America’s Gun Crisis


The original caption to this photograph appears to have been lost, but it may represent one of the attractive Chicago neighborhoods in which, thanks to restrictive gun-control laws, weapon-related violence is only a distant memory


Just about everybody in the media agrees, and the general public understands, that America is in a crisis of gun-related violence.  And the evidence bears this out.  Between 1993 and 2011, for example, firearm-related homicides rose by a shocking minus 39%, while non-fatal gun-related crimes soared by fully minus 69%, and school shootings increased by minus 33%:


Plainly, it’s high time to abridge if not altogether repeal the Second Amendment.  And, if deemed necessary by our leaders, sportsmen must surrender their hunting weapons.  It’s imperative that guns be the monopoly of the military, the police, and the criminal class.


We should, I think, be looking to Chicago, the political home of the current American presidential administration, as an example of how to deal with our nation’s literally incredible increase in gun-related violence.  Chicago has some of the strictest gun-control laws in the United States, and what those laws have done for that city can, I believe, be replicated for our country as a whole.


With this in mind, I pass on something — just slightly out of date, but still, I think, entirely True — that was brought to my attention yesterday by my friend Stan Barker:


Should the U.S. pull out of Chicago?
Body count: In the last six months 292 killed (murdered) in Chicago compared to 221 killed in Iraq 
President: Barack Hussein Obama 
Senator: Dick Durbin
House Representative: Jesse Jackson Jr.
Governor: Pat Quinn
House leader: Mike Madigan
Atty. Gen.: Lisa Madigan (daughter of Mike)
Mayor: Rahm Emanuel

The leadership in Illinois - all Democrats.

Thank you for the combat zone in Chicago.

Of course, they’re all blaming each other.

Can’t blame Republicans; there aren’t any!

Chicago school system rated one of the worst in the country.

Can’t blame Republicans; there aren’t any!

State pension fund $78 billion in debt, worst in country.

Can’t blame Republicans; there aren’t any!

Cook County (Chicago) sales tax 10.25%, highest in country.

Can’t blame Republicans; there aren’t any!

This is the political culture that Obama comes from in Illinois.

And he is going to “fix” Washington politics for us???

George Ryan is no longer governor; he’s in the Big House.

Of course he was replaced by Rob Blagojevich who is . . . that’s right, also in the Big House.  And Representative Jesse Jackson Jr. resigned a couple of weeks ago. That’s because he is fighting being sent . . . right again! to the Big House!

The Land of Lincoln, where governors make our license plates!!!!



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  • Raymond Swenson

    Chicago has the virtue of serving as a bad example to the rest of the country. Its ordinances banning privately owned firearms did not prevent a high rate of murder and armed robbery, and were overturned in a Supreme Court decision applying the Second Amendment to the states.

  • Raymond Swenson

    Since the focus of concern driving the current spasm of gun regulation proposals was a shooting in a school, we ought to take straightforward steps to secure schools, by giving them armed guards and detection equipment, like what Congress uses to screen.visitors. The school district in Newtown has done exactly that for the school where the surviving children attend classes. If it is good enough for our courthouses and airports, why not do the same thing at schools? And why not hold school districts liable when they fail to guard the children they have custody of each day? If states would waive sovereign immunity for school districts, the schools would have real guards and security systems.

  • Lucy Mcgee

    I live in Portland, OR, where, like in all large cities, pockets of crime exist. In some areas, crime, including homicide, is persistent and usually involves gangs. However, our lovely old Portland neighborhood (homes built at the turn of the last century) has experienced a renaissance over the past decade as citizens are investing in the revitalization of older homes. We have a neighborhood watch which does not include walking around armed, and yet has been massively effective in the almost total reduction of crime; it is all about paying attention and knowing ones neighbors, interacting and being a part of a community. Our police are also realizing that having a personal presence in neighborhoods (cop on the street), can have a huge impact. There was a recent 60 Minutes segment on just how effective such policing can be.

  • Grant L. Vaughn

    What does this have to do with Religion? Isn’t Patheos supposed to be a religious blog about Faith? Is this author supposed to represent Mormonism? I heard that not all Mormons are Republicans or enjoy making fun of the President. I don’t get it.

    • Daniel Peterson

      You’ll have to pose your question to the Powers That Be at Patheos. I didn’t start my blog on Patheos, but, when they saw it, they invited me to come over. I told them that I was happy with the mix of topics (e.g., not just religion, but also politics and movies and food and novels and travel) on my blog as it was, and that I had no interest in changing it. I started the blog in order to spout off as I pleased, and, said I, if coming over to Patheos would require me to change my approach, I had no particular interest in doing so. They told me that they were entirely content to have me post as I had been, so I came over. If they decide to restrict the topics on which I can post, I’ll happily depart altogether. Posting on Patheos was never a goal of mine. A few — perhaps three or four — have found my presence here offensive; they should know that being here wasn’t my idea.