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on December 5, 2006
I read this book , here in Brazil.I'm an agronomist(jobless) and I like to read books.

The main idea of this book is simple.When the citizens have more guns, they become more safe and free.The so called "politically correct" puts this book and this believe, in a devilish thinking.

Well, here in Brazil, we have terrible and draconian gun-control laws.Every year, there's more selling of air travels Brazil-Japan, than gun's sells to brazilian population.To have the right to carry any gun, is so dificult, that there's LESS than 1 to more than 2,000,000 souls in Brazil.To buy any ammunition is a nightmarish task, full of burocracy and dozens of papers.Almost all brazilian gun-shops are over.

The result is that there's MORE crimes in Brazil, than any other coountry in the world.Iraq has LESS crime than Brazil.Venezuela who has gun control laws similars to Brazil's laws, also has big crime rates.Argentine and Uruguay, who have more liberal gun-control laws also have less crime than Brazil or Venezuela.

This book shows that main victims of gun-control, in USA, were the poors, women, old people and colored people.This is the same who happens , here in Brazil and in everyplace and everytime.The criminals aren't heroes robbering from the richs and giving goods , to the poors.They robber and muder, exactly the poors and powerless people.This is right both in USA as in Brazil and everyplace in the world.When the bigoted government stoles the right to have/carry guns, the criminals, not the good people have advantages.My congratulations to the author of this excellent book.
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on June 21, 2002
In much the same way that Immanuel Kant devoted reams of dense prose to a philosophical foundation for the Golden Rule, John Lott piles chapter after chapter and chart after chart of thorough, systematic data analysis into support for propositions that you intuitively know to be correct.
Armed citizens stop crimes.
The more armed citizens you have, the lower your rate of violent crime -- criminals are stupid, but they're rational, and they don't want to get shot any more than you do.
En route, Lott's analysis of the data reveals additional points that are very interesting and may be slightly less intuitive. For instance:
1. Blacks benefit more from gun ownership than whites. On average, black Americans live in worse neighborhoods with higher crime rates than white Americans. When laws permitting citizens to carry concealed firearms are introduced, crime rates fall more dramatically in those neighborhoods, and black Americans benefit disproportionately.
Yep, that's right. Gun control is racist.
2. Women benefit more from gun ownership than men. Women's ownership of concealed weapon permits decreases the women's murder rate more than men's ownership decreases the men's rate. Women toting guns also significantly reduce the rape rate.
Amen, sister. Gun control is sexist, too.
3. Private gun ownership is cheap law enforcement. I don't mean vigilantism -- I mean deterrence. Private gun ownership lowers more crime per dollar spent than almost any other crime reduction measure...and the gun owners bear virtually all of the cost.
And the list goes on. In addition to the statistical analysis (including abundant responses to academic and not-so-academic criticism), Lott recounts the reception of his initial paper on the subject, as well as the hardback edition of the book, and discusses the media mistreatment of school shootings and similar events.
The book is dense, but as statistics-driven sociology goes, quite readable. Go buy it today.
And then apply for your concealed weapon permit.
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on April 27, 2000
Lott's book grows out of the largest, most extensive study ever undertaken on the impact of concealed weapon laws on crime rates. Where most gun studies look at state-level data or small snapshots, Lott used county level data over a sixteen year time-series. At the heart of his study are complex econometric models and and other statistical analysis. But the text does a superb job guiding noneconomists through the methods and results. Lott's original paper on this subject triggered a firestorm of criticism. One of the most interesting parts of the book is the chapter where Lott addresses those criticisms.
Gun control debates usually have more heat than light. I found this book a refreshing change. It is focused on facts, its conclusions are drawn from rigorous analysis, and its tone is not strident.
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on September 10, 1999
I read the original Lott study and then bought the book. While I could find no holes in his statistics or his methodology, I didn't trust my own crunching of his numbers as my statistics and research training was over 17 years ago.
In the interest of getting a second opinion, I asked my Father to review the Lott study material, the comments from negative reviewers and Lotts reponses. Why you ask? Well my Father recently retired from 30 years as a social science researcher, teacher of statistics and research methodology. In addition, my father is a new deal democrate is as anti-gun as one can be. However, I have always known him to be honest in his pursuit of the scientific truth with the ability to put aside personal beliefs in the search for knowledge and truth.
After reviewing Lotts materials, my Father, could not find a problem with Lotts stastics, Lotts findings or his methods. For me this is case closed. I wish everyone had the ability for themselves to crunch the numbers or had a trusted associate/friend/family member to do it for them.
They would come to undertsand that Lott is correct and his critics speak only from a political agenda and not from a scientifically provable platform.
In a society that has voilent crime, the people are best protected when they are armed and when criminals know they may face an armed defender.
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on June 12, 2000
Here are just a few of the academics who have expressed admiration for Lott's pathbreaking book. Few people have both the real world law enforcement experience and extenstive research background to take on this explosive issue of guns and crime. This is what the experts in the field think of Lott's book. (The quotes are from the paperback version of the book.)

