Debate Magazine

More on the Chicago Lie

Posted on the 02 October 2013 by Mikeb302000
The Propaganda Professor
But the gun culture wants to train its crosshairs only on those cities with strict gun regulations that have experienced an increase in violent crime.  Three years ago, Boston was all the rage, as 2010 saw a temporary (and relatively minor) jump in homicides for that city. But when levels returned to normal the following year, the gunsters turned their sights toward the Second City instead. But the focus is on only one particular year in Chicago — i.e., 2012. It’s not hard to figure out why if you take a look at the statistics for the few years leading up to that:
More on the Chicago Lie
As even a casual glance makes clear, the city’s homicide tally had been on a rather steady downward slide for 20 years; thus, it appears that what happened last year was an anomaly rather than a trend. And this is borne out by the fact that the homicide rate for 2013 appears to have dived back down again, and has been on pace to be the lowest in about 40 years! No wonder you hear a lot more about 2012 than you do about 2013 or 2011. You also hear about isolated days or weekends of exceptional bloodshed much more than you hear about the overall trend (which is almost never). This obsession with recent (though not too recent) crime statistics, and trying to tie them to “gun control” suggests that the gun lobby wants to give the impression that strict gun regulation is a recent development in Chicago. But far from it. Way back in 1982 the city passed one of the strictest of gun policies: an outright ban on handguns. And guess what? The streets haven’t become Armageddon Unlimited. In fact, at the time the ban went into effect, the city’s homicide rate had been on a steep escalator; but since then, it has dropped an average of 17 percent per year. Homicide isn't the only story, of course; there are other crimes to consider. And how has the overall crime rate fared in the wake of the handgun ban? The short answer is down, down, down.  Every category of crime  has seen an overall decline in Chicago for at least 20 years or so. (Burglary has been holding steady for the past 10 years, but was on the decline in the preceding years just like everything else.)

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