U.S.A. –-(AmmoLand.com)-– On October 26, 2022, the New York Times published an article focusing on allegations of increased violence after the state of Texas moved to Constitutional Carry in September of 2021.
The author, David Goodman, is fairly careful in his allegations, which consist of one incident where an innocent 9-year-old was killed during a defensive shooting and anecdotes from city sheriffs, police leaders, and district attorneys.
However, many read only the headline and a few lines after that. The headline implies large problems with permitless (Constitutional) carry. The first incident is an extremely rare occurrence: the death of an innocent during a justified shooting.
Consider the headline and sub-headline from the article. From nytimes.com:
The headline: Texas Goes Permitless on Guns, and Police Face an Armed Public
Most Second Amendment supporters and, indeed, most police believe this is a good and proper thing. Why, in the United States, would police believe they would face an unarmed public?
The sub-headline: A new law allowing people to carry handguns without a license has led to more spontaneous shootings, many in law enforcement say.
There is no data to support this, only anecdotes by authority figures in places that are traditionally anti-Second Amendment. In the body of the article, after the emotional mention of the shooting of the 9-year-old girl in Houston, is this explanation of anecdotes apparently collected by the reporter.
From the article:
The shooting was part of what many sheriffs, police leaders and district attorneys in urban areas of Texas say has been an increase in people carrying weapons and in spur-of-the-moment gunfire in the year since the state began allowing most adults 21 or over to carry a handgun without a license.
At the same time, mainly in rural counties, other sheriffs said they had seen little change, and proponents of gun rights said more people lawfully carrying guns could be part of why shootings have declined in some parts of the state.
Is there any real data in this report? Yes, one datum. The one incident where a man, in a justified defensive situation, shot and killed an innocent 9-year-old girl in error. It seems the reporter received considerably mixed messages when he asked people if they had seen any change. Predictably, people in areas where the assumption is “guns are bad” claimed they noticed a change predicted by the prevailing political thought in those areas. People in areas where the right to bear arms is valued by the political class did not see any such change.
Many left-leaning outlets take their views from the New York Times. The Crime Report took the New York Times article and embellished it a bit. From thecrimereport.org:
Headline: Random Gun Violence Up in Cities After Texas Drops Permits
From the article:
While rural areas of the state are reporting little change in terms of shootings, sheriffs, police leaders and district attorneys in urban areas of Texas are reporting a rise in random gunfire and people carrying weapons since the state began allowing most adults 21 or over to carry a handgun without a license, reports J. David Goodman for the New York Times.
After restoring Constitutional Carry, where permits are not required, it is rational that more people would carry weapons. What else would be expected?
The anecdotal reports of rising “random gunfire” do not indicate a rise in unjustified injuries or deaths in any statistical sense. From the New York Times article:
In the border town of Eagle Pass, drunken arguments have flared into shootings. In El Paso, revelers who legally bring their guns to parties have opened fire to stop fights. In and around Houston, prosecutors have received a growing stream of cases involving guns brandished or fired over parking spots, bad driving, loud music and love triangles.
This is the usual unfounded prediction from those who think “guns are bad.”
Notice one of the incidents involved armed people stopping a violent confrontation. This is very weak sauce to build a case for violating fundamental, enumerated, Constitutional rights.
Those who wish to see the population disarmed consist of many sub-groups. Many of them simply use the sophomoric argument, “if there were no guns, no one would be hurt with guns”. It is as silly and simplistic as it sounds.
We cannot eliminate guns. Attempting to eliminate guns does not reduce suicides or murders.
For a century, Progressives have worked hard to make sophomoric logic into law based on their disdain for the common man.
Reality has reversed the situation. The common man now disdains the Progressive ruling class.
The data, so far, indicates little or no change in murder or suicide rates with the restoration of Constitutional Carry.
I expect arrests for merely exercising Second Amendment rights will measurably decrease. Perhaps an enterprising researcher will work to measure that metric.
About Dean Weingarten:
Dean Weingarten has been a peace officer, a military officer, was on the University of Wisconsin Pistol Team for four years, and was first certified to teach firearms safety in 1973. He taught the Arizona concealed carry course for fifteen years until the goal of Constitutional Carry was attained. He has degrees in meteorology and mining engineering, and retired from the Department of Defense after a 30 year career in Army Research, Development, Testing, and Evaluation.