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By Robert B. Young, MD

“States with relaxed concealed carry laws see spike in violent crimes.” 

 — New York Post, October 5, 2022

“CDC data shows constitutional carry states have fewer total and gun-related homicides.” 

 — TTAG, October 4, 2022

Huh? How can that be? Sure, they’re talking about somewhat different things (“violent crimes” versus “homicides”) yet those two typically track each other. And constitutional carry (no permit required) is the ultimate “relaxed concealed carry law.”

According to another study published November 16 by the American Journal of Public Health (of all places) over 6 million gun owners in 2019 were carrying legally daily (and 31 million at least monthly). That’s twice as many as in 2015. Even more were carrying without permits where permits are required. The whole issue has gotten confused, which benefits those who would restrict our right to bear arms. (Credit to John Falkenberg at for picking this up.)

The first study, published September 20 by the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, reviewed 36 states with their definition of loosened carry laws anytime between 1980 and 2019. Their data came from the Federal Bureau of Investigation Uniform Crime Reports and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention National Center for Health Statistics.

They report that in 34 of those states, assaults using firearms increased almost 10%. The finding is specific to whether gun purchases became allowed for those convicted of violent misdemeanors, not all other measures of “looser” carry laws. The Hopkins study excludes Kansas and Missouri “due to other significant firearm laws changing around the same time.”

Their “advanced statistical” controls were “synthetic”, i.e., constructed by the researchers who “predicted crime rates derived from data from eight states that had restrictive permitting requirements.” Interestingly, homicides not using firearms increased nearly 9% by the same measures during the same period.

What’s wrong with this picture? It sounds impressive and the data should be authoritative.

  • There were 4 shall-issue states in 1980, only 1 permitless state, 24 may-issue and 21 no-issue states in 1980; the rest didn’t allow concealed carry, and many of the “may-issue” states did not issue permits in practice. By 2019, there were 42 “shall-issue” states and 16 permitless states. By that standard, 20 states loosened their laws during that time period. So the major changes occurred in 15 states, with more minor changes elsewhere.
  • Lots of changes in firearm laws, not to mention policing and justice practices, social and economic forces occur through time in all states. That’s why it’s so hard to pin down any significant change in consequences from certain kinds of law variables.
  • “Advanced” or not, “synthetic controls” based on “eight states that had restrictive permitting requirements in place throughout the study period” means the authors were free to define the standards against which they measure results artificially. The best controls are the same places being studied, before and after the changes.
  • Their finding that homicides by firearm increased only about 1% compared to other methods of homicide shows a minimal at best difference attributable to the “loosened” carry laws because they should affect only crimes committed with firearms. That tiny difference is the only finding here, assuming everything else stands up to scrutiny…which we can’t.

The second report is the kind of thing anyone who’s sufficiently interested can do. DRGO writers look up CDC (and FBI) statistics all the time, just as Konstandinos Moros, an attorney who works with the California Rifle & Pistol Association recently did.

Today, in 2022, 25 states offer permitless carry, and all the others are required to “shall-issue” carry permits, though some are still fighting against the Supreme Court’s Bruen ruling on this. So a lot has changed in “relaxing” carry laws to date.

Moros was able to find near-complete national data for 2020, when our tragic violent crime and homicide trends began rising. He looked at the rates of homicides and specifically those involving firearms in the 16 states that then allowed permitless carry.

These states had an average overall homicide rate of 6.9 per 100,000 people compared to the national average then of 7.5. That’s despite several high outliers for violence…Mississippi, Missouri and Arkansas with rates of 19.4, 13.1 and 12.2 respectively.

And, not to our surprise, the average rate of homicide using guns in permitless states was 5.3 compared to the national average of 5.9. One might even conclude that making guns easier to acquire legally makes society more secure.

This is a cross-sectional study, comparing states with varying gun laws at a single time. The first study was longitudinal, looking at states through time. Normally, the latter approach is most meaningful, comparing a single geographic area to its history. But the “synthetic control” did not.

The differences Moros found of .6 per 100,000 in each case are not dramatic, and as always it is most certain to conclude that the spread of permitless carry has not caused any increase in homicide rates, either with or without firearms. But this is a simpler, more straightforward look at reality, not dependent on confusing statistical analysis and Moros’s results are clear—freer carry rights do not produce anything resembling the bloodbaths the gun control industry predicts and may actually improve citizens’ safety.

Incidentally, Carl Moody of the College of William and Mary in Williamsburg found in 2021 that in the 13 states adopting permitless carry from 2003 through 2019, there was a statistically significant drop in overall murder rate, and a drop (though statistically insignificant) in overall violent crime rates. He evaluated violent crimes, police officer killings, and firearm homicides along with overall murder rates.

Maybe American citizens can be trusted to do the right thing with the guns that an ever-increasing number of them cling to.


Robert B. Young, MD is a psychiatrist practicing in Pittsford, NY, an associate clinical professor at the University of Rochester School of Medicine, and a Distinguished Life Fellow of the American Psychiatric Association.

