Skip to main content

Trust and Misplaced Blame on Violence

Trust and Misplaced Blame on Violence
(Jeff Phillips photo)

A recent article published on The Conversation draws a correlation between the psychological impact of so called “gun violence” on Americans and reduced trust. Victims of violent crime can, understandably so, be psychologically affected by the choices of a criminal’s intent on inflicting harm. However, the article uses outdated data to try and connect victims of violence with reduced levels of trust. The author cites obsolete information from the U.S. General Social Survey which covers data collected from 1973 to 1994.

Unsurprisingly, there is also a false assertion that violent crime has been rising in recent years. Violent crime peaked in the United States in the early 1990s which would have strongly influenced the responses collected by the U.S. General Social Survey the article relies upon. Violent crime rates, however, have dropped steadily since the early 1990s. This is apparent not only in the historic data reported by the FBI but also in recent data released by the U.S. Department of Justice which reports a 15% drop in violent crime from 2018 to 2019.  Furthermore, according to the Preliminary Uniform Crime Report, January-June 2020, violent crime rates are lower in the first six months of 2020 when compared to the same timeframe of 2019. An important takeaway from this report is the drop in overall violent crime but the rise of manslaughter and aggravated assault offenses, 14.8 percent and 4.6 percent respectively, that can be attributed to the current civil unrest. It should be noted that this specific, recent increase is not part of a years-long trend, but is likely influencing the perception of safety and trust with the general public and contributing to a rational rise in first time gun owners from all walks of life.

violent-crime-rate-chart
Source: https://ucr.fbi.gov/crime-in-the-u.s

Firearm ownership has increased with multiple record-breaking months year after year. The article acknowledges that victims of crime have reduced trust; yet, puts a spotlight on the firearm instead of the criminal. This is a deliberate smoke and mirrors effort to cast firearm ownership in a negative light while minimizing the culpability of offenders who committed the crime. It is not the firearm that broke the law and victimized an innocent person. It is always the criminal who is responsible for his or her actions.

The Second Amendment itself may help build the trust of law-abiding individuals by enumerating the right to keep and bear arms to defend oneself, loved ones and property. Whether or not a victim of crime feels a lack of trust in society, certainly the knowledge that he or she can protect themselves in a time of need is paramount. Kimberly Corban, a rape survivor, famously confronted President Barack Obama on his gun control stance, telling him in a nationally-televised forum that since being victimized, she is an unapologetic gun owner. “I have been unspeakably victimized once already, and I refuse to let that happen again to myself or my kids.”


Holding Criminals Accountable

What is being done to catch violent criminals? The first step is to enforce the law to prevent prohibited persons, like convicted violent criminals, from obtaining a firearm in the first place. The firearm and ammunition industry supports these laws and works hard to help ATF educate retailers about how to spot and stop straw purchasers and to encourage all government entities to submit their prohibiting records to the FBI’s National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS). The Trump Administration is putting prosecution at the forefront with initiatives such as Operation Legend, which is expanding collaboration among federal, state and local law enforcement departments throughout the country to address violent crime. In a recent press release, Attorney General William Barr announced several impressive updates since the initiative rollout, including 2,000 arrests. Furthermore, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF), FBI, Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) and U.S. Marshals Service have confiscated over a thousand firearms, 111.2 kilos of illegal drugs, and $5.19 million in drug proceeds since the start of the program.


Building Trust

Law enforcement agencies and the criminal justice system must work tirelessly to apprehend violent offenders and prevent recidivism by career criminals. Addressing illegal activity at the source, the criminal – is a valuable building block to create a more confident and resilient nation, as seen by the steady reduction of violent crime over the years. Americans who lose trust in their communities or fellow citizens should not be further negatively impacted by antigun advocates. Articles like the one in the Conversation drive a wedge in communities to ostracize law abiding citizens who choose to exercise their Second Amendment rights. Instead, we need to promote legal and responsible gun ownership through collective support, education, and utilization of resources like #LetsGoShooting and +ONE.

GET THE NEWSLETTER Join the List and Never Miss a Thing.

Recommended Articles

See More Recommendations

Popular Videos

New for 2021: Bear Redemption EKO, Legit RTH Compound Bows

New for 2021: Bear Redemption EKO, Legit RTH Compound Bows

Bear Archery's newest bows - Redemption EKO and Legit RTH - are light, adjustable and fast.

New for 2021: Elite Archery Bows, Slick Trick Broadheads and CBE Sight

New for 2021: Elite Archery Bows, Slick Trick Broadheads and CBE Sight

Learn more about two new Elite Archery bows, the Enkore and Remedy, two new broadhead from Slick Trick and a new site from Custom Bow Equipment (CBE).

