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Why is there so much “gun violence” in states and cities with America’s “toughest” gun laws (e.g. Chicago)? Because nearby states don’t have tough enough guns laws! That’s the excuse proffered by gun control advocates. It’s nonsense. You know it. I know it. The anti-gunners probably know it too. But there it is. And the gun-averse media swallows it hook, line and sinker (e.g.‘s story Gun-related crimes on the rise in Massachusetts, Firearms flowing across borders). As we’ve said countless times, the facts don’t support gun control. The “argument” over the source of illegal firearms is no different. And now we have [more] proof . . .

A new report shows Vermont was not a major source of guns used in crimes in other states last year.

Political leaders in northeast states have raised concerns that Vermont’s lax gun laws have fueled a guns-for-drugs trade that is putting more guns in the hands of criminals in cities like Boston and New York.

The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives traces guns seized from criminals and in 2013 there were 1,571 guns recovered in Massachusetts. Of those guns, 29 came from Vermont– far fewer than other states. Massachusetts was the largest single source of guns recovered there with 431. Another 121 guns came from New Hampshire and 91 came from Maine.

The report also shows that of the 8,500 guns recovered in New York, only 61 came from Vermont.

Click here for the ATF stats from which this story was drawn. Meanwhile, let’s review the key fact: the Massachusetts “crime guns” traced by the ATF came from Massachusetts, self-proclaimed home of “America’s toughest gun laws.” Executive summary: gun control doesn’t work.

But you knew that. And now you can prove it to receptive nay-sayers (should you encounter any). Again. Still. Oh, and what of

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  1. Please stop using the cesspool of Chicago as an example of good gun laws or bad gun laws. The City itself is a worthless cesspool of humanity that needs to be walled off and kicked out of the US. More guns won’t fix it and neither will less guns. Its beyond saving.

    Remember the study posted on this site from a month ago? 70% of the shootings in the city are performed by Black Males aged 18-26…..

    • actually those very same stats hold true all across the entire country according to the FBI’s Uniform Crime Report

      While Chicago is truly a cesspool, I don’t think anyone voluntarily living in California has any room to throw stones

    • “70% of the shootings in the city are performed by Black Males aged 18-26…..”

      Yeah, let’s stop blaming the gun laws, and blame black people instead. That’s a good strategy.

      • If the shoe fits… Full on anarchy in Chicago would be an improvement to the gangsters paradise that is the windy cesspool.

      • Sock,
        Blame the people actually doing the crimes. I know that sounds like a strange concept but you seem to be a left wing whack type that think blacks are to stupid control themselves and must be babysat by their white democrat massa’s.

        • “too”

          A person can always identify a rightwinger by two things. Hatred of those left of center and poor grammar.

        • John, we identify left wangers by their lack of facts,and appeal to emotion. They also lie, misquote, and flame at an alarming rate.

        • If you want to blame the people actually committing the crimes, blame individuals, not groups. The vast majority of any race, age, gender, or whatever are not criminals.

          • No blame the group but specify parameters. Black Males, 12-18 etc, And blame the white liberals that try to excuse this behavior.

        • So, using the typical gun freak response, the answer is to arm more black kids so they can defend themselves. Right?

          Personally, I think that gang affiliation (you know, the Crips, motorcycle gangs, T-party types, militia members) should be factored into background checks. And firearms denied to those that are identifiable troublemakers.

        • John G,

          Who defines what a “troublemaker” is? And who defines which people fall under that definition?

        • You know how this argument always goes. One side will take the extreme position that the Guv’mint can’t be trusted. The other side will make an equally extreme statement that the Guv’mint knows everything and that draconian measures should be taken against those deemed unworthy to possess guns. Both sides of the extremes will want to outlaw their political opponents.

          Since you asked nicely, I would suggest that the current standards (felons, drug users, dishonorably discharged, etc.) should be maintained. The database needs to be updated and beefed up however.

