More evidence that people who CCW are better than most.

Discussion in 'Legal' started by JellyJar, Mar 6, 2010.

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  1. JellyJar

    JellyJar Member

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    I found this link to the site of the Texas Concealed Handgun Association:

    http://www.txchia.org/sturdevant2000.htm#2000chart

    A chart compares the arrest record of Texas Citizens 21 years or older and not having a Texas CHL ( CCW ) to those who do have one:

    Sorry couldn't download that chart. Basically it shows that CHL holders are far and away more law abiding then the average not CHL holder.

    From the web site:

    GO TEXAS
     
  2. JellyJar

    JellyJar Member

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    One note. The comparison of conviction rates does a better job of telling the story.
     
  3. Double Naught Spy

    Double Naught Spy Sus Venator

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    It is a biased comparison. Since CHL holders are those who have passed background check and the general population is inclusive of everyone including felons, people who beat their spouse, etc., of course the CHL holders will look better. The proper comparison would be CHL holders to those in the general population who have passed the same background checks, but they can't make that comparison because they aren't willing to do the leg work to get a large enough sample of people who have passed the same background checks.
     
  4. Zoogster

    Zoogster Member

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    Yes it is biased.
    It also sounds elitist. The last thing I want to do is support rights for the "elite" and discourage them for others.




    These statistics were also compiled about the 90s and year 2000. When your typical citizen was unaware of Concealed Carry, or chose not to get it for other reasons.

    The more informed in the 90s tended to be those with more financial means. For example internet use in the mid 90s was primarily by families who could afford luxuries like computers and internet access. (While today virtually everyone can and does get online, and it is no longer a luxury but an expected ability.)
    Someone had to know the laws concerning concealed carry options before they would acquire a license. So wealthier individuals were more inclined to know it was an option.

    Then there was some people who still viewed a requirement to ask the government permission to exercise a right, and then be tracked and in a database for doing so, wrong. Or people who did not want to list the serial number and make and model of a firearm on an application (requirement in some states who otherwise do not register firearms), effectively registering the weapon with the government.
    Consider that in the 1980s and before concealed carry most older (young adults were often still held to the letter of the law) law abiding citizens found to be illegally carrying a weapon who had not committed a separate criminal act were not charged in many areas. The lady with a gun in her purse for example was given a warning.
    So in effect many people were carrying concealed already, but who was punished when caught was discretionary. A sort of "may issue" type of situation. So the new permit system was essentially requiring the asking of permission for what many already did.
    By contrast today almost anyone carrying in violation of the law without a permit is charged.




    So the most inclined to jump through any hoops required and reply "how high" when asked to jump were by requirement the more meek. The meek who wanted to be armed. The meek who typically had enough wealth to both passively learn about the option and the desire to pursue it.

    Financially secure meek tend to commit few crimes. They have neither the financial motivation of most violent criminals, nor the personality to step on people's toes or make waves, never mind commit violent crime.
    While this was not everyone with a permit in the 90s, it was a sizable percentage of non LEO/armed guards.



    However the people acquiring permits today are totally different than those of the 90s. Today almost anyone with a passive interest in firearms will learn that the option to obtain a license to carry is there.
    People from all financial backgrounds, and of all personality types.
    The median age is also significantly lower.
    As we know the most dangerous people in society who are not career criminals are typically hotheaded young males that let passion or hormones cloud their judgment and do something stupid.
    This is an age bracket that in the 90s did not normally have a permit, but today will.

    On top of that a much larger percentage of gun owners are now okay with asking permission for their rights. So the less meek who may not have responded "how high" in the 90s are more inclined to jump through hoops for an extra 'privilege' today.

    Before the Law Enforcement Officers Safety Act of 2004 many LEO also had a permit. So they and family members they encouraged would be a decent percentage.
    Today LEO and retired LEO no longer need a permit, they are special citizens for life.
    So they were part of the 90s percentage, but would not be today.



    So what the study about the 90s showed was that typically financially secure people willing to ask permission for rights, as well as armed LEO and guards were significantly more "law abiding" than most.


    I think a similar study of the mid to late 2000s would show that people who can pass a background check to obtain a Concealed Carry permit are more law abiding than people who cannot. Considering most crime is committed by career criminals who repeatedly commit numerous crimes, that is significant.
    So if you compare permit holders to the population in general, including everyone who cannot pass a background check, you will find they commit less crime. However it is unlikely to be as significant a difference today as in the 90s because the demographics of modern concealed permit holders are very different. It includes less financially secure people, younger people, and fewer LEO today.
    So today they are statistically probably more dangerous than in the 90s.

