A Book Review By APSA Board Member Captain Tracy Price Airline Pilots Security Alliance

John Lott Jr.

By Captain Tracy Price

Dr. John Lott has been a huge asset to have in our corner for arming pilots. He attended numerous high level briefings with APSA and provided valuable data. It is our assertion even though arming pilots IS NOT a second amendment issue but rather a security issue; gun control still crept into our fight by our adversaries. Arming pilots for the defense of the cockpit is a security issue, period.

John Lott's 1st book, More Guns, Less Crime , was an eye-opening look into what the science shows about the presence of guns in society and clearly illustrated the benefits of armed, law abiding citizens. His latest book, The Bias Against Guns , expands further into media and governmental bias on the issue of guns and he debunks many of the "common sense" proposals for gun regulation; showing that these proposals actually increase crime while having no effect on accidental gun deaths.

Dr. Lott is a brilliant economist and he approaches his subject with a detached and unemotional, scientific process. In The Bias Against Guns , he takes the reader through the progression of verifying findings and considering alternate explanations. The result is a thoroughly convincing work that argues for gun policy based upon dispassionate science instead of vitriolic and emotional claims made by the media and some in government.

Part I of The Bias Against Guns is a careful analysis of how government and the media have unfairly framed the gun control argument to show only the costs of guns in our society. Liberal media and government have for many decades systemically and purposefully ignored the benefits of gun ownership in America and around the world. Many people who view themselves as clear-minded independent thinkers will be shocked when they read this section of the book. An open-minded appraisal will reveal that a distaste and fear of guns is far less rational than a fear of automobiles, or, for that matter, five gallon buckets. Guns, cars and buckets are tools that have costs (dangers) and benefits. Part I of The Bias Against Guns shows clearly how the media and the government have advanced a one-sided, costs-only view of guns in our society.

Part II of The Bias Against Guns is a detailed, scientific evaluation of many different gun control measures. In his previous book, John Lott largely restricted his research to the costs and benefits of laws permitting ordinary citizens to carry concealed handguns. In The Bias Against Guns , Lott evaluates laws such as safe storage requirements, the effects of gun control on multiple victim public shootings, "gun free" zones, bans on "assault weapons" and restrictions on gun shows. Again, Lott's dispassionate analysis gives these issues very fair treatment, evaluating all possible explanations for his findings. The results are sometimes surprising but always based upon scientific evidence and not emotional presuppositions.

If you are a proponent of law-abiding citizens owning guns, you will find much in The Bias Against Guns that will support your point of view. If you are among the many Americans that are more afraid of having a gun in your home than a car in your garage, I strongly urge you to read John Lott's latest book. You will come away convinced that our nations gun policy should be based upon what the science of the matter reports and not the liberal media's version of "common sense."

APSA Board

Book Review on The Bias Against Guns

Johnlott.org (description of book, downloadable data sets, and discussions of previous controversies)

Academic papers:

Social Science Research Network

Book Reviews:

For a list of book reviews on The Bias Against Guns, click here.

List of my Op-eds

Posts by topic

Appalachian law school attack

Baghdad murder rate

Arming Pilots

Fraudulent website pretending to be run by me

Ayres and Donohue

Stanford Law Review

Mother Jones article


Craig Newmark

Eric Rasmusen

William Sjostrom

Dr. T's EconLinks.com

Interview with National Review Online

Lyonette Louis-Jacques's page on Firearms Regulation Worldwide

The End of Myth: An Interview with Dr. John Lott

Cold Comfort, Economist John Lott discusses the benefits of guns--and the hazards of pointing them out.

An interview with John R. Lott, Jr. author of More Guns, Less Crime: Understanding Crime and Gun Control Laws

Some data not found at www.johnlott.org:

Updated Media Analysis of Appalachian Law School Attack

Since the first news search was done additional news stories have been added to Nexis:

There are thus now 218 unique stories, and a total of 294 stories counting duplicates (the stories in yellow were duplicates): Excel file for general overview and specific stories. Explicit mentions of defensive gun use increase from 2 to 3 now.

Journal of Legal Studies paper on spoiled ballots during the 2000 Presidential Election

Data set from USA Today, STATA 7.0 data set

"Do" File for some of the basic regressions from the paper