December 22, 2011
A Familiar Pattern: As Sales of Firearms Go Up … Crime Goes Down
This week the FBI released data showing that violent crime in the United States fell 6.4 percent in the first half of this year compared to the same time period in 2010. The data also indicated a 3.7 percent drop in property crime.
The FBI statistics undermine a favorite argument of anti-gun groups and some mainstream media that “more guns equal more crime,” especially when you consider that the continuing decrease in violent crime parallels record firearm sales.
According to the National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS), a primary source for how industry and analysts gauge firearm sales, this past November marked the eighteenth-straight month that NICS figures increased when compared to the same period of the previous year. Furthermore, this past “Black Friday” (November 25, 2011) set a record for the most background checks for firearm purchases in a single day (129,166), with a 32 percent increase over the previous single day high. This milestone was followed by the release of the NSSF-adjusted NICS figures for November 2011 that showed an increase of 16.5 percent over the same month last year.
Of course, there remain two additional statistics that likewise enjoy a symbiotic relationship to America’s decreasing crime rate and growing firearms population, our continuing decline in firearm-related accidents and the record lack of public support for gun control. Clearly more and more law-abiding citizens are choosing to exercise their Second Amendment right to keep and bear arms, and they’re doing so in a safe and responsible manner. This fact, coupled with the empirical data demonstrating a correlation between increased firearms ownership and decreased crime levels, is something we can all be thankful for this holiday season.