Explore The NRA Universe Of Websites

APPEARS IN News

Research Update: It’s [Still] Not the Guns

Monday, July 19, 2021

Research Update: It’s [Still] Not the Guns

Much has changed since last summer. In July 2020, notoriously anti-gun researchers circulated a paper that alleged an association between what they deemed excess” gun purchases early in the pandemic and violence. This year, the same researchers disproved their original findings with the addition of new data.

Doctor Garen Wintemute and his team at the University of California Firearm Violence Research Center at UC Davis found no association between what they dubbed excess” firearm purchases and non-domestic firearm violence, and the association they found between excess purchases and domestic firearm violence through May disappeared when either state trends were included in the model or when June and July were added to the time frame.

The findings are buried in the UC Davis press release. ABC News dedicated an article to the original study, but theres no mention of the newly published research. Bloombergs reporters” at The Trace spent over 700 words on the original study. They added a brief note to that article with a single sentence about the new and contradictory research.

News” outlets reported on the original non-peer-reviewed paper but spent little to no ink on the new research published in the journal Injury Epidemiology.

Instead, CNN published a piece entitled, How crime stats lie — and what you need to know to understand them” that cited an anti-gun web scraper for statistics to show an increase in gun violence.” CNN, of course, used the combined total of suicides, homicides, accidents, and every other intent but focused in on homicides and inserted this line:

Gun sales also soared during the pandemic.”

That line could only be intended to suggest causality, as if the increase in firearm sales was responsible for the reported increase in homicides. This makes no sense on its face and certainly not considering the latest research from UC Davis. Reports from retailers indicated that self-defense was the primary reason for obtaining a firearm during an unprecedented year of civil unrest, inmate releases, and efforts to defund the police.

Thanks to Wintemutes team at UC Davis, there is evidence of no association between excess” firearm sales and increasing firearm-related violence during the early months of the pandemic.

One might say that Wintemute found a protective effect of firearms against non-domestic violence though the results may not be statistically significant. The finding related to domestic violence is what the anti-gun crowd will promote but it does not hold up to scrutiny.

Wintemutes team claims that Increases in purchasing may have contributed to additional firearm injuries from domestic violence in April and May.”

The researchersfound a positive association for April and May when they included COVID-19 cases and deaths, mobility [a supposed measure of social distancing adherence, using cell phone data], unemployment, baseline firearm purchasing rates, police violence during the George Floyd protests, stay-at-home orders, and average temperature” in the model.”

Take those out, and April no longer has an association between excess” purchases and firearm-related domestic violence. Add in state-specific linear trends, and both April and May lose the claimed association.

The UC Davis findings are very much dependent on the model specification.

Also of interest is the decrease in effect as successive months of excess” purchases are added to the model. How could there be an association between excess” sales and domestic violence through April and May, but not through June or July?

Wintemute and his team claim there were more excess” purchases in June and July than in any prior month in the study period. June 2020 had the highest number of NICS checks ever (until December 2020). Theres nothing to suggest that excess” purchases in April and May should be associated with violence but not later excesspurchases.

As each new month is added, the effect of so-called excess” purchases on domestic violence perpetrated with firearms decreases. April and May saw a lower rate ratio – meaning a weaker effect - than April; April through June saw a lower rate ratio than April and May; and, April through July saw a lower rate ratio than April through June. One might reasonably expect any effect from excess purchases” to increase as the excess stock increases in aggregate but that is not the case in this analysis. The final two time frames were not statistically significant – there was no association between excess purchases” and domestic violence.

We debunked the notion of excess purchases last summer, when the original article came out  and now Wintemute and his staff at the Firearm Violence Research Center at UC Davis have rejected the theory of an association between the so-called excess” purchases and violence.

Bloomberg-funded researcher Daniel Webster commented on the study for The Guardian and provided the sort of dizzying spin usually reserved for desperate politicians.

