Published October 13, 2003, in The Florida Times-Union (Jacksonville, FL)

Infinite research


LENGTH: 261 words

HEADLINE: CRIME Infinite research

Bad news for criminals. Another attempt to find justification for more gun control has failed.

In a new study, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found no evidence that 20,000 gun -control laws are effective in preventing violence.

But that doesn't end the question. It never does.

Each time CDC studies this issue, it finds the findings inconclusive and recommends that the government spend more taxpayer money to try again.

Gun control groups deplored the alleged 'lack of studies' on gun control.

CDC spent $ 2.6 million on gun studies during the previous administration. Same results.

In the most recent CDC study, a task force of 14 experts spent three years reviewing 51 different studies and could find no evidence. At some point, one might surmise that there isn't much gold in that mine. Any further spending by the federal government on this subject probably should go to scholar John Lott, who has found that the private ownership of guns by law-abiding people deters crime and protects property, with a net benefit to society. He also has documented the media spin against gun ownership in his latest book, The Bias Against Guns.

If guns kill people, then more guns should kill more people. Yet, deaths and injuries from firearms have declined for the past 10 years, even though 4.5 million new firearms are sold each year.

Maybe people kill people -- and maybe the fact that more people inclined toward crime and violence are going to prison is a factor in the decline.

LOAD-DATE: October 14, 2003

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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

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