Explore The NRA Universe Of Websites

APPEARS IN News Second Amendment

The Privilege of Misconstruing Data

Friday, March 23, 2018

The Privilege of Misconstruing Data

Earlier this month, the head of Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America (Shannon Watts, not benefactor Michael Bloomberg) brutally dismissed an op-ed in the New York Times by Bethany Mandel as an anecdote of fear and paranoia. 

The anecdote? As a young girl, a home intruder climbing through her bedroom window threatened Mandel. Her mother used a firearm to defend her. More recently, Mandel routinely received death threats for her political commentary and was doxxed by neo-Nazis – which led her to obtain a firearms permit in her home state of New Jersey. In other words, Ms. Mandel was literally saved by a firearm as a child and obtained a firearms permit to protect herself and her own child after neo-Nazis published her home address. Ms. Watts chalked Ms. Mandel’s efforts to protect herself from the very real threats as privilege:

 

Watts seems to be referencing CDC data from a 1993 study led by Arthur Kellerman that concludes, “Rather than confer protection, guns kept in the home are associated with an increase in the risk of homicide by a family member or intimate acquaintance.”

This study focused on different time periods in three counties in three different states, none of which is as diverse as the country itself. Researchers canvassed the neighborhoods of murder victims in these counties to find someone who roughly matched the victim’s demographic profile (age, sex, and race) to use as a control and interviewed relatives of the actual murder victims. 

Methodological concerns include biases, ignorance of relatives’ criminal behavior, coverage issues, and even the possibility that canvassers may have avoided going to certain houses if they felt uneasy or frightened. Often overlooked is the finding is that renting and living alone provide the second highest odds of being murdered (illicit drug use is first).  

Perhaps the most glaring issue is that only cases that resulted in a fatality were included. Non-fatal defensive gun uses were by intent excluded. Noted criminologists Gary Kleck and Marc Gertz found in their 1995 study Armed Resistance to Crime: The Prevalence and Nature of Self-Defense with a Gun that only about 4.5% of defensive gun uses involved the defender firing a weapon at a perpetrator (note: this is not the number of defensive gun uses that resulted in a fatality). In total, only 24% of defensive gun uses involved shots fired – meaning Kellerman et al. focused on a minority of all defensive gun uses. Kleck validates this estimate by noting that the National Crime Victimization Survey found that 17% of gun crimes involve the offender shooting the victim.

But Ms. Watts happily throws a false claim of CDC data at a woman who wants only to protect her child from a very real threat. If Ms. Watts really wanted to use the Kellerman study to guide Ms. Mandel’s choices regarding her safety, she should urge Mandel to neither rent nor live alone – both of which are, according to the flawed Kellerman study that Watts relies upon, substantially more dangerous than keeping a firearm in the home.

TRENDING NOW
Kentucky: Committee to Consider Firearm Seizures Without Due Process

Friday, November 15, 2019

Kentucky: Committee to Consider Firearm Seizures Without Due Process

On Friday, November 22nd, the Kentucky state Interim Joint Committee on Judiciary will consider so called “red-flag laws.” Though no legislation has been introduced, such laws usually allow for Second Amendment rights to be suspended ...

A New Candidate for Confiscator-in-Chief

News  

Monday, November 11, 2019

A New Candidate for Confiscator-in-Chief

Former Texas Congressman Robert Francis O’Rourke abandoned his run for President last week, once again leaving a void for the most strident anti-gun candidate seeking the Democrat nomination. Even before declaring his candidacy for President, ...

Strong Firearms Preemption Laws are More Important Than Ever

News  

Gun Laws  

Monday, November 11, 2019

Strong Firearms Preemption Laws are More Important Than Ever

Photo Courtesy of Jeremy Tremp In recent weeks, gun owners have been given two prime examples of just how important strong firearms preemption laws are to the vibrant exercise of Second Amendment rights. On October ...

Guide To The Interstate Transportation Of Firearms

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 as legal advice or a restatement of law.

National Hearing Conservation Association Supports Suppressors

News  

Monday, November 4, 2019

National Hearing Conservation Association Supports Suppressors

Photo Courtesy of Silencer Shop On October 28th, the National Hearing Conservation Association sent its new position paper on firearms suppressors to the American Suppressor Association. The paper, in short, recognizes the important role that ...

Wisconsin: Gov. Evers Calls for Firearm Confiscation & Criminalizing Private Transfers

Friday, September 20, 2019

Wisconsin: Gov. Evers Calls for Firearm Confiscation & Criminalizing Private Transfers

On September 19th, Wisconsin Governor Tony Evers, Attorney General Josh Kaul, Representative Melissa Sargent (D-48), and Senator Lena Taylor (D-4) held a press conference calling on the Legislature to violate the Second Amendment by: 1) ...

Nevada: Gov. Sisolak Signs Anti-Gun Bill

Friday, June 14, 2019

Nevada: Gov. Sisolak Signs Anti-Gun Bill

Ignoring the constitutional rights of law-abiding Nevadans, on June 14th, Governor Steve Sisolak signed omnibus anti-gun Assembly Bill 291 into law.  Your NRA would like to thank the many lawmakers who stood with our members and ...

News  

Friday, June 27, 2008

Heller: The Supreme Decision

Leaders of the National Rifle Association (NRA) praised the Supreme Court’s historic ruling overturning Washington, D.C.’s ban on handguns and on self-defense in the home, in the case of District of Columbia v. Heller.

HR 218/Law Enforcement Officers Safety Act (LEOSA)

Gun Laws  

Sunday, May 11, 2014

HR 218/Law Enforcement Officers Safety Act (LEOSA)

LEOSA, as Amended by the National Defense Authorization Act of 2013 (Jan 2, 2013) (Changes have been italicized.) § 926B.

NRA Statement on Walmart's Decision to Change Firearms Policy

News  

Tuesday, September 3, 2019

NRA Statement on Walmart's Decision to Change Firearms Policy

Fairfax, Va.— The National Rifle Association released the following statement today regarding Walmart's decision to change its firearms and ammunition policies:"The strongest defense of freedom has always been our free-market economy. It is shameful to see ...

MORE TRENDING +
LESS TRENDING -

More Like This From Around The NRA

NRA ILA

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.