Video of Dr. John Lott v Paul Helmke debate in NYC: Will more Gun Control reduce the murder rate? Audience vote shows CPRC wins debate

Apr 12, 2016 | Featured

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The proposition for debate was: “In order to reduce its murder-rate, the U.S. needs more stringent gun-control laws.”

John Lott argued against the proposition. Dr. Lott’s book, “More Guns, Less Crime,” now in its third edition, was first published in 1998. He holds a PhD in economics from UCLA and has held teaching and/or research positions at Wharton, University of Chicago, Stanford, and Yale. He is the President of the Crime Prevention Research Center. He originally spoke at the NYC Junto in 1999.

Paul Helmke argued in favor of the proposition. Mr. Helmke is an American politician, attorney, and advocate for gun control. He served as a three-term mayor of Fort Wayne, Indiana, President of the US Conference of Mayors, and President and CEO of the Brady Center to Prevent Gun Violence. He holds a JD from Yale Law School, is a Professor of Practice at Indiana University Bloomington, and is the founding Director of IU Bloomington’s Civic Leaders Center.

Founded in 1985, the NYC Junto is a monthly meeting hosted by investor Victor Niederhoffer. Junto meetings are moderated by Barron’s columnist Gene Epstein and Mr. Niederhoffer. Meetings occur on the first Thursday of each month, are free and open to the public, and take place at the General Society Library, 20 West 44th Street.

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  1. Ralph

    Sadly political solutions are based upon sound bites fueled by hysterics. The cure is never approached because why on earth would we need those in power so the perpetual promise is made which depletes Liberty for a feeling of safety.

    Hence, no one will be safe as history has clearly demonstrates the end result.

  2. Phil Kline

    Well done, as always.
    I think the strongest argument you have is your point that their “studies” are cherry-picked and flawed, that they pick 2 cities in 2 different years, and ignore the pre-existing trends and concurrent national trends. So when City A has been experiencing a 10% decline in murders for 10 years, and implements a new infringement, they brag that homicides went down 5% afterwards, so TaDa!, gun control is effective. Same with City B with a 10% homicide upward trend, liberalizing carry permits, and knocking that trend down to 4%, which is not a 4% increase due to the permits, it’s a 6% reduction in the trend. That would merit a failing grade in any freshman statistics course, but it’s the keystone of their arguments.
    Maybe emphasize that a little more; they don’t have intuitive logic on their side (“disarm the potential victims and everyone will be safer”?), so they really need those studies. Make it clear that the studies are hack jobs, with simpler words and repetition of the faulty logic.

  3. Benjamin Franklin

    The debate results speak for themselves. John speaks the truth and he changes hearts and minds. I would like to see this debate on national television. What other debates are you planning in the future?

    They that can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety.