Every citizen in the United States has a constitutional right of self-defense. American constitution recognizes the right of every citizen to use firearms for self-defense. It is thus important for states to pass concealed carry laws that allow citizens to have the right of owning guns. States that have allowed conceal gun laws have recorded a decrease in the level of violence. North Carolina and Florida have recorded lower rates of criminal activities after they implemented conceal gun laws (Lott, 2010). Criminals have revealed that they fear attacking citizens who possess guns for self-defense. However, some critics argues that if citizens are allowed to carry guns, crime rates will increase, because felons will have easy access of guns to commit crime. States that allow all citizens to carry guns have low crime rates.
Statistics of Violent Crimes
Statistics shows that concealed carry laws reduced crimes in states that have implemented them. In accordance with the statistics obtained by researchers on the effects of concealed carry laws, the states that have enacted these laws have been able to reduce rape cases by 5%, murder rates by 8.5%, assault cases by 7%, and robbery by 3% (Eide, Rubin & Shepherd, 2006). In the United States, Vermont is one of the five safest states. The laws in this state allow all citizens to carry firearms without the need of paying any fee, without seeking permission, and without going through any waiting period. In addition, murder rates in Florida reduced significantly when this state introduced conceal carry laws in 1987. FBI reports have revealed that murder rates in this state have reduced by 52% since the conceal carry laws were passed in this state. Violent crimes also reduced in North Carolina after it introduced conceal carry laws that allowed citizens to be given permits for owning guns. In 1995, the number of violent crimes in this state was 45,016. Violent crimes reduced to 34,033 in 2010. Analysts argue that the decrease in this number could be attributed to the fact that more than 275,000 people in this state own guns.
One of the reasons why carry laws help to reduce violent crimes is that guns are important tools for self-protection. According to research conducted by the Clinton Justice Department, citizens who abide by the law use guns in about 2.5 million times each year to defend themselves. Cases exist where citizens have been able to defend themselves against rapists or robbery by using handguns. Concerns for self-protection among all citizens have motivated states to pass laws that would allow students to carry guns to schools. Such states argue that it will help in promoting campus safety and reducing violent crimes (Vito, Maahs & Holmes, 2006). Some states are also considering passing laws that would allow people to carry guns in restaurants and bars. If citizens carry guns in these social places, there is a high chance that they will ensure their self-protection and thus reduce the cases of violent crimes. According to John Lott (2010), “When criminals commit a crime, they want to reduce the risk to themselves.” It proves that criminals will not commit violent crimes when they know that citizens carry guns for self-defense. Studies conducted by Clinton Justice Department also revealed that in case of attacks, armed citizens kill more criminals compared to police. It shows that guns used for self-defense help to reduce violent crimes. Recently, a murderer killed twelve innocent lives and injured 58 citizens in a movie theater in Aurora. The murderer used a pump action short gun, semiautomatic handgun, and semiautomatic rifle. Critics argue that this murder could not have happened if citizens were allowed to carry guns for self-protection in movie theaters.
Conceal carry laws also help to reduce crimes in states, because criminals claim that they always try to avoid citizens who possess guns. Criminals argue that they prefer conducting burglary when owners of a house are away, because they fear confrontation from the owners. In addition, criminals claim that they prefer being arrested by an armed police instead of meeting a victim of a crime who is armed. This is because most victims of a crime kill the criminals when they get a chance of preventing a crime from happening. Most police arrest felons when they catch them committing a crime. In contrast, citizens owning guns would rather kill criminals than hand them to police custody (Lott, 2010). Due to this, violent crimes are likely to reduce in states, because felons fear being combated by citizens owning guns.
Some critics argue that states will increase crime if they allow citizens to carry guns. Criminals will likely shoot victims when they discover that they have a gun for self-protection. Gun conceal laws argue that a citizen owning a gun will respond well while defending himself in case of a combat. However, this citizen may not have good training on how to use a gun or handle stressful situations. It proves that citizens carrying guns can help in promoting violent crimes instead of reducing rates of crime. Police have also reported cases where citizens possessing guns kill each other because of personal conflicts (Carter, 2002). Such murder cases increase the rate of violence in states. Moreover, if states allow citizens to carry guns, it would be difficult for police to track guns used to commit violence. Offenders may steal the gun of registered citizens and use it to commit violence. Violence will therefore increase, because it would be hard to track criminal offenders.
To conclude, states that allow citizens to carry guns have low levels of crime. Statistics reveals that crime rates have reduced in those states that have implemented concealed carry laws. Vermont is one of the five safest states, because it allows citizens to carry guns without any conditions. In addition, crime rates in North Carolina decreased, because the law there allowed citizens to carry guns. Conceal carry laws help to reduce crimes, because they aid citizens to defend themselves. In addition, criminals fear attacking citizens who possess guns. However, some critics claim that crime rates will increase if states allow citizens to carry guns, because they will make the guns readily available to felons.