Felons with Guns Go Free

Bail was set at $150,000 today on weapons-related charges for a Brighton Park man already on parole in an attempted murder case after beat officers saw him firing a gun near his home this week.

Edgar Jasso, 29, faces charges of unlawful use of a weapon by a felon and reckless discharge of a firearm, and also has been charged with violating his parole for a 2005 attempted murder case, according to police and court records.

via chicagotribune.com.

This story is what I’ve been talking about for years!  Grrr….

Turns out a LOT of Illinois residents don’t know how gun laws work in the State of Illinois.  First off, if you want to touch a bullet or a firearm in Illinois you must first acquire a FOID — Firearm Owners I.D. — card.

To get your FOID you must apply to the Illinois State Police who takes your application, conducts a background check to make sure you’re not a felon, and that you’ve never been arrested for a weapons charge or convicted of any domestic violence, and then they send you your FOID.

In Illinois possession of a single bullet without a FOID is a felony.

In Illinois you cannot buy any firearm or ammunition without presenting a valid FOID card.  Neighboring states are aware of Illinois’ laws; so when you buy ammo in either Indiana or Wisconsin and they ask for your drivers license, when they see you’re from Illinois they always ask to see your FOID card.

Additionally, when you go to purchase a firearm you must show your FOID and then hold-out for the waiting period (3 days for handguns, 1 day for everything else) and the FFL that sells you the firearm must perform an instant background check w/ the BATF/FBI.

This idea that people are buying guns in Illinois w/out a background check is absurd.

As an aside, I’ve already covered that it’s illegal to convict a felony for NOT getting a FOID card prior to acquiring a firearm.  Yes, really.  Check out the link.  It’s self incrimination to apply for a FOID when you know you can’t have one.

This is why gun registries will never work.  Criminals will never register their guns.  And honest folks will immediately become criminals by not registering their guns.  … Well that and history shows that gun registries have never solved a single crime.

But I digress…

18 U.S.C. § 922(g)(1) is the federal firearms law that states that felons are barred from possession of any firearm.  It’s a mandatory sentence of not less than a year.  But get this.  If the person has 3 or more felony convictions then the minimum sentence is 15 years.

Why is State’s Attorney Anita Alvarez not sending these goons to the Feds?  They the federal government house, feed, try, sentence, and punish these guys.  Would save the state millions and get these career criminals off the streets.   It’s a win-win.

UPDATED:  Corrected some bad grammar and added two paragraphs.

Milwaukee Sheriff’s Says Arm Yourself

Milwaukee County Sheriff David A. Clarke Jr. set off alarm bells Friday with a radio spot some view as a call for citizens to arm themselves.

In the radio ad, Clarke tells residents personal safety isn’t a spectator sport anymore, and that “I need you in the game.”

“With officers laid off and furloughed, simply calling 911 and waiting is no longer your best option,” Clarke intones.

“You could beg for mercy from a violent criminal, hide under the bed, or you can fight back.”

Clarke urges listeners to take a firearm safety course and handle a firearm “so you can defend yourself until we get there.”

“You have a duty to protect yourself and your family. We’re partners now. Can I count on you?”

via Milwaukee Journal Online.

Sound advice from a serious man.

Why is it in Chicago all we hear from McCarty and Rahm is that you cannot protect yourself?

When seconds count the police are just minutes away.


A Few Thoughts On Gun Control « Eudaimonia

This will be detailed and thorough, and I apologize in advance for its length. I also need to clarify that I am not a statistician, lawyer, political analyst, or sociologist. I am merely curious, capable at finding information, and trained in scientific analysis. If there are errors in this, they are not intentional.

via A Few Thoughts On Gun Control « Eudaimonia.

Amazing amount of information here.

Gun Violence and Race

Chicago is home to some 2,707,120 people (U.S. Census.)  We’re also told that about 32.9% are black while 45% are white.  That equates to about 890,642 black people and 1,218,204 white people in Chicago.  So far, nothing unusual.

Over at the Red Eye (a Tribune Media property) they have a worksheet showing the murder victims in Chicago.  The results show 392 black victims and 116 white victims.  Some algebra we calculate that the homicide rate in Chicago (by all causes, not just guns) is:

44.01 / 100,000 for black people, and 9.52  / 100,000 for white people.

For the record, the U.S. homicide rate (by all causes, not just guns) — for the entire country — is 4.8.

Chicago’s homicide rate (by all causes, not just guns) for everyone is 18.98.

If Chicago was it’s own country, the homicide rate among black’s in Chicago would rate between Belize (41.4) and Venezuela. (45.1.)

