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Image courtesy Fox News

Detroit Police Chief James Craig dropped a bomb on the smug and cozy world of gun-control advocates last week, when he said publicly what the statistics and sociologists have been saying for years: more guns equals less crime. To be specific,  law-abiding concealed carry deters crime. Chief Craig has a long way to go to win an NRA endorsement as LEO Of The Year, but this is a giant step in the right direction . . .

From our experience with New York, Chicago and other hellholes of crime and corruption, we’ve come to expect big-city police chiefs to be among the most enthusiastic infringers of the 2nd Amendment anywhere. Chief Craig started his career in Motor City in the 1970s with a dim view of private firearm ownership, but he experienced a conversion on the road to Damascus, er, Detroit, when he worked in Maine.

Concealed carry was commonplace there, and Chief Craig came to understand that law-abiding citizens with guns are part of the solution instead of part of the problem. “I changed my orientation real quick,” he said. “Maine is one of the safest places in America. Clearly, [criminal] suspects knew that good Americans were armed.”

But before we invite Chief Craig to give the keynote address to the Second Amendment Foundation banquet, it’s worth remembering that he has called for tighter background checks, restrictions on normal-capacity magazines, and a ban on whatever the hell ‘assault weapons’ are.

As wrong as he is on those issues, that’s no reason not to take advantage of this (almost completely unexpected) endorsement of an armed citizenry. If the Chief is amenable to facts and reason in the CCW debate, he may someday prove likewise educable when it comes to magazine capacity and scary-looking rifles.

And until then, Detroiters, it’s time to tool up.


Full story: Fox News.

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  1. I’m sure some cowboys will be a long shortly to toss more garbage and this Police Chief, but I’ll be the first to say, “Good for him.”

    As you said, if he can learn one thing, he can learn another (mag caps, etc etc)

    • +1. Bravo to the Chief for speaking up.
      I’m going to defer to the real LEOs here to confirm how it is in their experience hut I think it safe to genrralize that Chiefs and other high ranks have to toe the party line of the pols who hire them so they have a difficult row to hoe balancing whats real and the spin in the more liberal enclaves.

      Detroit has become the poster child for liberal corrupt pc mismanagement so maybe the taboos are being broken in desperation…

  2. He’s ONLY calling for Detroit citizens to arm themselves because the city is broke and the police don’t have the resources or manpower to protect the public the way they should.

    • That implies that we should not rely on the government to provide all our needs. That implies that we should take personal responsibility for our well-being. HERETIC!!!!

    • This is a VERY good point, you beat me to it. Detroit is in bad shape. He needs all the help he can get. But he’s right, the more honest citizens that are armed the safer we’ll ALL be. Every time I hear of another citizen taking down a scumbag I grin ear to ear and yell ALRIGHT!

  3. This statement is why permits are a bad thing:

    I got to Maine, where they give out lots of CCWs (carrying concealed weapon permits), and I had a stack of CCW permits I was denying; that was my orientation.

    How many people did he leave disarmed because he didn’t like the idea of them being armed? How many other chiefs or agents charged with signing off on permits even in “shall issue” states (of which Maine is one) are playing the same game?

    • That’s one reason out of many as to why a government permission slip should not be legally required in order to carry a firearm.

  4. He might want to call the CCW’ers, a “sort of well regulated Militia”,
    in the ye olde sense of the word to defend Self, Community and Nation, or at least the first two.
    Heck, they are on the border, lets include all three in case the Canucks get frisky

  5. Congratulations Chief Craig. You just took a large and appropriate step toward your committment of, “to serve and to protect.” One of the best way to protect your citizens is to educate them on concealed carry and encourage them to protect themselves.

  6. Concealed carry permits are the state’s way of finding out who tends to be law-abiding, supportive of order, yet skilled with firearms. This is very useful information at times when serious disorder breaks out. CCW holders are the least likely to take advantage of disorder and the government knows it. I’m good with that, but I suspect many have a different view of the matter and of themselves.

    The only firearms-related question current governing power coalitions have is whether, under chaotic circumstances, they have enough CCW types to help return the status quo, or whether, instead, even the CCW-types would wish for the overthrow of the prior arrangements. I’d take Michigan as a state believing in the former, and NY (or NYC) being an example of the latter belief. It isn’t chance that the core zones of densely populated inequality (ratio of poor service workers to seriously rich folks) are exactly those where CCW permits are difficult to get (SF, Chicago, NYC, the CT financial centers, DE’s chateau country, etc.).

    Briefly, then, Detroit’s PD chief can fairly assume that the CCW’s or legal gun owners remaining in Detroit are law-abiding. Since the seriously rich don’t live within Detroit any more (unlike NYC, SF, and others) he doesn’t see gun ownership as a serious class issue. He would prefer a home-grown violence-damping solution to yet another humiliating call-out of the National Guard. He is entirely sensible his conclusion.

