Author Topic: Statistical link between background checks and firearms crimes  (Read 140 times)

Offline Mr. Bill

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Fairly long overview by FactCheck.org (5/10/19):

O’Rourke Wrong on Gun Control Stat

Quote
After the Colorado school shooting, Democratic presidential candidate Beto O’Rourke advocated universal background checks for gun purchases, claiming that state laws mandating universal checks “have been shown to reduce gun violence by 50 percent.”

But academic research doesn’t support that.

O’Rourke’s campaign said the statistic came from Everytown for Gun Safety, but the gun-control group told us it has updated its background material on the issue in light of “rigorous” new research that has “improved our understanding of this.” ...

A study led by Boston University Community Health Sciences Professor Michael Siegel and published in March in the Journal of General Internal Medicine looked at homicide and suicide rates in all 50 states over a 26-year period and analyzed the relationship between various firearm laws, including universal background checks. The research found that universal background checks are associated with about a 15 percent reduction in firearm homicide. ...

Siegel, who has extensively studied gun violence, noted that his research found an “association” between universal background checks and reduced homicide rates, “but did not definitively conclude causality.”

“I think that we are not quite at the level of research when we can conclude there is a causal relationship, but we’re probably close,” he said. ...

Siegel said states that have lower firearm violence rates to begin with are the ones that tend to pass laws requiring universal background checks. He and the other researchers who participated in the study “tried to account for that by looking at CHANGES in homicide rates over time from before to after these laws, while comparing the changes with those in other states during the same time period,” he said. ...

Offline David in MN

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Re: Statistical link between background checks and firearms crimes
« Reply #1 on: May 15, 2019, 09:25:24 AM »
I take a very skeptical view of both sides of any firearm statistics debate. Even here we must concede that a "homicide" might not be a crime. There is such a thing as justifiable homicide. If a police officer shoots some crazed psycho with a chainsaw running at a preschool it's a homicide.

This issue has massive overlapping of terms and I read a lot of flags like "gun violence" (like being pistol whipped?) that could mean a lot of things. To be fair the pro-gun side also take liberties at estimating unreported events where brandishing saved a life.

The problem with gun statistics is that almost by terminology and statistical method I could come to whatever conclusion the guy signing my paycheck wanted. So I tend to ignore them all.