Three gun-free zones, three public shootings
Louisiana Gun Free Zone?
It is illegal to bring a firearm onto a college campus in the state of Louisiana. All of the defenseless students at Louisiana Technical College complied with the ban. One murderous 23 year-old woman did not. The results speak for themselves.
Missouri Gun Free Zone?
It is illegal to bring a firearm into a government building or government meeting in the state of Missouri. All of the defenseless elected officials attending a council meeting in the Kirkwood city hall complied with the ban. Charles Lee "Cookie" Thornton did not. The results speak for themselves.
Ohio Gun Free Zone?
It is illegal to bring a firearm into a school in the state of Ohio. All of the defenseless students and teachers at Portsmouth's Notre Dame Elementary complied with the ban. William Michael Layne did not. The results speak for themselves.
It doesn't have to be this way, and it hasn't always been.
In the year 2000, professors John R. Lott and William M. Landes examined multiple-victim public shootings in the U.S. from 1977 to 1999. According to their research, the only policy factor that has had a consistently significant influence on multiple victim public shootings is the passage of concealed handgun laws.
From the study:
- Right-to-carry laws reduce the number of people killed or wounded from multiple victim public shootings as many attackers are either deterred from attacking or when attacks do occur they are stopped before the police can arrive. We are able to provide evidence for the first time that the harm from crimes that still occur can be mitigated. Given that half the attackers in these multiple victim public shootings have had formal diagnoses of mental illness, the fact that some results indicate concealed handgun laws reduce these attacks by almost 70 percent is remarkable.
Indeed, Lott and Landes found that when states passed right-to-carry laws, the rate of multiple victim public shootings fell by 60%. Deaths and injuries from multiple-victim public shootings fell even more - an average of 78% - as the remaining incidents tended to involve fewer victims per attack.
I can hear my anti-gun readers now - "but Ohio and Missouri and Louisiana are all concealed carry states!" True, but as noted, schools campuses and government buildings are still state-mandated victim zones. By proactively rendering people in these locations defenseless in the name of making everyone "feel safe" rather than pursuing measures that would actually improve safety, legislators ensured that there could be no deterrent effect, and no reduction in the number of victims. In fact, Lott and Landes noted that their results "clearly show that the states with the fewest gun free zones have the greatest reductions killings, injuries, and attacks." Their conclusion? "Increasing gun free zones increases murders."
For more information, read Which came first - the gun violence or the gun control?