"More Guns, Less Crime is one of the most important books of our time." -- Thomas Sowell, Professor, Stanford University

"John Lott has done the most extensive, thorough, and sophisticated study we have on the effects of loosening gun control laws." -- Gary Kleck, Professor, Florida State University

"Lott has done us all a service by his thorough, thoughtful, scholarly approach to a highly controversial issue." -- Milton Friedman, Nobel Prize winning economist, Stanford University

"A model of the meticulous application of economics and statistics to law and policy." John O. McGinnis, Professor, Cardozo Law School

"His empirical analysis sets a standard that will be difficult to match. . . . This has got to be the most extensive empirical study of crime deterrence that has been doen to date." -- Public Choice

"The standard reference on the subject for years to come." Stan Liebowitz, Professor, University of Texas

"This book will - or should - cause those who almost reflexively support the limitation of guns in the name of reducing crime to rethink their position." -- Steve Shavell, Professor, Harvard University Law School

The book has gotten similar positive comments from those working in law enforcement. This is a great book.
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on January 13, 2006
I have a concealed carry permit and am a member of a number of gun rights organizations. However, I simply am not one to use utilitarian arguments for such positions and so would normally not be interested in econometric modeling to defend something like the right to keep and bear arms. Nevertheless, as I began to find all these attacks on Dr. Lott -- even by miscellaneous gun rights advocates on USNET, I just had to see what it was all about.

I have a fairly good technical background, especially in statistics. (I have an MS in Math which has included a fair amount of probability and statistics as well as having gone into actuarial science professionally.) And, I thought the book was pretty good, in fact, perhaps the best I have seen (for someone that doesn't typically buy such books), especially for what I would tend to expect out of social scientists. Furthermore, I think most of what I have seen in terms of criticisms of his methods on the internet are ridiculous pseudo-science. And finally, the source of his data seems pretty solid -- pretty much just various governmental agencies' data on crime, concealed carry laws, and so on.

I suppose if I really wanted to know just how right he is or isn't, I would go independently collect the data and perform his regressions myself, but I do have a day job. Also, having read his book and many criticisms of it, I think the recent data for states having long since enacted concealed carry laws is not nearly as important as many seem to think it is. The issue is what happens when concealed carry laws are implemented. It is an interesting *separate* question as to the ongoing effects of having concealed carry laws on the books. If you include too much data from times distant from the event in question, you are likely to cloud the model and tests of such an hypothesis with all sorts of other factors that no one can realistically have accounted for in any model of something like crime rates.
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on January 11, 2006
You won't really understand the virtue of a gun until you need one. I hope no one ever reaches a situation that perilous, but it happens to thousands of innocent people. My husband has had a concealed carry permit and a semi-automatic on his hip for years. This book finally convinced me it was something I needed to do too.

That perilous time did come for me and my little pistol was there to back me up. The police are a helpful lot, but they can't be with you all the time or at the moment you need them most. Minutes away is sometimes too long when someone is trying to get into your house. Nothing is more frightening, especially when I thought of my baby sound asleep a room away.

