Government & Constitution

Lott: Bogus data from Obama, Bloomberg twists gun rights debate

Lott: Bogus data from Obama, Bloomberg twists gun rights debate
John R. Lott Jr.

The economist, who is the leading expert on gun violence statistics, told Guns & Patriots President Barack Obama depends  on biased gun studies to push gun control and registration.

“Ask the President if he has ever been to a gun store,” said John R. Lott Jr., founder and president of the Crime Prevention Research Center in response to recent statements made by the White House regarding executive gun control action. “Obama makes it sound like he has no clue what’s going on.”

The media gives Obama a pass, he said. “If it was a Republican president who said something this erroneous on a particular issue, he would be called a moron.”

The White House and the media continues to rely on the same unchecked and faulty data it has relied on in the past whenever a question about gun control comes-up, he said. “The vast majority of the media just repeat what the President says, without checking it themselves.”

These are misleading studies coordinated by former New York City Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg and groups that cannot be trusted, he said.  “There is so much false information being put out by Bloomberg.”

CPRC, which is a research organization that studies the relationship between laws regulating the ownership or use of guns, crime, and public safety, identified many errors in Bloomberg’s data.

For example, Lott said Bloomberg’s group claims there have been 74 school shootings since the tragic shootings in Newtown, Conn. in Dec. 2012, yet the evidence suggests that to be a grossly exaggerated number.

Out of the 74 cases listed as school shootings, he said:  Most of the cases did not involve a student or a school. About 40% of the cases were a result of suicide. Virtually all of them were lone suicides late at night outside a school perimeter. One-third of the shootings were gang-related also outside regular school hours and outside a school perimeter.

“One case was a 45-year old man who committed suicide at 2:00 A.M. in the morning and the Bloomberg study calls this a mini-Newtown.”

It would be derelict for Congress to pass laws based on inaccurate studies, said Lott who is the author of More Guns, Less Crime and The Bias Against Guns.

The President claims we need background checks even though there is a 1994 federal law that requires a background check in order to purchase a firearm, he said. “Right now, you cannot go to a gun store and buy a gun without having to go through a background check.”

While the majority of gun owners support background checks, the White House neglects to tell us that Congress’ attempt at a background check law last year failed because the people did not accept more rules, said Lott.

The Toomey-Manchin proposal required background checks for the transfer of firearms not just for the sale, he said.  “It’s different if you say you support background checks on the real gun and you support universal background checks in the transfer of guns.”

CPRC surveys indicate that while support for background checks is high, he said support for the exact bill that was written by Congress was low. “One of the questions CPRC asked concerning the Toomey-Manchin bill was: Are you happy that the bill failed? The majority of people answered yes.”

The President falsely contends that a background check would have prevented the most recent shootings that have occurred, he said. “I cannot think of one of these attacks with guns that a background check would have made a difference – not in Santa Barbara or the Oregon High School shooting.”

The goal of this administration, Bloomberg and others is to enforce gun registration, said Lott who is a FOX News contributor.  “They claim gun registration is an important crime fighting tool because in theory law enforcement can trace the gun back to the criminal.”

However, he said in practice the gun does not get traced back to the criminal as intended. “The problem is it is very rare that the firearm is left at the scene and if any are left behind it is because the killer is seriously wounded or killed.”

Even if guns were left at a crime scene and the criminal is alive somewhere, guns are not registered to the criminal, he said.  “You just do not find criminals by gun registration.”

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