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On Fox News Rundown: What’s behind the surge in gun sales?

23 Aug , 2020  

Dr. John Lott appeared on Fox News Rundown on Friday. Besides some editorial comments by the host in the beginning of the program, the discussion seemed to go well. Presumably, the host, Dave Anthony, doesn’t think that we should count the San Bernardino, Chattanooga, or first Fort Hood shootings as terrorist attacks. Our new research on mass public shootings goes through how those attacks are defined.

Whether it’s increased violence in American cities or the uncertainty bought on by the pandemic or an election year, more people arming themselves. 

In fact, Americans have already bought more guns this year than in all of 2019.

Earlier this week, host Dave Anthony spoke to John Lott, President of the Crime Prevention Research Center, and Kris Brown, President of Brady United Against Gun Violence , to discuss this year’s surge in gun sales and what a Biden presidency would mean for gun control.

The discussions were too long and we only included small portions of each interview in our original segment. Guns will no doubt be a big topic in both local and national races and we wanted you to hear everything both guests had to say about the issue. 

On the Fox News Rundown Extra, you will hear our complete interviews with both Crime Prevention Research Center’s John Lott and Brady United’s Kris Brown.

“What’s behind the surge in gun sales?” Fox News Rundown, August 21, 2020.

(Friday, August 21, 2020)

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1 Response

  1. Jim McNamara says:

    The anti-gun movement is a paradox. Research, evidence, facts, and statistics are irrelevant to anti-gunners who are emotionally and passionately committed to preconceived, fallacious beliefs. Information is discarded, contradictions ignored, and reality twisted and distorted in order to sustain the untenable convictions. What we have here is an example of a disingenuous disinformation campaign that is characteristic of the gun control movement, from none other the president of Brady United Against Gun Violence (Chris Brown). Allow me to take the liberty to address some of her errant assertions.

    Gun violence??? Irrefutably, that is deliberate semantic deception … a faulty premise. A gun is not imbued with ethical or moral properties or principles. A gun is NOT violent. People are violent. A gun is an inanimate object incapable of violence which is a behavior, not a device. What does Chris, and those of her ilk not understand about that rudimentary concept?

    Guns are sold with no background checks over the internet and at guns shows??? Guns purchased from licensed firearms dealers over the internet must be shipped to a FFL, Firearms Transfer Record (Form ATF 4473) must be filled out, and a background check must be passed before a purchaser can take possession of a firearm. The vast percentage of firearms sold at gun shows are sold through FFL’s and background checks are required. Granted, federal law does not require a background check for privates sales of firearms at gun shows, but nearly half the states have enacted laws requiring background checks for private sales at gun shows. Even in states where background checks for private sales are not required, some organizations hosting gun shows require background checks as a matter of policy.

    Extreme risk (red flag laws reduce suicides)??? Studies indicate that, where passed, there is little evidence to support the efficacy of red flag laws since there has been no significant impact on homicide, suicide, robbery, aggravated assault, burglary, domestic violence rates, or the number of persons killed in mass public shootings. FACT: If a person is intent upon committing suicide, in the absence of a gun, they will and have chosen an alternate method. Red flag laws are fundamentally flawed and rife with potential for abuse. Firearm confiscation is based on dubious, subjective conjecture from a petitioner/accuser whose identity is held confidential. Red flag laws authorize court ordered seizure of firearms to be enforced with lowly evidentiary standards. Effectively suspending our Constitution, an ex parte judicial proceeding is conducted from which the accused is barred from participation unable to exercise the right to face their accuser. Red flag laws conflict with one of the most sacred core principles and bedrock of our jurisprudence system, namely the legal maxim, presumption of innocence. Red flag laws trample civil liberties by abrogating fundamental constitutional rights that were conceived and intended to preclude government overreach. Red flag laws countermand the rights of the law-abiding by infringing on the 2nd Amendment right to keep and bear arms, the 4th Amendment protection from unreasonable search and seizure (without a warrant and probable cause), the 5th and 14th Amendment protections from seizure of property without due process or just compensation, and the 6th Amendment right to legal counsel and public trial by an impartial jury, and the right to confront cross-examine witnesses (accusers). Red flag law risk assessment fails to acknowledge, let alone address, several crucial aspects of the “danger equation” that raises various questions. Is a dangerous person any less dangerous in the absence of a firearm? Couldn’t a dangerous person find another means or method of being a danger to themselves or others, or commit some “future crime” without the use of a firearm? Even more to the point, if the accused is deemed too dangerous to own a firearm, shouldn’t such a person be confined to a mental health facility for evaluation and assessment, or at the very least be mandated to seek mental health therapy by court order? Why is there no such requirement? If the focus of red flag laws is mental health, then why are mental health professionals not fundamental participants in the risk assessment process? Where is the verbiage in red flag laws to address these conspicuous loopholes?