I don't live in fear anymore because I am no longer a helpless victim.

The second ammendment is very clear. Requiring a waiting period or banning certain "scarey" looking guns does not seem unreasonable at first. But you give legislators an inch and they will go all the way. Why do you think our taxes are so high?
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on May 1, 2000
In this most momentous book, Professor John R. Lott, Jr., studied the FBI's massive yearly crime statistics for all 3,054 U.S. counties over 18 years (1977-1994), the largest national survey on gun ownership and state police documentation in illegal gun use, and comes to some startling conclusions:
1. While neither state waiting periods nor the federal Brady Law is associated with a reduction in crime rates, adopting concealed carry gun laws cut death rates from public, multiple shootings (e.g., as those which took place in Jonesboro, Arkansas, and Springfield, Oregon, this year, or the 1993 shooting on the Long Island Railroad) - by 69 percent.
2. For each additional year that concealed carry gun laws have been in effect, the murder rate declines by 3 percent, robberies by over 2 percent, and rape by 1 percent.
3. Children 14 to 15 years of age are 14.5 times more likely to die from automobile injuries, 5 times more likely to die from drowning or fire and burns, and 3 times more likely to die from bicycle accidents than they are to die from gun accidents.
This book debunks much of the sensationalized mythology surrounding what has been published in the medical literature based on the politicized, results-oriented gun (control) research of the public health model, and supports and elaborates on Profs. Don B. Kates' and Gary Kleck's previous research about the benefits of gun ownership by ordinary citizens, albeit from different perspectives.
This is a must have tome for those genuinely interested in the criminological aspects of gun and violence research. Dr. Lott deserves the respect of all social scientists working in this area for his groundbreaking research and the accolades of all freedom-loving citizens of this great nation.
Miguel A. Faria, Jr., M.D., Editor-in-Chief of the Medical Sentinel of the Association of American Physicians and Surgeons (AAPS) and author of Medical Warrior: Fighting Corporate Socialized Medicine.(...)
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on January 2, 2001
While supporters of lawful firearms restriction or elimination attempt to rationalize or manufacture "flaws" in Lott's work, it is in fact as close to "bulletproof" (pun intended) as research can be. From a personal viewpoint, this research helped change my somewhat anti-gun stance to a fairly pro-rights one.
Researchers can quibble over the statistical methods used by Lott all they wish-albeit few accredited critics do. But the bottom line is that, by studying all 3,054 counties in the U.S., violent crime was significantly less in those states which allowed citizens to carry firearms. Although many people associate firearms with crime, and some have even developed a prejudice that they cause crime, it seems equally commonsense that criminals should fear a potentially-armed victim, and, logically, some will be deterred from attacking. That, in turn, squares with research showing as many as 2.5 million Defensive Gun Uses annually (Kleck/Gertz, et.al.)
Moreover, previous work by James Wright and Peter Rossi for the National Institute of justice shows that three-fifths of prison inmates studies said they would not attempt to attack a potential victim known to be armed. Real-life evidence can be seen in Switzerland, where gun ownership is mandatory and violent crime extremely rare; it is virtual suicide.
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on July 11, 2006
It would be in the best interest of those thinking of purchasing the book to scan over a copy of it themselves before purchasing it. The especially negative reviews should be scrutinized.....they are obviously written by people who do not like looking at what Dr. Lotts' data says. They claim that he is a mouthpiece for the firearms industry, but the truth of the matter is that the man never even owned or operated a firearm until AFTER he came to the conclusions he did in the paper that subsequently led to this book. He chose to purchase a firearm only after he learned the effects private ownership had on crime.

Another example of misleading information concerns the fellow who referred to the NAS's firearms and violence study of 2005. The study was not done to study whether firearms ownership deterred violent crime; the purpose was to determine what effect legislation and regulation of who can and cannot own a firearm had on violent crime. There was no correlation as the previous reviewer had said, but this is only true if the correlation referred to an increase in firearms regulation with a subsequent drop in violent crime. In other words, they found no proof to substantiate the claim that more firearms regulation means less violent crime.
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