    Who cares about statistics, this is America, it should be about freedom.
    Arguing statistics is what leads to repressive European legislation. Where if everyone is unarmed there is fewer total guns to be used by anyone. You may be totally helpless against those criminals who still are armed, but there is fewer of them total, so statistically it is "safer".
     
    Last edited: Mar 6, 2010
  5. duns

    duns Member

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    Go to http://www.texaschlforum.com/viewtopic.php?f=7&t=17975. The first message has an attachment, an Excel spreadsheet, that contains a very detailed and up-to-date analysis of Texas crime statistics relating to CHL holders and the adult population generally. The results are broadly the same as in the webpage posted by the OP with the advantage that you can check the calculations if you want to. All the raw statistical data used in the spreadsheet is on the web so you can check the sources as well if you really want to.
     
  6. conw

    conw Member

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    Spreading this type of info could be considered propagandistic, w/ all that entails ethically.

    I personally believe in giving people a fair look at issues. For reasons elucidated by Double Naught Spy, this info is somewhat misleading. It doesn't really say anything favorable about guns or people who want to own them; if anything it really speaks favorably to government background checks.

    Good intentions don't automatically mean any info you provide is honest. I personally feel my intelligence is being insulted when I am presented with fallacious info, regardless of whether I believe in the cause. I still give the cause a fair look...but many people are unable to look past the messenger and see the message.
     
  7. Zoogster

    Zoogster Member

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    Today that is virtually what it means. People who are allowed a Concealed Carry permit are less likely to have trouble. Why? The process is selective requiring permission from the government which is selectively granted.

    In fact if you made the process even more discretionary, went from "shall issue" to "may issue" and added dozens of new prohibiting offenses, you could end up with even better statistics about those able to pass.

    In fact if you prohibited anyone who ever did anything wrong, including any traffic tickets, you would get a really good statistic!
    Only the perfect angels of society, XX% less likely to commit a huge range of offenses would pass.
    Expand that to prohibit anyone who has ever had a mental illness (50% of the population is determined to have a "mental illness" at some point http://www.webmd.com/mental-health/news/20050606/mental-illness-common-in-us ) and you will get even better statistics of those left.
    How about anyone who has ever tried an illegal substance.
    How about people who drink more than X amount of times a year, label them a substance abuser.
    In fact if you tried I am sure you could find several ways to increase the number of prohibiting offenses, each time being left with people XX% less likely to commit crimes than before!
    Of course each time the number of people shrinks.


    So it speaks highly of both government background checks and discretionary rights, as well as prohibiting offenses and their expansion.

    Likewise if you denied the first Amendment to anyone who had ever done anything wrong I imagine you would find who was left over to freely express themselves had a significantly lower rate of offensive language.
    First Amendment licensees able to pass the test and background check would have much better language, be less offensive, and probably have a greater vocabulary as well!

    Let us not forget the 2nd was originally meant as a deterrent to government. Turning it into a tool used by the government to divide the people would be the very opposite of that intended purpose.
    Giving the ability to deny the deterrent to those it does feel comfortable with is also counterproductive to the original purpose.
     
    Last edited: Mar 6, 2010
  8. duns

    duns Member

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    I don't think it's biased. The results to which the OP linked tie in with my own quick analysis of the recent Texas crime statistics. The results also tie in with the thorough and up-to-date analysis that I referenced in my previous post (#5). You can download that analysis and check the calculations for yourself.

    As I mentioned, recent analyses give broadly similar results.

    Who cares about statistics? Well, every person and oprganization makes decisions, decisions are based on risk assessment, and risk assessment is based on statistics. Lots of people and nearly all organizations care about and use statistics in order to better manage risks and to make better decisions.

    The suggestion that statistics led to repressive European legislation is partly correct but there was a more important emotional element as well. The handgun ban introduced in Britain in 1997 was mainly in response to public reaction at the Dunblane massacre of small schoolchildren and the Hungerford massacre of random people on the street. In both cases, the massacres were by licensed firearms holders. So the emotional reaction was "right, no civilian is going to be allowed a handgun". Control was also greatly tightened on other types of firearms. The controls were politically easy because there wasn't much of a gun culture in Britain from WWII onwards. My impression is the overwhelming majority of the public supported the controls. I don't think statistics played much part in the legislative decision-making; as I said, I think it was mainly emotional reaction to a couple of terrible incidents.

    You talk about freedom. Freedom for individuals in all countries is never absolute but subject to restrictions to protect other individuals.

    Greater use of statistical analysis has the potential for less emotional decision making and for more rational, less subjective decision making. No body should be against statistics any more than one should be against physics, maths, engineering, etc.
     
