A wave of high-profile school shootings has placed gun control at the top of the public agenda for the past couple of years. Politicians are engaged in frantic attempts to prevent gun violence or at least give the appearance of doing so. Celebrities have lately added to this cause, like rapper Puff Daddy, and basketball star, Jason Williams, who were both part of recent shootings. In short, this flood of lawmaking and big name hemming and hawing misses the point. In fact, a very small percentage of the population is responsible for committing a large percentage of the nation's crime.
There is a simple solution to this, strike at the "root cause" of crime and the crime rates will fall. The root cause here is criminals. Not social pathology or the social construction of crime, not ever the host of other reasons fabricated by stupid criminologists and politicians.
California's three-strike law, for example, has been effective in taking a significant number of ordinary criminals out of circulation. Crime rates have fallen dramatically in these areas. Now apply the same reasoning to gun violence. Only a very small percentage of guns are used to commit crimes. Law-abiding citizens don't use their guns for criminal purposes, but they do frequently use them for self-defense.
As many as three million law-abiding citizens each year use guns in this manner to protect themselves and their property. In most instances, no shots are fired and no reports are filed with police. Without exception, states with more liberal concealed-carry laws have seen dramatic drops in crime because if you were a criminal, obviously you would prefer to prey upon the defenseless. They would be scared to be confronted by an armed citizen. The new gun-control proposals address the wrong issue by seeking...