          I would like to see anyone on the terrorist watch list added. And anyone a member of a recognized terrorist organization. My understanding is that the NRA has successfully blocked utilization of those lists.

          I’d like to see the standards for mental illness expanded. Anyone on medications that may affect mood and judgment doesn’t need to possess a firearm.

          Now, the other side of the coin …

          I’d like to see some sort of panel or tribunal where a person banned from possessing a firearm can appeal. I’d like to see local boards (so you don’t have to travel far) with folks that are likely to be sympathetic (a chance for the NRA-types to volunteer).

          Folks that get banned, particularly for taking prescription antidepressants, should have an opportunity to demonstrate that they are cured, and get their firearms back. We need to securely store a person’s firearms and not confiscate or trash them. We need to remove the stigma of seeking mental health care, and when the time comes that professionals say the person is no longer a danger to themselves or others then return their firearms.

          Did I leave anything out?

          We will be spending more money but I see that as a desirable alternative to outright bans, and that’s where we are heading unless responsible gun owners meet the antis at least somewhere in the middle.

      • Sock Monkey, looks to me like the 30% who are non-black are catching the blame for their part. Perhaps you overlooked that?

        • What I want to know is why is this debate always divided into black crime rates and white crime instead of gangster crime rates versus law-abiding citizen crime rates?

          Condemning an entire community or ethnic group because of the activities of its criminal element is as worthless as condemning Italian, Irish and Jewish communities for mob activity.

          • Why is because the black gangsta gun crime is being projected onto whites. In Maryland all antigun laws are directed against law abiding whites instead of the black gangsta gun crime. If you don’t believe me read the anti gun law they passed last year. It makes no sense what so every but makes most law abiding white and black gun owners criminals.

        • I get what you are saying Whatever – basically correlation does not equal causation – that’s fair. Just because someone is a black youth between 18-26 doesn’t mean they are automatically part of the problem. On the other hand our leaders should be looking at those correlations to see if we can find causation (.i.e. poverty, drugs, repeat offenders, etc) but instead have pushed the “easy button”.

      • The last time I did that in a discussion, I pointed to the official *government source* that showed the numbers that supported it. Its not racist/bigoted/prejudice if the numbers are there. Sorry. Its just FACT.
        People can be all butt-hurt about it all day but the numbers speak for themselves and are not from some political blog.

        At one point, I had dug around and found that approx. 78% of all gun homicides were drug and/or gang related. I can no longer find those numbers and some government pages are now gone and the numbers obscured.

        I see talk of how many gang related deaths are gun related. And yet, they can’t tell the total? When I find a number lately its really low – I don’t buy it when I see LA had on average 400+/year.

        • This isn’t about “butthurt” or whatever straw man you are stroking, this is about using statistics in a misleading manner to paint an entire community as criminal rather than isolating the sub-groups that are participating in gang activity.

          • Mark Twain said there were 3 kinds of lies in this world. Lie’s, Damned Lie’s and Statistics. I do believe the anti gun repeatedly has a trifecta covered on lies.

    • I recall that study saying 70 percent of the shootings were done by a population of people who had previously been arrested with someone else, the inference being shootings and gang crime largely overlapped. I don’t recall the study analyzing race or gender at all.

      • After Sandy Hook, I had found government sources that put the gang and/or drug related shootings around 78% – now some of the bookmarks I had are giving 404-page not found or the numbers are not obvious.

        I’ve seen links to a CDC page that put it @80% but there is nothing in that that supports that claim (was it changed?)

  2. Unless the guns traced by the ATF were allowed to be straw-purchased, by the ATF. Hmmm. Sounds familiar…

  3. The entire premise that gun crime comes from another state is crap to begin with. So a criminal is going to go buy a gun in another state and then come back to a more restrictive state to commit the crime? What is so great about that state that they would come back to it? Wouldn’t they just, ya know, stay in the state they can get guns in? I know, radical thinking. I guess the elitists in the northeast think their utopian cities are so great even the criminals would rather go there.

