Violent crime, gun homicides decline, says FBI Crime Report


Earlier this month, Insider Online got hold of the FBI Uniform Crime Report for 2018, and among the revelations is the slight decline in firearm-related homicides, which could force some fast-talking by the gun prohibition lobby.

Last year, the FBI report says there were 14,123 murders, of which 10,265 involved firearms. Back in 2017, by comparison, the FBI reported 15,129 slayings, including 10,982 committed with firearms.

According to FBI data, handguns are used in the majority of homicides, yet gun prohibitionists want to
ban semiautomatic rifles.

The FBI report says 6,603 of last year’s killings involved handguns, which is down from the 7,032 handgun-related homicides reported in 2017. Last year, rifles of any kind were identified as murder weapons in 297 murders, which is significantly lower than the 403 slayings with rifles in 2017, the year of the Las Vegas outrage that claimed 58 lives and left hundreds of others wounded.

Last year, shotguns were the weapons of choice in 235 murders, down from the 264 logged in 2017.

While it is not a rosy picture, stacked against more than 300 million privately-owned firearms in the hands of an estimated 100 million law abiding gun owners, the numbers sort of belie claims that the U.S. is in the grip of a “gun violence epidemic.”

Just to keep all this mayhem in perspective, last year saw 1,515 murders committed with knives or other cutting instruments. That’s more than twice as may people who were slain with rifles and shotguns combined.

So, two questions are appropriate. First, when is the establishment media going to start talking about “knife violence” like they do about so-called “gun violence?” Second, has anybody figured out there are no background checks on knife purchases, and that the crime data proves beyond any doubt that people determined to hurt other people will find a way and a weapon?

Last year, more than 1,100 people were murdered with blunt objects or “personal weapons,” meaning they were beaten or stomped to death. There are no background checks for hammers, crowbars or baseball bats, either.

There’s a different column for strangulation, with less than 100 victims. All those causes combined, there are still more than twice as many people as the victims of rifles and shotguns combined.

The Caveat

When we’re talking about firearms-related homicides, it’s important to note the more than 3,100 murders committed with guns that were not identified or were “unknown.” But figuring that on an annual basis about 3 percent of murders are committed with rifles or shotguns, if you just carry that forward to break down the 3,130 slayings with “unknown” guns, the numbers do not come up much overall.

Here’s something else. All of these people murdered with firearms are no more or less victimized and deceased than those who were stabbed, smothered or bludgeoned into the hereafter. So why the emphasis on so-called “gun violence?”

It’s just possible Alan Gottlieb, chairman of the Citizens Committee for the Right to Keep and Bear Arms has cracked that code. In a prepared statement, he observed, “In order to create the impression that this country is awash in violent crime, gun grabbers routinely combine the number of homicides and suicides, plus accidental deaths and call them all acts of so-called ‘gun violence.’ It is deliberately misleading and downright dishonest.” It’s an interesting observation.

Before they can regulate gun ownership into the dustbin of history, they first have to demonize them to such a degree that nobody will want one. At least, that appears to be the strategy, but it’s working poorly. Whenever anti-gunners start working with Capitol Hill gun grabbers, it drives gun sales upwards.

In Self-Defense

Last year, the number of justified homicides by private citizens acting in self-defense dropped slightly, the FBI reported.

Source: FBI Uniform Crime Report for 2018.

In 2018, an estimated 353 perpetrators were killed in self-defense, including 298 who were fatally shot by the intended victim. That’s down from 369 and 314, respectively, reported in 2017. This is no reflection on marksmanship by the good guys; indeed, it may simply mean that more bad guys survived to be prosecuted.

Still, since 2014, it’s the second-highest number of apparent bad guys who were dispatched by armed private citizens.

Besides, the number of justifiable homicides committed by police officers also declined last year from 2017. According to the FBI, there were 410 justifiable homicides by police in 2018, including 407 killed by gunfire. That’s down from the 436 fatally shot by police in 2017, and actually the lowest number of suspects killed by law enforcement over the past five years.

Meanwhile, at the Supreme Court

It’s looking like the U.S. Supreme Court is preparing to rain on New York City’s parade with a hearing on its hastily amended handgun control law that prohibited legally licensed handgun owners from taking their sidearms out of the city.

New York City officials have scrambled to keep a challenge to an offensive gun control law away
from the U.S. Supreme Court.

When the high court agreed back in January to hear the case, New York officials suddenly decided there was something in need of fixing with their extremist gun law. While pundits believe the city was merely trying to keep the case away from the Supremes fearing a loss that could open the door to challenges of other restrictive gun control laws, there is another theory, and it goes like this:

The city knew all along the prohibition overstepped constitutionality, and only when the court made it clear that this case is ripe for review was the city compelled to clean up its own mess.

The problem, as explained by an attorney for the National Rifle Association, which supports the case, is that if the high court dismisses the case now, at some future date the city might impose a regulation just as offensive, if not moreso.

The hearing is scheduled for Dec. 2.