    • During a certain catastrophic event the police used the lists of legal responsible gun owners to confiscate forcefully as many guns as possible even resorting to assaulting at least one elderly woman. So with all due respect you couldn’t be more wrong.

  7. I was at a Christmas function in my home town and I had a guy running for sheriff stop to talk about getting my vote…in the beginning of the conversation he asked me if I had my CCW permit yet and that if I don’t I need to go get one…he got my vote…not just for that but his long remarkable resume he had.

  8. Amazing, he’s a completely different guy now that he left us here in Cincinnati. Where he refused to take the ohio peace officers course/test, citing his experience as a LEO should have clearly sufficed.though I have say I am glad he can change his tune about some things, maybe he’ll come around on other suppressions of freedom he’s previously supported.

    • I believe there was an article here on ttag’s and elsewhere that exposed the fact that he had not taken the same test needed here in Detroit either.

    • Maybe all those who aspire to be police chiefs in big cities should do a tour in Maine, New Hampshire, Wyoming, etc.

  9. He’s pushing this because the police force in Detroit is at like 25% strength. I watched a special on their homicide dept detectives and they have half the number of detectives they had 10 years ago in city with a 15% larger population than 10 years ago which now has more crime including gun murders, where as the most of the rest of the nation excluding sitholes like Chicago and DC, rest of the nation all crimes including gun murders have dropped significantly over the last ten years.
    It’s the wild wild Midwest up there in D-town.

    • That would make sense if anti gun individuals were capable of making such a thought from beginning to end. To any died in the wool anti all that is just more proof that guns are evil and that people aught to punished for them. The typical response in the scenario you describe would be to re direct the efforts of the remaining police to confiscation firearms from other wise legal or atleast non violent criminals. The killers are to much to take on so institute stop and frisk constant traffic stops speed traps and searches designed to subject as many innocent people to searches they would not otherwise be subjected to and call every half ounce of weed and technically illegal firearm a victory.

      Any reaction at all from an innocent civilian may be grounds for detainment and search, no knock warrants for as many minor infractions as possible to catch people at something prosecutable.

      And finally taking a lesson from the UK you fudge reports or refuse to take them at all so you can provide proof of results to the media and Brady bunch.

      THAT is how an anti responds.

  10. I think it’s a common misconception amongst folks that are’nt really POTG that pistols are acceptable self defense weapons. After all, that’s why people get ccw’s, to protect themselves and loved ones. For these people it’s probably a logical step to regard assualt weapons as offensive weapons of war, not self defense tools.

    If he can change his opinion and attitude about ccw, he can change his opinion and attitude about assualt weapons. Maybe. It’s up to law abiding POTG to help him. Just as the folks in Maine showed him.

    • jwm,

      There is another important detail that Mr. Dumm incorrectly reported: police Chief James Craig worked at the Los Angeles police department for 26 years and was fully indoctrinated into the policy of denying CCW licenses to everyone. That is why he initially denied most/all CCW applications in Maine — because he had just left the Los Angeles police department. Between his experience in Maine and Detroit, it now sounds like he fully supports citizens who wish to carry concealed handguns. Go figure!

  11. The founders wanted an armed citizenry to ensure civil peace as much as or even more than a check on tyrannical government. The saw role of militia first and foremost as the nation’s defense force and second as civil peacekeepers. The idea that the primary purpose of an armed citizenry as check against government is wrong. It is a collateral effect rather than a design. Sure you can find a quote here and there to say otherwise but that was a personal opinion and not gospel.

    • thx tdi for that. I did not realize that subtlety but take it for granted you are correct as you’ve been spot on in past. Any readings that you can recall that are instructive on this point before I go a- googling?

  12. “… New York, Chicago and other hellholes of crime and corruption …”

    Wouldn’t that be “wretched hives of scum and villainy”?

    • They really took a step backwards when they were given the opportunity to vote for their own council president and pro-tem.

      Like giving an alcoholic keys to the liquor store.

    • Well, in fairness, the city council members have to reside in the city. Given that there has been a several year long mass exodus from the city proper there isn’t a whole lot for them to choose from anymore. That became painfully clear to me after Kwame…..

  13. Anything’s possible, I suppose, but as it took him three decades to see the light on concealed carry, I’m not holding my breath that he’ll properly decipher other issues like AR bans, ammo restrictions, background checks and so forth, any time soon.

    It’s odd, too, because he’s far out of the mainstream of other LEO’s, including chiefs, when it comes to those issues. Most cops know darn well that AR bans have no impact on decreasing crime, for example. This one still doesn’t get it. Oh well, take our gains where we can, and we’ll keep on going.