This article was originally published at and is reprinted here with permission. 

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  1. Show me a politician, and I’ll show you someone spewing out statistics. There’s a reason for all things.

    • I live adjacent to two constitutional carry states…as near as I can tell little has changed there in terms of the crime rate…prompting my state..(PA).. to at least consider the measure although passage is doubtful because of the eastern liberal connection…we’re a bit of a “tweener” state…

    • The 1775 Patriots were all “constitutional carry” or should I better say……….. DECLARATION OF INDEPENDENCE CARRY.
      If Citizens have the RKBA to abolish government, they have the RKBA to carry without any interference by government, said government not privileged to act upon RKBA by constitutional limitation and the SECOND Amendment.

  2. It doesn’t matter, the whole thing is about controlling the population. Right now we potg have to decide if we are willing to fight and die to keep the USA a sovereign nation. Don’t you reckon it will be easier to make us eat bugs, drive electric cars, cook with electric, eat fake meat, get rid of your horses, etc,etc,etc.

    • When the power goes out, my gas stove keeps right on working. For months.

      Now the control freaks are anxious to switch me to electric.


  3. The overwhelming majority of violence is concentrated in a relatively small number of cities.

    And these are blue cities even in red states. Two things to reduce crime. Get the democrats out of politics, in other words de-not-zee-fy our nation. And split up big cities.

    No city in America should be bigger than 25,000 residents. We have plenty of open lands and the work to build these new cities would give us near 100% employment.

    • Government force to determine population sizes, and to determine where free citizens may reside? That couldn’t possibly end badly, could it?

    • “Get the democrats out of politics, in other words de-not-zee-fy our nation.”

      O.K., Mr. Putin… 🙁

    • yes, let’s bulldozer farm land and national parks for all those city folk.
      what’s your next line of stupidity ?

  4. quote———–freer carry rights do not produce anything resembling the bloodbaths the gun control industry predicts and may actually improve citizens’ safety.———-quote

    Wrong. Overall Red States with lax gun laws have higher homicide rate than Blue States with tough gun laws.

    And Europe and Asia that for the most part OUTLAWED CONCEALED CARRY did to because when a naked ape gets a weapon in his hand he is going to use it on a fellow naked ape for the most trivial of reasons. Their vastly lower homicide rates prove their tough laws work and work well.

    Road Rage alone is enough to ban concealed carry. Even the notorious George Zimmerman was nearly killed by a maniac in a road rage incident. And George Zimmerman himself cause a needless shooting death because if he had not had a concealed carry weapon he never would have left his car and antagonized a man twice his size, he would have obeyed the 911 emergency operator and stayed in his car until the police arrived.

    Punk Faced racist Carl Rittenhouse would never have been attacked or killed anyone if he had not threatened and antagonized protesting people with an AR15 rifle. In fact today Rittenhouse is being SUED IN CIVIL COURT. Just as when the justice system failed and let off O.J. Simpson for 2 cold blooded murders, he was later convicted in civil court which has lower standards of proof of guilt. Now its racist punk faced Rittenhouse who will get what is coming to him.

    • @dacian

      A gun is not used in all homicides….but you probably already knew that.

      Road rage? Why not solve the actual problem? Convicted “road ragers” should lose their driver’s licenses for life and do prison time. Why should I give up my rights because a few people have poor impulse control?

      Democrats hate guns so much they are unwilling to solve any problem they can use to blame on guns and gun owners.

    • From the person whose Final Solution to eliminate gun violence is to eliminate gun owners.

      We see Cambodia’s killing fields as a warning from history. The little Commissar sees them as inspiration.

    • dacian the demented dips***,

      I, and others, have schooled your ignorant, uneducated @$$ on this subject multiple times. I must assume you are simply incapable of learning (and that would be very ‘on brand’ for you!).

      The vast majority of “gun crime” in red states??? Occurs in a VERY FEW ‘blue’ cities within those states. PERIOD. Average people in red states, outside of the s***hole, Dimocrat-run cities, commit few crimes.

      No, we need Dimocrat mayors, prosecutors, police chiefs, and sheriffs to produce the truly hellish crime scenarios we see in places likes Memphis, St. Louis, Little Rock, Mobile, etc.

      What is ALWAYS, UNIVERSALLY true about cities with absurdly high crime rates??? They’re all controlled by Dimocrats. And all you Leftist/fascist @$$holes lie about it, constantly.

      Eff off and expire, @$$clown.

    • Big lie tactics work better if you are not immediately crushed by facts and nuance but keep that copy pasta from getting stale I guess.

    • “George Zimmerman himself cause a needless shooting death because if he had not had a concealed carry weapon he never would have left his car and antagonized a man twice his size, he would have obeyed the 911 emergency operator and stayed in his car until the police arrived.”

      dacian, you’re a bald-faced, pathological liar. We’ve been over this.

      Zimmerman and the criminal Martin never had contact, so there was no antagonization; Zimmerman lost sight of Martin when the yoot ducked between buildings and hid.

