Sunday, January 25, 2009


By Howard Nemerov

January 24, 2009

The Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence hailed the 2008 presidential election as “a decisive victory for common sense gun laws.” Sarah Brady said: “There is no indication that any candidate, at any level, lost their election because of their support for reasonable gun measures.”[1]

But what exactly qualifies as “common sense gun laws” or “reasonable gun measures?” A recent paper answered this question by noting certain correlations for states considered the “best” by Brady in terms of how many “common sense gun laws” they have passed:

• Brady’s highest-rated states have the highest average violent crime and murder rates. These states also have the lowest levels of gun ownership.
• Only 2 of these states have shall-issue concealed carry laws.
• Brady’s “failed” states (not enough “reasonable gun measures”) have the lowest violent crime and murder rates, and the highest levels of gun ownership.
• All have shall-issue concealed carry laws.[2]

In practical terms, Brady’s criteria for “sensible gun laws” translate into less civilian gun ownership and less ability for law-abiding citizens to protect themselves against violent criminals, flying in the face of the recent Supreme Court ruling that concluded:

The Second Amendment protects an individual right to possess a firearm unconnected with service in a militia, and to use that arm for traditionally lawful purposes, such as self-defense within the home.[3]

Brief History Lesson

In the mid-1990s, Britain and Australia instituted gun confiscation laws. Britain’s was a total ban, while Australia’s was slightly less onerous, allowing certain guns to be owned under certain circumstances, but semi-automatic rifles, shotguns and “handguns of .22 caliber or higher” were prohibited.[4] Prior to these bans, the United States had higher violent crime rates than Britain; sexual assault and “regular” assault were 25% higher in Australia than the U.S., but robbery in the U.S. was 50% higher than in Australia. Through 2006:

• The murder rate in the U.S. fell faster than in Britain or Australia.
• Robbery and assault rates in both Britain and Australia rose, while the U.S. rates dropped.

Most importantly, rape skyrocketed in Britain by 76.5%, increased 21.4% in Australia, and decreased in the U.S. by 16.8%. Compared to women in the United States, where there has been no nationally-instituted civilian gun ban, British women are now raped and sexually assaulted about twice as often, and Australian women about three times as often.

Reality Versus Fantasy

Last October, a 57-year-old woman was raped by a 47-year-old registered sex offender:

[T]he woman heard glass breaking in her basement about midnight on Saturday. She went to leave the house, and the man attacked when she opened the front door. He punched her in the face and then forced her into a bedroom, where he raped her, said H. Morley Swingle, prosecuting attorney in Cape Girardeau County.Yes.[5]

A few days later, the woman was at home watching TV when the same predator cut the power to her home:

She tried to call 911, but couldn’t because the power was off. She got a shotgun and waited as the man began banging on the basement door. She fired when Preyer came crashing through the door.[6]

Larry Tillman was a career criminal: Jail records show Tillman was found guilty of 21 of 25 cases filed against him. In 1990, Tillman was sentence to six years for burglary. In 1995 (5 years later), he was sentenced to five years in prison for armed robbery. In 1998 (3 years later), Tillman received six years for residential burglary, but was sentenced to eight years in prison in 2001 (3 years later) for burglary. In 2006 (5 years later) he was shot by 87-year-old Jacksie King as he pried the security bars off her window, preparing to break into her home.[7]

Criminals learn experientially the story the Bureau of Justice Statistics tells in unembellished numbers. According to federal district court records, of 1,000 rapes committed, only 60 result in prison time.[8] The federal justice system has no obligation to prosecute and incarcerate violent offenders: The Supreme Court¬––which recognizes the civil right of self-defense––also concludes that police have no obligation to protect any particular member of society.[9]

Brady Campaign’s purported “common sense gun laws,” remove the civil rights of law abiding people, but nowhere in the gun control formula is there any curtailment of the “right” of violent predators to inflict pain, suffering, or death upon others.


1 - The Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence, downloaded January 13, 2009.
2 - Howard Nemerov, The Brady Campaign to Define ‘Sensible Gun Laws’, NewsWithViews, July 2, 2008.
3 - See District of Columbia et al. v. Heller, No 07-290, Supreme Court of the United States, Syllabus, page 1.
4 - Reuter and Mouzos, Australia: A Massive Buyback of Low-Risk Guns, 2002, page 122. For more detailed discussion, see Chapter 2 of Four Hundred Years of Gun Control: Why Isn’t It Working?
5 - Heather Ratcliffe, Cops: Cape Girardeau woman kills man who returned to rape her second time, St. Louis Post-Dispatch, October 31, 2008.
6 - Ibid.
7 - Carolyn P. Smith, Man shot by 87-year-old woman had long record, The Herald, Bradenton, Florida, February 15, 2006.
8 - Compiled into spreadsheet from data tables in: Steven K. Smith and Mark Motivans et al, Compendium of Federal Justice Statistics, 2004, Bureau of Justice Statistics, U.S. Department of Justice, December 2006.
Email request for spreadsheet. For more detailed discussion, see Chapter 8 of Four Hundred Years of Gun Control: Why Isn’t It Working?
9 - See Town of Castle Rock, Colorado, Petitioner v. Jessica Gonzales, No. 04-278, United States Supreme Court, page 8. and Deshaney v. Winnebago Cty. Soc. Servs. Dept., 489 U.S. 189 (1989)

© 2009 Howard Nemerov - All Rights Reserved

Howard Nemerov is a “recovering” gun control supporter. He began to research the issue of gun control on his own, and what he found transformed his perspective. Now he writes to help gun owners become better emissaries when talking about gun rights, and to help undecided people understand the underlying principles of the right to self-defense.

Howard is a contributor for the Texas State Rifle Association’s “TSRA Sportsman” and appears frequently on NRA News as an Analyst At Large, talking about gun control and its threat to our way of life and liberty. His new book is “Four Hundred Years of Gun Control: Why Isn’t It Working?” This book emphasizes the civil rights aspect of self-defense, enhancing our outreach effort to those who currently do not understand or support the Second Amendment.

Contact Howard via his blog at:


Post a Comment

<< Home