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The "Junkiest" Junk Science That Taxpayers' Money Can Buy

Friday, October 9, 2009

Now, more than at any other time in anyone's memory, the federal government is in no position to waste taxpayer dollars on gun control advocacy "research."  Nevertheless, the National Institutes of Health recently gave anti-gun researchers at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine $639,586 to conduct a survey intended to prove that possessing a gun doesn't benefit assault victims. 

Criminologist Gary Kleck calls the resulting survey "the very epitome of junk science in the guns-and-violence field—poor quality research designed to arrive at an ideologically predetermined conclusion." 

Here's how it was done.  The Pennsylvania researchers surveyed only those assault victims who were shot, limited in the last six months of the survey to victims who were fatally shot.  It did not consider the far more numerous gun owners who used guns for self-defense successfully without being shot, nor crimes that were not even attempted because the criminals feared that prospective victims might be armed. 

The survey was further limited to residents of urban Philadelphia who, according to the research, "were significantly more often Hispanic, more frequently working in high-risk occupations, less educated, and had a greater frequency of prior arrest," compared to the rest of the population.  Victims who were shot in Philly, but who were not from Philly, were excluded too.  The survey considered a victim to be "armed" even if his gun was "in a nearby vehicle, or in another place." 

As Kleck says, "none of the evidence presented by the authors actually has any relevance to the issue of the effectiveness of defensive gun use, for the simple reason that at no point do they ever compare crime victims who used guns defensively with victims who did not."  Kleck notes that other published research "reached precisely the opposite conclusions" reached by the NIH-funded survey. 

What Kleck had in mind were the results of the federal government's annual National Crime Victimization Survey, covering tens of thousands of assaults.  Kleck and others have reviewed those surveys and found that people who use guns to defend against assaults are less likely to be injured than people who use other means, or no means, of protection.


Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Appropriations Act Signed Into Law With Important Pro-Second Amendment Provisions

On Wednesday, November 25, the President signed S. 1356, the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2016 into law. Included in the bill were some very important pro-gun provisions that represent the culmination of long-term efforts by ...


Friday, November 20, 2015

Anti-gun Politicians, Media Exploit Paris Attacks in “Terrorist Gap” Rehash

The Paris terrorist attacks were not easily pinned on America’s supposedly lax gun laws or the NRA, but ...


Friday, November 20, 2015

Brussels Pushes Gun Control in Wake of Paris Attacks

On November 18, the European Commission expedited a plan to overhaul the European Union’s already restrictive gun control laws. The ...


Friday, November 20, 2015

“F” Stands for Fail: Gun Turn-in Event Nets a Stack of Paper Pledges and Some Surplus Sporting Goods

Recently, we reported on Hillary Clinton’s praise for local firearm “buyback” events and her view that forcing Americans to participate ...


Friday, November 20, 2015

Overwhelming 81 Percent of Current and Former Military have Unfavorable View of Clinton

More bad news for Hillary Clinton. Coming off the heels of survey results that found the former Secretary ...


Friday, November 20, 2015

Bloomberg’s Lackeys Tweet Solace to Unarmed Victims of Paris Attacks … Some of Them, Anyway

On Friday, Nov. 13, Islamic terrorists carried out a series of coordinated attacks in Paris, France, that left ...

Gun Laws  

Thursday, January 1, 2015

Guide To The Interstate Transportation Of Firearms

CAUTION: Federal and state firearms laws are subject to frequent change. This summary is not to be considered ...

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Michigan: Governor Snyder Signs Firearm Inheritance Protection Act

Today, November 24, Governor Rick Snyder (R) signed Senate Bills 225 and 226.


Friday, June 5, 2015

Stop Obama's Planned Gag Order on Firearm-Related Speech

It's happening again— President Obama is using his imperial pen and telephone to curb your rights and bypass Congress ...


Friday, November 20, 2015

NRA Statement on Terror Watch List Distortions

The National Rifle Association's Institute for Legislative Action issued the following statement on the terror watch list distortions:


Established in 1975, the Institute for Legislative Action (ILA) is the "lobbying" arm of the National Rifle Association of America. ILA is responsible for preserving the right of all law-abiding individuals in the legislative, political, and legal arenas, to purchase, possess and use firearms for legitimate purposes as guaranteed by the Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.