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Wild shots
Real facts about guns and violence from the Progressive Review

 

 EARLIER ITEMS

THE LIBERAL GUN CLUB

GUN CONTROL: JUST THE FACTS

FBI murder stats

2014

A public health approach to gun violence

Ninety-two percent of voters, including 92 percent of gun owners and 86 percent of Republicans, support background checks prior to all gun sales, according to a new poll from Quinnipiac University.

Mass shootings not on the rise

Truth Revolt - New York magazine's "Science of Us" has revealed a study by a criminologist at Northeastern University which shows that mass shootings are not on the rise.

James Alan Fox has tracked mass-shootings of four or more fatalities spanning from 1976 through 2012. The data shows a steady rate of incidents as well as victims over that 36 year period -- no upward trend whatsoever.

Fox says that even if you change the data set to three victims, the result would be the same. "There isn't even any upswing in the number of school shooting victims," the article states.

Despite public outcry on social media and 24/7 media coverage lamenting that America is headed to hell in a hand basket, the evidence shows that America is no more violent than it has ever been and mass shootings aren't the new normal.

States: Same ownership rates, big difference in murders

Sam Smith - One of the problems with anti-gun efforts is that they steadfastly ignore other factors involved in American's tendency towards violence. Here are a couple of examples:

- Mississippi has approximately the same rate of gun ownership as New Hampshire yet has five times as many murders per capita. The same is true of Louisiana and Maine: five times as many murders per capita in Louisiana despite roughly the same rate of gun ownership.

- As this chart from School Survival indicates, the growth in school shootings is a fairly new phenomenon while guns aren't. Why is there so little discussion of other possible causes such as bad reactions to psychiatric drugs (with which many school shooters were being treated), the growth of violent video games & movies, the collapse of American culture generally and the stressful rise of test driven public education?

Some mass murder myths

2013

How gun store owners and pawnbrokers feel about gun control

Mass murders and anti-depressants

Post Navy Yard killing thoughts

The best gun control legislation would be end the war on drugs. - Sam Smith

Harvard study finds gun bans don't reduce murder rate

Stereotype buster of the day

Gun crime has plunged but Americans don't know it

Although you wouldn't know it from the current debate about gun control, according to the FBI the number of U.S. murders dropped 39% between 1992 and 2011. Between 2006 and 2010, gun murders dropped 14%. Murders by rifles and shotguns declined 21%. In 2010, rifles and shotguns were responsible for 6% of all murders.

Lower the heat on heat

Gun deaths plummeted over past two decades

Gun control: how not to win the debate

Word: Russ Feingold on guns

In defense of the gun guys

About those background checks

Federal appeals court says 2nd Amendment doesn't cover concealed carry

Background checks as teddy bear politics

The violence beat

We live in a society that condones violence in our public policy and are excessively entertained by it in our private lives.

Data weak on effectiveness of gun laws

Bill Clinton warns Democrats on handling of gun issue

Guns and internal repression

What DC tells us about gun control

Just the facts

Assault weapons are for wusses

High gun owning Maine open to some restrictions

Some sensible words about gun control

Alex Jones & Chris Matthews control

2012

Talking guns

Newtown murders

How to sue gun manufacturers

Assault weapons: just a few facts

Violence: From top to bottom

Fantasy also kills

What's an assault weapon?

Murders per capita by state

Anti-depressants and violence

A culture of young depression

Only six percent of murders use rifles or shotguns

How to be safely violent in America

A different way to handle guns

Why gun control doesn't work the way it's supposed to

When we don't mind violence

How I learned that gun control didn’t work the way it was supposed to

More gun facts

Violence actually on decline

The gun myth

The guns that really need controlling

2011

Dan Baum, Huffington Post - Gun control not only does no practical good, it actively causes harm. It may be hard to show that it saves lives, but it's easy to demonstrate that we've sacrificed a generation of progress on things like health care, women's rights, immigration reform, income fairness, and climate change because we keep messing with people's guns. I am researching a book on Americans' relationship to their guns, and keep meeting working-stiff gun guys -- people whose wages haven't risen since 1978 and should be natural Democrats -- who won't even listen to the blue team because they're convinced Democrats want to take away their guns. Misguided? Maybe. But that's democracy for you. It's helpful to think of gun control as akin to marijuana prohibition -- useless for almost everything except turning otherwise law-abiding people into criminals and fomenting cynicism and resentment.

2010

DC FINDS NEW WAYS TO VIOLATE SUPREME COURT RULING

2009

HOW DC GETS AROUND THE SECOND AMENDMENT

2008

SWAMPOODLE REPORT: THE SUPREME COURT DOES SOMETHING RIGHT

Sam Smith

I don't own a gun. I was never any good at shooting a gun. I was educated by Quakers and avoid violence every chance I get. Still, I was delighted by the Supreme Court's Second Amendment ruling. Not simply because it upheld the Constitution, but because, in a land whose leaders are increasingly contemptuous of democracy and its people and where the specter of dictatorship has loomed as never before, an armed citizenry is one of the last defenses - both symbolic and practical - left to us.

My view of guns has also been affected by spending time in Maine, one of the best armed and least violent places in America, and having had a wonderful hunting father-in-law. While I never went hunting myself, whenever liberals would rail against gun ownership, I would think of him sitting in a blind in northern Wisconsin waiting for the ducks to appear.

It turned out that there was another advantage for a peace loving progressive to oppose taking away other people's guns. Once some of these folks found I wasn't after their guns, they were more willing to listen to my ideas on other subjects. It was something many liberals have never learned: don't mess around too much with the other person's culture. Stick to the big things that can bring us together.

Some people think I'm paranoid for imagining a time when the people might have to choose between their freedom and their government. I hope the day never comes but I know it's happened elsewhere and I know that one of the things that slows potential dictators down is knowing that the people they are trying to suppress are also armed.

Besides, I've stopped worrying about worrying. About a decade and a half ago I began writing about the creeping coup that was infiltrating American government and thought. When I go back and read that stuff, the main thing that strikes me is that I didn't worry enough. For all intents and purposes, the First American Republic is over. We now live under an adhocracy in a post constitutional era of uncertain future.

That's why the Supreme Court decision was so important. Old conservatives would have easily stood up for the Second Amendment, but the new authoritarians driven by a political puritanism - and who thrive in both major parties - could easily have said more control was necessary. For the court, it was a close call.

There are piles of practical arguments to support the court's decision - beginning with the fact that murders soared after the contested DC law was passed - but most of all it means that guns will not be the sole property of a government disloyal to its citizens and their rights or of those individuals who see them as a weapon of personal abuse. Good guys can own them, too, and keep them in their homes. And that little fact may make us all a bit saner and safer.

RECOVERED HISTORY: EARLY AMERICAN RIGHT TO ARMS

Even if one argues that the Second Amendment only applies to members of a militia, the very concept of a militia was quite different in the days of early America, including a requirement that militia members arm themselves. Note that Merkel cites a 1806 report that found 250,000 guns in the hands of militia members "which have, a few instances excepted, been provided by, and are the property of, the individuals who hold them." The public arsenals at the same time only had about 120,000 guns.

WILLIAM G. MERKEL, HISTORY COOPERATIVE On April 2, 1806, Joseph Varnum, then a six-term Republican Congressman from Massachusetts and major general in the Commonwealth's militia, presented a report from the "committee instructed to inquire what measures are necessary to be adopted to complete the arming of the militia of the United States" to the House of Representatives. . . In the report itself, Varnum's committee informed Congress

that, by the laws of the United States, each citizen enrolled in the militia is put under obligations to provide himself with a good musket or rifle, and all the other military equipments prescribed by law. From the best estimate which the committee have been able to form, there is upwards of 250,000 fire arms and rifles in the hands of the militia, which have, a few instances excepted, been provided by, and are the property of, the individuals who hold them. It is highly probable, that many more of the militia would have provided themselves with fire arms in the same way, if they had been for sale in those parts of the United States where the deficiencies have happened; but the wars in Europe have had a tendency to prevent the importation of fire arms from thence into the United States, which, together with the limited establishments for the manufacture of that implement in the United States, has rendered it impossible for individuals to procure them.