If Chicago was it’s own country, the homicide rate among white’s in Chicago would rate between Bolivia (8.9) and Nauru (9.8.)

Chicago is a dangerous place for everybody (as compared to the U.S. countryside) but is nearly 5 times more dangerous for blacks as for whites.

The Atlantic took this a bit further; looking only a GUN homicides:

The pattern is staggering. A number of U.S. cities have gun homicide rates in line with the most deadly nations in the world.  If it were a country,

New Orleans (with a rate 62.1 gun murders per 100,000 people) would rank second in the world.

Detroit’s gun homicide rate (35.9) is just a bit less than El Salvador (39.9).

Baltimore’s rate (29.7) is not too far off that of Guatemala (34.8).

Gun murder in Newark (25.4) and Miami (23.7) is comparable to Colombia (27.1).

Washington D.C. (19) has a higher rate of gun homicide than Brazil (18.1).

Atlanta’s rate (17.2) is about the same as South Africa (17).

Cleveland (17.4) has a higher rate than the Dominican Republic (16.3).

Gun murder in Buffalo (16.5) is similar to Panama (16.2).

Houston’s rate (12.9) is slightly higher than Ecuador’s (12.7).

Gun homicide in Chicago (11.6) is similar to Guyana (11.5).

Phoenix’s rate (10.6) is slightly higher than Mexico (10).

Los Angeles (9.2) is comparable to the Philippines (8.9).

Boston rate (6.2) is higher than Nicaragua (5.9).

New York, where gun murders have declined to just four per 100,000, is still higher than Argentina (3).

Even the cities with the lowest homicide rates by American standards, like San Jose and Austin, compare to Albania and Cambodia respectively.

via The Atlantic Cities.


Back to Chicago…

Of the 441 gun homicide victims in Chicago 347 (or 78.68%) were black; 91 (20.63%) were white.  Blacks are victims of gun homicides at over twice the rate to their population.  White are victims less than one-half the rate to their population.

I’m willing to bet you that if we looked into all of these cities on The Atlantic list that we would find similar results.  In this country we have a serious gun violence problem in the black community.  It needs to be dealt with.  It is unfair and unjust that peaceful people — of any race — have to live in communities plagued by violence.  But because of the unique nature of this problem a wide-sweeping federal solution will never work.

Taking guns away from law abiding citizens in the sticks will not solve the inner city gun problems.

Guns vs. McDonald’s

There are more than 129,817 federally licensed firearms dealers in the United States, according to the latest Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives numbers as of Aug. 1.

Of those, 51,438 are retail gun stores, 7,356 are pawn shops and 61,562 are collectors, with the balance of the licenses belonging mostly to manufacturers and importers of firearms and destructive devices. For comparison, here are some numbers of other ubiquitous elements of American life:

• Gas Stations in the U.S. 2011: 143,839
• Grocery Stores in the U.S. 2011 36,569
• McDonald’s restaurants in the U.S. 2011: 14,098

Yes, there are more stores selling guns than groceries.

But unlike burgers, gas and groceries, firearms are not a perishable or consumable product. They don’t go away. A rifle used in the 2009 Holocaust Museum shooting was nearly 100 years old, but was still an effective murder weapon.

via ABC News.

Interesting right?  But get this:

  • About 600,000 people die of heart disease in the United States every year–that’s 1 in every 4 deaths.
  • Heart disease is the leading cause of death for both men and women. More than half of the deaths due to heart disease in 2009 were in men.
  • Coronary heart disease is the most common type of heart disease, killing more than 385,000 people annually.
  • Every year about 935,000 Americans have a heart attack. Of these, 610,000 are a first heart attack. 325,000 happen in people who have already had a heart attack.
  • Coronary heart disease alone costs the United States $108.9 billion each year. This total includes the cost of health care services, medications, and lost productivity.

via Center for Disease Control & Prevention.

Heart disease kills 15 times more people than guns annually.  Where’s the campaign to ban tobacco and trans-fats?

According to Pew Research there are around 160, 000 fast food restaurants in the U.S.  That’s about 30,000 more fast food places than licensed FFL’s.  But it’s actually 2.7 times the number of gun stores and pawn shops with licenses to sell guns. But these fast food places and gas stations (number one source of cigarettes) that are killing 15 times as many people.

What we really need is to be shutting down these merchants of death… the fast food restaurants and stores that sell cigarettes. Kinda like in Clerk’s when Dante gets attacked.

