Hague: A response to dispute some gun crime ‘stats’


Mr. Greg Layton, the “statistics” you refer to have been debunked many times in the last few years (“Speak Up: How would a law requiring a permit to purchase firearms affect Delaware?”). Studies from the Pew Research Center in 2018 found no evidence that permitting schemes reduced crime. Economist John Lott reviewed much of the data in the studies I believe you are referring to and found so many errors that the results from Daniel Webster, who is funded by Michael Bloomberg at Johns Hopkins, are worthless.

An even easier method to debunk your statement that permitting “significantly reduces” violent crime is to look at Maryland. Maryland instituted a permitting scheme back in 2013. Murder rates rose after that statewide and skyrocketed in Baltimore. Another example is Illinois. It has had a permitting scheme for many years. How’s that working out in Chicago? What you call “gun safety” is far from that. It is “gun control,” plain and simple. By definition, criminals do not obey the law.

You should also be careful throwing around numbers of deaths. It is not “50,000 per year.” Murders saw 20,958 deaths (43%) in 2021 in the United States. Suicides, by far the largest number, numbered 26,328 (54%) in 2021. The laws you are referring to do not follow the U.S. Constitution or the Delaware Constitution. Since the Bruen decision in June 2022, the laws you refer to have been found unconstitutional.

The old adage, “Guns don’t kill people; people do,” is absolutely correct. Firearms are just one of many deadly weapons that criminals use to inflict injury on law-abiding citizens.

Jeff Hague

President, Delaware State Sportsmen’s Association


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