It seems Webster wanted a way to reconcile these findings with the anti-gun worldview. Webster offered that perhaps more Americans were willing to carry their firearms, or that the surge in sales was predominantly existing gun owners, or that the increase in homicides may be due to increased illegal carrying of firearms.

Well, he may be on to something with that last trial balloon. Webster referenced reports of an increase in weapons found during arrests in several cities even as the pandemic and other 2020 pressures reduced the overall number of arrests.  Key in on the phrase, during arrests.”

In other words, criminals.

An increase in criminal behavior just so happens to coincide an increase in certain types of crime. Next, theyll tell us that background checks dont impact crime.

Thats right – both criminals and from Wintemute and Webster, whose previous research determined that Californias universal background check law had no effect on homicide rates, have already proved this.

Its what weve been saying all along.

 

IN THIS ARTICLE
Research Bias
TRENDING NOW
Biden Reiterates Call to Ban 9mm Handguns

News  

Monday, July 26, 2021

Biden Reiterates Call to Ban 9mm Handguns

During a July 21 CNN “presidential town hall,” Joe Biden expressed his support for a ban on commonly-owned handguns. Responding to a question about the recent increase in violent crime, the career politician stated,

Great Expectations, Empty Promises: Gun Control in Washington State

News  

Monday, July 26, 2021

Great Expectations, Empty Promises: Gun Control in Washington State

For years, voters in the Evergreen State have been assured that if only they approve certain gun control ballot initiatives, they would “save lives” and reduce crime. The Washington Alliance for Gun Responsibility (WAGR), the organization pushing ...

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.

How Anti-Gun Research Works

News  

Monday, July 26, 2021

How Anti-Gun Research Works

The objective world mistrusts most gun policy research because it’s clear the objective is to produce an anti-gun outcome rather than honest analysis. Politicians and professional activists claim the mantle of evidence but will ignore ...

St. Louis Prosecutor Kim Gardner Ignores Violent Crime While Playing Politics with Gun Owners

News  

Monday, July 26, 2021

St. Louis Prosecutor Kim Gardner Ignores Violent Crime While Playing Politics with Gun Owners

Similar to many other urban areas of the country, St. Louis saw a dramatic increase in homicide in 2020. The Gateway to the West’s homicide rate per 100 thousand residents exploded from 64.5 in 2019 to 87.2 in 2020. The homicide ...

Louisiana: Betrayal at the Capitol

Wednesday, July 21, 2021

Louisiana: Betrayal at the Capitol

Yesterday, SB 118, Constitutional Carry, was defeated due to several Senators reversing their initial vote of support on the bill.  Two of the Senators who flip-flopped were Senators Patrick Connick (SD-8) and Louie Bernard (SD-31). 

Students “School” Antigun Education Officials on Civil Rights, Receive Large Settlements in Court Cases

News  

Monday, July 19, 2021

Students “School” Antigun Education Officials on Civil Rights, Receive Large Settlements in Court Cases

Last September we reported on the saga of Ka'Mauri Harrison, a Louisiana elementary school student who was suspended for having a BB gun that happened to come into view while the fourth grader was participating in online ...

Guide To The Interstate Transportation Of Firearms

Gun Laws  

Monday, June 30, 2014

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.

ATF Targets Pistol Stabilizing Braces in New Rulemaking

News  

Wednesday, June 9, 2021

ATF Targets Pistol Stabilizing Braces in New Rulemaking

On June 7th, ATF published a new notice of proposed rulemaking on its website...

NRA-ILA Applauds Rep. Claudia Tenney and U.S. House of Representatives’ Amicus Brief Supporting Second Amendment Case Before Supreme Court

Tuesday, July 20, 2021

NRA-ILA Applauds Rep. Claudia Tenney and U.S. House of Representatives’ Amicus Brief Supporting Second Amendment Case Before Supreme Court

Earlier this year, the Supreme Court decided to hear the NRA-ILA backed case challenging New York’s restrictive concealed-carry-licensing regime. NRA-ILA’s opening brief is located here.

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.