  9. duns

    duns Member

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    Impartial information is just information and is very useful in forming rational opinions and in making decisions. Propaganda is the transmission of selective, often inaccurate information, with the intention to persuade for ideological, political or commercial reasons. This info is accurate and therefore not propaganda. If you want to suppress this information because you think it is not compatible with your ideology, then you would be the propagandist, IMO.
     
  10. duns

    duns Member

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    So what is your proposed alternative? Do you suggest that anyone at all (professional criminals, substance abusers, drunks, the mentally unstable) should be free to keep and bear arms?
     
  11. earlthegoat2

    earlthegoat2 Member

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    Interesting that arrests are on the decline from year to year.......

    Must be more CHL holders out there.
     
  12. conw

    conw Member

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    duns, you and I know that many people who look at this info will conclude that "carrying guns makes people obey the law more."

    That is like seeing the correlation (and a real correlation does exist) between eating ice cream and drowning, and concluding one causes the other, when in fact they both occur on a hot day. This is the third variable that, if left out of an explanation, misleads people in its absence.

    If one attempts to lead others to conclude that carrying guns in and of itself makes people more law-abiding, and uses the above data to do it, one is misleading through omission. The omission being the third variable: not just guns and criminality, but background checks. Any population that passes background checks is more law-abiding than the general population, by definition. Guns in general are irrelevant to that fact, just as ice cream is irrelevant to drowning in 99.999% of cases, and to use the info in a pro-gun way is relatively propagandistic*, which is in fact what I was stating initially.

    *Presenting the info itself is not necessarily propagandistic, but if you have a way of using the info to persuade people, or even prod people to conclude a certain thing, that isn't, I'd sure like to see it. The bottom line though is that propaganda and omission does work, and is not always even dishonest...it's just treading a thin line, one that I feel we on the High Road can avoid.
     
  13. Echo9

    Echo9 Member

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    I think a lot of people are missing the value in these statistics. I completely understand the assertion that what it tells us most about is how effective background checks are.

    But the anti, traditionally left-wing battlecry from all the way back when the first shall-issue laws were born was that the streets would run with blood and vigilantes would turn America into a Wild West blood bath. How could we be so insane as to allow civilians to walk around carrying a tool designed to kill people?

    These statistics, at the very least, could help assuage those hyperbolic fears and misconceptions.

    "See? CCW holders aren't sociopaths with itchy trigger fingers. They're mostly just honest people who stay out of trouble."

    I can't help but see value in that. And if you look at the number of carry permits that are permanently revoked per year, they account for only a tiny percent of all permits issued.

    So sure, we can sit here and say that all that these statistics prove is that background checks do indeed check backgrounds, and that selection bias is a real and fascinating phenomenon, but the fact that so few permits are revoked suggests that the law-abiding stay law-abiding. Because I don't know about you guys, but I've heard quite a few antis say that a background check shows that "you haven't committed any crimes..... yet." Maybe touting the effectiveness of background checks isn’t so bad after all – antis certainly seem mistrusting of them.

    As for the propaganda idea.... I can't really get on board with that. The name of this forum is not "The Shooting Line," or "Plastic Gun Talk," or "JMBisGod Forum." It's "The High Road." That in itself strikes me as propaganda.

    And that's OK. As negative as the word's connotation is.

    From Wikipedia: "Propaganda is a form of communication aimed at influencing the attitude of a community toward some cause or position." Besides the interesting discussion and besides just helping each other out, how is that not what we do here? We even have an "Activism" sub-forum.

    Propaganda does not have to be synonymous with "deception," and using these statistics in the RKBA debate need not qualify as such.

    Besides, can't we at least use them to balance out what the antis (another bit of propaganda there) claim the adoption of CCW laws will do to a peaceful society?
     
  14. Echo9

    Echo9 Member

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    "duns, you and I know that many people who look at this info will conclude that "carrying guns makes people obey the law more."

    How is that any worse than the more common conclusion, "carrying guns makes people dangerous vigilantes."?
     
  15. duns

    duns Member

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    I don't believe that the information will make people conclude what you say. I would have thought the obvious conclusion would be "background checks are generally effective in achieving their objective of ensuring that CHLs are given only to responsible, law-abiding citizens".
     
  16. duns

    duns Member

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    I don't think people would draw from the statistics the conclusion that "carrying guns makes people obey the law more". I would expect most people to conclude that "by and large, the background checks ensure that only law abiding, mentally stable people are issued with CHLs".

    Dissemination of this information should certainly help stop people drawing the conclusion that "carrying guns makes people dangerous vigilantes". There are some websites that tell anecdotes about crimes committed by CHL holders as part of their campaigns against all private firearms ownership. These websites tend to prefer anecdotal to statistical evidence.

