2 critical factors for homicide: 1. Weapon choice 2. Decision to use the weapon
As a third factor, we can limit the weapon range of choice.
As is the case with speeding and drunken driving, 1. society has a range of options to influence
individuals not to put others at risk and 2. a balance of measure can reduce risk. As a society,
we must choose.
Casual drinkers will respond to deterrence measure, but alcoholic drivers will not, thus the only
effective solution for them is removal of the instrument or effective incapacitation (treatment)
Solid evidence that family violence is deterred by police intervention leading to arrest of the
Most individuals would be unable to complete a homicide without some weapon other than
their own hands
Our nation continues to have the highest murder rates among advanced nations because we have
such easy access to guns.
3 possible points of intervention. At the point of threat (by threat of sanctions or intervening
officer) at the point of weapon choice (by constraining weapon availability) and at the point of
choosing to use the weapon.
Total homicides fall simply by reducing the number of guns among the general public, even
though the use of guns by criminals remains unchanged. This is Kellerman's main point.
Firearms are used 65% of the time in homicides
NRA vs. Handgun Control:
NRA views the ownership and possession of guns as a right that should
not be constrained in any way, as it is guaranteed by the US constitution. NRA views any degree of
weapons control as a violation of the constitution.
The Position of Warren Burger:
chief Justice, U Supreme Court, believes that guns should be
registered as with autos and that there should be a listing age, a waiting period, transfers registered as
with vehicles, and ballistic fingerprints on file.
Kellerman's Research Results:
Argued successfully against the self defense argument and rebuttal,
Kellerman based his conclusion on epidemiological studies. Firearms in the home as a risk to family,
suicide and homicide. Guns do not provide substantial protection against homicide (homes with guns
have a 3X higher chance of homicide and a 5X higher chance of suicide). Guns are used way more for
criminal violence than for self defense, and our homicide rates are 10X those of western Europe.
We have met the enemy, and he is US.
Lecture 6 – Crime in CA
UCR Offenses Per Capita by State
Crime Generation: OF=f(CR,SV,SE,MC)
OFPC=(PRPC,SC,MC), meaning that offenses per capita varies with prisoners per capita,
casual variables, and moral compliance
SE: Casual variable = Human capital: % of students above basic grade 4 reading, deaths per
100,00 from heart disease, % of children below poverty
MC: Moral compliance = % catholic, % weekly church attendance
Education, MC, and Less poverty reduce crime, health is insignificant.
The Meth Epidemic