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December 11, 2007

Comments

From a more-than-reasonably cynical person: isn't it just as possible that there's a serious and thriving underground gun market that goes so deep the researchers could not find it?

@Anonymous - that certainly could be the case, as with any research; the research could be just plain wrong. Given the quality of work of the researchers involved and the explanation they gave, I am wont to believe that they did not miss the market entirely. However, it is good to remain skeptical; thanks for bringing that possibility up.

About the durability and economy of guns:


One of the myths about the feasibility of having any control over guns is
that there are so many of them and they are so durable, they stay around forever.
There are many practical problems with this:

Most of the guns traced to crimes are relatively new- bought from gun stores within the last few years. Honest homeowners buy one or two guns and keep them forever. Criminals need a constant flow of new weapons.

Most people who perpetrate violence are relatively young-- men between the ages of 16-30. Therefore, they can’t have had guns for more than a few years. And after a crime they usually ditch them, or they are often confiscated by the police.

Recent research has traced a large percentage of the guns used in crimes in New York City, Philadelphia, and Newark to just a few gun stores in Northern Virginia where there is no 7 day waiting period just an “instant background check,” after which the records are purged. These very few gun stores make a lot of money selling guns to people who they know are selling guns to criminals.

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