Dr. John Lott’s newest piece at National Review starts this way:
Democrats keep using shootings of police officers to push for more gun control. Having just arrived in Philadelphia for the Democratic National Convention, the Reverend Jesse Jackson complained on Sunday that police are more likely to be killed in states that have open-carry laws. He claimed that without an assault-weapons ban police lives are endangered because people have “access to military weaponry, stronger than the police have.”
President Obama touched on this issue a couple of weeks ago: “If you care about the safety of our police officers, then you can’t set aside the gun issue and pretend that that’s irrelevant.” Hillary Clinton echoed Obama and Jackson at the NAACP Annual Conference last week: “People who should care about protecting police officers should be committed to getting assault weapons off the streets to start with.”
The Philadelphia Police Union, which will be protecting Democrats’ convention this week, takes such professions of concern with a grain of salt. The union has angrily denounced the party’s plans to host the relatives of those killed by police — including Michael Brown of Ferguson, Mo., and Eric Garner of New York City — without also inviting the relatives of police who have been killed in the line of duty.
Research in my new book, The War on Guns, shows that each one-percentage-point increase in gun ownership is associated with a 3.6 percent decrease in the number of police killed. Clinton and Obama keep pushing for background checks on private transfers of guns, but using data from the handful of states that mandate such checks, I found no relationship between tighter restrictions and the number of police shot to death in the years 2000–2014.
Jackson’s claim about open-carry laws is simply wrong. From 2013 to 2015, the six states (plus the District of Columbia) that banned open carry actually experienced higher rates of police death (20.2 versus 17.3 per 100,000 officers). . . .
More on John J. McNesby, President of Philadelphia Lodge #5 of the Fraternal Order of Police, reaction slamming the Democratic National Convention.