The committee went on to say that the number of stands of public arms in the arsenals of the various states had not been ascertained, that there were about 120,000 fire arms fit for use and 12,000 in need of repair in the magazines of the United States. . .

Varnum's report points to the committee's concerns over a national militia less than fully armed and then proposes to rectify this problem by Congressional spending on arms production in federal arsenals for distribution . . . to unarmed militia members. . .

Varnum suggests that most militia eligible Americans wanted to comply with the Militia Act's requirement of arming themselves, but that many were unable to do so because guns were scarce. . .

DC'S GUN BAN DIDN'T WORK

JOHN R. LOTT, JR. AND MAXIM LOTT, FOC NEWS - For gun control proponents and opponents a lot is riding on a former security guard for the Supreme Court Annex. The Supreme Court will hear arguments over whether the District of Columbia's ban on handguns and its requirement that any rifles or shotguns remain locked violates the plaintiff, Dick Heller's, constitutional rights. . .

Thus far the District of Columbia has spent a lot of time making a public policy case. Their argument in their brief to the court is pretty simple : "banning handguns saves lives." Yet, while it may seem obvious to many people that banning guns will save lives, that has not been D.C.'s experience.

The ban went into effect in early 1977, but since it started there is only one year (1985) when D.C.'s murder rate fell below what it was in 1976. But the murder rate also rose dramatically relative to other cities. In the 29 years we have data after the ban, D.C.'s murder rate ranked first or second among the largest 50 cities for 15 years. In another four years, it ranked fourth.

For Instance, D.C.'s murder rate fell 3.5 to 3 times more than Maryland and Virginia's during the five years before the handgun ban went into effect in 1977, but rose 3.8 times more in the five years after it.

Was there something special about D.C. that kept the ban from working? Probably not, since bans have been causing crime to increase in other cities as well. D.C. cites the Chicago ban to support its own. Yet, before Chicago's ban in 1982, its murder rate, which was falling from 27 to 22 per 100,000 in the five years, suddenly stopped falling and rose slightly to 23 per 100,000 in the five years afterwards.

Neither have bans worked in other countries. Gun crime in England and Wales increased 340 percent in the seven years since their 1998 ban. Ireland banned handguns and center fire rifles in 1972 and murder rates soared - the post-ban murder rate average has been 144 percent higher than pre-ban.

How could this be? D.C. officials say that the ban will disarm criminals. But who follows a ban and turns their guns in? Criminals who would be facing long prison sentences anyway if they were caught in a crime, or typically law-abiding citizens? By disarming normal people, a gun ban actually makes crime easier to commit.

http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,336689,00.html

2007

SOME LIBERAL LAWYERS NOW DEFEND SECOND AMENDMENT

ADAM LIPTAK, NY TIMES - In March, for the first time in the nation's history, a federal appeals court struck down a gun control law on Second Amendment grounds. Only a few decades ago, the decision would have been unimaginable. There used to be an almost complete scholarly and judicial consensus that the Second Amendment protects only a collective right of the states to maintain militias. That consensus no longer exists - thanks largely to the work over the last 20 years of several leading liberal law professors, who have come to embrace the view that the Second Amendment protects an individual right to own guns. . .

Laurence H. Tribe, a law professor at Harvard, said he had come to believe that the Second Amendment protected an individual right. "My conclusion came as something of a surprise to me, and an unwelcome surprise," Professor Tribe said. "I have always supported as a matter of policy very comprehensive gun control."

Several other leading liberal constitutional scholars, notably Akhil Reed Amar at Yale and Sanford Levinson at the University of Texas, are in broad agreement favoring an individual rights interpretation. Their work has in a remarkably short time upended the conventional understanding of the Second Amendment, and it set the stage for the Parker decision.

APRIL 2007

WHY MORE GUN CONTROL WON'T HELP

- Gun prohibition has much the same effect as drug or alcohol prohibition. It would increase the price but not limit the availability of guns for those who really want them. One of the effects, for example, of banning cigarettes in prisons is to create a booming trade in contraband tobacco.

- Within a few years of DC passing a gun control law so stringent that it was recently ruled in violation of the Second Amendment, the war on drugs was launched by Ronald Reagan. In the years that immediately followed the murder rate doubled despite the gun law.

- The killer was mentally deranged and driven enough to have easily obtained a gun even if there were gun prohibition.

- Since 1993 the U.S. handgun murder rate has decreased 48 percent while the number of privately owned handguns in America has increased by more than 20 million

- Culture is a far more important factor in violence that gun ownership. There are more guns per-capita in Maine than in any other state save possibly Alaska. About 50,000 Mainers have permits to carry concealed weapons. Yet Maine has a crime rate one-third below the national average. Maine has one or two fatal gun accidents a year, lower than the death rate for snowmobiling or boating. These figures -- which reflect those of certain high gun-ownership countries such as Sweden, Norway and Switzerland -- suggest that the culture of a society affects the problems caused by guns more than the guns themselves. Introduce guns to an inherently violent community and you'll get more violence. Introduce guns to an inherently lawful society and the crime rate drops. In 2004 the South, on the other hand, had a murder rate 57% higher than the Northeast.

- Forty-six percent of all those dying of gunshots in 1997 were between the ages of 15 and 34. Presumably guns work mechanically the same way for this age group as they do for others, thus something other that safety would appear to be involved.

- Treating gun laws as a national issue exacerbates cultural conflict, such as those between rural and urban, east and west, wealthy and not so well off. Telling rural Westerners to get rid of their guns is like telling urban blacks to stop reading African-American books.

- John R. Lott has pointed out that "less than one out every thousand times people use guns defensively is the attacker killed. Ninety-eight percent of the time, simply being able to brandish a gun is sufficient to cause a criminal to break off an attack and the two percent of the time when guns are fired, the vast majority of those are warning shots. It's something like less than one-half-of-one percent of the time is the gun fired in the direction of the attacker. Even when they do hit, woundings are much more frequent than times when the attacker is killed."

- A Justice Department stud, conducted from 1993-1995 tracked 4,000 boys and girls aged 6 to 15 in Denver, Pittsburgh, and Rochester, NY. According to the study:

Children who get guns from their parents don't commit gun crimes (0%), while children who get illegal guns are very likely to do so (21%).

Children who get guns from parents are less likely to commit any kind of street crime (14%) than children who have no gun in the house (24%) and are dramatically less likely to do so than children who acquire an illegal gun (74%).

Children who get guns from parents are less likely to use drugs (13%) than children who get illegal guns (41%).

"Boys who own legal firearms have much lower rates of delinquency and drug use [than boys who get illegal guns] and are even slightly less delinquent than non-owners of guns," the study reported.

- The Columbine killers violated at least 17 existing state and federal weapons control laws.

- In 1997 it was reported that Americans use guns defensively around 2 million times each year, five times more frequently than the 430,000 times guns were used to commit crimes that same year. And 98 percent of the time, simply brandishing the weapon is sufficient to stop an attack.

MORE ON GUNS
http://prorev.com./guns.htm

MAYHEM IN GUN-HAPPY NORWAY: 32 MURDERED IN ONE YEAR

[Gun ownership in Norway is only slightly less prevalent than in the United States]

AFTENPOSTEN, NORWAY - An examination of homicide statistics for 2006 reveals the most typical situation - a man aged 30-40 kills a female acquaintance with a knife. Over 80 percent of the assailants behind the 32 solved homicides last year were men, while over half of the victims were women according to the national statistics compiled by Kripos, Norway's National Criminal Investigation Service. The killings are most often triggered by an argument or as the result of a mental disorder.

http://www.aftenposten.no/english/local/article1605255.ece

MARCH 2007

Certainly one of the chief guarantees of freedom under any government, no matter how popular and respected, is the right of citizens to keep and bear arms.... The right of citizens to bear arms is just one guarantee against arbitrary government, one more safeguard against the tyranny which now appears remote in America but which historically has proven to be always possible. - Senator Hubert H. Humphrey

SOME REASONS THE APPEALS COURT GUN DECISION MAKES SENSE

1. The Second Amendment said so. Arguments that guns should only be owned by members of a state militia are not only historically wrong, they ignore the fact that the powers of state militias aka the National Guard have been unconstitutionally emasculated by the federal government.

2. The founders said so:

"No free man shall ever be debarred for the use of arms." - Thomas Jefferson, 1776

"Before a standing army can rule, the people must be disarmed; as they are in almost every kingdom of Europe." - Noah Webster, 1787

"What is the militia? It is the whole people, except for a few public officials." - George Mason, 1788

"The said Constitution shall never be construed to authorize Congress to prevent the people of the United States who are peaceable citizens from keeping their own arms." - Samuel Adams, 1788

"The militia is our ultimate safety. We can have no security without it. The great object is that every man be armed." - Patrick Henry

3. Gun control is an issue like abortion that needlessly divides the people and distracts them from more important matters like our loss of democracy and economic inequity. Neither side is going to win but both sides can agree to let the other side have a gun or not or TO have an abortion or not, whether one likes it or not. About 110 million American households own guns and not many are going to change their mind

4. An armed citizenry is a major defense against dictatorship and invasion. America would be a lousy place for anyone to try to take over by force.

5. In a city like Washington, the only people actually affected by a gun ban are law abiders. The others get their guns anyway.

6. The statistical evidence clearly shows that DC's gun ban had no effect on murders. If anything should have been ban it would have been the war on drugs, the major cause of murder in DC over the past few decades.

http://prorev.com/dctrendscrime.htm

7. Since 1993 the U.S. handgun murder rate has decreased 48 percent, while the number of privately owned handguns in America has increased by more than 20 million

8. Culture is a far more important factor in violence that gun ownership. There are more guns per-capita in Maine than in any other state save possibly Alaska. About 50,000 Mainers have permits to carry concealed weapons. Yet Maine has a crime rate one-third below the national average. Maine has one or two fatal gun accidents a year, lower than the death rate for snowmobiling or boating. These figures -- which reflect those of certain high gun-ownership countries such as Sweden and Switzerland -- suggest that the culture of a society affects the problems caused by guns more than the guns themselves. Introduce guns to an inherently violent community and you'll get more violence. Introduce guns to an inherently lawful society and the crime rate drops. In 2004 the South, on the other hand, had a murder rate 57% higher than the Northeast.

9. Even the Washington Post admitted that the DC gun ban wasn't working all that well:

- ILLEGAL GUN TRADING is rampant on the streets of the nation's capital, which has one of the toughest gun control laws in the country." - Washington Post, March 8, 1981.

- "THE DISTRICT, which bans all guns except for those used by law enforcement officers, maintains one of the highest gun violence rates in the country." - The Washington Post, Dec. 1, 2000.

10. In 2002, Charlie Reese of the Orlando Sentinel reported: "A new survey involving 34,000 people in 17 industrialized countries published by the Dutch Ministry of Justice shows [that] the nations that report the highest percentage of crime victims are those that have virtually banned private gun ownership. In descending order they are Australia, England and Wales, Scotland, Finland, Northern Ireland, France and the Netherlands. The United States ranks eighth out of 17."

11. The evidence has been around for a long time. For example, HL Mencken wrote many years ago:

"The hard facts are publicly on display in New York State, where a law of exactly the same tenor is already on the books, the so-called Sullivan Law. In order to get it there, of course, the Second Amendment had to be severely strained. . . It is now a dreadful felony in New York to "have or possess" a pistol. Even if one keeps it locked in a bureau drawer at home, one may be sent to the hoosegow for ten years. More, men who have done no more are frequently bumped off. The cops, suspecting a man, say, of political heresy, raid his house and look for copies of the Nation. They find none, and are thus baffled but at the bottom of a trunk they do find a rusted and battered revolver. So he goes to trial for violating the Sullivan Law. . . With what result? With the general result that New York, even more than Chicago, is the heaven of footpads, hijackers, gunmen and all other such armed thugs. Their hands upon their pistols, they know they are safe. Not one citizen out of a hundred that they tackle is armed for getting a license to keep a revolver is a difficult business, and carrying one without it is more dangerous than submitting to robbery. So the gunmen flourish and give humble thanks to God. Like the bootleggers, they are hot and unanimous for Law Enforcement.

12. Forty-six percent of all those dying of gunshots in 1997 were between the ages of 15 and 34. Presumably guns work mechanically the same way for this age group as they do for others, thus something other that safety would appear to be involved.

13. There are already thousands of gun control laws, too many of which don't work. Every ineffective law brings government into disrepute.

14. Prohibition of something that large numbers of citizens want always fail, witness the war on the drugs. It merely increases the value of the prohibited item and changes the distributors from honest people to crooks.

15. Treating gun laws as a national issue exacerbates cultural conflict, such as those between rural and urban, east and west, wealthy and not so well off. Telling rural Westerners to get rid of their guns is like telling an urban blacks to stop reading African-American books.

16. The push for gun restrictions and prohibition is interwoven with the drive to restrict other citizen liberties and erode democracy. Liberals once opposed such moves, but in recent years have become supporters of repression. They need to became civil libertarians again.

17. People who drive around cities in four-wheel drive SUVs with noisy alarm systems shouldn't lecture others on what safety precautions are permissible.

18. In DC, home of the gun ban in dispute, the school system spent a lot of money for metal detectors, cameras and security officers. But between 197 and 2001, according to the Washington Times:

- Assaults with deadly weapons shot up from 66 to 127.

- Simple assaults in the school system rose from 384 to 475.

- The number of children caught bringing concealed weapons to schools swelled from 329 to 423.

- Robberies rose from 18 to 35.

- Threats against students and staff increased from 156 to 225.

The number of incidents reported to the school system are as bad or worse than those of school systems with twice the number of students all in a city with a handgun ban.

AN ARMED CITIZENRY & THE NAZIS

Excerpts from remarks made in 1998 by author Stephen Halbrook on the publication of his book, Target Switzerland:

In 1940, after the rest of central Europe collapsed before the German army, Swiss Commander in Chief Henri Guisan assembled his officers at the Rotli meadow near the Lake of Lucerne. He reminded them that, at this sacred spot, in the year 1291, the Swiss Confederation was born as an alliance against despotism. Guisan admonished that the Swiss would always stand up to any invader. One has only to recall the medieval battle of Morgarten, where 1400 Swiss peasants ambushed and defeated 20,000 Austrian knights.

In World War II, the Swiss had defenses no other country had. Let's begin with the rifle in every home combined with the Alpine terrain. When the German Kaiser asked in 1912 what the quarter of a million Swiss militiamen would do if invaded by a half million German soldiers, a Swiss replied: "Shoot twice and go home." Switzerland also had a decentralized, direct democracy which could not be surrendered to a foreign enemy by a political elite. Some governments surrendered to Hitler without resistance based on the decision of a king or dictator; this was institutionally impossible in Switzerland. If an ordinary Swiss citizen was told that the Federal President--a relatively powerless official--had surrendered the country, the citizen might not even know the president's name, and would have held any "surrender" order in contempt.

When Hitler came to power in 1933, the Swiss feared an invasion and began military preparations like no other European nation. On Hitler's 1938 "Anchluss" or annexation of Austria, the Swiss Parliament declared that the Swiss were prepared to defend themselves "to the last drop of their blood."

