Gannett News Service: Anti-gun group questions concealed carry research

COLUMBUS -- Gun control advocates on Wednesday criticized the credibility of a leading firearms researcher and said lawmakers have relied too much on his flawed work in their push for concealed weapons licenses in Ohio.

But the expert, author John Lott, maintains his research is valid, and supporters insist the concealed weapons concept has more justification than just those figures.

Jeff Garvas, president of Ohioans for Concealed Carry, called the coalition's press conference a smear campaign designed to tear down "the person they see as the biggest threat to them."

Click on the "Read More..." link below for much, much more.

Sen. Eric Fingerhut, D-Cleveland, said many of his colleagues pushing the concealed weapons legislation have relied solely on Lott's work.

"Take away the claim of evidence that (Lott) makes, and any chance of public support on the issue collapses," he said.

But bill sponsor Rep. Jim Aslanides, R-Coshocton, said Lott's research has little bearing on the state's need for responsible and fair concealed weapons legislation.

"For (this version of the bill) I've never used John Lott to prove results, and I don't need it," he said. "The heart of concealed-carry is its success in other states."

Garvas echoed those sentiments.

"We don't argue the reason we should go forward is because of John Lott," he said. "We argue that in 43 states this hasn't caused problems, and it can be implemented safely."

OFCC PAC Commentary:
Is this the best they've got?

After years of publicizing false and misleading data to support their anti-gun cause (such as counting deaths of 25 year old "children" from gang wars on American streets and ethnic wars in Kosovo and Africa), the anti-gun crowd seems to be conceding victory to the concealed carry reform movement on the FACTS.

More and more, they are being called to task (even by the media) for their fear-based rhetorical claims that Ohio will become Dodge-city if we reform the law. The argument that 43 other states are doing just fine with CCW has become overwhelming. Their last resort seems a desperate attempt to discredit just one of MANY researchers which have come to the same conclusion: CCW saves lives. They STILL are not claiming Lott's research is faulty, only trying to attack him personally. Contrast this with Michael Belliseles, anti-gun researcher who was fired from his job as an Emory professor for falsifying research.

All they seem to have left is the politics of personal destruction. And from our perspective, this looks like very good news.

Click here to read the full story in the Zanesville Times-Recorder.

Other Gannett-owned newspapers will likely pick this Leo Shane III article up as well. Links will be published here, and intelligent, factual responses via letters to the editors are certainly encouraged.

Click here to read the full story in the Marion Star.

Click here to read the full story in the Lancaster Eagle-Gazette. This paper chose to omit Rep. Aslanides' statement that Lott's research had not been used to prove results, and his point about the successes in 43 other states. Concerned letter writers might want to ask them why.

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