  14. It is extremely important to have armed citizens. Unfortunately, the Detroit metropolitan statistical area appears to have the second highest per-capita murder and/or violent crime rate in the nation according to the FBI’s Uniform Crime Reports. (Flint, Michigan is first.) As a counter to that, I believe Detroit leads the nation in justifiable homicides. According to an article I found, armed citizens have dispatched something like 75 violent criminals in Detroit over the last three years. Perhaps not surprisingly, that number is trending down since that has to have put a serious dent in the population of violent criminals.

    So if you live anywhere near the Detroit Metro area — or plan to visit — tool up and keep your head on a swivel. You’ll do fine.

  15. I realize that police officers have to wear some sort of rank on their uniforms. However, any chief, of even the largest city, who wears General of the Army insignia is someone who does a disservice to Marshall, MacArthur, Eisenhower, Bradley, Leahy, King, Nimitz, Halsey, and Arnold. Those men bore colossal responsibilities that far exceed those that are borne by Chief Craig.

  16. i understand that he doesn’t know what shall not be infringed means due to his statements about scary guns and normal mags… however, i can’t think of any other leo that has said to arm yourself. i think he probably should get leo of the year.

    • It doesn’t happen often enough, that’s for sure. The City Attorney of San Bernardino advised citizens to arm up to protect themselves, because that bankrupt city couldn’t provide effective protection due to budget cuts. He got in some hot water for that advice, though.

      A few others have made headlines occasionally for coming out and saying straight up that law enforcement will do what it can, but that you really should arm yourselves for your own protection. Here’s a few examples I recalled enough and could verify, but no city P.D. Chiefs among them, sorry.

      Sheriff Arvin West, Hudspeth County, Texas
      Sheriff Chuck Wright, Spartanburg, SC
      Sheriff David A. Clarke Jr. , Milwaukee County, Wis.
      Interpol Secretary General Ronald Noble

      I’d forgotten about the Interpol chief until I stumbled across it just now. He went on record after the African mall terrorist attack and said citizens worldwide ought to be packing as an anti-terrorism measure.

      • Regardless of budget it is essentially unfeasible to provide “protection” to any substantial portion of any population. Budget cuts may effect their ability to respond to 911 calls in a timely manner and their ability to conduct investigations and apprehend suspects AFTER the fact but since 99+% of the population must be out of sight of an officer at any given time and the fact that most criminals are smart enough to avoid potential victims within the effective range of an officer the likelihood of an officer being able to actually stop an assault is miniscule at best.

        Yes having police at a high risk location like a convenience store in a bad neighborhood is a documented deterrent but that deterred event tends to simply be delayed because even then the police are unable to be present all the time.

        • I agree, as I’m familiar with some of the research in that area. What’s unnerving to me in this sphere of human behavior is the vastly different decision calculus that different people employ. There are actually people out there who will not commit a crime only because an officer is physically within sight and obviously they don’t want to get caught. Yet, these same people will eagerly commit a crime when no officer is present, despite the certainty of being caught through basic evidence left behind like fingerprints, close-up video footage, or even being personally known and therefore identifiable by their victims.

          It reminds me of that old Stanford University “Marshmallow Test” from the 1960’s. Individually, they provide a marshmallow (or cookie, pretzel, other treat) on a plate for a four year old, then offer him/her a choice: you can have that treat right now or any time you want; but if you wait a whole 15 minutes without eating it, then the researcher would give you two marshmallows. So the test is about self-control. Some kids held out, for various times or not at all, while others made it the whole way and got two treats as their reward.

          When they followed up with these kids later in life, they learned that those who couldn’t wait the 15 minutes ended up with higher rates of drug addiction, obesity, and behavior problems than did the self-controlling kids. The two-treat winning kids reportedly scored an average 200+ points higher on their SAT’s than did the low control kids. So it may not just be simple self-control, but also the underlying cost/benefit analysis, at play.

          Seems interesting, by that I mean frightening, that some criminals will seize that instant gratification even knowing full well they’ll be caught and pay a great price for their crime. That is, unless they’re deterred by instant punishment like an officer or, in my opinion, a lawfully armed citizen.

      • thanks thats a good list to start. seems like a good topic for an artcle and resource to update to show the tide turning. like the stats and study review nick did awhile back.or the guy that updates dgus in his signature on one of the gun forums. Handy sticky or referencd for us to link to and for newbs and the real press to have for reference on The Truth About Guns.

  17. You Know maybe he is even more Pro 2A than his comments indicate. Think about it a black police chief in the heavily democrat controlled major city of Detroit just said CCW would help with their crime problem. To the democrats in charge of that city (and in general) that’s probably the equivalent of him saying he enjoys engaging in bestiality. He is probably in danger of loosing his job just by say that much pro 2A stuff. If he had said he was against AWBs as well he’d would probably have been fired before he could even make it back to his desk..

  18. I’m glad you mentioned normal capacity mags. I was going to send an email linking a midway email I received advertising high capacity 30 round magazines. Do with it what you will.


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