      Zimmerman was on his way back to his vehicle (a 911 operator has no authority to order a citizen to do anything) when the addict Martin jumped him from behind and began smashing Zimmerman’s head into the sidewalk — habitual “purple drank” narcotic users develop paranoia and often react violently to imaginary stimuli.

      This was all established in court where Zimmerman was found “not guilty” of homicide due to self-defense. You can access and read the testimony if you really wanted to learn the truth. You won’t.

      • if that “yout” had kept walking he’d still be walking today…trying to administer some “street justice” proved to be a very bad idea…but then no one would mistake this kid for an intellectual….

        • The good news is that Martin hasn’t committed any additional crimes for nearly 11 years.

    • When someone makes assertions and fails to back them up, we call that intellectually lazy. Your statistics do not break down to the County level or zip code level. 1 county or 1 zip code can have more incidents that the rest of the State combined. That would change the calculus of political domination of the truly problematic area. Do you understand the fundamentals here? I know you do, that is why you don’t follow the trail. Had you been with Louis and Clark you would have stopped at St Louis and said it all looked the same from there on.

      I suppose you did not read the article that you are posting under either. Which means the cites provided are unread as well.

      I am not sure of your fascination with naked primates, or how they are relevant to the discussion.

      You do seem to try to compare different societies as if they are socially and historically the same.

      George Zimmerman was accused of attacking a child, giving the allusion that Zimmerman was a larger person than Martin. Now you went off talking points saying Martin was larger. You have to make up your mind, like the whole white Hispanic charade to “prove” Zimmerman was some sort of KKK member.

      If you watch the videos of Rittenhouse before the incidents and listen to his words, actually listen to what he says and the manner he says it, you’ll find your narrative is completely off. He was sympathetic to the protestors and the protests. Being attacked by 3 people, even a felon who was armed, was not his fault or was done because he antagonized or threatened anyone. If you believe so, I would advise you to avoid being in public as women still wear short skirts.

      What is coming to Rittenhouse? Revenge for self defense against some serious felons? Do you hold domestic abusers and pedophiles in higher regard than those who defend themselves from them? That is how you come across.

      On the subject of the article, your inside edition cite does not dispute what is laid out. You know this, we know this, even Alexa knows this.

      At least most here provide why your cites are dubious. Many have even made well thought out arguments backed with cites that you never even bother to read much less provide a well thought reasonable counter argument against.

      • it is worth noting that Mr Zimmerman was ambushed by a maniac who attempted to assassinate him – road rage had absolutely nothing to do with it. Crucial to the ambush was the fact that the would-be assassin (apparently) knew that Mr Zimmerman had a doctor’s appointment, and knew when and where it was, and the route he would travel…

        He missed. By less than an inch.

        Yet the Left continues to paint the incident as “road rage”.

        How scary is that?

      • Do you hold domestic abusers and pedophiles in higher regard than those who defend themselves from them?

        That’s antifa’s recruiting pool. On the promise their preference will be tolerated if not decriminalized. But in reality when their usefulness ends their fate is sealed.

    • Day-cee-ANNE! I told you about needing credible sources! Why do you go to the swamp to get your news? You remind me of your great-aunt Bertha, always coming home from the sanitorium with her wild ideas and conspiracy theories!

    • “threatened and antagonized”?……really?….seems to be a distorted opinion of what actually happened…

    • dacian, the DUNDERHEAD, The word homicide does not necessarily mean that the homicide was committed with a gun does it?

    • once again you try to make it a state by state issue, wrong again dummy.
      it’s a city issue and you know it.

      it is interesting that you admit that travon Martin was not some small little kid the liberal news media portrayed him to be.

    • YIKES…………. if some 20 Million French or some 15 Million Polish or 6 Million Jews had had “assault weapons”, there would not have been a WW2.
      In South Vs Maryland 59 US 396, in just 7 pages, the Court affirms, that no crime victim has standing to sue in court over being a crime victim the law enforcement could not or did not stop from occurring.

  5. darcydodo is the forum’s resident spokesperson for Gun Control which is a History Confirmed Agenda Rooted In Racism and Genocide. That confirmed history puts darcydodo and his Gun Control in a corner he cannot wiggle out of no matter how much slander and libel he concocts.

    The souls of millions of defenseless people who have been imprisoned, tortured and murdered at the hands of Gun Control will on the day of his passing escort darcydodo’s soul to where it will reside for eternity…Take that to the bank.

  6. These studies are so much easier when you decide what your conclusion should be and then pick the data that supports it.

  7. What I don’t understand is how the disarmament crowd always find excuses to disarm and punish those who have committed a crime but wish to exercise their rights, but can’t find a reason to arrest and convict those who do.

  8. The historically monarchical/totalitarian states of Europe and Asia for the most part OUTLAWED CONCEALED CARRY.

    Yep. And for the usual totalitarian reasons…

    And the unbelievable bloodbaths of the 20th Century followed.

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