. If I had wanted to make a drastic example with a closer population number, I would choose San Antonio instead. Here is a comparison of statistics between San Antonio and Philadelphia, with data taken from the FBI 2007 statistics that I referenced in my previous post.

    Population:
    San Antonio: 1,316,882
    Philadelphia: 1,435,533

    Murder (per 100.000):
    San Antonio: 9
    Philadelphia: 27

    Robbery:
    San Antonio: 186
    Philadelphia: 715

    I was being generous with my Houston comparison. Other large cities in Texas fare as well or better.

    I’ll address the assertions you claim I make individually.

    1. As I have already stated above, my assertion is not that guns are the issue. The issue is when governmental restriction serves to influence public perception on the social acceptability of defensive force, deadly or otherwise. What I did say is that the gun is the absolute best and most efficient tool in a specific set of violent encounters where other options are unavailable or ineffective. When the government disarms law-abiding citizens, it sends a message that we cannot be trusted to protect ourselves against crime and must rely on the police (who have no duty to protect us).

    2. If we are to go by your HDTV example in your earlier comment, then rural living provides less opportunity, less likely reward for effort, and less frequent incidence in crime. And yes, I am saying that both violent and property crime rates are higher in urban areas. The U.S. Burea of Justice agrees with me.

    To quote specifically:
    Urban residents had the highest violent victimization rates, followed by suburban resident rates. Rural residents had the lowest rates.
    and
    Urban households have historically been and continue to be the most vulnerable to property crime, burglary, motor vehicle theft and theft in the United States.

    You can find the report I pulled that from at http://www.ojp.gov/bjs/cvict_c.htm

    3. That really depends on your city. If you want to go with your 10% criminal rule, obviously the cities with lower crime rates have fewer citizens who are willing to be victims. To more specifically address the assertion, it is not so much a matter of will than it is ability. As I’ve stated previously, rural populations are more self-sufficient by nature. The need for self-protection is a much more distinct reality, as police assistance is often immediately unavailable. City-dwellers (again, this varies depending on the city) have been conditioned to rely more exclusively on police response against crime – they are generally not as mentally prepared for the reality of a self-defense situation.

    4. Yes, that is a correct assessment. The only modifier here is that owning a gun is not on its own an effective deterrent. To be truly effective, the gun owner needs to be proficient with the weapon and be willing and ready to use that weapon if the need arises.

    For all your claims that my opinions are shaky conclusions and speculations, your own arguments in this thread have been based completely on supposition. You have yet to point out a single piece of data or study to support your position. Essentially, your side of the conversation has been “you’re wrong, you make bad assumptions”.

    In effort to address your concerns, I’ve provided you with statistical data and my own observations as to why I think that data is significant. While these may be conclusions to fit into my preconceived notions, you’ve countered with your own conclusions with no data or even anecdotal evidence to back them up.

    An agenda would imply that I have some specific goal in mind. I have no goal other than to live my life with liberty and in the pursuit of happiness. I’m flattered that you believe I have some sort of agenda, but in reality I’m just a guy in Texas who values his civil rights.

  25. Straight from the FBI (http://www.fbi.gov/ucr/cius2007/data/table_06.html):

    Philly 2007:

    Pop 1,435,533 / Murders 392 / Rate per 100K 9.5

    Robberies 10,258 / Rate per 100K 264.1

    SATX 2007:

    Pop 1,316,882 / Murders 122 / Rate per 100K 7.1

    Robberies 2,445 / Rate per 100K 137.1

    Houston 2007:

    Pop 2,169,544 / Murders 351 / Rate per 100K 8.8

    Robberies 11,479 / Rate per 100K 268.9

    That’s quite a variance – your reported Philly numbers from wiki on rate per 100K are off by a couple of standard deviations. Care to look at the FBI stats? It comes in Excel format for easy digestion.