When the Fuehrer attacked Poland in 1939, General Guisan ordered the citizen army to resist any attack to the last cartridge. After Denmark and Norway fell in 1940, Guisan and the Federal Council gave the order to the populace: aggressively attack invaders; act on your own initiative; regard any surrender broadcast or announcement as enemy propaganda; resist to the end. This was published as a message to the Swiss and a warning to the Germans; surrender was impossible, even if ordered by the government, for the prior order mandated that it be treated as an enemy lie.

When the Germany army, the Wehrmacht, attacked Belgium and Holland, it feigned preparations for attack through Switzerland. Like a giant movie set, divisions moved toward the Swiss border by day, only to sneak back again by night and repeat the ruse the next day. Both the Swiss and the French were tricked into thinking that concentrations of troops were massing to attack through Switzerland and into France. Swiss border troops nervously awaited an assault each time the clock approached the hour, for the Germans were punctual in lauching attacks on the hour.

When France collapsed, detailed Nazi invasion plans with names like "Case Switzerland" and "Operation Tannenbaum" were prepared for the German General Staff. They only awaited the Fuehrer's nod.

Threatened with attack from German and Italian forces from all sides, General Guisan devised the strategy of a delaying stand at the border, and a concentration of Swiss forces in the rugged and impassable Alps. . . A fifth of the Swiss people, 850,000 out of the 4.2 million population, was under arms and mobilized. Most men were in the citizens army, and boys and old men with rifles constituted the Home Guard. Many women served in the civil defense and the anti-aircraft defense.

Nazi invasion plans for 1941 were postponed to devote all forces to Operation Barbarossa, the attack on Russia. The Swiss would have their turn in due time. Hitler banned the play William Tell. He called the Swiss "the most despicable and wretched people, mortal enemies of the new Germany"; in the same breath he fumed that all Jews must be expelled from Europe. His plan to annihilate the Jews would have faced a special obstacle in Switzerland, where every Swiss Jew (like every other citizen) had a rifle in his home. In the heroic Warsaw ghetto uprising of 1943, Jews demonstrated how genocide could be resisted with only a few pistols and rifles. Hitler boasted that he would liquidate "the rubbish of small nations" and would be "the Butcher of the Swiss." But the dictator was more comfortable with liquidating unarmed peoples and was dissuaded from invading Switzerland. There was no Holocaust on Swiss soil.

As a neutral, the Swiss represented American interests before the Axis powers, such as by inspecting German prison camps holding American POWs. When Vichy France was occupied, German soldiers with sub-machine guns took over the American embassy. The Swiss minister, brandishing his Swiss army knife, drove them out.

A Nazi SS invasion plan, recommended for execution in 1944, warned the German general staff that the Swiss fighting spirit was high and shooting instruction good; German loses would be heavy, and a conquered Switzerland would require a strong occupation force. D-Day put the plan on hold, but new dangers threatened Switzerland as the Allies pushed the Nazis back. In 1944, the Wehrmacht's counter-offensive in the Ardennes, leading to the Battle of the Bulge, proved that the Nazi Beast was still strong and full of suprises. The Swiss prepared for an attack from Germans retreating from Italy. The Swiss resolve remained high, for, as the US State Dept. declared, "no people in Europe are more profoundly attached to democratic principles than the Swiss.". . .

MORE THOUGHTS OF EARLY AMERICANS

"And that the said Constitution be never construed to authorize Congress...to prevent the people of the United States, who are peaceable citizens, from keeping their own arms..." - Philadelphia Independent Gazetteer, August 20, l789

"A militia, when properly formed are in fact the people themselves...and include all men capable of bearing arms." - RICHARD HENRY (LIGHT HORSE HARRY) LEE, Additional Letters from the Federal Farmer (1788) at 169.

"A free people ought...to be armed...." - GEORGE WASHINGTON. Speech of January 7, l790 in the Boston Independent Chronicle, January 14, l790

"Laws that forbid the carrying of arms. . . disarm only those who are neither inclined nor determined to commit crimes. . . Such laws make things worse for the assaulted and better for the assailants; they serve rather to encourage than to prevent homicides, for an unarmed man may be attacked with greater confidence than an armed man." - THOMAS JEFFERSON, Thomas Jefferson's "Commonplace Book," 1774-1776, quoting from On Crimes and Punishment, by criminologist Cesare Beccaria, 1764

"The right of the people to keep and bear arms has been recognized by the General Government; but the best security of that right after all is, the military spirit, that taste for martial exercises, which has always distinguished the free citizens of these States. . . Such men form the best barrier to the liberties of America." - Gazette of the United States, October 14, l789

"The said Constitution [shall] be never construed to authorize Congress to infringe the just liberty of the press, or the rights of conscience; or to prevent the people of the United States, who are peaceable citizens, from keeping their own arms." - SAMUEL ADAMS of Massachusetts, Massachusetts' U.S. Constitution ratification convention, 1788

"As civil rulers, not having their duty to the people duly before them, may attempt to tyrannize, and as the military forces which must be occasionally raised to defend our country, might pervert their power to the injury of their fellow citizens, the people are confirmed by the article in their right to keep and bear their private arms." - Tench Cox in "Remarks on the First Part of the Amendments to the Federal Constitution." Under the pseudonym "A Pennsylvanian" in the Philadelphia Federal Gazette, June 18, 1789. at 2 col.1

"Who are the militia? Are they not ourselves? Congress have no power to disarm the militia. - Tench Cox of Pennsylvania, The Pennsylvania Gazette, Feb. 20, 1788

"Are we at last brought to such a humiliating and debasing degradation, that we cannot be trusted with arms for our own defense? Where is the difference between having our arms in our possession and under our own direction, and having them under the management of Congress? If our defense be the real object of having those arms, in whose hands can they be trusted with more propriety, or equal safety to us, as in our own hands?" - Patrick Henry, 3 Elliot Debates 168-169.

"When the resolution of enslaving America was formed in Great Britain, the British Parliament was advised by an artful man, who was governor of Pennsylvania, to disarm the people; that it was the best and most effectual way to enslave them; but that they should not do it openly, but weaken them, and let them sink gradually." - George Mason - Virginia's U.S. Constitution ratification convention, 1788

SEPTEMBER 2006

"No free man shall ever be debarred the use of arms." ~Thomas Jefferson, 1776

"Before a standing army can rule, the people must be disarmed; as they are in almost every kingdom of Europe." ~Noah Webster, 1787

"What is the militia? It is the whole people, except for a few public officials." ~George Mason, 1788

"The said Constitution shall never be construed to authorize Congress to prevent the people of the United States who are peaceable citizens from keeping their own arms." ~Samuel Adams, 1788

"The militia is our ultimate safety. We can have no security without it. The great object is that every man be armed." ~Patrick Henry

JUNE 2006

STATS SHOOT HOLE IN GUN MYTH

WASHINGTON TIMES - Figures released by the Treasury Department show that retail sales of firearms and ammunition rose almost 3 percent in 2005. All told, 4.7 million new guns were sold during this past year. Yet government figures and independent statistics reveal that firearms crimes, suicides and accidental fatalities, including among youth, all trend downward. According to the National Shooting Sports Foundation, the estimated number of privately owned firearms in the U.S. now stands at more than 290 million, while American households with at least one firearm is estimated at nearly 110 million.

http://insider.washingtontimes.com/articles/normal.php?StoryID=20060605-111139-8659r

JANUARY 2006

COUNTER INTUITIVE NEWS

CHRIS COX, NATIONAL RIFLE ASSN, LETTER TO WASH POST - Since 1993 the U.S. handgun murder rate has decreased 48 percent, even as the number of privately owned handguns in America has increased by more than 20 million. Today, murder rates are at a 39-year low and the rate for total violent crime is at a 30-year low. Handguns are statistically the most effective means of self-defense against a criminal attack, and handguns are used for self-defense approximately three times more often than they are used in victimizations. It's arrogant and elitist to advocate depriving Americans of the right to decide how to best protect themselves and their families.

