Clayton E. Cramer: Do Background Checks for Gun Purchases Actually Work?Roundup: Historians' Take
tags: guns, gun control, PJ Media, Clayton E. Cramer, background checks
I found this testimony to the U.S. Senate by Dr. Daniel Webster, a public health professor, from a few weeks back – he claims that Missouri’s repeal of its permit-to-purchase law (which required police approval of all firearms purchases) increased murder rates. His testimony claims that the increase was directly tied to the repeal of the law:
In 2008, the first full year after the permit-to-purchase licensing law was repealed, the age-adjusted firearm homicide rate in Missouri increased sharply to 6.23 per 100,000 population, a 34 percent increase.
That is a pretty startling increase, but several aspects of the claim made me start sniffing the air for fertilizer.
First of all, notice that this claim includes only firearms homicides. People stabbed to death don’t matter? It turns out that while Missouri’s murder rates (from the FBI’s Uniform Crime Reports) did indeed rise from 2007 to 2008, it was a 24% increase, which while still disturbing, is not as disturbing as 34%....
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