    Personally, I welcome statistics from whatever source provided they are accurate. The statistics posted by the OP do seem to tie in with other data I have seen.
     
  17. hoptob

    hoptob Member

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    Here is a better pierce of statistics. In Florida, a state with over 1M CPL's issued, one is more likely to be attacked by an alligator than a CPL holder.

    Mike
     
  18. nalioth

    nalioth Member

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    Here's the chart, FWIW:

    tx-chl-chart.png
     
  19. Zoogster

    Zoogster Member

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    The result is more people who pass the background checks carry firearms under a government granted license.
    However a similar number of the violent criminals are still going to be armed and committing crimes.
    So the honest statistic is not that less people are harmed, or less overall crime is being committed because people are carrying.
    A similar number of criminals still commit crimes, and some other people are now legally carrying guns.

    Statistically almost nothing has changed.
    In fact to be purely honest there might be a very slight increase in crimes committed by people with legal firearms who had they not had a firearm on hand would have calmed down before they shot someone (granted it is a small number of people with permits). While there might be an equally small number of people who stop criminals with firearms they otherwise would not have had.
    The real difference is not a statistical change due to carrying, but that people who want the ability to have a greater say in their own destiny now do. More people have the legal privilege to play a role in the outcome of certain events.
    I am more in favor of freedom for the sake of freedom which was supposed to be what the United States was about. Not because one is statistically slightly better or worse.

    But I also am not going to pretend I don't see the labeling of different people fit for various "rights" by the government as dangerous. The offenses someone can be prohibited from acquiring a carry permit are even greater than for purchase of a firearm (though those are growing too), including many misdemeanors. The lists are growing and offenses and categories growing, as are the databases.
    What might be seen as good today can be used to disarm people with various beliefs, traditions, or who oppose steps taken by the government in the future.
    Campaigning that who the government says is fit for more rights are better people seems a dangerous precedent. The government approved elite.
     
    Last edited: Mar 6, 2010
  20. MedWheeler

    MedWheeler Member

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    "Better"? Bad choice of words.

    You're not going to win any arguments by using that word. Licenseholders are not better in general than non-licenseholders. More likely as a demographic be law-abiding? Quite likely. But not "better".
    One reason one can argue that they may be more "law-abiding" is that virtually anyone can get away with walking about town with a concealed firearm on his/her person. However, the licenseholder chooses , by their own nature in most cases, to proceed with the requirements to legally carry, such as meet the standards and sub,it to the background check (as well as pay the fee!) I
     
    Last edited: Mar 7, 2010
  21. JellyJar

    JellyJar Member

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    Let me see if I can make some things clear.

    Many gun control advocates don't trust us CCW totting, gun lovers, background check or not. They think we are all drooling, knuckle walking, misanthropic, psychotic psychopaths who are looking for the slightest excuse to pull out our heater and blast away!!! We are as dangerous if not more dangerous then the real criminals that infest out country.

    These statics prove them wrong!!! That is the purpose of this post! To show that we CCWers ( perhaps because of the background check or not ) are instead one of the most law abiding, peaceful, non-violent, safest group of people anyone could ever hope to meet!
     
  22. duns

    duns Member

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    Very well put, JellyJar!
     
  23. Double Naught Spy

    Double Naught Spy Sus Venator

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    For those of you who do not think the statistics are biased, then you might want to review considerations on population sampling. The fact that the CHL sample is a filtered sample composed of those who have already been vetted makes the comparison biased.

    CHL holders may be better behaved than the rest of the population which is all inclusive, but cannot be said to be better than non-felons of the general population.
     
  24. duns

    duns Member

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    The fact that CHL holders are vetted before they get their CHL does not make the analysis biased. The entire point of the statistical analysis is that it seeks to find out whether the vetting is effective. And it finds, as would be expected, that those who have been vetted (CHL holders) are generally more law abiding than those who have not been vetted.

    "Population sampling" is a red herring. There was no sampling involved in either the study referenced by the OP or the study that I referenced in post #2.
     
  25. Art Eatman

    Art Eatman Moderator In Memoriam

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    The relevance of the comparison is to combat the "blood in the streets" crowd's BS.

    The Florida Department of Law Enforcement (FDLE) and the Texas Department of Public Safety (DPS) have both publicly stated that CHL people, of all identifiable groups, are the least problem for law enforcement.

    That provides an authoritative source to contravene the arguments against CHL, whether on the street or in national parks. Unstated but implicit is that given the conditions for gaining a CHL, we're as "pure" as any policeman.

    "Bias" has zilch to do with anything of concern to us as gunowners.
     
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