NOVEMBER 2005

GUNS DON'T KILL; LIVING IN THE SOUTH DOES
MURDER RATE PER 100,000 IN 2004
DEATH PENALTY INFO

JAN 2003

RECOVERED HISTORY

"And that the said Constitution be never construed to authorize Congress...to prevent the people of the United States, who are peaceable citizens, from keeping their own arms..." - Philadelphia Independent Gazetteer, August 20, l789

"A militia, when properly formed are in fact the people themselves...and include all men capable of bearing arms." - RICHARD HENRY (LIGHT HORSE HARRY) LEE, Additional Letters from the Federal Farmer (1788) at 169.

"A free people ought...to be armed...." - GEORGE WASHINGTON. Speech of January 7, l790 in the Boston Independent Chronicle, January 14, l790

"Laws that forbid the carrying of arms...disarm only those who are neither inclined nor determined to commit crimes... Such laws make things worse for the assaulted and better for the assailants; they serve rather to encourage than to prevent homicides, for an unarmed man may be attacked with greater confidence than an armed man." - THOMAS JEFFERSON, Thomas Jefferson's "Commonplace Book," 1774-1776, quoting from On Crimes and Punishment, by criminologist Cesare Beccaria, 1764

"The right of the people to keep and bear arms has been recognized by the General Government; but the best security of that right after all is, the military spirit, that taste for martial exercises, which has always distinguished the free citizens of these States...Such men form the best barrier to the liberties of America." - Gazette of the United States, October 14, l789

"The Constitution shall never be construed...to prevent the people of the United States who are peaceable citizens from keeping their own arms." - SAMUEL ADAMS, Debates & Proceedings in the Convention of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, 1786-87

"The said Constitution [shall] be never construed to authorize Congress to infringe the just liberty of the press, or the rights of conscience; or to prevent the people of the United States, who are peaceable citizens, from keeping their own arms." - SAMUEL ADAMS of Massachusetts, Massachusetts' U.S. Constitution ratification convention, 1788

"As civil rulers, not having their duty to the people duly before them, may attempt to tyrannize, and as the military forces which must be occasionally raised to defend our country, might pervert their power to the injury of their fellow citizens, the people are confirmed by the article in their right to keep and bear their private arms." - TENCH COXE in "Remarks on the First Part of the Amendments to the Federal Constitution." Under the pseudonym "A Pennsylvanian" in the Philadelphia Federal Gazette, June 18, 1789. at 2 col.1

"Who are the militia? Are they not ourselves? Congress have no power to disarm the militia. - TENCH COXE of Pennsylvania, The Pennsylvania Gazette, Feb. 20, 1788

"Are we at last brought to such a humiliating and debasing degradation, that we cannot be trusted with arms for our own defense? Where is the difference between having our arms in our possession and under our own direction, and having them under the management of Congress? If our defense be the real object of having those arms, in whose hands can they be trusted with more propriety, or equal safety to us, as in our own hands?" - PATRICK HENRY, 3 Elliot Debates 168-169.

"When the resolution of enslaving America was formed in Great Britain, the British Parliament was advised by an artful man, who was governor of Pennsylvania, to disarm the people; that it was the best and most effectual way to enslave them; but that they should not do it openly, but weaken them, and let them sink gradually." - GEORGE MASON - Virginia's U.S. Constitution ratification convention, 1788

SEP 2002

PROGRESSIVE REVIEW, 1998 - There are more guns per-capita in Maine than in any other state save possibly Alaska. About 50,000 Mainers have permits to carry concealed weapons. Last year over ten percent of the state's population bought deer-hunting licenses. Yet Maine has a crime rate one-third below the national average. Maine has one or two fatal gun accidents a year, lower than the death rate for snowmobiling or boating. These figures from Down East Magazine -- which reflect those of certain high gun-ownership countries such as Sweden and Switzerland -- suggest that the culture of a society affects the problems caused by guns more than the guns themselves. Introduce guns to an inherently violent community and you'll get more violence. Introduce guns to an inherently lawful society and the crime rate drops. The figures also reflect strikingly different attitudes towards the use and handling of firearms in rural compared to urban communities.

JUN 2002

WILD SHOTS

[The capital's gun laws, now headed for court review, are - like Samuel Johnson's description of second marriages - the triumph of hope over experience. In honor of the new notoriety of DC's remarkably ineffective gun laws, we have assembled some of our previous material on the issue]

"ILLEGAL GUN TRADING is rampant on the streets of the nation's capital, which has one of the toughest gun control laws in the country." - Washington Post, March 8, 1981.

"THE DISTRICT, which bans all guns except for those used by law enforcement officers, maintains one of the highest gun violence rates in the country." - The Washington Post, Dec. 1, 2000.

WHILE 69 MEN PER 100,000 die of gun shots in DC every year, the number of female fatalities is so small that it's not even listed in the latest Kaiser health statistics report. Obviously, something more than guns are involved in these deaths.

CHARLIE REESE, ORLANDO SENTINEL: A new survey involving 34,000 people in 17 industrialized countries published by the Dutch Ministry of Justice shows [that] the nations that report the highest percentage of crime victims are those that have virtually banned private gun ownership. In descending order they are Australia, England and Wales, Scotland, Finland, Northern Ireland, France and the Netherlands. The United States ranks eighth out of 17. As legitimate scholars have shown time and again, there is no correlation between gun ownership and crime except often an inverse one - the fewer private guns, the more crime.

Arrest of Washington DC police officers: 19 per 1000
Arrest rate of New York City police officers: 3 per 1000
Arrest rate of Florida concealed handgun permit holders: 1 per 1000

[Political Digest]

BRIT HUME, FOX NEWS: The crime rate in Kennesaw Georgia, near Atlanta, is 89 percent lower than it was 19 years ago according to the Marietta Daily Journal. What's the news in that? Well it seems that 19 years ago the city council passed an ordinance requiring the head of every household to own at least one firearm with ammunition. The ACLU challenged the law in court unsuccessfully and there were predictions of shootings in the streets and violence in people's homes. What happened instead was that the crime rate plunged. Said Robert Jones, president of the city historical society, quote: 'It did drop after it was initially passed and it has stayed the same low level for the past 16 years.'

HL MENCKEN: The new law that [the Nation] advocated, indeed, is one of the most absurd specimens of jackass legislation ever heard of, even in this paradise of legislative donkeyism. Its single and sole effect would be to exaggerate enormously all of the evils it proposes to put down. It would not take pistols out of the hands of rogues and fools; it would simply take them out of the hands of honest men. The gunman today has great advantages everywhere. He has artillery in his pocket, and he may assume that, in the large cities, at least two-thirds of his prospective victims are unarmed. But if the proposed law (or amendment) were passed and enforced, he could assume safely that all of them were unarmed.

Here I do not indulge in theory. The hard facts are publicly on display in New York State, where a law of exactly the same tenor is already on the books the so-called Sullivan Law. In order to get it there, of course, the Second Amendment had to be severely strained, but the uplifters advocated the straining unanimously, and to the tune of loud hosannas, and the courts, as usual, were willing to sign on the dotted line. It is now a dreadful felony in New York to "have or possess" a pistol. Even if one keeps it locked in a bureau drawer at home, one may be sent to the hoosegow for ten years. More, men who have done no more are frequently bumped off. The cops, suspecting a man, say, of political heresy, raid his house and look for copies of the Nation. They find none, and are thus baffled but at the bottom of a trunk they do find a rusted and battered revolver. So he goes to trial for violating the Sullivan Law, and is presently being psycho-analyzed by the uplifters at Sing Sing.

