THE TRUTH ABOUT GUNS
By Sheriff Richard Mack
June 3, 2002
When I started my police career in 1979, I was relatively oblivious to the gun issues. Then the issue began to hit me right in the face. I saw a young boy accidentally shoot his cousin through the heart and the devastation this death had on a family. I handled a case in which a young man just 23 years old was shot by an irate drunk. The murdered victim had done nothing to the gunman, they were not even acquainted, he was merely in the wrong place at the wrong time as the drunk went on his rampage.
I heard some cops say that no citizens should have guns and I heard others say that all citizens should be armed. I guess I was leaning towards an armed citizenry, but I wasn't really sure. I did know that any attempt to take guns away from some of my hunter friends would have been the beginning of Civil War II. I did not hunt and did not own a gun, but I wanted to know the truth. So, I started researching everything I could about guns, the Second Amendment and the history of gun control.
I was amazed to find how fundamental the "right to keep and bear arms" was to the American equation. My first discovery of deception was that the media and politicians who asserted that the Second Amendment's reference to a "well regulated militia" was actually referring to the National Guard or Army, is an absolute absurdity.
The ride of Paul Revere speaks to the heart of this principle. As Revere rode through the Colonial Townships he called to arms the citizens' militia NOT the standing army. The militia, to quote the founders, "was the people themselves and included all men capable of bearing arms."
This was not the only intentional distortion I found. There were numerous others. The results of my research are as follows:
1.) Propaganda schemes promoted by anti-gun organizations and politicians would have us believe that the prevalence of guns is conducive to and causative of murders, robberies, assaults, burglaries, rape, suicide, and accidental shootings. Government statistics and records show such claims are FALSE! The facts show that the areas of the U.S. where guns are most available and numerous that all aggravated crime is lower than in communities that have stringent gun control laws or that ban guns all together. Furthermore, guns are no more conducive to suicides than the availability of razors, ropes or prescription drugs are. (All of which are used to commit suicides.) And, accidental shootings of children from the age of 0-14 rank dead last of the five leading causes of children's accidental deaths. Motor vehicle deaths are far and away in first place, drownings are second, burnings are third, suffocations are fourth and way last are accidents with guns.
Perhaps one more "bottom line" here is that suicides and accidents with guns have steadily and gradually declined during the past 25 years, while during the same time gun ownership has risen remarkably.
2.) The same propaganda myths have been used across the country in attempts to defeat concealed carry permit legislation. The cries of alarm were astonishing. We were told that road rage would increase and that out-of-control drivers would turn our highways into bloodbaths. Others screamed that we would turn our country into the Old West with shootings occurring at every corner! The fact is that in each of the 37 states that have enacted some form of concealed carry permits for citizens; crime in all major categories has gone down. The return to the Old West or the bloodbaths plain and simply have not happened anywhere! Even after hundreds of thousands of citizens have been issued concealed carry permits.
3.) Women have been lied to also. Sarah Brady has told women especially not to obtain guns for self-defense. "You'll only make matters worse," Mrs. Brady warns. Handgun Control, Inc. and Sarah Brady continue to spread the myth that if a woman attempts to defend herself with a gun, the suspect will take it from her and use it against her. Once again, the facts completely contradict this claim. Eighty-three percent of the time that a woman uses a gun (usually by merely brandishing the weapon) in her own defense against an attacker, she comes out of the incident unscathed and unharmed. That's 83 percent! There is no other self-defense method that comes even close to the success of self-defense with a gun. It is by far the most successful and safest method!
4.) Bill Clinton has said that the Brady bill has saved lives, prevented injuries and stopped 250,000 felons from obtaining guns. Sorry, but this too is a ruse. Of these supposed 250,000 felons who tried to illegally purchase a gun only SEVEN were prosecuted. This taught the remaining 249,993 that nothing will happen to you if you break the law!
Furthermore, the normally anti-gun American Medical Association just issued a report on August 3, 2000, which completely contradicted all claims from politicians, that the Brady bill has been successful. The AMA report said that the Brady bill did NOT keep guns from criminals, did NOT prevent injuries, did NOT reduce murders, and has for the most part, been a waste of time and money.
5.) Numerous gun control groups have disseminated information that guns are dangerous, that they cause crimes and that more guns mean more violence. The truth of the matter is that guns do NOT cause crime. In fact, independent studies conducted by professors Gary Kleck (Florida State University) and John Lott (University of Chicago) have shown that guns are used at least ten times more in thwarting crime than they are used in the commission of crimes. Kleck's research shows that guns are used 2,500,000 times per year by citizens to defend themselves against criminals. Lott's studies bear this out as well and prompted him to write a book entitled, "More Guns, Less Crime".
Even if guns were as "evil" as some would have us believe, the Second Amendment nevertheless guarantees the right of the people to keep and bear arms. This right cannot be legislated away by the whimsical notions of politicians. Founding father George Mason said," To disarm the people is the best and most effectual way to enslave them". Therefore, any attempt to disarm a law-abiding citizen should be considered an affront to liberty and would be entirely against American idealism.
Note: To order sheriff Mack's books, "From My Cold Dead Fingers" or "The Proper Role of Law Enforcement" call toll free: 1-800-834-2027
The Journal of the Medical Association of Georgia
Professor Gary Kleck
Professor John Lott
National Center for Health Statistics
U.S. Department of Justice
Journal of the American Medical Association
© 2002 Richard Mack - All Rights Reserved