    • Because if you’re a criminal you want to be where honest people aren’t carrying.

      • Its not like current gun laws allow them to go to another state and buy them from gun dealers. Not that they’d pass a NICS check anyways. Gasp, does that mean they are breaking the law? Criminals? Maybe they should write a law making breaking the law illegal to stop these criminals from breaking the law so they can commit murder and sell drugs.

  4. Of course they know it. Like every other lie they tell, it is a neatly packaged little slander bomb that targets all the right villains. Note how the key insinuation of the “guns flowing across the borders” meme is that the average law abiding citizen is actually too susceptible to bribery from criminals to resist committing heinous felonies on their behalf. Thus, the gun stores in neighboring states must be “crime gun sources,” just as lawful handgun carriers must be tarred as “inactive shooters.”

  5. Have an evidence room of guns seized during arrest. Only 1 was legally purchased others stolen. 1 problem we have now is original owners can’t have a lot back as they are in violation of state laws where they now live. Some signed them over & they have been given to patrol as back-ups a few (Jennings, Ravens) destroyed. The 1 legal was turned into department by a woman who’s husband had passed on & she was afraid it would fall into wrong hands (elderly lady) it was her husbands WWII service pistol that he had been given after 30 years in the USMC. Had it transferred to dept. declared surplus & donated it too a museum. After 30 years have only seen 2 legally obtained firearms used in crimes. 1 a 75 y/o man in end stage cancer died from a .22 rifle to the head friend helped. & another was a police family that used retirement pistols during bank robberies according to the feds that investigated. All before the NICS. Have had a number of ATFE agents try & use straw purchaserd or try to get me to sell a personal gun against the law even offering double price too go criminal.

  6. If some states’ lax gun laws lead to crime in states with tough gun laws,

    [Insert Philosoraptor]

    Then why don’t those states with lax laws have higher rates of firearms-related crime than states with strict gun laws?

    • Because… LOOK! SQUIRREL!

      And asking that question makes you a racist in disguise. So says Eric.

    • See, what you fail to realize is that you’re wrong and I’m right… Now look at this baby. Look at it!

    • Because those unwashed lands don’t have the art and culture that draws criminals from far and wide to the large Utopian cities. No one lives out there but gun slinging rednecks with bad grammar.

  7. I was reminded again today that even when you use facts, logic, and numbers compiled by the FBI or CDC to make your case, no anti will accept that as readily as a poorly researched write-up from Mother Jones.

    For example, did you know that in 2011, falling furniture caused 293 deaths. All rifles total caused 323, meaning military style rifles could not have caused more than a fraction of that. Yet, according to antis, the AR-15 should be banned while grandfather clocks should not.

    Numbers… They’re just hard to ignore, unless you’re an anti.

    Thanks for the facts though.

    • Well of course, I mean, how could you NOT trust a publication with “Mother” right in the name?

  8. The antis keep regurgitating the same old lies, we shoot them down, and they still keep using them over and over again. That is why they are losing the battle in America. Most Americans are getting tired of hearing the same lies endlessly repeated.

    “When it comes to infringing on Americans’ Constitutionally protected right to keep and bear arms, losing the arguments means never having to say you’re wrong.” – Robert Farago (president of The Truth About

    • The anti gun lobby is not loosing the battle. They are winning, one dead child at a time.

      • Really? Because now we have 42 shall issue / Constitutional Carry states whereas in 1985 we had one. I hope we keep losing like that.

        • You might want to discuss that with folks from Connecticut. And Chicago, and California.

        • None of which matters. 5 liberals in black robes can end the second amendment in an afternoon. If you think what the people want and vote for results in laws, I can disabuse you of that notion in one word: Obamacare. Liberals are fascists at heart, and when they cannot get what they want in an honestly governed state they will use a liberal court to get it enacted by the feds. Eternal vigilance really is the price of freedom, and once we allowed B.O. in the door at 1600, the damage done to the courts may well never be repaired.

