, Newburyport, MA


May 7, 2013

Guns save lives, halt crimes

To the editor:

Your recent story, “Pentucket student charged after fake gun found in backpack” (May 4), about the apparent shocking reaction to appearance of a toy gun in a school reminds me of a similar incident where a customer attempted to return a rifle to the Seabrook Walmart, sending customers into a panic and running for the door. By contrast, schools once had gun lockers for both teachers and students, as well as a culture of responsible gun ownership. Israelis, Swiss and Norwegians are still well armed, deterring criminals in their communities.

Tragically, over 150 Americans are killed — and another thousand disabled — each day in preventable car and truck accidents on our roads and highways. Holland has reduced traffic and pedestrian fatalities by over 75 percent in the last three decades by making continuous improvements to roads, intersections and walkways. Two thousand Americans die of cancer each day, and as many succumb to heart disease. At least 50 Americans die each day from preventable hospital infections, and as many of AIDS. A thousand students are attacked daily in public schools.

However, gun owners prevent somewhere between 2.5 to 3.5 million crimes each year usually without shooting anyone. Thousands of lives have been saved — including my own — and millions of crimes have been prevented by private firearms ownership. By contrast, there are at most 300 to 800 accidental gun deaths each year, mostly in anti-gun households where parents refuse to allow firearm safety to be taught. Statistically, police are five to 10 times as likely as private gun owners to kill an innocent person by mistake. John R. Lott Jr., author of “More Guns Less Crime,” found that, “As more people obtain permits there is a greater decline in violent crime rates. For each additional year that a concealed handgun law is in effect, the murder rate declines by 3 percent, rape by 2 percent and robberies by over 2 percent.”

Text Only | Photo Reprints

NDN Video
Crews rescue elderly woman trapped inside flooded minivan Taylor Swift Reveals New Album 1989 is Full-On Pop Serious Flash Flooding in Arizona Man Poses for New Mugshot Photo Wearing Shirt with Old Mugshot Photo On It Disquieting times for Malaysia's 'fish listeners' Caught On Camera: Johnny Manziel Obscene Gesture Rita Ora Embraces the Ice Bucket Challenge Bird surprises soccer player Ashley Young during game Chapter Two: Never too late to become an artist Ice Bucket Challenge Goes Viral, Raises Over $15M For ALS Damaging Winds Stop the Show! In the Cockpit of the Air Force's Elite Squadron Pathologist: Autopsy Shows Teen Repeatedly Shot Christina Aguilera Has a Baby Girl Marvel Fans: Watch Dancing Baby Groot Over and Over! Raw: Protesters, Police Clash in Ferguson Gov. Rick Perry responds to indictment Breaking: Officials release name of police officer in Ferguson shooting Man Shot As Protesters Defy Curfew in Ferguson Justin Bieber & Selena Gomez Back Together for Two ‘Secret’ Dates
Special Features
NRA Waterfront Plans