New for 2021: Excalibur Crossbow, BowTech Bows, TightSpot Quiver, Ripcord Rests, Black Gold Sights

New for 2021: Excalibur Crossbow, BowTech Bows, TightSpot Quiver, Ripcord Rests, Black Gold Sights

New for 2021 are several hunter-defined products, such as the Excalibur TwinStrike Crossbow, BowTech Solution and Solution SS Bows, TightSpot Pivot 2.5 Quiver, Ripcord Cage and Code Red X arrowrests, and Black Gold Pro FX and Pro Hunter HD sights.

Hobie MirageDrive 360 Kayak Propulsion: Amazing Control and Power

Hobie MirageDrive 360 Kayak Propulsion: Amazing Control and Power

The Hobie MirageDrive 360 pedal propulsion system is the pinnacle of kayak control with more efficient fin designs, glide technology and allows the boat to be moved in any direction.

See More Popular Videos

Trending Articles

The Havoc RS440 XERO, Havoc RS440 and Siege RS410 bring cutting-edge tech to your hunt.New for 2021 from TenPoint Crossbows Crossbows

New for 2021 from TenPoint Crossbows

Game and Fish Staff - December 29, 2020

The Havoc RS440 XERO, Havoc RS440 and Siege RS410 bring cutting-edge tech to your hunt.

Check out some of the compound bows from this year's ATA Show.First Look at New Compound Bows for 2021 ATA Show

First Look at New Compound Bows for 2021

Game and Fish Staff - January 14, 2021

Check out some of the compound bows from this year's ATA Show.

Smart technology offers crossbow hunters instantaneous decision making capabilities.Field Tested: TenPoint's Vapor RS470 XERO Proves Itself on Ohio Hunt Crossbows

Field Tested: TenPoint's Vapor RS470 XERO Proves Itself on Ohio Hunt

Dr. Todd A. Kuhn - November 18, 2020

Smart technology offers crossbow hunters instantaneous decision making capabilities.

The best jig fisherman are those that are always aware of what their jig is doing.4 Tips When Jig Fishing For Bass Bass

4 Tips When Jig Fishing For Bass

Chris Schneider - August 25, 2015

The best jig fisherman are those that are always aware of what their jig is doing.

See More Trending Articles

More News

Op/Ed on President-Elect Biden's gun stance from the National Shooting Sports Foundation.NSSF: Gun-Control Policy Disguised As 'National Health Crisis' Conservation & Politics

NSSF: Gun-Control Policy Disguised As 'National Health Crisis'

Larry Keane - December 16, 2020

Op/Ed on President-Elect Biden's gun stance from the National Shooting Sports Foundation.

Perspective from the National Shooting Sports Foundation.NSSF: Taking Stock of Record-Setting Year for Firearms Conservation & Politics

NSSF: Taking Stock of Record-Setting Year for Firearms

Joe Bartozzi - January 08, 2021

Perspective from the National Shooting Sports Foundation.

At Tennessee's Reelfoot Lake: 'What has taken place today is hard to process. No duck is worth the life of a man.'Shooting Leaves Two Duck Hunters Dead at Famed Waterfowl Lake News

Shooting Leaves Two Duck Hunters Dead at Famed Waterfowl Lake

Lynn Burkhead - January 26, 2021

At Tennessee's Reelfoot Lake: 'What has taken place today is hard to process. No duck is worth...

Second-Amendment perspective by the National Shooting Sports Foundation.NSSF: Firearm-Friendly Freshmen Class Reports for Duty Conservation & Politics

NSSF: Firearm-Friendly Freshmen Class Reports for Duty

Larry Keane - January 07, 2021

Second-Amendment perspective by the National Shooting Sports Foundation.

See More News

Magazine Cover

GET THE MAGAZINE Subscribe & Save

Digital Now Included!

SUBSCRIBE NOW

Give a Gift   |   Subscriber Services

PREVIEW THIS MONTH'S ISSUE Arrow

Buy Digital Single Issues

Don't miss an issue.
Buy single digital issue for your phone or tablet.

Buy Single Digital Issue on the Game & Fish App

Other Magazines

Special Interest Magazines

See All Special Interest Magazines

GET THE NEWSLETTER Join the List and Never Miss a Thing.

Phone Icon

Get Digital Access.

All Game & Fish subscribers now have digital access to their magazine content. This means you have the option to read your magazine on most popular phones and tablets.

To get started, click the link below to visit mymagnow.com and learn how to access your digital magazine.

Get Digital Access

Not a Subscriber?
Subscribe Now