With what result? With the general result that New York, even more than Chicago, is the heaven of footpads, hijackers, gunmen and all other such armed thugs. Their hands upon their pistols, they know they are safe. Not one citizen out of a hundred that they tackle is armed for getting a license to keep a revolver is a difficult business, and carrying one without it is more dangerous than submitting to robbery. So the gunmen flourish and give humble thanks to God. Like the bootleggers, they are hot and unanimous for Law Enforcement.

JOHN R. LOTT, YALE LAW SCHOOL - [Women] who behave passively when they are confronted by a criminal are 2.5 times more likely to end up being seriously injured than a woman who has a gun. And the reason is pretty straightforward. You're talking about a female victim. The attackers are virtually always male. There's a large strength differential on average between a male attacker and a female victim. Other types of resistance -- using your fists, for example -- is very likely to lead to tragedy, because a female who uses her fist has a high probability of a physical response back from the attacker and a high probability of serious injury or death. While men also benefit from having a gun, the benefit isn't as large . . .

There are 31 states now that have so-called right-to-carry laws. These are laws that set certain objective criteria. Once you meet those, you can apply for a permit and then it's automatically granted. You have to be a certain age; you have to pay a fee; half the states require some type of training; and there are criminal background checks. What you find is that the states that issue the most permits, have the biggest drops in violent crime. For each additional year that these right-to-carry laws are in effect, you'll see an additional 1.5 percent drop in murder rates and about a three percent additional drop in rapes, robberies and aggravated assaults . . .

There are lots of reasons why crime has been falling . . . We've seen a huge drop in drug prices in the United States since 1991. There have been big changes in drug interdiction and most people, I think, don't appreciate how many murders, in urban areas in particular, are due to drug gangs fighting against each other in order to try and control drug turf. As the amount of drug interdiction has gone down, we have seen more drugs coming into the country from more sources -- and the profits that have been associated with the gangs controlling drug turf have gone down . . .

Less than one out every thousand times people use guns defensively is the attacker killed. Ninety-eight percent of the time, simply being able to brandish a gun is sufficient to cause a criminal to break off an attack and the two percent of the time when guns are fired, the vast majority of those are warning shots. It's something like less than one-half-of-one percent of the time is the gun fired in the direction of the attacker. Even when they do hit, woundings are much more frequent than times when the attacker is killed.

INCREASE IN SUPPLY of guns since 1945: more than double
Decrease in fatal gun accidents: two-thirds
Number of non-fatal toy injuries annually: 140,000
Number of non-fatal gun injuries annually: 2,000

BETWEEN 1985 AND 1988, in the wake of the revived drug war, murders in Washington, DC soared from 145 a year to 369. During this period, the city's office of criminal justice planning did an unusually detailed analysis of homicides. The report illustrates dramatically the complexity of crime and shows why simple or over-arching solutions rarely work. For example, here are various factors and the percent of murders involved.

Victim under 18 (8%)
Victim 18-25(30%)
Victim a white female (1%)
Victim a black male (75%)
Murders in richest ward (1%)
Murders in poorest ward (20%)
No drugs or alcohol in body (37%)
Drugs or alcohol in body (63%)
July (5%)
January or June (12%)
Thursday (11%)
Saturday (17%)
6-9 am (7%)
9 pm -midnight (25%)

In short, it was virtually impossible to be killed in Washington if you were a young white girl living in upscale Georgetown on an early Thursday morning in July. If, on the other hand, you were a young black 20-year-old male living in low-income Anacostia, dealing drugs on a Saturday night in June, your chances of being killed were far greater than the overall statistics would suggest. And if you were not buying or selling drugs at all, your chances of being killed in DC were about the same as in Copenhagen. Other differences showed up, most strikingly in motive. The murder rate resulting from altercations or robberies actually dropped substantially during this period and those that stemmed from domestic violence stayed about the same. But those involving drugs leaped over 300%. Were it not for the drug trade, DC would have had a murder rate roughly that of Copenhagen. Death in DC is about drugs, not guns.

A JUSTICE DEPARTMENT study, "Urban Delinquency and Substance Abuse," which was conducted from 1993-1995 tracked 4,000 boys and girls aged 6 to 15 in Denver, Pittsburgh, and Rochester, NY. According to the study:

- Children who get guns from their parents don't commit gun crimes (0%), while children who get illegal guns are very likely to do so (21%).

- Children who get guns from parents are less likely to commit any kind of street crime (14%) than children who have no gun in the house (24%) -- and are dramatically less likely to do so than children who acquire an illegal gun (74%).

- Children who get guns from parents are less likely to use drugs (13%) than children who get illegal guns (41%).

- "Boys who own legal firearms have much lower rates of delinquency and drug use [than boys who get illegal guns] and are even slightly less delinquent than non-owners of guns," the study reported.

FORTY-SIX PERCENT of all those dying of gunshots in 1997 were between the ages of 15 and 34. Presumably guns work mechanically the same way for this age group as they do for others, thus something other that safety would appear to be involved. Clue: these are also the major crime years.

THE COLUMBINE MURDERERS violated at least 17 state and federal weapons control laws, and none of the proposals for trigger locks, waiting periods or gun show restrictions would have stopped Eric Harris and Dylan Klebold from obtaining either their guns or bomb-making materials.

ACCIDENTAL GUN DEATHS among children are much rarer than most people believe. Consider New York, with more than 2.6 million children under the age of 10. From 1993 to 1997, the Centers for Disease Control report that there were only six accidental gun deaths in that age range an annual rate of 1.2 deaths. Yet, with over 3.3 million adult New Yorkers owning at least one gun in 1996, the overwhelming majority of gun owners must be extremely careful or such gun accidents would be much more frequent.

GUNS CLEARLY DETER criminals: Americans use guns defensively around 2 million times each year five times more frequently than the 430,000 times guns were used to commit crimes in 1997. And 98 percent of the time, simply brandishing the weapon is sufficient to stop an attack.

YOUTH HOMICIDE ARRESTS dropped 56 percent from 1993 to 1998, but two-thirds of 1,000 people polled by The Washington Post said they believed children were getting more violent.

DC FACTS

-- Since 1995, 88% of DC homicides have been gun-related.
-- In 1985, only 65% of the homicides involved guns.
-- There has been no significant change in the number of guns reported in the city between 1985 and 1995.
-- During this time, however, the number of homicides went from 148 in 1985 to a high of 454 in 1993, then down to 260 in 1998. Clearly the number of guns in the city was not the controlling factor.

THERE ARE MORE GUNS per-capita in Maine than in any other state save possibly Alaska. About 50,000 Mainers have permits to carry concealed weapons. Over ten percent of the state's population buys deer-hunting licenses. Yet Maine has a crime rate one-third below the national average. Maine has one or two fatal gun accidents a year, lower than the death rate for snowmobiling or boating. These figures from Down East Magazine -- are similar to those of certain high gun-ownership countries such as Sweden and Switzerland.

WHY PROGRESSIVES SHOULD
STOP PUSHING FOR MORE
GUN CONTROL LAWS

-- There are already thousands of them, too many of which don't work. Every ineffective law brings government into disrepute.

-- Prohibition of something that large numbers of citizens want always fail, witness the war on the drugs. It merely increases the value of the prohibited item and changes the distributors from honest people to crooks.

-- Gun control laws are highly divisive to no good end. Since they don't work well, why get everyone so mad about them? Progressives should instead start finding issues that make people happy.

-- Treating gun laws as a national issue exacerbates cultural conflict, such as those between rural and urban, east and west, wealthy and not so well off. Telling rural Westerners to get rid of their guns is like telling an urban blacks to stop reading African-American books.

-- There is no evidence that members of the NRA murder people at a higher rate than non-members. It is insulting to gun owners to speak as though they did.