  26. Andy,

    Working directly from the FBI site, here’s what I found:

    I calculated incidence per 100,000 with this formula:

    [crime incidences] / ( [population] / 100,000 )

    Philidelphai data pulled from http://www.fbi.gov/ucr/cius2007/data/table_08_pa.html

    Philadelphia
    Population: 1,435,533
    Robbery: 10.258 (715.57779 per 100K)
    Murder: 392 (27.306988 per 100K)

    Texas data pulled from http://www.fbi.gov/ucr/cius2007/data/table_08_tx.html

    San Antonio
    Population: 1,316,882
    Robbery: 2,445 (185.66584 per 100K)
    Murder: 122 (9.2643077 per 100K)

    Houston
    Population: 2,169,544
    Robbery: 11,479 (529.09736 per 100K)
    Murder: 351 (16.178515 per 100K)

    These numbers are consistent with what I posted above. Something is wrong in your calculations. Do the math again.

  27. They’re not my calculations. They’re the FBI’s. Download the sheet from the link I posted.

  28. ok, john, let me address your responses indiiduall too:

    “The issue is when governmental restriction serves to influence public perception on the social acceptability of defensive force, deadly or otherwise.”

    And I’m saying that unless you’re going to start referencing some major sociological study, you’re making a huge leap to assert that you have some great insight into various regional population’s perception on the social acceptability of defensive force. This is what I mean when I say you’re making wild speculation on people’s motiviations and viewpoints.

    “What I did say is that the gun is the absolute best and most efficient tool in a specific set of violent encounters where other options are unavailable or ineffective.”

    I’d agree, but by the same token, a clothes hanger is the absolute best and most efficient tool in a specific set of violent encounters where other options are unavailable or ineffective. Your statement is as meaningless as if I were to say “Orange juice is the best beverage that you can get from simply juicing an orange.” True statement, but who cares?

    “And yes, I am saying that both violent and property crime rates are higher in urban areas.”

    Again, I’d agree. in fact that was a major part of my initial point. It was not however the assertion that I was disagreeing with you on. You suggested that simply living in a city made people more likely to commit crime. I don’t think there’s enough evidence to suggest that. It’s a number’s game. There are more criminals in the city than in the country, but there are also more non-criminals.

    “obviously the cities with lower crime rates have fewer citizens who are willing to be victims.”

    This may be “obvious” to you, but not to me. There are a huge number of factors that go into determining a city’s crime rate. It may be that fewer citizens are “willing to be victims,” it seems more likely that fewer citizen’s are willing to be criminals. This what I’m talking about with your shakey conclusions. You’re looking at whatever conclusion fits in your neat little box of how the world works and refusing to acknowlege any of hundreds of thousands of other factors. I understand the “blame the victim” mentality, because it serves as a defense mechanism for those who think that way (ie. bad stuff can’t happen to me because I would defend myself), but it’s not very helpful in discussing reality.

    “The only modifier here is that owning a gun is not on its own an effective deterrent. To be truly effective, the gun owner needs to be proficient with the weapon and be willing and ready to use that weapon if the need arises.”

    I agree with you wholeheartedly here. The thing is for weapons training to have a deterrent effect, the criminal must know that the potential victim has that weapons training prior to the decision to commit the crime. Therefore, unless we’re limiting our discussion to crimes in which the perp has great knowledge of the victim’s background, it sounds like you’re acknowledging that there is little reason to believe that gun ownership is a deterrent against crime.

    “For all your claims that my opinions are shaky conclusions and speculations, your own arguments in this thread have been based completely on supposition.”

    My only argument has been, and continues to be, that you do not have the data to draw the conclusions that you are drawing. I’m not making any conclusions except that there is not enough data to draw the kind of conclusions that are being made.

    “Essentially, your side of the conversation has been ‘you’re wrong, you make bad assumptions’. “

    That’s a load of bull, and you know it. I have not once said you were WRONG. I have said you are drawing conclusions from assumptions that you don’t have the evidence to make. I have no idea whether you are right or you are wrong, but what I do know, that you don’t seem to, is that you have no idea whether you are right or wrong either, because the evidence that you have provided isn’t sufficient to draw the kinds of conclusions you are trying to.

  29. The crime rates per 100,000 inhabitants in the fed database were based on the Metro population quoted:

    for Philly that was 5,821,531 people vs the population of Philly city limits being 1,435,533. Now there were 522 murders in the metro population of Philly, which leads to the 9.5 rate. In the city proper, there were 392 of those 522 murders which leads to the 27.3 rate quoted by John for the city of Philly alone.

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