CPRC in the News: News Coverage from around the US

13 Oct , 2015  

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Washington Post, October 8, 2015

But pro-gun-rights economist John Lott Jr. wrote in his 2003 book, “The Bias Against Guns,” that states with conceal-and-carry laws did have lower firearm murder and injury rates. He’s also argued that guns can be a powerful deterrent: A research paper of his cites a 1986 survey in which 56 percent of felons across 10 state prisons said they would not attack a potential victim known to be armed. . . .

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Article by Ken Blackwell in the Washington Times, October 7, 2015:

An underreported study released a year ago by the Crime Prevention Research Center (CPRC), the organization led by America’s leading gun policy expert John Lott, found that 92 percent of mass shootings since 2009 have taken place in designated gun-free zones.

Or, as CPRC puts it, “Since 2009, only 8 percent of mass public shootings have occurred where civilians are allowed to defend themselves.”

“Gun-free” zones are purported to forestall gun violence, but in practice they attract deranged gunmen like porch lights attract moths. Why? Because deranged gunmen are crazy, not stupid. An identified gun-free zone literally advertises the ideal environment for committing mass murder.

Mass shootings are committed by mentally ill people to achieve a form of immortality, or by political zealots to terrorize the public. They know the more they kill, the more publicity they’ll get. They also know the only way they will be stopped is by a good guy with a gun, so they choose to attack in places where they know nobody else will be armed.

Most mass shootings don’t end until the police arrive. Killers typically have several minutes to slaughter as many victims as they can without fear of interference.

At least one mass murderer explained in his “manifesto” that he took armed resistance into account when choosing his target. According to CPRC, California killer Eliot Rodger, who murdered six University of California-Santa Barbara students in 2014, wrote, “I figured this would be the perfect day to attack Isla Vista, but after watching YouTube videos of previous Deltopia parties, I saw that there were way too many cops walking around on such an event. It would be impossible to kill enough of my enemies before being dispatched by those damnable cops.”

Then there’s Canadian killer Justin Bourque, who murdered three Royal Canadian Mounted Police officers in his attempt to start a revolution in New Brunswick in 2014. According to CPRC, “On his Facebook page, Bourque posted comics poking fun at how gun-free zones make these crimes possible.”

CPRC also notes that the 2012 Aurora, Colo., “Batman” gunman, James Holmes, drove past seven more-nearby theaters playing the movie to launch his attack at the one theater identified as a “gun-free zone.”

Holmes was able to murder 12 people and wound another 70 before he walked out of the theater and was arrested in the parking lot.

In contrast, Colorado Springs New Life Church gunman Matthew Murray was shot by an armed volunteer security guard after killing just two people in a crowded church service in 2007.

Many mass shootings have been ended quickly, with reduced loss of life, by people with concealed carry permits who acted before police could reach the scene. CPRC points to incidents at malls in Portland, Ore., and Salt Lake City, the Appalachian Law School in Virginia, and shootings in Pearl, Miss., and Edinboro, Pa. . . .

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Townhall.com, October 11, 2015

The only state amongst those judged the most lenient where there was a notable incident of mass murder in this recent string is Arizona in which the Tucson incident occurred in 2011. In judging what is the most or least lenient by the Brady Campaign, they judge open carry laws as being a lenient factor which John R. Lott Jr. states from multiple studies deters crime because criminals are unsure who might be armed to defend themselves; and, when needed, the victims can defend themselves. . . .

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Russia Today, October 10, 2015

“If the media more regularly reported when a shooting occurs in a gun-free zone, more people would realize that gun-control laws don’t deter criminals who are looking for select targets where people can’t fight back,” John R. Lott Jr., president of the Crime Prevention Research Center and author of More Guns, Less Crime, wrote in a Philly.com blog post“More Americans would come to feel that gun ownership makes them safer.”

He added that, while it is legal to carry a concealed firearm in Oregon, “public educators in Oregon have undermined the law by putting bans in faculty and student handbooks,” and that interim Umpqua President Rita Calvin “wouldn’t even let the college’s security guards carry guns.” . . .

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PoliZette, October 9, 2015

John Lott, author of “More Guns, Less Crime, The Bias Against Guns,” is not so sure.

“I don’t see how he has anything authority to do this,” he said. “That statute is pretty clear.”

That statute requires a federal firearms license for any “person who devotes time, attention, and labor to dealing in firearms as a regular course of trade or business with the principal objective of livelihood and profit through the repetitive purchase and resale of firearms.”

It also specifically exempts “occasional sales, exchanges, or purchases of firearms for the enhancement of a personal collection or for a hobby.”