    • Someone should put together a website that lists all the common anti gun tropes and just have a simple one to one debunking, point by point. Lay all arguments out in one place. That way anytime it gets presented to debunk one argument, any fence sitters get to see the arguments against the next trope that gets used too. Help them see the pattern.

      Something like but in a sleeker layout and in more detail with an emphasis on the pattern of ZOMG! emotional based appeals trumped by logic and reason and data.

      • +1 It would be informative useful and entertaining if the debunking were done flow chart style: ‘Anti Says’- follow a line to the rebuttal through a series of if then statements and facts. A lot of work but it will still be very cool and certainly could be made in such a way that it was also hilarious. Never underestimate the power of humor to sway peoples thinking, or the power or threat of ridicule.

      • Great idea in theory and even in execution. However, one thing to consider is this:
        When motherjones posted their piece recently and every point was debunked HERE on TTAG, people then went to mother jones and posted the link to the story.

        The minute the anti-gunner saw the link, they were NOT going to look at it let alone read it. Its like using a bible to convert someone who is a devout atheist. You might as well use a fairy tale to do that.
        Or you might as well send republicans a mother jones link as proof or send a democrat a Rush Limbaugh link as proof.

        The minute you post that link – you’ve lost in their eyes. Point instead to the studies/gov’t links/etc…

  9. Actually I believe that some states purposely manipulate the data for traced guns. Trace data comes from the ATF based upon a request from local law enforcement, and I believe that certain states are purposely only tracing guns they have reason to believe are from out of state. For example in New York, pull over a speeder with georgia plates, find a firearm, submit for trace, and there you go, gun came from out of state. All very legit, the gun comes from a “crime scene”. Now I understand most people will think this is a tinfoil hat conspiracy theory, but I find the variation between California trace data vs New York/new jersey trace data to be very suspicious. California has about 2.5x as many gun deaths as New York, yet traces over 3.5x as many guns. And would you believe it, only 28% of California’s guns trace to out of state vs 68% of New York’s gun traces. Meanwhile all of the states bordering California are “lax” gun law states, vs the only lax state that borders New York is Vermont and Vermont only “supplied” 41 guns to New York, vs virginia (200 miles from the ny border) supplied 458 guns. I would make a supposition that New York is manipulating the data through selective submissions. Thus creating the problem of other states causing the gun problem.

    California’s gun laws and New York’s are very similiar, if not more restrictive in California, yet somehow criminals in California are getting their guns instate, while New York criminals for some reason have to import them from over 200 miles away. What secret do California criminal’s know that the New York criminals are too dumb to figure out?

    • I dislike conspiracy theories on their face for logical reasons, there is almost always a more reasonable explanation that obscured malice. In this case though I don’t think any tinfoil hat is needed. Given that the NY state and NYC governments are virulently anti gun, and the NYCPD thoroughly steeped in the guns are bad meme, particularly at the higher levels, I think it’s likely that there are at least independent and ‘local’ unwritten rules that skew trace requests to guns more likely to be from out of state. I don’t find it difficult to believe at all that there are those involved who would take small actions to advance the narrative, there are certainly many opportunities and motivations to do so, so why wouldn’t it be happening at least in some places with some people some of the time?

      • Don’t both California and New York have their own registration systems? So why would they submit firearms to the ATF for tracing that already show up in their own registries?

  10. The ATF definition of a crime gun here is not just guns used in a shooting. The vast majority of these guns were seized as part of an investigation, such as a drug bust.

  11. Not going to argue the point, however as my high school logic teacher would have pointed out, the evidence offered in this story doesn’t support the conclusion. Of the over 1500 guns were recovered in MA, only a bit more than 400 came from MA itself. That means that over 1,000 guns – nearly 3/4 came from outside the state. So, that would suggest that the contention that guns come into tight gun law states from others is supported by the facts laid out in this story.

