5/27/03

I have gotten a couple really amusing responses to my May 24th post. Apparently some donít really believe that the Fox News quote from John Carpenter is really from John Carpenter. Instead, Fox News is supposedly just quoting me saying what I said that Carpenter said. I have even been told that it is impossible for Carpenter to have actually made this quote because it contradicts what (they believe) happened in the Merced pitchfork murders.

To believe that a television network would do this involves a really high level conspiracy theory. However, if a television segment actually runs a quote from someone on the air, it is because that person gave the network the quote. Otherwise the conspiracy theorists would have to believe that Fox News actually had me posing as the other person. Here is the text the Fox News story as it ran on July 5, 2002 from a Nexis search:

SPRINGER:
One example John Lott could cite is the Merced family, whose guns were put away because of California's safe storage law. John Carpenter believes it cost him the lives of two children after a man broke into his home with a pitchfork.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE:
If a gun would have been here today, I'd have at least a daughter alive.

Unfortunately, the transcription service does not make it clear that the "Unidentified Male" is John Carpenter, but the July 8th piece posted by reporter Dan Springer on the Fox News web site that I referenced on May 24th should correct any misimpressions.

For follow up posts on this discussion see: The Merced Pitchfork Killings and Vin Suprynowicz's quote.

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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 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