Congress has rebuffed proposals to extend those regulations to private sellers. Lott questioned whether Obama could set an arbitrary number of sales to define “high-volume” dealers.

Officials at the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives have indicated the proposal under consideration by the White House would be difficult to carry out practically. Lott agreed.

“I don’t see how they can enforce it,” he said.

Lott said the proposal would not have prevented a single mass shooting that has occurred in recent years.

“I don’t think this is going to have any impact on mass shootings,” said Lott, who is president of the Crime Prevention Research Center. “I have no idea why the president is pushing this.” . . .

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Oregon Live, October 9, 2015

Economist John Lott Jr. argued in his influential 1998 book, “More Guns, Less Crime,” that the growing number of concealed handgun licensees contributed to a drop in crime.

Lott, who went on to found the Crime Prevention Research Centersaid that armed citizens can halt crimes the police can’t get to in time. And he argued that many mass murderers deliberately use settings – whether schools or movie theaters – where guns are banned.

“Everybody wants to stop certain people from being able to get guns,” Lott said in an interview.  “There’s no doubt about that. The question is whether what we’re doing is working.”. . .

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The Oroville Mercury-Register, October 9, 2015

“With just two exceptions, every public mass shooting in the United States since at least 1950 has taken place where citizens were banned from carrying guns,” writes John R. Lott, author of “More Guns, Less Crime.” . . .

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The New American, October 8, 2015

One of these writers, John R. Lott Jr., is the president of the Crime Prevention Research Center and the author of More Guns, Less Crime: Understanding Crime and Gun Control Laws. In an October 7 article posted by the Philadelphia Inquirer, Lott noted that the gun-control law that President Obama and fellow Democrats have constantly promoted wouldn’t have stopped the shooting at Umpqua Community College — where expanded background checks have been in place since August — nor would it have stopped any of the other mass public shootings that have occurred during Obama’s presidency.

Lott made the additional point that practically all mass public shootings take place in what are deemed “gun-free zones,” including the Oregon shooting. Noted Lott:

If the media more regularly reported when a shooting occurs in a gun-free zone, more people would realize that gun-control laws don’t deter criminals who are looking for select targets where people can’t fight back. More Americans would come to feel that gun ownership makes them safer.

While acknowledging that Oregon law does allows those with concealed handgun permits to carry their weapons on school property, Lott noted that this right is largely negated by the schools’ practice of placing weapons bans in both faculty and student handbooks. This disarmament is practiced so fanatically that Umpqua president Rita Calvin will not even let the college’s security guards carry guns.

Lott concluded, “What all these rules mean is that no potential victims — students, faculty, or those unaffiliated with the college — were able to defend themselves in the classroom where the attack occurred.”

A similar point was made in an October 7 article in the Washington Times by J. Kenneth Blackwell, who is a former Ohio secretary of state and mayor of Cincinnati, and is a senior fellow and policy board member of the American Civil Rights Union. Blackwell referred back to a study released by Lott’s Crime Prevention Research Center last year, indicating that 92 percent of mass shootings since 2009 have taken place in designated gun-free zones. . . .

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The Dailywire News, October 9, 2015

This appears to be a recurring trend, as all but two mass shootings since 1950 have occurred in gun-free zones. This is because, as John Lott writes, murders know they won’t face any armed resistance in gun-free zones.

“The suspect in the Charleston, S.C., shootings in June originally aimed to attack the College of Charleston. He chose a church instead because the college had armed guards,” Lott wrote.  “The diary of the Batman movie theater killer, James Holmes, was finally released just a few months ago. He decided against attacking an airport because of the ‘substantial security.’ Out of seven theaters showing the Batman movie premiere within 20 minutes of the suspect’s apartment in 2012, only one banned permitted concealed handguns. That’s the one he attacked.”

Lott also points out that in Europe, every mass shooting has been in a gun-free zone and that in fact, “three of the six worst K-12 school shootings and by far the worst mass public shooting perpetrated by a single individual” have occurred in Europe. These facts completely contradict Obama’s claim that mass shootings don’t happen in other developed countries. . . .

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Chico (California) Enterprise-Record, October 8, 2015

The only common-sense thing to do is abolish gun-free zones. “With just two exceptions, every public mass shooting in the United States since at least 1950 has taken place where citizens were banned from carrying guns,” writes John R. Lott, author of “More Guns, Less Crime.”

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Breitbart, October 5, 2015

Kelly’s figures are likely drawn from an Everytown for Gun Safety study, which claims that only 14 percent of mass shootings occur in gun-free zones. But contrary to Kelly and Everytown, the number of mass shootings that take place in a gun-free zones is greater than 9 out of 10. In fact, the Crime Prevention Research Center (CPRC) has shown that 92 percent of mass public shootings have occurred in a gun-free zones.