    I’m not going to comment as to whether the stats have been manipulated or not. They come from the ATF, which is not the most believable source, but if you are going to go ahead and cite these likely bogus numbers in the story, you might want to make sure they actually support the point you are trying to make. These don’t.

    Or did I misunderstand something here? It is late and I’m pretty tired.

    • The ATF figures show that of the 1,571 firearms recovered, only 1,024 were successfully traced. That could be due to a number of factors (old firearms before the 4473, de-serialized, home made, etc), and at the end of the report, they acknowledged that it’s possible that all the traces haven’t been completed at the time of publishing.

      So 431 of 1,024 is still not technically a majority, but it’s a 3.5:1 favorite over the next closest state, and far and away the largest percentage player.

    • “that criminals in states where gun purchases are heavily regulated get most of their firearms from elsewhere as evidence that state-level gun control laws are working, and that a federal law is needed to reign in trafficking.”

      See the problem with this? Some how federal law to “reign in trafficking” is needed… cause it works so well for drugs. These guns coming from out of state are most likely NOT obtained legally anyway so what exactly is the point? NJ wants to pretend its idiotic laws are working but empirically they aren’t because it’s not keeping guns out of the hands of criminals and they still get plenty of guns from NJ. If straw purchasers in the South are buying guns to send them up north it’s all criminal any way you slice it and additional laws won’t stymie this at all without entirely disrupting the majority of legal gun sales. What do you expect from the same dipshits who lock up the sudafed in their ineffective attempts at reducing meth production…

  12. I didn’t find where Vermont was mentioned in the Boston Globe article and the WCAX article doesn’t point to which “new report” identifies Vermont as an out of state source for firearms used in crimes.

    Please don’t call us out needlessly. We already have enough trouble with relocated statists trying to mould Vermont into the image of other failed states.

    And, no, I didn’t vote for BHO – twice.

  13. Does the ATF ever use their firearm tracing system for any purpose other than promoting a gun-control agenda? You know, like solving crimes?

    • Does NJ have a handgun registration system? What that map shows is that only 1/5 guns submitted to the ATF come from NJ. If NJ has their own registration they probably check it first. If they find it there there is no need to submit it to the ATF.

  14. Another stupidity hidden away in the article: it’s not relevant at all that Philip Markoff purchased his handgun illegally. He had no criminal record (that I’m aware of) and lived in Quincy, which is relatively liberal about class-A permits. He could have purchased his handgun legally in Massachusetts and would still have murdered Julissa Brisman.

  15. If they are using lies and false statistics to create gun laws, imagine the other crap laws they keep pumping out every year.

    States with single party rule are a complete disaster because the law makers sit all day in a echo chamber and can no longer see the difference between truth or lies

  16. Newsflash: criminals (especially syndicates) will always find a way to acquire contraband.

    Here are just a few possible ways that criminals can acquire firearms:
    (a) straw purchase
    (b) theft
    (c) “legal” purchase with bribery/coercion of oversight authority
    (d) smuggle from foreign country
    (e) manufacture locally

    Shut down any distribution method (which isn’t even possible) and criminals will simply exploit another method.

  17. “Why is there so much “gun violence” in states and cities with America’s “toughest” gun laws (e.g. Chicago)? Because nearby states don’t have tough enough guns laws!”

    How typical of leftists/liberals…blame others…

  18. Some recurring themes on this forum; the left vs right, liberal vs conservative, and the repeating ‘conspiracy theories are for crazies’ mantra….this site really seems to have an ulterior purpose, to support(while pretending not to) the existing status quo.

    • I concur. Another bizarre trend here: for a group of people who espouse freedom, liberty, right to self-defense, etc, there are many here who support the police state and the ultra-militaristic mindset and behavior (no-knock raids, botched, wrong address raids, assaulting innocent people, etc.) of the police.

  19. Yellow, you’re pretend answers are amusing. You should run for office, it’s a real talent to appear to say things without actually saying anything.

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