-- The push for gun restrictions and prohibition is interwoven with the drive to restrict other citizen liberties and erode democracy. Liberals once opposed such moves, but in recent years have become supporters of repression. They need to became civil libertarians again.

-- America no longer has a strong, reliable democracy. It has been deeply corrupted and is being brutally manipulated. We are also losing our major defense against tyranny: the spirit and will of the people. An armed citizenry is a reasonable back-up plan.

-- One of the things authoritarian governments do is to disarm their citizens.

-- People who drive around cities in four-wheel drive SUVs shouldn't lecture others on what safety precautions are permissible.

-- The strongest reason for the people to retain their right to keep and bear arms is as a last resort to protect themselves against tyranny in government. We didn't say that. Thomas Jefferson did.

-- Progressives should stop treating average Americans as though they were alien creatures. Progressives haven't just lost elections because of their issues but because of their attitudes as well.

JAN 2002

[Another case study in attempting to deal with social problems in a technocratic fashion]

||| VAISHALI HONAWAR, WASHINGTON TIMES - The number of assaults with deadly weapons in D.C. schools has doubled in the past four years, even though the system has spent $8 million on metal detectors, cameras and security officers trying to keep students safe. Information obtained after The Washington Times filed an open-records request shows that between the 1997-98 and the 2000-01 school years:

- Assaults with deadly weapons shot up from 66 to 127.
- Simple assaults in the school system rose from 384 to 475.
- The number of children caught bringing concealed weapons to schools swelled from 329 to 423.
- Robberies rose from 18 to 35.
- Threats against students and staff increased from 156 to 225.

The number of incidents reported to the school system are as bad or worse than those of school systems with twice the number of students. MORE

JUNE 2001

POLITICAL DIGEST: "Illegal gun trading is rampant on the streets of the nation's capital, which has one of the toughest gun control laws in the country." - Washington Post, March 8, 1981.

"The District, which bans all guns except for those used by law enforcement officers, maintains one of the highest gun violence rates in the country." - The Washington Post, Dec. 1, 2000.

WHILE 69 MEN PER 100,000 die of gun shots in DC every year, the number of female fatalities is so small that it's not even listed in the latest Kaiser health statistics report. Obviously, something more than guns are involved in these deaths.

MORE ON KNIFE CONTROL

JESSE WALKER, REASON, October 1999: Supporters of the Second Amendment have often suggested that gun control boosters will not rest until the private possession of guns is completely banned. They may be wrong: If recent events in Australia are any guide, the government won't stop there. Last year, the state of New South Wales made it illegal to sell knives or knife blades to anyone under 16. Plastic knives are still acceptable. Everything else, though - from cake slicers to cutlery - is off-limits. In Queensland, a new law prohibits carrying a knife in public without a "reasonable" excuse - a loophole that, the police minister stressed, did not include self-defense. With those two models in place, other states and territories have adopted, or at least considered, similar anti-knife rules of their own. On the federal level, the Australian government announced earlier this year that it will crack down harder on illegal knives, thanks to a report by the Australian Institute of Criminology that revealed a rise in the percentage of murders committed with knives and-ominously - other "sharp object[s]."

KNIFE CONTROL

BRASS CHECK, MARCH 2000: On page B5 of today's New York Times there's a story about a ten year from Tom's River, NJ, a woodsy New York suburb, who stabbed his father to death with a five inch knife. A terrible, terrible story. The circumstances leading to the assault were as follows: The father accused the boy of eating a container of chocolate frosting. The boy denied it. At one point, no doubt as the argument reached a fevered pitch, the father handed his son the knife and told him: "If you hate me so much, why don't you stab me." The boy did. Right in the chest. It only took one thrust . . . So what do we do to prevent things like this from happening in the future? Ban chocolate frosting, the obvious "cause" of the argument? No. That would be ridiculous. Ban knife possession instead. The fact is if there hadn't been a long, sharp knife in that home this man would still be alive. Ban knives now. I have a five point plan to accomplish this: First, make it illegal for an adult to hand a child a knife, bare his chest, and say "stab me." Second, make possession or handling of knives illegal by anyone under 21. Third, require that all knives have lock guards on them that can only be opened by their owners. Fourth, cities should sue all knife manufacturers for all police calls, ambulance trips and emergency room visits related to people suffering from stab wounds. Five, require that all knife owners be registered and that certain kinds of especially sharp or long knives be banned.

JEWS FOR THE PRESERVATION OF FIREARMS OWNERSHIP: In 1938, five years after taking power, the Nazis enhanced the 1928 [gun] law. The Nazi Weapons Law introduced handgun control. Firearms ownership was restricted to Nazi party members and other "reliable" people. The 1938 Nazi law barred Jews from businesses involving firearms. On November 10, 1938 -- one day after the Nazi party terror squads savaged thousands of Jews, synagogues and Jewish businesses throughout Germany -- new regulations under the Weapons Law specifically barred Jews from owning any weapons, even clubs or knives."

FEBURARY 2001

AN ARMED CITIZENRY & THE NAZIS

Excerpts from remarks made in 1998 by author Stephen Halbrook on the publication of his book, Target Switzerland:

In 1940, after the rest of central Europe collapsed before the German army, Swiss Commander in Chief Henri Guisan assembled his officers at the Rotli meadow near the Lake of Lucerne. He reminded them that, at this sacred spot, in the year 1291, the Swiss Confederation was born as an alliance against despotism. Guisan admonished that the Swiss would always stand up to any invader. One has only to recall the medieval battle of Morgarten, where 1400 Swiss peasants ambushed and defeated 20,000 Austrian knights.

In World War II, the Swiss had defenses no other country had. Let's begin with the rifle in every home combined with the Alpine terrain. When the German Kaiser asked in 1912 what the quarter of a million Swiss militiamen would do if invaded by a half million German soldiers, a Swiss replied: "Shoot twice and go home." Switzerland also had a decentralized, direct democracy which could not be surrendered to a foreign enemy by a political elite. Some governments surrendered to Hitler without resistance based on the decision of a king or dictator; this was institutionally impossible in Switzerland. If an ordinary Swiss citizen was told that the Federal President--a relatively powerless official--had surrendered the country, the citizen might not even know the president's name, and would have held any "surrender" order in contempt.

When Hitler came to power in 1933, the Swiss feared an invasion and began military preparations like no other European nation. On Hitler's 1938 "Anchluss" or annexation of Austria, the Swiss Parliament declared that the Swiss were prepared to defend themselves "to the last drop of their blood."

When the Fuehrer attacked Poland in 1939, General Guisan ordered the citizen army to resist any attack to the last cartridge. After Denmark and Norway fell in 1940, Guisan and the Federal Council gave the order to the populace: aggressively attack invaders; act on your own initiative; regard any surrender broadcast or announcement as enemy propaganda; resist to the end. This was published as a message to the Swiss and a warning to the Germans; surrender was impossible, even if ordered by the government, for the prior order mandated that it be treated as an enemy lie.

When the Germany army, the Wehrmacht, attacked Belgium and Holland, it feigned preparations for attack through Switzerland. Like a giant movie set, divisions moved toward the Swiss border by day, only to sneak back again by night and repeat the ruse the next day. Both the Swiss and the French were tricked into thinking that concentrations of troops were massing to attack through Switzerland and into France. Swiss border troops nervously awaited an assault each time the clock approached the hour, for the Germans were punctual in lauching attacks on the hour.

When France collapsed, detailed Nazi invasion plans with names like "Case Switzerland" and "Operation Tannenbaum" were prepared for the German General Staff. They only awaited the Fuehrer's nod.

Threatened with attack from German and Italian forces from all sides, General Guisan devised the strategy of a delaying stand at the border, and a concentration of Swiss forces in the rugged and impassable Alps. . . A fifth of the Swiss people, 850,000 out of the 4.2 million population, was under arms and mobilized. Most men were in the citizens army, and boys and old men with rifles constituted the Home Guard. Many women served in the civil defense and the anti-aircraft defense.