A Marine Writes Sen. Feinstein

Senator Dianne Feinstein,

I will not register my weapons should this bill be passed, as I do not believe it is the government’s right to know what I own. Nor do I think it prudent to tell you what I own so that it may be taken from me by a group of people who enjoy armed protection yet decry me having the same a crime. You ma’am have overstepped a line that is not your domain. I am a Marine Corps Veteran of 8 years, and I will not have some woman who proclaims the evil of an inanimate object, yet carries one, tell me I may not have one.

I am not your subject. I am the man who keeps you free. I am not your servant. I am the person whom you serve. I am not your peasant. I am the flesh and blood of America.

I am the man who fought for my country. I am the man who learned. I am an American. You will not tell me that I must register my semi-automatic AR-15 because of the actions of some evil man.

I will not be disarmed to suit the fear that has been established by the media and your misinformation campaign against the American public.

We, the people, deserve better than you.

Respectfully Submitted,
Joshua Boston Cpl,
United States Marine Corps

Mass Shooting: 3 Dead, 2 Wounded, in Switzerland

No assault weapon involved:

A man armed with an old military rifle and a handgun shot and killed three women and wounded two men in a southern Swiss village, police said Thursday.

Police shot and wounded the suspect after he threatened to also shoot officers who arrived at the scene after the shooting in the village of Daillon on Wednesday evening, said interim cantonal police chief Robert Steiner. The gunman was then arrested.

Steiner said the suspect was using a military rifle that was once standard issue in the Swiss army during the first half of the 20th century.

via Fox News.

What?  The guy was using a 60 year old rifle?  How can that be?

I mean, it couldn’t have a high-capacity mag., or a flash suppressor, or a multi-position stock.  So it would not have been banned under any “assault weapons” ban.

Is it time to admit that banning assault weapons will not work?

Shot vs. Shot & Killed – The Miracle of Modern Medicine

This post was originally drafted in April.  Bare with me… very current story cited below.

I’ve mentioned before that the shooting to death ratio appears very low to me. Crime stats over at Crime in Chicago suggest that in 2011 2,217 were shot, with 441 dead – 19.9% (ratio of 5:1.)  So far in 2012 we have 2,670+ shot, 532 dead – 19.9% (ratio of 5:1.)  What I have been looking for, and cannot could not find, is what these numbers were in 1975, 1985, and 1995.

In the book Can Gun Control Work, James Jacobs writes in a footnote on pg 8 that, “Nonfatal gun injuries are complicated to compute.  Gary Kleck reasonably estimates the ratio of nonfatal gun wounds to gun fatalities at 3:1 during the 1990’s.”  Jacobs suggest we see Point Blank by Gary Kleck.  A search of Point Blank on Google Scholar does not yield that ratio.

In 1991 Chicago has 927 homicides.  If the 3:1 ratio Kleck cites is accurate that means around 2,781 people were shot in Chicago in 1991.  That’s damn near the exact number we had last year!!

Neat speculation but nothing scientific.

Enter today’s WSJ:

The number of U.S. homicides has been falling for two decades, but America has become no less violent.

Crime experts who attribute the drop in killings to better policing or an aging population fail to square the image of a more tranquil nation with this statistic: The reported number of people treated for gunshot attacks from 2001 to 2011 has grown by nearly half.  …

In other words, more people in the U.S. are getting shot, but doctors have gotten better at patching them up. Improved medical care doesn’t account for the entire decline in homicides but experts say it is a major factor.  …

“Our experience is we are saving many more people we didn’t save even 10 years ago,” said C. William Schwab, director of the Firearm and Injury Center at the University of Pennsylvania and the professor of surgery at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania.  …

At the same time [that homicide deaths are declining], medical data and other surveys in the U.S. show a rising number of serious injuries from assaults with guns and knives. The estimated number of people wounded seriously enough by gunshots to require a hospital stay, rather than treatment and release, rose 47% to 30,759 in 2011 from 20,844 in 2001, according to data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s National Electronic Injury Surveillance System-All Injury Program. The CDC estimates showed the number of people injured in serious stabbings rose to 23,550 from 22,047 over the same period.Mortality rates of gunshot victims, meanwhile, have fallen, according to research performed for The Wall Street Journal by the Howard-Hopkins Surgical Outcomes Research Center, a joint venture between Howard University and Johns Hopkins University. In 2010, 13.96% of U.S. shooting victims died, almost two percentage points lower than in 2007. (Earlier data used different standards, making comparisons useless.)


So there!!  I knew I was on to something.

So the next time Rahm and McCarthy are out running their gums about how “safe” everything is and that “crime is down, crime is down!” Now you know that maybe some crime is down… but the odds of getting shot in this town are just about the same as they were in 1991. … Which is not very good at all.