    Assault Weapons ban??? Can Chris even define an “assault weapon “. It is a prerequisite that one must first define something before one can legislate and regulate it, and therein lies the crux of the matter. Assault weapon bans specifically target firearms based on particular characteristics rather than functionality or lethality rate, namely firearms with specific cosmetic features even though such features do not make a firearm functionally different or any more lethal than a firearm without such features. The 1994 U.S. Federal Assault Weapons Ban, which expired in 2004, defined a semiautomatic rifle as an “assault weapon” if it could accept a detachable magazine, and had at least two military-style features such as a folding or telescoping stock, a pistol grip, a bayonet mount, a flash suppressor, or threaded barrel designed to accommodate one. The list of military-style accessories also included a grenade or rocket launcher both of which were already banned. No mass public shooter has ever affixed a bayonet or employed a grenade or rocket launcher. It is not the intent of the deranged, homicidal maniac to get up close and personal with their victims. Their objective is to effectively main and kill as many people, as quickly as possible, at a safe distance, and that is simply not accomplished with a bayonet. Granted, a grenade or rocket would make a firearm more lethal and suitable for the intended purpose, but both are already banned and unavailable. A threaded barrel is primarily intended for attachment of a flash suppressor, muzzle brake, or silencer (sound suppressor) which is, for all practical purposes, already banned for civilian use, but movement is in the making to eliminate silencer bans. A flash suppressor diverts muzzle flash to the side to minimize loss of night vision. A muzzle brake suppresses recoil and muzzle flip for better control of a firearm. A barrel shroud enables a shooter to stabilize a firearm without risk of burning a hand. A telescoping stock allows for adjustment of a firearm to the size of the shooter. A folding stock allows for easier transport of a firearm. A deceptive wish list, the assault weapons ban was part and parcel of the gun-grabber’s thinly disguised disarmament agenda. Originating in the 1940s, a genuine “assault weapon” is a magazine fed, select fire, full-auto capable, military, infantry combat rifle. The official Department of Defense definition of an “assault weapon” is one capable of selective fire, that is semiautomatic in operation (single round fired per each trigger pull) and select-fire fully automatic in operation (multiple rounds fired per a single trigger pull). Civilian ownership of fully automatic firearms (machine guns) has been restricted since the National Firearms Act was passed in 1934. A political ploy by gun control activists, “assault weapon” is an arbitrary designation that entered the American lexicon in the late 1980s. The term “assault weapon” is an emotionally charged, inflammatory favorite of the media, anti-gun movement, and gun-grabbing politicians. Regardless of what kind of spin politicians and the media attempt to put on things, civilian semiautomatic firearms are not select-fire, full-auto capable, battlefield ready, weapons of war as erroneously portrayed. As repeatedly depicted by politicians, the media, and gun control activists, “assault weapon” is an arbitrary term for a semiautomatic civilian firearm that has the appearance, but not the function of a fully automatic military issue weapon. Based on indicators of the percentage of gun crimes resulting in injury or death, a Department of Justice (National Institute of Justice) study concluded that the assault weapons ban had no appreciable effect since there was no discernible reduction in the lethality and injuriousness from “gun violence” while the assault weapons ban was in effect. From September 1994 to September 2004, the duration of the assault weapons ban, there were still 15 mass shootings. If ineffective the first time, why push for enactment?

    Covid-19 fueled gun sales??? That is an assertion that doesn’t pass the sniff test. Aren’t violent riots, criminals released from prison, closure of gun stores, orders for police to stand down, lack of police response to 911 calls, movements to defund police, concerns over anti-gun Democratic agenda significant contributing factors driving gun sales?

    It is unfortunate that Chris wasn’t on first, so that John could have refuted here errant assertions, as I have tried to do here.

    I have a some questions for Chris. Why focus on gun control rather than crime control? Why is it that in every single instance when and where guns are banned, murder rates fail to decline, but rather increase? Why should the rights and liberties of the law-abiding be contingent upon the conduct of the lawless? If you are genuinely concerned about making a difference, why not focus on opposition to gun-free zones where 94% of mass public shootings have occurred?

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