On top of this, there is ample proof that mass shooters purposely target gun-free zones. One of the best illustrations of this is Aurora movie theater gunman James Holmes, who shot and killed 12 and wounded 70 more during an July 2012 showing of “The Dark Knight Rises.” After the attack was carried out, Fox News reported that there were seven movie theaters showing the film within a 20-minute radius of Holmes’s residence, some of which were even closer than the Cinemark theater he attacked.

The Cinemark theater Holmes finally chose was a four-mile long, eight-minute car ride, while another theater showing the film “was only 1.2 miles (3 minutes) away.” But of all the theaters within a 20-minute radius, including the one just three minutes away, the Cinemark theater was the only one that barred law-abiding citizens from carrying guns for self-defense.

So we have a CPRC study showing that 9 out of 10 mass shootings occur in gun-free zones, we have a gunman who drove past numerous theaters closer to his home in order to reach one where citizens were required to be unarmed, and we have a NYT report admitting that the majority of mass shooters are getting their guns via background checks. And after an attack in a gun-free zone on the UCC campus was carried out by a gunman who passed background checks for his weapons, Mark Kelly defends gun-free zones and pushes more background checks.

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Rapid News Network, October 8, 2015

Speaking Friday on CNN Newsroom with Carol Costello, perennial gun rights advocate John Lott said, “My solution for thesemass shootings is to look at the fact that every single time, these attacks occur where guns are banned”. . . .

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American Thinker, October 9, 2015

Try reading the response to your comments by John R. Lott, a leading expert in analyzing gun crime statistics and author of More Guns, Less Crime. You know who he is. He says that in 1996 when you were both at the University of Chicago you told him:

“I don’t believe that people should be able to own guns.”

Mr. President, while in the Illinois Senate, you voted against Senate Bill 2165, which asserted a right of citizens to protect themselves with a gun against home invasions, regardless of local ordinances against handgun possession.

Can you understand why we might believe Mr. Lott and not you?

Here are some of your comments about Umpqua and Lott’s responses to Newsmax TV show host Steve Malzberg on Oct. 2 and extensive research available on Mr. Lott’s website.


Earlier this year, I answered a question in an interview by saying, “The United States of America is the one advanced nation on Earth in which we do not have sufficient common-sense gun-safety laws — even in the face of repeated mass killings.”


“The United States ranks about ninth compared to countries in Europe in terms of either the rate of these mass public shootings or the fatalities from them.

But we’re over 320 million people and so you have to kind of adjust a little bit for the population differences. If you take Europe as a whole, there’s not a big difference in the per capita rate of mass public shootings compared to the United States. Europe has had the worst of the mass public shootings.”


“There is a gun for roughly every man, woman, and child in America. So how can you, with a straight face, make the argument that more guns will make us safer?”


“In these mass public shootings, it’s seems hard for me to believe that we can just ignore the fact that the attack yesterday as well as all the other ones that President Obama’s talked about in his administration, as well all but two since at least 1950, keep on occurring where guns are banned.”

The Exponent Purdue University

The Exponent (Purdue University student newspaper), October 9, 2015

It seems a reasonable fear that more concealed carry would lead to more violence. And crimes by concealed carry permit holders do occur. But they’re unbelievably rare because concealed carry permit holders are extremely law-abiding. According to a 2015 report by the Crime Prevention Research Center, permit holders commit crimes at a rate of 22.3 crimes of any type per 100,000 people—compared to a rate of 3,813 per 100,000 people in the general population. . . .

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America’s 1st Freedom, October 8, 2015

Further proof that Americans being armed reduces crime comes from a new study by the Crime Prevention Research Center (CPRC), led by John R. Lott Jr., a former chief economist for the U.S. Sentencing Commission. Noting that the number of people with concealed-carry permits has reached an all-time high of 12.8 million, the study finds that the increasing number of permit holders is associated with a decrease in murder and total violent crime.

Between 2007 and 2014, CPRC found that as permit numbers have increased, “murder rates have fallen from 5.6 to 4.2 (preliminary estimates) per 100,000. This represents a 25 percent drop in the murder rate at the same time that the percentage of the adult population with permits soared by 156 percent. Overall violent crime also fell by 25 percent over that period of time.”

Furthermore, CPRC notes that murder and violent crime rates were lower in the 25 states with the highest permit rates. Although VPC and other anti-gun groups have absurdly attempted to paint permit holders as irresponsible potential law-breakers, CPRC found that permit holders are convicted of crimes at a lower rate than even law enforcement officers in some states. . . . .


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