Last year saw the City of Chicago reportedly post the fewest homicides since 1965, and the Second Amendment Foundation says one plausible explanation for at least part of the decline is because criminals can no longer be certain that their intended victim is not legally armed.
Since SAF’s landmark Supreme Court victory in the 2010 McDonald v. City of Chicago case that nullified the 30-year-old handgun ban in the city, increasing numbers of law-abiding citizens have obtained firearms for personal protection, noted SAF Executive Vice President Alan Gottlieb.
“For three decades,” he said, “street thugs essentially enjoyed a risk-free environment in the Windy City. That changed, thanks to a series of court victories stemming from SAF’s win in the McDonald case. That forced the city to enter the 21st Century and rejoin the United States where the right to keep and bear arms is protected by the Second Amendment.
“Surveys have repeatedly revealed that predatory criminals fear armed citizens,” he added. “Just the thought that an intended victim might be armed, and willing to fight back, tends to discourage some of these outlaws.”
ABC News reported that the city saw a 16-percent reduction in crime overall last year. There were 415 homicides, which was 88 fewer slayings than the city logged in 2012.
“Improved police work is certainly a factor, and no doubt a number of slayings involved people with criminal backgrounds, themselves, who are no longer victimizing the community,” Gottlieb observed. “However, it cannot be discounted that with the restoration of gun rights in the city, there is a deterrent factor that did not exist for many years under the virtual ban on private handgun ownership within the city limits.
“One thing about criminal predators is that they don’t want to risk getting shot by an intended victim,” he concluded. “Now, with legal concealed carry coming to Illinois thanks to SAF’s victory in Moore v. Madigan, this sends an even stronger message to criminals that it may be time to change their lifestyle.”
The Second Amendment Foundation (www.saf.org) is the nation’s oldest and largest tax-exempt education, research, publishing and legal action group focusing on the Constitutional right and heritage to privately own and possess firearms. Founded in 1974, The Foundation has grown to more than 650,000 members and supporters and conducts many programs designed to better inform the public about the consequences of gun control.