Nazi invasion plans for 1941 were postponed to devote all forces to Operation Barbarossa, the attack on Russia. The Swiss would have their turn in due time. Hitler banned the play William Tell. He called the Swiss "the most despicable and wretched people, mortal enemies of the new Germany"; in the same breath he fumed that all Jews must be expelled from Europe. His plan to annihilate the Jews would have faced a special obstacle in Switzerland, where every Swiss Jew (like every other citizen) had a rifle in his home. In the heroic Warsaw ghetto uprising of 1943, Jews demonstrated how genocide could be resisted with only a few pistols and rifles. Hitler boasted that he would liquidate "the rubbish of small nations" and would be "the Butcher of the Swiss." But the dictator was more comfortable with liquidating unarmed peoples and was dissuaded from invading Switzerland. There was no Holocaust on Swiss soil.

As a neutral, the Swiss represented American interests before the Axis powers, such as by inspecting German prison camps holding American POWs. When Vichy France was occupied, German soldiers with submachineguns took over the American embassy. The Swiss minister, brandishing his Swiss army knife, drove them out.

A Nazi SS invasion plan, recommended for execution in 1944, warned the German general staff that the Swiss fighting spirit was high and shooting instruction good; German loses would be heavy, and a conquered Switzerland would require a strong occupation force. D-Day put the plan on hold, but new dangers threatened Switzerland as the Allies pushed the Nazis back. In 1944, the Wehrmacht's counter-offensive in the Ardennes, leading to the Battle of the Bulge, proved that the Nazi Beast was still strong and full of suprises. The Swiss prepared for an attack from Germans retreating from Italy. The Swiss resolve remained high, for, as the US State Dept. declared, "no people in Europe are more profoundly attached to democratic principles than the Swiss."

Switzerland saved a half million refugees who came there in the war. Restrictive policies by government officials, often secret, were ignored by Swiss who helped refugees. Let it be remembered that Switzerland took in more Jewish refugees than the United States took in refugees of all kinds. . .

In the American Revolution, a Swiss leader wrote to Benjamin Franklin calling America and Switzerland the "Sister Republics." After two centuries of mutual respect, today a media frenzy falsely depicts the Swiss as Nazi collaborators. It was the opposite. Nazi Propaganda Minister Goebbels called Switzerland "this stinking little state" and ranted that the Swiss press was "either bought or Jewish." The Swiss bashing seen in the New York Times today could use a reality check by reference to the Times issues of the war period--such as a 1939 issue with a map showing Switzerland as a possible invasion route, or a 1942 issue calling Switzerland an "Oasis of Democracy." Our new "Ugly Americanism" will never have the credibility of Winston Churchill, who observed near the end of the war: "Of all the neutrals Switzerland has the greatest right to distinction."

OCTOBER 2000

MAYBE WE NEED LOCKS
FOR THE GUN LOCKS

JAMES GORDON MEEK, APB NEWS: Injuries and deaths caused by firearms declined by 40 percent in the mid-1990s, the Department of Justice reported in a new study, but at least one expert says the reasons for the reduction are still unclear . . . The [Bureau of Justice Statistics]study showed that gunshot wounds from assault treated in hospital emergency rooms fell to 39,400 cases in 1997 . . . The number of homicides with a gun also dropped, by 27 percent, to 13,300 for 1997, the most recent year for which national information is available. Out of 19.2 million incidents of non-fatal violent crime examined, excluding simple assault, less than 1 percent resulted in gunshot wounds, the report said.

Jon Vernick, a professor and associate director of the Johns Hopkins Center for Gun Policy and Research in Baltimore, said it's too early to credit one of any number of credible reasons for the downward trend. Besides a good economy and the waning of the crack cocaine epidemic, possible factors include tougher sentencing, aggressive policing, the Brady gun control law and various concealed weapons laws, Vernick said . . . "As far as I've seen in the science literature, no one has adequately explained the decline," Vernick said. "No one has yet produced the grand, unifying theory."


Harry Browne, the Libertarian candidate for president points out that during the past five yeas the number of guns in America has surged 25 million. By the standards of the SUV liberal set, that should have brought a commensurate surge in crime. In fact, crime dropped during the period by 40%.

AUGUST 2000

[John R. Lott, a Yale Law School senior research fellow, conducted one of the most comprehensive firearms research projects ever undertaken. The conclusion he reached -- that more guns in the hands of private citizens results in less crime -- predictably has sparked heated debate. Lott was interviewed by radio talk host Zoh Hieronimus, whose talk show can be heard daily on the Net as well as syndicated stations. A few excerpts of Lott's remarks]

[Women] who behave passively when they are confronted by a criminal are 2.5 times more likely to end up being seriously injured than a woman who has a gun. And the reason is pretty straightforward. You're talking about a female victim. The attackers are virtually always male. There's a large strength differential on average between a male attacker and a female victim. Other types of resistance -- using your fists, for example -- is very likely to lead to tragedy, because a female who uses her fist has a high probability of a physical response back from the attacker and a high probability of serious injury or death. While men also benefit from having a gun, the benefit isn't as large . . .

There are 31 states now that have so-called right-to-carry laws. These are laws that set certain objective criteria. Once you meet those, you can apply for a permit and then it's automatically granted. You have to be a certain age; you have to pay a fee; half the states require some type of training; and there are criminal background checks. What you find is that the states that issue the most permits, have the biggest drops in violent crime. For each additional year that these right-to-carry laws are in effect, you'll see an additional 1.5 percent drop in murder rates and about a three percent additional drop in rapes, robberies and aggravated assaults . . .

There are lots of reasons why crime has been falling . . . We've seen a huge drop in drug prices in the United States since 1991. There have been big changes in drug interdiction and most people, I think, don't appreciate how many murders, in urban areas in particular, are due to drug gangs fighting against each other in order to try and control drug turf. As the amount of drug interdiction has gone down, we have seen more drugs coming into the country from more sources -- and the profits that have been associated with the gangs controlling drug turf have gone down . . .

Less than one out every thousand times people use guns defensively is the attacker killed. Ninety-eight percent of the time, simply being able to brandish a gun is sufficient to cause a criminal to break off an attack and the two percent of the time when guns are fired, the vast majority of those are warning shots. It's something like less than one-half-of-one percent of the time is the gun fired in the direction of the attacker. Even when they do hit, woundings are much more frequent than times when the attacker is killed.

REUTERS: Saying it did not want to open a "Pandora's box" for lawsuits against other industries, an appeals court has upheld a judge's decision to throw out a suit by the city of Cincinnati seeking to recover millions of dollars from gun manufacturers. In its unanimous decision, the Ohio First District Court of Appeals likened the city suit to the "absurdity" of suing the makers of matches because of losses from arson

JULY 2000

JENS LUDWIG & PHILIP COOK, JOURNAL OF THE AMA: Based on the assumption that the greatest reductions in fatal violence would be within states that were required to institute waiting periods and background checks, implementation of the Brady Act appears to have been associated with reductions in the firearm suicide rate for persons aged 55 years or older but not with reductions in homicide rates or overall suicide rates.

OOPS

NEWSMAX: Just over a year ago, Australia followed in the footsteps of mother country Great Britain and made law a total ban on hand guns. The gun ban and confiscation program cost the Australian government more than $500 million. Sometimes using deadly force, authorities there collected 640,381 personal firearms. And now the results are in: Australia-wide, homicides are up 3.2 percent (in a country that has a low homicide rate). Australia-wide, assaults are up 8.6 percent. Australia-wide, armed robberies are up 44 percent (yes, 44 percent). In the state of Victoria, homicides with firearms are up 300 percent. Figures over the previous 25 years show a steady decrease in armed robbery with firearms - since the gun ban this has changed for the worse.

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