Apr 20th, 1:00 PM - 4:00 PM
Firearm Policies: On the Mark or Off Target?
Dr. Elizabeth Fredericksen
One of the basic tenants of government is the protection of its citizens from harm. At the federal level, protection is often focused on attacks on a national scale from a foreign threat. Often, at the state and local level of government, the quest is to protect law abiding citizens from their criminal peers. The policy often imposed in major metropolitan areas is the placement of firearm restrictions on citizens in the hope of lowering violent crime rates within the community, thus creating a safer living environment and fulfilling government’s protection objective. The purpose of this research paper is to determine whether the current firearm policies related to the protection of citizens are “on the mark.” Do they truly meet the intended result of lowering violent crime rates? Or, are they “off target?” Rather than protect their citizens, do these policies place the public at a greater risk of harm by disarming citizens and leaving them defenseless against an armed foe? This project will apply multiple regression analysis to determine if current firearm policies in major metropolitan areas produce the intended results - to lower violent crime rates and create safer cities. The intent is to look at a broad, national view by comparing cities of approximately equal size and stature across the United States that employ similar firearm restrictions against crime rates from cities of like stature which do not have comparable firearm restrictions. The hypothesis states current policies do NOT produce the intended results. Rather than produce lower violent crime rates, the policies allow violent offenders to continue to prey upon defenseless citizens.